Vietnam, Central Coast and Highlands
Info : Ancient Civilisations
Visit the Cham Museum in Danang, once the centre of the ancient Cham civilisation. Hindu in origin, the Cham people left a legacy of sublime sculptures, now housed in the only museum, as they were pushed south by the advancing Vietnamese invaders.
Continue to the Marble Mountains for a photo stop en-route to Hoi An. These five rocky outcrops are said to represent five natural elements, and are the source of many intriguing legends, as well as housing temples and once even an army hospital! You will see skilled artisans carving all manner of statues from marble sourced locally at the mountains' base. Just a short drive from Danang, the unique trading town of Hoi An was a civilisation cut off by destroyed rail lines and a silted river, leaving it untouched by war and frozen in time. See architecture reminiscent of traders of a bygone era - Japanese, French, Chinese, and Indian, as well as beautifully preserved ancient houses. No cars are allowed to pass through Hoi An, rendering it an excellent walking village. Visit the unique Japanese covered bridge and a Chinese communal house. Shop for art at one of the numerous galleries and enjoy the riverside ambiance.
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Lyria was marvellous. The trip was perfect.