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Vietnam - Christmas Day

Guerilla Gallivanter - Christmas in Vietnam

Don’t tell my family, but this was the most memorable Christmas I’ve ever had – and there wasn’t a turkey or Christmas tree in sight. For a Christmas break in 2011 from my teaching job in Korea, a group of friends and I decided to head to Vietnam. Accustomed to being on the opposite side of the world from Canada, I was more excited to spend Christmas in a foreign country than I missed being at home. Actually, I didn’t miss home at all.


On Christmas day, we woke up early to do a tour of the Ku Chi Tunnel system the Viet Cong built during the war. It was an unforgettable and exciting learning experience, which was concluded with the chance to shoot an AK-47 and an M-16.


For Christmas dinner, we found some directions to a special restaurant that served cobra. Little did we know they had bat as well. We picked out some cobras and bats and began the process. The cobra blood was mixed with a whisky, which was poured over the beating heart into my shot glass. I gulped down the shot quickly, and we proceeded with the two meats cooked in several ways. The cobra was chewy, but the bat? One of the tastiest meats I’ve tried!

This Christmas I hid in a Viet Cong sniper hideout

Cobra blood and whisky coctail


One of the cobra dishes - quite chewy, but tasty!


I asked to open the bat's head to try the brain

What did you miss the most about home? Spending Christmas in another country is in some ways a big sacrifice, and in other ways a big gain. You give up your traditions to learn new ones – which is a valuable learning experience. Spending it with friends rather than family is a sad reality of long term travel. No regrets.

What is your next dream Christmas destination? My next Christmas destination would be Iceland to meet my unborn nephew/niece and do a photography driven road trip.

Read more from David at Guerrilla Gallivanter or follow his travels on Facebook.

1. Full Name, Age, Sex

Scott Tisson, 31, Male


2. Blog / Publishing Title details?

Intrepid Escape

Travel Writer


3. Time spent travelling last year?

4 months


4. Planned travel in the next 12-24months, When & Where?

May - July 2015: Spain, Greece, and potential one other trip in Europe

August 2015: Australia

October: Thailand, potentially Philippines

Nov & Dec: Australia (Flexibility to go to New Zealand, Fiji or South East Asia)

January 2016: unplanned, Australia based (Same flexibility as above)

Approx June 2016: South America, including Columbia, Brazil & Peru


5. Activities Experience / Preference? 

All of the options (Treking Dry Land, Ice & Snow, Jungle, Animal Safaris, Water sports, Climbing, Aerial Activities)


6. Regional Preference? 

Asia, South Pacific, Mediterranean, Western Europe, South America

Please let me know if you need anything else, or want any more specifics about the blog
Many thanks