Vinpearl – Disneyland meets Communism and Liz stops evolving on a frightener – Day 157 – 24 June

We were up quite early today as we were going across to the small island across from Nha Trang, that holds the ‘Disneyworld’ of Vietnam – Vinpearl. We were picked up one of the very many mini buses that are about at that time in the morning and whisked away. We were going over to the island by cable car and it was a long and high old trip to be making, it is 3km over the sea! Each one of the pylons looked like a small red and white Eiffel Tower on a concrete base – all very impressive. As ever though Liz was a bit worried by the whole thing and gave a little gasp every time we juddered or went over the pylon parts.

By the time we got over, the day looked like it was going to be a good one so all systems go. The park seemed quite full but everything was well organised so queuing did not seem a problem. There are two parts to the place, the rides and the waterpark so we decided to go on the rides first and then hit the water later on. The first ride we tried out was the coasterbob, we had seen this one from the cable cars. It consisted of a chain that pulled each of the cars all the way straight up the hill of the island and then you simply coasted down. Applying the brakes only when necessary. This looked a good way to start the day, not too crazy but also not too tame. Me and the missus jumped into our ‘bob’ and were conveyed up the steep incline. It was really high and the ride down was great but my wife also acted as the applicator of the brakes, or at least her screams did. She screamed so I had to apply the brake or suffer the consequences … lol. A great ride though and great views of Vinpearl from it.

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Uphill on the Coasterbob – both very relaxed

Next up we went on a rollercoaster ride which was nice enough and a bit corkscrewy and  had primed the belly – well mine anyhow – for the next ride the much more traumatic ‘Evolution’. About one nanosecond in and Liz realised she did not like this one bit and unfortunately we had a few real tears and unhappy ones at that on the ride. If she could have got off or got the staff to stop the ride I think she would have. It was a really fast ride which left us upside down for far too long for Liz to handle and she was much happier when the whole process had finished and we, somewhat shakily got off. After this a bit of a change of pace to calm us down a bit and first we went on the swing carousel and then after for a bit of a sit down on the 4D cinema which was more relaxing. Then we watched one of the park’s Disney-style parades, which was a bit more Smurf-based than using the standard fare American cartoon characters, lots of people dressed up in costume walking on stilts too giving a most entertaining procession.

After all the excitement we were a bit famished so we went to one of the park cafes, which was reasonably enough priced. The problem was in the numbering system and who was being served at any one time, it all seemed a bit chaotic and haphazard but we all got served in the end. Or at least ‘we’ got served so I just walked off with the food and let the rest fight it out. Here I had made a bad food choice in that I plumped for a’local’ dessert. This had the flavour of ‘sweet’ and that was it there was no other accompanying flavours to broaden my tastebuds horizons. It was sweet so that in itself qualifies it to be a dessert in Vietnam and this is probably why we have not, thus far tried any desserts here. Our meal had filled the spot though so it was now time to de-clothe and give the watery park a bit of a test ride.

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Smurf-Based fun and frolics down the street.

The waterpark was great, I managed to get on just about every ride there was and if there is such a thing as a bad water ride I have yet to discover it. Although this park did have one that me and Liz went on which nearly broke our backs but just how necessary are backs really in the scheme of thing? (Only joking, do not try these things at home kids!). Getting up to the tops of the rides was much more of a pain as they had metal mesh stairs to climb and these were a killer on the feet. After running round the rides we then popped into the wave pool and after bullying some 3 year olds into giving us their rings we had a great time jumping in and out the rings and generally having a good laugh. This was until I nearly got stuck in one and at that point you know you have just gone too far.

By this time, late afternoon, it was now getting on for the afternoon Dolphin show and this started off okay but as we were watching it a small storm seemed to be heading our way from Nha Trang and you could see it advancing over until it reached us and the heavens opened and we were deluged. I am not sure who was wetter us or the dolphins and the show was actually finished early to allow everyone to get out and find somewhere to dry off. The place had been covered but the wind simply blew the rain under the cover so we were all soaked through.

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– It’s raining                               – What do you mean raining?   – Well its where you get all wet. – ?????

Off we trudged to the aquarium, the rain by this time had stopped but we needed somewhere just to dry off a bit and the aquarium seemed as good as anywhere. It was small but all done very nicely with plenty of colourful stuff both fish and animals to see. As the day in the park came to a close and the Sun went down we walked back to get the cable car to the mainland which in some ways was even more impressive at night. Vietnam has the capacity to keep on surprising us, it is not only brilliant at doing the things you expect but the park is something everyone would see as a departure from the norm yet it was all really well done. It wasn’t Disney but it was still a full day of entertainment and awfully good fun to boot.

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Goodbye Vinpearl – a most excellent place for a lark or two

Once back at the digs all that remained was to go out for a night-bite and a couple of beers to celebrate the day. As the day had taken its toll, we plumped for an Indian restaurant across the road from the hotel and here we had two of the hottest but best most flavoursome dishes we have eaten since coming away and that is saying something indeed. What a most excellent end to what had been a brilliant day!

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