I've made my decision for January. This travelling thing is only going to last so long, so I'm going to take maximize the sh*t out of my travelling and go to Vietnam. Although I would have preferred to stay with Duvine, they don't offer many tours in January. So I'm using Butterfield & Robinson (which kinda seems a little extravagant, so I'm not sure what kind of co-cyclists I'll have).
The plan is to fly from Tana to Johannesburg (because of flight times I have to spend almost an entire day there, which I hope to use as time to get a haircut & pedicure), then to Hong Kong, then to Hanoi. I would arrive in the evening, have the next day to myself, and then start the tour the day after that.
I'm really looking forward to the lower mileage. We average around 25km/day which is about 15-20km/day less than the Piedmont tour is. Also, I see a lot of "flat countryside" and "fields". Hills can be good to break up the day, but the "rolling hills" of Piedmont took me a little too far out of my comfort zone.
Here's the schedule:
Day 1: A 25 km (16 mi.) ride through the picturesque fields and towns around Hue.
Day 2: A 24 km (16 mi.) bike ride through the countryside with sections along the Perfume River, with an additional 13 km (8 mi.) option. (HAHAHAHA!!! Yeah right!)
Day 3: A 28 km (18 mi.) ride on slightly rolling terrain with a 18 km (12 mi.) long option.
Day 4: A 24 km (16 mi.) loop ride around the fl at countrysidesurrounding Hoi An.
Day 5: A 28 km (18 mi.) ride along the Cai River to the sea.
Day 6: A 36 km loop (24 mi.) bike along challenging coastal road.
Day 7: A 27 km (18 mi.) ride through the fl at countryside of Nha Trang.
Day 8: A 28 km (18 mi.) ride along the quiet roads of the Mekong.
Before booking the tour, I had to check out the hotels. I'm all fine and dandy getting dirty, roughing it a bit, but at night? I want a nice hotel. I want a clean hotel. I want a hotel....with a spa. I've checked out the hotels and they look pretty killer.
After the cycling, I have a couple of options that I have...oh...SEVEN MONTHS to figure out. Maybe I can meet Louis somewhere, or maybe I can find a beach to lay in and soak my tired muscles.