Well thank you Vietnam......
for making my first mid-life crisis, empty-nest adventure so wonderfully brilliant. From Hanoi to Hue to Ho Chi Minh city, I have fallen hopelessly in love with this wonderful country and it's people and quite honestly I can't wait to go back..
And yes, despite being fifty-something, we did survive with just rucksacks and we didn't need half of what we took. We didn't get sick, as everyone said we would and we definitely didn't need the help of an organised tour, which quite frankly, having watched many shuffle by, looking knackered and miserable, we are soooo glad we avoided.
Because that's the beauty of modern technology. If you can use the internet, all the information you need is available to book your own itinerary. We trawled through Trip Advisor, Booking.com and Airbnb, making notes, reading reviews and finally pulling a trip together that we hoped would tick as many of our boxes as possible in three weeks. We booked a mixture of Homestays, overnight trains, budget hotels, treks, cruises, street food tours, cooking courses, taxis, internal flights, mopeds and even a posh hotel, all from the comfort of our kitchen before we left, our accommodation when we there or even the airport at last minute. And amazingly, nothing went wrong. Not one single thing. It all turned out to be a brilliant adventure from start to finish, all of which I will tell you about and pass on tips in my next series of blogs.
I know I keep harping on about it but life is short and there's a big amazing world out there, offering experiences that you can't ever really describe but which enrich your soul and hopefully make you a better human being. This fifty-something window of opportunity is too good a chance to miss especially if you're still fit enough and brave enough to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself.
So follow my blogs over the next few weeks as I try and show you that life at fifty doesn't have to mean a Thrifty Fifty Travel card or a Saga Holiday. It's not too late for an adventure and it's never, ever too late to chase a sunset!