Sunlight streams through the window, trying to squeeze open my eyelids and wake me up with its golden radiance. I groan, feeling the cusp of a headache coming on as I glance at my watch and see the time. 5:30.
I am beginning to doubt my decision to wake up so early on vacation.
But the view of the sparkling blue waters outside beckon me to forget the headache and hurry up and get my swimsuit on. A few minutes later, I pull on my water shoes and skip out the door, my family following close behind.
Dawn is just breaking, beautiful golden rays stretching out in a heavenly blush while the light scattered away perfect swirls of grey and white clouds, all of it reflecting gently onto the glassy ocean.
I had hoped, since it was so early, that the air would be cooler, but no such luck. The air is almost stifling with humidity, and the sun hasn’t even been out for more than fifteen minutes. My skin feels heavy and sticky just standing there.
So we head to the water, Mama and Micah heading to the left to swim, Papa and I heading to the right to explore those boulders in the distance that are so irresistibly calling to me to climb. Hòn Vợ Chồng, or the Couple’s Rocks.
We wade through the water, cool and refreshing, and dodge seaweed and other debris lying on the sand. Soon we reach the boulders and come up with creative ways to climb them, squeeze through them, and jump on them, all of which is very thrilling and, in the case of slippery moss, very challenging.
But during the long, exhausting journey, my eyes are constantly bathed in the beauty of the tranquil ocean and vine covered boulders. I breathe in the salty ocean air of morning with joy. It is starting to be worth waking up so early.
We arrive at the boulders and step out of the water onto the sand. The sight is so calmly majestic as bright light peeks out of the clouds. Boulders are scattered everywhere, some in the water, and I can just imagine a mermaid sitting on one and bathing in the sunlight.
I can imagine the mermaid so well, in fact, that I decide to be one. I wade through the water and perch myself on top of a boulder, gazing out at the beautiful ocean.
But the hot reality soon kicks in, and I wade back through the water to cool off a little. There is a trail heavily trodden by tourists, but at that hour there are only a few people and Papa and I pick our way among the rocks with ease. They form incredible shapes and arches, and climbing them is like a perfect nature playground.
We reach the highest boulder/mountain and have a spectacular view of the lapping ocean capped with silver light. How beautiful it is! I’ve been to Vietnam more times than I can count, my first visit at a few months old, but this is the loveliest sight I have ever seen.
The sun starts to rise and we know it’ll be hot soon, so we head back and get a few last surprises. The vine covered boulders are so irresistibly beautiful, with purple flowers dotting them. Lush green plants line a high staircase, with bright pink tropical flowers curling out to say hello.
At the top of the staircase, I glance back and see the whole Hòn Vợ Chồng with the ocean in the back and hot pink flowers in front. This tropical jewel was worth the long journey. It was worth the stifling heat.
And yes, it was worth waking up so early.
2 thoughts on “Dawn at Hòn Vợ Chồng”
Wow, that place is beautiful. Those pictures make me want to dive into them and smell, touch, hear. I have a sudden urge to go to a beach in Vietnam.
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It really is! Yes, you should definitely visit one day! The beaches in Vietnam are one of a kind. It’s amazing how tranquil and quiet they are compared to the cities.