Though the urbex movement was born in the catacombs of Paris and the storm drains of Sydney, the pastime’s 21st-century popularity has more to do with the invisible cities shooting up aboveground.
Speaking about the urbex crew that climbed London’s 310-metre-tall superscraper, the Shard, Matthew Power described their mission as an attempt “to rediscover, reappropriate and reimagine the urban landscape in what is perhaps the most highly surveilled and tightly controlled city on earth”.
In Vietnam, we’re relatively lucky. For the most part, the buildings in this country haven’t yet been locked down. We can indulge in the fun part of urbex without the risk.
But change is coming, as fast as 80-storey buildings can crowd the skyline. It’s time to enjoy our cities while they still belong to us.
To explore your urban environment and gain access where access if difficult to gain, here’s what you have to do.
1) Take only pictures, leave only footprints
2) Don’t leave cigarette butts!
3) Don’t break stuff
4) Don’t talk too loudly
5) Don’t throw stuff off of buildings
6) Be respectful to anyone you meet. Greet them with a smile and a reasonable explanation
7) No flips flops. Adjust the dress code to the level of urbex you’re planning
8) Don’t dress too flashy. Long pants help you to look like a responsible adult
9) Take water
10) Always keep a flashlight on you