Vietnam — Next stop — Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam

Time to move on — time for a train ride

September 2015

After my three-day excursion to Ha Long Bay, I returned to Hanoi for one evening before moving on to Ho Chi Minh City.

For my trip from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), I decided to go by train. Specifically, I would be travelling on the SE5, which leaves Hanoi at 9 am and arrives in Saigon the next day around 8 pm. A total of 35 hours on the train. I was excited about this trip, I love travelling across countries by train, and I was looking forward to experiencing my first train ride across Vietnam.

Rather worryingly, when I told the hotel staff that I was travelling from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) by train, they kept giving me looks of 'you poor sad fool' and even told me I shouldn't attempt such a journey as it would be uncomfortable and unpleasant. They even offered to book me a flight. And when the taxi driver dropped me off at the station, he wished me good luck! All of this didn’t fill me with confidence.

But I was worrying for nothing. The train ride turned out to be one of the highlights of my visit to Vietnam.

I booked a soft sleeper with a bed and air conditioning for the trip. The sleeper was designed for four people.