9th September, 2017.
The day dawned clear after overnight rain but it promised to be an extremely humid day not a happy prospect as we would be visiting areas where Australian troops had been based during the Vietnam War.
The view from our hotel room before we checked out.
We picked up a local guide prior to our first stop at Long Phuoc, a former village standing on a maze of tunnels, a few miles south-east of the Australian Base at Nui Dat.
Part of one of the tunnels is open for tourists to explore and the entrance features a static display representing a group of Viet Cong.
I was not keen to explore the tunnel but Erich was game.
Another display inside the tunnel.
Our next stop was at Nui Dat, where the Australian troops lived and trained.
Standing on the helicopter landing area looking towards the remains of Nui Dat hill, which had been partially removed for use in local road making until the authorities realised that no hill would mean no Australian tourists and stopped its destruction.
The surrounding area is now farming land.
Our guide had an interesting folder of maps and photographs which gave us a good feel for how the area looked during the war.
Looking along what was the 1 km long airstrip for the base.
We visited the nearby Kindergarten co-funded by the Australian Vietnam Volunteers Group. It was school holiday so the place was deserted but we could have a look around the area.
The Long Tan Memorial was quite an emotional stop for most of our group. We had a short service and each placed a memorial flower.
Nui Dat Hill in the background.
For more information about Long Tan – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Tan_Cross
More Vietnamese ingenuity – a three wheeled motorbike parked outside our lunch venue.
After lunch our coach made its way back through Ho Chi Minh City to My Tho, a city on the Mekong Delta. Once again we had water views from our hotel but this time it was a river view.
Our hotel’s facade from the riverside with the open air restaurant to the far right.
Although the hotel was not fantastic, its restaurant was very good. We had never seen a whole fish presented like this. It was delicious; even the scales!