Cu Chi Tunnels
Depending on the time of day you leave Saigon, traffic will dictate whether your trip to the Cu Chi Tunnels is either 1 or 2 hours each away. Although parts of the Cu Chi Tunnel tour is a bit morbid, it’s pretty amazing to see not only the tunnels themselves, but how the Vietnamese lived within them. You’ll probably hook up with an affordable guide to tell you all about it, and if you’re lucky you’ll catch one of the very anti-American videos being shown in “bunkers” throughout the site. There are a few tunnels open for tourists to crawl through. The first one you’ll likely come accross is more “original” in size. The entrance is tactically-tiny (too small for most, but perfect for Vietnamese to squeeze through) and the tunnel itself is very congested and dark. There are other, longer tunnels, that have been modified for Western tourists to explore – the entrances are much larger and the tunnels themselves have been made wider. If you’re 6 feet tall and 200lbs you’ll fit through the tunnels OK, and they are lit from start to finish. Check out the photos of the Cu Chi Tunnels on my flicker page.
The Cu Chi Tunnel Firing Range
While you’re crawling through the Cu Chi Tunnels you can hear rounds bursting above ground as there’s a firing range on site. At the time I visited, there were 6 guns to choose from ranging from pistols to machine guns. I shot the AK-47 and the M60 machine gun, videos below. The cost was $1 per round (bullet). Of all the haggling and bargaining that seems to be standard in Vietnam, it appeared that the $1 per round cost was not up for negotiation. Also, for anyone that’s been to a firing range before and knows the risks, you’ll want eye protection. They do not provide eye protection (although they do provide ear protection), so bring your own or at least wear sunglasses.
Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)