To make my journey through Vietnam cheaper and easier I bought somehing called an open tour ticket, this costs you roughly $50 USD and with it you can designate which plafes you want to stop and stay at along the way. You can inky get on and off these busses at certain stops so for me to make my way to Hanoi I thought it was ideal as it wentnto all the places I wanted to go and only one I didn’t so I could easily skip that. From Saigon to Mui Ne I had my first encounter with these busses which have about 50 seats in them that can all recline to about a 15-20 degree angle, yes you get to spend the whole journey laying down, soumds great right? It’s not..
Okay I might be an extreme case and other people might say they are great but for me they just don’t work. I’m top tall for one thing, I’m slightly too wide too which makes lying on my back feel uncomfortable. If I lay on my side of course I curl my knees up a little which then usually I hit on a bit of metal over lumps and bumps (of which there are many) and if thats not enough last night I spent my night on the back row at the bottom. Here is a different deal, at the back there are two sets of four beds four above and four below, the beds in the middle of these do not adjust so you have no choice but to lie down amd if your as tall as I am if you sit up you have to really sit forward or you put your neck in a really uncomfortable position. Just to add to the pain there are three other people next to you giving you no sideways movement whatsoever and if you have ever spent any length of time on a bus you will know the worst place to feel the bumps is right at the back.
I don’t actually think I slept that much if at all, I knew I had 12 hours on this coach in this position and tried not to look at my watch the whole time but I got on the bus at 19:15, remember looking around 22:00, hetting off at around midnight to eat at a place unsure if what I was about to eat would stay inside me for the rest of the journey or not. Then getting back on the buss and trying not to think about sleep, checked my watch at both 02:00 and 04:00. When 06:00 came around I knew the end was close and all I could do was hold in there, by 08:00 the bus had pulled into Hoi An, I got off relieved that I no longer had to feel all the lumps in the road along the entire length of my body and began to find my feet once again, grabbing my bag and avoiding the motorbike guys who were trying to tell me they could take me to the place I was staying for cheap whereas the place I was staying actually did a free pick up. Nothing is cheaper then free so I took total advantage of that.
Bag dropped off, shirt changed and checked in. I walk out of the hotel, grab a Bahn Mi and a drink to try and settle my stomach and headed for the beach some 2km walk. I have decided that this is not the way you should travel through Vietnam. Not only do you not really see anything but you get to experience even less, next time allow more time and buy a bike for the whole journey or hook up with a rider, the roads may be more dangerous than on the bus but I would give anything to not have deal with my upcoming last overnight bus journey.