This was, by far, my most adventurous day on my trip. It started out slow. I walked around Bai Chay until the cable car opened at 2pm. My plan was to cross over to the amusement park in Ha Long Bay, and leave to check out the market and (possibly) try to climb Poem Mountain. Unfortunately, after crossing I learned that I could not leave the amusement park and was forced to ride back and take a cab. I went to the market and then made my way to where there was a secret entrance to climb the mountain. I got to the area and a woman immediately came up to me and pointed up. I nodded, and she took me through her house (up a ton of steps) and to a locked gate on a trail going to the top of the mountain. In order to get through the gate, she guided me to climb over the fence and through a tree that was at least 40 feet above the ground. It would have been very easy to fall during the process. Needless to say, I made it over and climbed to the top of the mountain. My return trip over/through the fence was more difficult for me to navigate, so I was very grateful that two boys happened to be there to help me.
After a long day I was looking forward to getting dinner at a place recommended by my host. I made a wrong turn that took me 20 minutes out of the way, so I had to double back and then walk an extra 20 minutes! When I got to the restaurant they said they were closing. After some searching, I found a small cafe that was open. They didn’t serve food, and did not speak English. Thanks to their translator app, I was able to communicate my predicament and they made me some ramen! It was not the dinner I’d hoped for, but it was so nice to find strangers who were so willing to help me out.