Tag Archives: travel photography

An hour’s drive from Hoi An is the ancient World Heritage Hindu site of My Son (pronounced Me Sohn). Seventy Cham temples were built between the 4th and 13th century.  The twenty remaining temples are being restored under difficult circumstances given the area’s heat, humidity and propensity to flooding. In the 1930s, French archaeologists identified all of the periods represented at the site and began the first restoration work. In its original state, the site was comparable to temple complexes at Angkor Wat in Cambodia, Borobodur in Indonesia and Bagan in Myanmar.

Around fifty of the temples were destroyed in August 1969 when My Son, known to be a base for North Vietnamese guerrilla fighters, was carpet bombed by American B52s. Bomb craters are evident across the site. Unexploded ordnances are known to exist in the surrounding areas.

my-son-world-heritage-site-15-oct-2016-2 my-son-world-heritage-site-15-oct-2016-3 my-son-world-heritage-site-15-oct-2016-4 my-son-world-heritage-site-15-oct-2016-5 my-son-world-heritage-site-15-oct-2016

To assist with the conservation of the Old Town of Hoi An and to gain access to some of the historic buildings, the purchase of an Old Town ticket is required. This afternoon we used one of the five tabs on that ticket to visit the Tan Ky House, a two hundred year old building that has housed nine generations of the same family. It’s a mix of Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese design.

The family still lives in the house that is regularly subjected to flooding from the river. They have a pulley system installed to raise the ground floor furniture each time the river breaches its banks.

tan-ky-house-ceiling-13-oct-2016 tan-ky-house-hoi-an-13-oct-2016 tan-ky-house-lantern-detail

Last night after dinner in the company of a Canadian woman, we watched, from our “fresh beer” drinking vantage point, young couples participating in the Pot Breaking Game. Blindfolded and armed with a stick to smash a small clay pot, they competed for prizes of lanterns and purses amidst much hilarity when the target was missed. The position of the pot was adjusted to match the height of the contestant.


This place has a way of slowing down your pace when you stay for more than a few days. The rainy season also dictates whether a stroll is in or out of the question. This morning we ate breakfast at Rosie’s Cafe, a business venture started by two young Vietnamese women. They specialise in coffee, cold-pressed juices and all-day (until 3 pm) breakfasts.



Here are some of the highlights from this morning’s walk in the weather break, which included a wander through the food markets.


What a treat this museum was. A tribute to the history of ceramic tiles in Portugal, and a few Dutch tiles thrown in for good measure. Here’s a representative sample.

I will attribute the pieces and artists at a later date when more time’s available.

Lisbon - Museu Azulejo 1

Turtles in the courtyard setting of the cafeteria.

Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 2

Best sign for Ladies and Gents ever!

Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 3

The site of the Museum was originally a church.

Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 4


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 5


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 6


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 7


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 8


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 9


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 10

Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 11


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 12


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 13


Lisbon - Museu de Azulejo 14


We visited a dozen temples around Bagan on a day when the thermometer reached 43 degrees C. Everywhere you look in this region, there’s a pagoda to be seen. The interiors provided some level of comfort from the heat, with the occasional breeze wafting through some corridors.

The people selling local crafts, drinks and mangoes were doing it tough today. Rob bought two mangoes and delighted the women by borrowing their knife and demonstrating the easy way to cut and eat the flesh (with a blunt knife). They declared it ‘very clever’.

A few of the temples didn’t allow inside photography. It was almost impossible to make out the frescoes at Gubyaukgyi. As I was leaving, an elderly woman, whose face was richly adorned with thanaka paste, insisted I go back in. Some local people had arrived and a guide had activated the lighting system. Think light globe on a selfie stick, only with a very, very long cord.

The paths to the temples were so hot today, people were running to get to a cool spot to land their bare feet.

I’ve pared down the photographs to give you some idea of the diversity of temples, architectural styles and decoration.


Shwezigon Pagoda

Shwezigon Paya - zedi

Shwezigon Paya - zedi and tree decorShwezigon Paya - tree decoration detail

Pyat Thut Gi

Pyat Gi Thut exterior

Sulamani Pahto (my favourite, largely because of the detailed frescos and decorations)

Sulamani Pahto - entranceSulamani Pahto - exterior detailSulamani Pahto - vaulted ceiling detailSulamani Pahto - fresco 2Sulamani Pahto - interior frescoSulamani Pahto - fresco 4Sulamani Pahto - pedastal detailSulamani Pahto - fresco 3

Dhammayangyi Pahto

Dhammayangyi Pahto - exterior

Dhammayangyi Pahto - Sleeping BuddhaDhammayangyi Pahto - marionettes for sale

Ananda Pahto (under considerable restoration)

Ananda Pahto - exterior - stupaAnanda Pahto - grounds - restorationAnanda Pahto - restoration work

Ananda Pahto - scaffold around Buddha

Lunch at Moon Restaurant (Be Kind to Animals) – a cool spot to rehydrate.

Moon Restaurant - garden parasols

Than Daw Ga Pagoda

ThanDawGa Pagoda - Buddha - lava stone - earthquake restoration

Nagayon Pagoda

Nagayon Temple 2Nagayon Temple