Khôi Phạm

in Natural Selection

The Rise and Fall of Phượng Vĩ, the Summer Icon of Our Teenage Dreams

I was a teenage cliché. No matter how much I try to rack my brain to find any other personal connection to the incandescently red tree that is phượng vĩ, I keep going back to my middle school crush and that one tree in the front yard of our school.

in Environment

Another Hoàn Kiếm Turtle Dies in Hanoi, Setting Back Conservation Efforts

It’s reported that a “Hoàn Kiếm turtle” living in Hanoi has died, further impeding efforts by conservationists to keep the species from extinction.

Chris Humphrey

in Society

The Rustic Beauty of Hanoi's Red River Brick Factories

Living in a city as culturally rich and absorbing as Hanoi, it’s not unusual to discover new secrets in a place you thought you knew completely. The depth of the capital really is astounding. And yet, I wasn’t quite prepared for the striking, rustic beauty of the brick factories on the Red River’s north shore.

Paul Christiansen

in Natural Selection

The Ugly Truth of the Life and Impending Demise of the Hoàn Kiếm Turtle

Everyone knows the mythological story of the Hoàn Kiếm turtle.

in Parks & Rec

I Went Cloud-Hunting and Found Peace Atop Đà Lạt's Tea Hill

Northern California is blessed with serene nature. Growing up there, pathless trails and cloudy mountain peaks were my safe havens, and when returning home on break from college, it was a tradition to visit my favorite hideout place: a curvy hill near my old high school. Sitting atop the hill and looking down at the city offer a peaceful means to recharge and quiet my mind. The appearance of clouds adds more to the valley’s awe-inspiring nature.

in Environment

I Saw the World's Most Handsome Bird Right in Vietnam's Hidden Backyard

Everywhere I go in Vietnam, I keep my eyes peeled for the incredible birds that call this country home. Sometimes I don’t even realize that I’m doing it. I scan the horizon above low hills for migratory hawks. I stare into breaks in the foliage for passing buttonquail. I peer into rice paddies, fingers crossed for a cryptic snipe. And, of course, there’s Facebook. I refresh Facebook over and over again, waiting for the arrival of the mandarin duck. Its scientific name is Aix galericulata, which one assumes means “prettiest goddamn duck in the world.”

in Architecture

Amid Bảo Lộc Hills, a Wooden Cafe Floats Amongst the Clouds

In the middle of nowhere Bảo Lộc, perched on the side of an alternative national road is the wooden carapace of Nguyen Coffee, a veritable “Noah’s ark” welcoming travelers in for a short break to enjoy its drinks and spectacular view of the Đá Bàn Stream below. 

in Architecture

Amid a Resort, This Thatched Hut Houses a Zero-Waste Water-Bottling Plant

A humble production hut built with recycled bottles, local timber, thatched roof and simple granito concrete floors is used as a bottling facility for drinking water.

Back Society

in Tech

We Hardly Knew Ye: Flappy Bird Developer Pulls Hit Game

While players of Flappy Bird spent the weekend trying for double digit scores and smashing their phones in frustration, the game’s maker shocked the world by announcing that he would be pulling the ga...

in Tech

Vietnamese Developer who Made Flappy Bird Pulling in $50,000 Per Day

It’s unclear which is the hottest story trending in Vietnam right now – McDonalds opening in Saigon or the surprising success of Flappy Bird. What is clear is that the story of a Vietnamese programmer...

in Development

Vietnam Mulling Options to Improve Road Safety, Air Quality

Vietnam’s worsening traffic and air quality and are no secrets and these problems are likely to get much worse before they get better. Faced with this reality, Vietnam is exploring ways to combat thes...

in Health

Resource: A List Violations and Fees for Motorcycle Drivers in Vietnam

Considering most traffic violations in Saigon consist of a short conversation and ‘tip’ for your friendly neighborhood policeman, we were, admittedly, a bit unfamiliar with the full list of rules and ...

in Tech

Facebook Gets Official in Vietnam

In a bid to increase its ad revenue, Facebook has partnered with a local advertising firm to make some money off of Vietnam’s 20 million Facebook users.

in Development

Saigon House Nominated for Archdaily's 'House of the Year' Award

Green and sustainable buildings are still in their infancy in Vietnam. However the trend is becoming more popular and slowly but surely, Vietnamese architects are entering this arena with great succes...

in Tech

New Site Lets you Search Vietnamese Plane, Train and Ferry Tickets in English

As a foreigner in Saigon, you don’t need to know much Vietnamese to get by. But when it comes to travel, especially by modes that don’t include wings, things can get pretty complicated. Enter Bao...

in Development

Slideshow: A Look Inside Saigon's New Public Toilets

Last Saturday Saigon’s first batch of high-end public toilets (4-5 stars, whatever that means) were opened at Tao Dan Park, 23/9 Park and Le Van Tam Park in District 1. The facilities are part of a p...

in Development

Tet Bonuses Reveal How Teachers are Really Valued in Vietnam

Although Vietnam traditionally revers teachers and those working in education, as Tet approaches teachers working in the state system once again feel their low financial worth.

in Development

Expert: Saigon's Sidewalks a Model for Other Cities

While Vietnam frequently looks to NGOs and international organizations to make policy recommendations on topics ranging from the environment to the economy, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MI...

in Development

[Video] Saigon: Future Megacity

With Saigon's population rapidly expanding, a new set of challanges, both social and environmental have arisen. The city's growing pains have been well-documented and many argue that serious measures ...

in Development

Trend: Vietnamese Factories are Slowly Going Green

Mike Ives of The New York Times published a piece earlier this week on the growing trend of green factories in Asia, using Intel’s chip factory in HCMC as its focal point. According to the article, co...

in Development

Saigon to Add High-End Public Toilets

In what can only be described as exciting news, city authorities have launched a pilot program to add ‘5-star’ public toilets to the busy streets of Saigon. 

in Development

Vietnamese Airlines Order Hundreds of New Planes but There’s Nowhere to Park Them

Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet and Jetstar have all placed ambitious orders for hundreds of new planes to upgrade and expand their aging fleets. But with the expansion of Saigon’s Tan Son Nhat still years ...

in Tech

Vietnamese Teachers Told to Monitor Students via Facebook

In what is being seen as a bizarre move, Vietnamese teachers are being instructed to join Facebook and other social networks in order to ‘manage’ their students more effectively.

in Development

After Massive Auto Tax Breaks, Will Saigon Become a Parking Lot?

It looks like Saigon won’t be able to avoid the 'car age' after all. Under new import rules for 2014, autos produced by ASEAN neighbors will receive a 50 – 60% tax reduction and many fear that Vietnam...

Brian Letwin

in Health

Back to the Basics: The Struggle for an Organic Vietnam

After recent health scares from chemically-laced produce and dubious Chinese imports, Vietnamese consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the fact that they don’t know where their food comes from....

in Development

Flower Power: US$190 Million Pledged to Develop Da Lat's Hi-Tech Flower Industry

Da Lat, the flower growing center of Vietnam, is about to get a huge financial boost. The municipal government recently approved a VND4 trillion (US$190 million) credit package in effort to turn flowe...

in Health

The 'Most Interesting Man in the World' Helps Clear Central Vietnam of Unexploded Ordinance

Jonathan Goldsmith, more commonly known as 'The Most Interesting Man in the World' from the wildly popular Dos Equis Beer commercials, recently teamed up with non-profit, Clearpath International to he...

in Health

Behold: The Invisible Bike Helmet

If you’re tired of bulky helmets ruining your carefully manicured style, 2 Swedes have created a product you may be interested in – an invisible bike helmet.