I always love a good story about how someone gets off the path and finds a unique way to get around a country to see it in a way most of us never will. Motorbiking in Vietnam is one of those great trips. I will never do it myself. I can’t manage a Vespa, much less a motorbike. But, when Ant and Elise from Positive World Travel asked me to review their book, I said yes. Plus, they were really fun to follow during their round the world trip, I couldn’t say no.
Motorbiking up and down Vietnam is gaining in popularity with many travelers. So Two Wheels and Rice Fields is timely. And, it helps that Ant and Elise did it themselves. As they correctly state, there isn’t much information out there on how to do it. So based on their experience and, as they say, their mistakes, they’ve written this book.
What you get
- Safety information
- What gear you need
- How to maintain your bike
- Top places to visit along the way
- Etiquette tips for the Vietnam
- Tips on accomodation, food, festivals, weather, visa, language, border crossings
- How to handle your driver’s license and other permits
- How to select your bike, and considerations for renting or buying, and then how to sell it once you’re done
- Additional resources list
- Guide to common phrases a traveler needs
- $1000 in coupons and discounts for tours and accomodations throughout the country
The book has lots of photos of Ant and Elise riding around the country, giving me confidence that they really have been there and done that. It’s the kind of in-depth guide that can only be written by people with first-hand experience.
The first part of the book is chock full of tips. I was impressed at how detailed they were and the amount of topics they covered. Then the book turns into a guide for traveling around Vietnam. They include lots of little towns that you might have missed otherwise. But, if you’re on a motorbike, they are all clearly accessible. I particularly liked the ¨Unforgettable Rides¨ section. It’s a handpick selection of some of Ant and Elise’s favorite rides. Some are perhaps expected like Hanoi to Halong Bay. But, there are several others that I wouldn’t have known about otherwise.
Finally, knowing Ant and Elise, I can only assume that if you have questions after you buy the book, they will respond and help you out. They are very passionate about travel and very approachable.
If you are heading to Vietnam and want a different, independent experience, then you should definitely buy this book. It will save you a lot of time and hassle.