Ho Chi Minh Highway
Ho Chi Minh Road or Ho Chi Minh Highway (Vietnamese: Đường Hồ Chí Minh) is a highway in Vietnam. It runs from the north to the south of Vietnam, west of National Route 1A. The highway was named after Hồ Chí Minh.
The route roughly coincides with the Ho Chi Minh trail during the Vietnam War. It is a two-lane highway and is planned to become an 8-lane highway and it will connect Cao Bằng Province by the Sino-Vietnamese border to Cà Mau Province with the total length of 3,167 km. As of 2007, this road runs from Hoa Lac in Hanoi to Ngoc Hoi in Kon Tum Province with a total length of 1,234.5 km.
In the provinces of Quảng Bình, Quảng Trị, Thừa Thiên-Huế and Quảng Nam, the road divides into two separate roads: Đường Hồ Chí Minh Đông (Ho Chi Minh Highway East) and Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây (Ho Chi Minh Highway West). Đường Hồ Chí Minh Đông is a well-traveled road with many trucks, towns and restaurants along it. There are few steep hills on the Đường Hồ Chí Minh Đông, with the exception of the portion of the highway in Quảng Nam just before it merges with Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây. Conversely, Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây cuts through extremely mountainous areas with steep hills and few gas stations. Consequently, all heavy traffic avoids these portion of Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây. At times heavy-rain washes out small segments of Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây, making it impassable to trucks and cars. Many farmers allow their goats, buffalo and cows to graze along the roadside, and they frequently wander onto the road, so drivers must be careful on this stretch of the road.
When the highway was first built, a small portion of Đường Hồ Chí Minh Tây within Thừa Thiên-Huế and Quảng Nam passed through Laos, but the highway now stays completely within Vietnam's borders.
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