Rusty Compass - an independent travel guide to Cambodia and Vietnam

Travel guide to
Cambodia · Laos · Vietnam

handpicked · independent

From the archive: The Last President's Driver

Photo feature

From the archive: The Last President's Driver

This man, Cu Thach Banh, was the driver for South Vietnam's last President, Duong Van Minh. I met... enlarge

FEATURES

Remembering General Giap's passing 6 years on

Hanoi Video

Remembering General Giap's passing 6 years on

Vo Nguyen Giap is the most celebrated modern military figure in Vietnam. He led the defeat of the French at Dien Bien Phu in 1954 ending almost a century of colonial rule and... more

Is the tide turning against heritage destruction in Vietnam?

Ho Chi Minh City Blog

Is the tide turning against heritage destruction in Vietnam?

The past decade has been devastating for Vietnam’s built heritage. Three recent decisions suggest that the tide may be finally turning in... more

The other remarkable thing about Pu Luong Vietnam? No piles of plastic

Pu Luong Blog

The other remarkable thing about Pu Luong Vietnam? No piles of plastic

Pu Luong, around four hours south of Hanoi, looks set to become the “next’ destination in Vietnam’s breathtaking mountainous north. And... more

One of Vietnam's most historic churches faces demolition

Hanoi Blog

One of Vietnam's most historic churches faces demolition

Vietnam’s three decades of rapid economic growth have not been so good for the country’s built heritage. The distinctive Bui Chu Cathedral... more

Vietnam in the 1990s - Qantas returns to Saigon

Ho Chi Minh City Blog

Vietnam in the 1990s - Qantas returns to Saigon

In December 1990, I was aboard the first post-war Qantas flight to operate between Australia and Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon). It... more

Vietnam's first international tourism campaign - from 1991?

Hue Blog

Vietnam's first international tourism campaign - from 1991?

I’m gonna hazard a guess that this was the first post-war Vietnam tourism promotion in a Western country. It was 1991 and Vietnam was just... more

Introducing a special new tour by Rusty Compass - Vietnam by the Book

Hanoi Blog

Introducing a special new tour by Rusty Compass - Vietnam by the Book

It's more than 25 years since I ran my first tour through Vietnam. After a long break from leading tours, I now head back out on the road... more

RECENT REVIEWS

Train Street - Hanoi

Hanoi see and do

Train Street - Hanoi

IN EARLY OCTOBER 2019, HANOI AUTHORITIES MADE A DECISION TO CLOSE THE CAFES ALONG TRAIN STREET IN LIGHT OF SAFETY CONCERNS. more

Craft beer - Saigon's craft beer scene

Ho Chi Minh City nightlife

Craft beer - Saigon's craft beer scene

If you love your craft beer, you’ll feel right at home in Saigon. Vietnam is the largest beer drinking nation in South East Asia and Saigon now... more

Breakfast in Saigon - our picks

Ho Chi Minh City eating

Breakfast in Saigon - our picks

Where are the best places to grab breakfast in Saigon? This is our handpicked collection of the best Saigon breakfasts from smashed avocado for the... more

Casa Italia Restaurant, Hanoi

Hanoi eating

Casa Italia Restaurant, Hanoi

Part restaurant and part showroom for Italian luxury brands - Maserati, Vespa and Armani - Casa Italia is located in a grand colonial-era villa in... more

Tam Vi Restaurant, Hanoi

Hanoi eating

Tam Vi Restaurant, Hanoi

Delicious Vietnamese cuisine - the stuff Vietnamese eat rather than a hybrid for tourists - in a cool design space. These places are rare in Hanoi.... more

Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi

Hanoi see and do

Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi

An early morning or late afternoon spent wandering around legendary Hoan Kiem Lake is a perfect way to start or end any Hanoi day. The lake is the... more