Founders' Stories | Easy Riders of Central Highlands
The Central Highlands are my favourite part of Vietnam. Culturally you are amongst numerous ethnic minorities. Visually, there are beautiful windy mountain roads to drive, waterfalls to swim in, and amazing viewpoints. And physically, you are isolated; this part of Vietnam is not touristy yet.
I motorbiked without a local guide for most of Vietnam but decided to take on an Easy Rider D for a couple days. And travelling with D, who spent a lifetime growing up there and has about 15 years of experience as a tour guide added a whole new layer to the experience. Instead of driving by, speculating what people on the side of the roads are doing or then doing research after, travelling with D is like having your own personal Wikipedia! I think the most rewarding thing about travelling with D is that you get access to “locals only” places without feeling like you are intruding. I swam in an amazing waterfall with a natural hot water shower; I was able to ask questions about local communities and get an immediate and honest response; and I learned so much more about the cultures of all the different ethnic minorities.
D is all personality. If you ask the right leading questions, you get some real life stories about the American War in Vietnam, how he grew up, and some of the crazy things he has done in his life. When I repeat some of his stories to my friends, the phrase "you can't make this sh*t up" comes up all the time.
Easy Riders is just a term coined in Vietnam for riding pillion on the back of a motorbike while your guide takes you on a day trip and sometimes travellers ride for a month with their Easy Rider! It all started in DaLat then DaNang and now there are “Easy Rider Offices” in just about every tourist town. This concept has created many jobs and opportunities.
Chickenfeet Travels is still trying to work with more in Vietnam to enhance your local experience. Plans are in place for Da Lat, Far North, and Thanh Hoa/ Hoa Binh region, we just want to make sure we have found the best person for the job.