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Private tour Hoi An – My Son from Hue with Professor Dirk Wendtorf

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Departure from Holiday Diamond Hotel in Hue city, we drove South on Highway 1A towards Da Nang city. Firstly, we had a brief stop at the Lap An lagoon, which is famous for its oysters (oyster is a kind of food that makes a man stronger ...). Our second stop was at Lang Co beach where we can see the bridge that goes into the Hai Van tunnel. Apparently, the Lang Co beach is like a blond hair of a beautiful girl standing next to a handsome knight, which is the Bach Ma mountain. Then, we went to the top of the Hai Van pass. Hai Van pass was a physical border between Vietnam and Champa in previous times. Certainly, there we walk to the old French fort used by Americans and South Vietnamese Army. At the top of the pass, you would have a panorama of Da Nang to the South and Lang Co town to the North. This pass was featured in BBC's 2008 Show Top Gear Vietnam Special.

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

After crossing the Hai Van pass, we followed the Nguyen Tat Thanh seaside road into the downtown area of Da Nang city via the Red Beach where the first 3500 US Marines landed in 1965. Along the way to Hoi An, you can see various Da Nang iconic architecture, e.g. the Administrative Center - the tallest building of Da Nang,  the Dragon Bridge representing a fast growing city, or the My Khe beach also known as China Beach by American soldiers (Vietnamese prefer the local name). We had a brief photo stop at the My Khe beach. From here, you can see the Monkey Mountain (Son Tra mountain in Vietnamese) in the distance.

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

We also stopped at a stone sculpture showroom close to the Marble Mountain for a short visit. The village nearby is famous for its stone carving. Fortunately, it was a nice display of stone carving products including Buddha, Jesus Christ, ...

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

We continued our trip to the ancient town of Hoi An where we visited the typical tourist attractions including the Japanese Bridge, the Fujian Assembly Hall and the old Tan Ky House. Unlike the common tours of Hoi An ancient town and My Son sanctuary departing from Hoi An, our tour departure point of Hue requires us to squeeze the time at the old town for the sake of My Son holyland. 

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

After about one hour of walking, we had lunch at the  Morning Glory restaurant right in the center of the old town. We enjoyed the Hoi An specialty of "Cao Lau" for lunch. Cao Lau is a Japanese-styled noodle that is very unique dish of Hoi An. It goes well with herbs, pork and rice crackers.

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

After our lunch break, we continued our trip to the My Son sanctuary. It takes another one hour drive. This was on 4th of July, the Independence Day in the US. Normally the weather at this time of the year is very hot. Luckily, we had a little bit of a breeze on this day which made it more bearable.

When we arrived at the My Son sanctuary around 13:30, we had a short drive with a golf cart and a bit of walking before reaching the main site. On the right side of walking pathway, you could see the Cat's Tooth Mountain. The first main site we saw was Group H which was reinforced with metal post to prevent it from collapse.

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.
 
From the position of C1, you could notice an axis from D2 to C2. If we consider C1 a temple, then D2 is a meditation house and C2 is a gate leading to the worshipping area in front of C1.

US Bombing destroyed most of the structures here during the Vietnam war. We could only wander around the ruins and imagine the heyday of the Champa kingdom centuries ago.
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.
 
From the position of C1, you could notice an axis from D2 to C2. If we consider C1 a temple, then D2 is a meditation house and C2 is a gate leading to the worshipping area in front of C1.

US Bombing destroyed most of the structures here during the Vietnam war. We could only wander around the ruins and imagine the heyday of the Champa kingdom centuries ago.
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

While strolling inside the B-C-D complex, we heard some Cham dance music from afar. Thus, we interrupted our visit for a while and headed straight to the Cham dance performance building for a short break. Fortunately, there were still several performances, such as the Cham dancers Apsara, or the Cham flute Saranai.

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary

Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.

Once the Cham show finished, we returned back to visit the structures at group G, group A. Thereafter, we visited group E-F. Unfortunately, there are many bomb craters within the area of these groups.
 
Finally, we made a loop back to the golf cart and be driven back to our private car. At 15:00, we headed north to Hue. It was a long day and took us a combined 11 hours of driving.
 
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary.
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary
Private tour Hue Hoi An ancient town My Son sanctuary