Travel with your teddy bear in Vietnam. Why not?
Traveling alone can be boring. But traveling with others is not always pleasant.
But there is one perfect companion you may have forgotten: your stuffed animal. Who else can provide unflagging companionship and never asks for anything in return?
As it turns out, when these following avid travelers in Vietnam hit the road, they always make sure to leave room in their backpacks or suitcases for their furry friends.
Dinh Xuan Son, a college student, brought a huge teddy bear with him when he traveled more than 300 kilometers from Hanoi to Ha Giang on his motorbike. “I came up with the idea when I realized that would be a long and lonely trip.”
Son said it was nice to have the bear with him watching the sunrise or sunset and enjoying the beauty of nature.
Son isn't the only adult traveling with a stuffed animal. In fact, a few other young men might just have a teddy bear tucked away in their suitcase. Le Nguyen Trong Binh, a 30-year-old living in Hanoi, has traveled across Vietnam, from the north to the south of the country with this small teddy bear.
And it isn't just men who travel with stuffed animals. Pham Kim Lien, 20-year-old student, has a bear that she takes away with her whenever she travels. “I am a solo traveler because I want to test the limits of myself to see how strong I could be when things get hard. But I don’t like being alone, so the bear goes everywhere I go”.
The bear's gone everywhere Lien has been in the last few years. They met each other recently.
“I sleep with my stuffed bear every night. He’s kind of my security blanket. When I travel alone, there are two things more of a priority than anything else: my stuffed bear and my guitar,” said 23-year-old Nguyen Hoa Van.
Hoang Nam, from the Mekong Delta’s Can Tho City, has a stuffed monkey when traveling. Nam said the stuffed monkey is a nice reminder of home whenever he is on the road to explore the world out there. “My stuffed monkey makes the journey become more memorable,” said Nam who has never forgotten to leave room in his backpack for his stuffed animal.
Travellers say hugging a teddy bear reduce their stress level after a hard day.
And a large number of the bear-toting travelers are men.
Photos courtesy of the travelers