22nd of August – Adventure at Bach Ma National Park
After the spiritual trip to one of the biggest and most significant temple and Bodhisattva statue, today I left for Bach Ma National Park. Asking for permission from the higher rank masters, the female monk who took me to many places before could come with me to the national park. I really wanted to see it as it looked so beautiful on the picture.
As long as it is nature and requires hiking it’s easy to win me. The taxi driver of the master took us to the park. Well, the entrance was a bit tricky. You have to pay 60.000 VND for each person. Then there is a car road at 16km length that lead to the top. Either you pay 700.000 VND to get a car going up, either you wait for other people to come so you can share the car. But of course no one was there except us. Or you could book a tour going there.
If someone has car to drive up, they let them enter for free. Luckily the taxi driver drove us up. The road was full of curves. Just similar or even more adventurous than the one I went on at Da Lat pass. The view was amazing. The green, greenish-blueish shade of the forest shaping the curve of the hills plus the white sky. It felt so free and mysterious. I wondered what was inside.
It was long to get to the top though. At least 20-30 minutes must have passed. I really didn’t want to leave the place and just wanted to see the scene. Arriving up there we had to take a short walking trail to get to Hai Vong Dai. It’s a building from where the whole scenery could be seen. The building itself is a museum to display the fauna and flora of Bach Ma. I went up to the roof and took a picture from there. To my surprise a group of Buddhist masters (who stayed at the temple near my guesthouse) also gathered having a tea there. It was like a picture. On the high, in the middle of the mountain where a group of Buddhist master having a tea. A scene of tranquility. Never felt that calm before. I so wish to stay there for the whole day.
But of course we still had to go back. Not so soon though. We heard Do Quyen fall was very beautiful we went to look for it. Then our trekking started. We were walking inside the forest. The trail wasn’t that hard though as the road are all built. There was a cave leading somewhere but it looked so creepy so we skipped. We found the Five Lakes instead. It was five small lakes next to each other but separated by rocks. The water was crystal clear but so cold.
Walking walking we finally found the waterfall. But we arrived at the top of the fall. The scenery was wonderful though. I sat on the chair there and saw the green hills with the sky. The water was falling down and the sound plus the scene was so calming. That was the time I so felt in love with the nature that I wish later when I get old, I would have a house in the mountain.
I was desperate to see how it looked from the bottom. We met a man who said to be the maintenance of the park. Others kept telling me there was no way down but when we were ready to leave I wanted to check out a place. It was a way going down. The board said 689 steps led down and only people with good health were advised to go down. Others told me it wouldn’t be worth it as there was not a lot of water. Moreover that much step would be a pain. I didn’t care about the 689 stairs. I just wanted to go down. I didn’t know when I would go back there, so no matter what I had to take that chance to climb that 689 stairs. I was thinking I would deal with it later. Inside I really hoped there was another way to go up.
It took at least 20 minutes to go down as it was very steep. The weather was humidly hot as well and it didn’t help. Finally we arrived but the fall wasn’t that impressive. It was summer and it didn’t rain a lot in Hue so there wasn’t much water falling as well. But a picture was a must.
The challenging part started after. We had to go up. I wanted to pray for finding another route, but no chance. We had to take 689 stairs up. The man we met up there held my hand and literally pulled me up. His speed was much faster than mine so it was hard to catch my breath. I thought the stairs would never end. Luckily we arrived back to the top of the fall. I sat down to catch my breath. The wind was blowing plus the hilly scene with the sound of the water. So calming scene.
It was time to go home, though, so we took the trail to go back to the parking lot. Of course we took a wrong path. Getting out to the road, we realized the car was much up. So the taxi driver walked up to get the car for us. I and the female monk enjoyed the scene. Then we went home. On the way back I couldn’t do anything except sleeping. At the guesthouse I had to have a bath and lie on the bed. I was out by the stairs.
Dragon boat on Perfume river
In the evening a girl who is a student of the master took me to the Perfume river to see the traditional singing of Hue on dragon boat. We could see some people singing and playing traditional Vietnamese musical instrument. The singing was amazing.
But the people who were on the boat as well, they drank, smoked and made noise. I was so disturbed by them. Fortunately the scene of Hue city from the river was nice. The representative bridge changed its colour and it was windy.
Later we could let lotus flowers flow on the river with candle lit in it. The more lotus candle, the prettier it looked. It felt like in the film when the person let the lotus go and it would make our wish come true. The singer did explain why it was significant and said a lot about Hue’s culture. But due to the drunk men nothing could be heard. I wish to leave the boat as soon as possible.
Then we went to eat che with the girl. The day ended “simply” like that. I have to say the 689 stairs made me feel satisfied. I missed the feeling when I was totally out due to an intense trekking. I realized how important it was to stick to my wish and kept going after it. If that time I agreed with the others and left, probably now I would still have thought “I should have done it.” Of course it was exhausting and while taking the stairs I wished I had never gone down. After all the easy road doesn’t give anyone satisfaction. We still need to work hard for what we like in order not to have any regrets.