Mui Ne is a nice resort area in Phan Thiet, near Ho Chi Minh City (south Vietnam).
Mui Ne is a town and cape located 180 kilometers east of Ho Chi Minh City (220 kilometers on the current highway). In 1999, the town of Mui Ne, plus the village of Hon Rom and Suoi Nuoc Beach north of Mui Ne were combined into one ward and, along with a number of other communities along the coast, were annexed by Phan Thiet. This annexation nearly doubled the population of Phan Thiet to just under 400,000, thereby allowing it to be registered as a city.
Northeast of the city center of Phan Thiet, the coastal road climbs over the slope of a hill in Phu Hai ward and descends onto the long, sandy crescent of Mui Ne Bay in Ham Tien ward. The formerly little-inhabited beach west of the fishing town and cape of Mui Ne proper has seen some serious development in the last 20 years. Now it is a 10 km long strip of resorts that line up like pearls on Nguyen Dinh Chieu and Huynh Thuc Khang streets, shaded by coconut palms.
Given the choice, nature would move the sand around, much to the dismay of some developers. Beach sand tends to migrate up and down the coast seasonally, leaving some (but not all) spots with just a concrete breakwater rather than sandy beach. There is always a good sandy beach somewhere along this 10 km beach. If a sandy beach is important to you, some research is called for before booking a resort in Ham Tien ward.
A few bargain hotels have popped up on the inland side of the road, across from the beach-side resorts. If you stay on the inland side, you will need to pass through one of the resorts to reach the beach, which might or might not result in some hassle from the guards. The resorts jealously guard their lounge chairs and palapas, though the beach itself is open to everyone. If all else fails, you can always access a nice sandy stretch of beach via Joe's Cafe at 86 Nguyen Dinh Chieu, with a drink purchase.
Within the past few years, resort development has expanded into Mui Ne ward, as well as along the coast south of the Phan Thiet city center in Tien Thanh commune and the area around the Ke Ga lighthouse. Phan Thiet and most particularly Rang Beach in Ham Tien ward is very popular with Russian package tour tourists which means most of the restaurants have signs, names and menus in Russian. With the decline of the Russian Ruble, Russian tourist numbers have dropped, but since late 2016, they are again on the rise.
Mũi Né ward itself has two beaches; Ganh Beach and Suoi Nuoc Beach, both with an increasing number of resorts, shops and restaurants. Strong sea breezes make all the beaches of Phan Thiet very popular for kitesurfing and windsurfing.
Rang Beach in Ham Tien ward was first discovered by many foreigners when they descended on the area on October 24, 1995 to watch a solar eclipse. Scientists had predicted that one of the best places in the world to see the total eclipse was on the beaches northeast of the Phan Thiet city centre. Guidebooks directed would-be astronomers to the beach along Mui Ne Bay, incorrectly referring to Ham Tien as ‘Mui Ne’ and Rang Beach as ‘Mui Ne Beach’. This confusion has continued and most tourists still think that all three wards east of the city center are called Mui Ne.
Many overseas visitors reach Phan Thiet via "Open Tour" buses that run between Ho Chi Minh City and Phan Thiet or Nha Trang. Most depart from HCMC between 7:30 and 9:00AM or PM (7:30AM for Sinh cafein air-conditioned bus, arriving at Ham Tien at about 1:00 PM, same for the night schedule). In the opposite direction, buses typically depart from Ham Tien around 2:00PM or AM and arrive in HCMC at 7:00PM or AM~ five hours at night or in the morning. Joe's Cafe is a good place to catch an outgoing night bus as it offers full service until late at night. Outside HCMC, the coach will stop at a petrol station with a pretty large shop and stalls selling snacks, drinks and fruit.
The buses stop in front of most resorts in Phu Hai and Ham Tien, so there is no need to take a taxi. Besides Sinh Tourist, Tam Hanh, Hahn Cafe and Phuong Trang coach companies offer regularly scheduled trips between the Pham Ngu Lao area of Ho Chi Minh City and the tourist areas of Phan Thiet. Although Sinh Tourist only delivers customers to Mui Ne resorts en-route to Nha Trang after a meal stop at their resort in Ham Tien, coaches from the other three companies will take tourists to their resorts in Mui Ne immediately. Both seats and sleeper buses are available, depending on the company. The cost is about US$6 each way. If you are traveling to HCMC from Phan Thiet with Sinh Tourist, you will most likely be put on an already full bus traveling from Nha Trang. Since you are not assigned a seat you may not be able to sit with any traveling companions, and at some of the less scrupulous travel agents you may not even get a real seat (we were put on a mat at the back of the bus with four other people).
Public buses from both destinations also travel to Phan Thiet city center, though finding the departure stations and figuring out the schedule might be difficult for visitors. It's not worth the trouble unless you have a strong need to depart at a different time of day than when the Open Tour bus leaves. Travel agencies play dumb because they don't earn anything from helping you find a public bus.
A train runs daily from HCMC to Phan Thiet, departing at 6:50AM and arriving at around 10:30AM. The return trip leaves Phan Thiet at 1:10PM. The cost is around USD$8 per person each way for the air-conditioned chair car. The train station in HCMC (Saigon Railway Station) is in District 3, about 3 km from the center. The railway station in Phan Thiet is about five km (150,000VND taxi ride) from the beginning of the Ham Tien resort strip, and taxis are abundant to take you there. Keep in mind that a ride all the way to Mui Ne costs up to 400,000VND from the train station. There is a mid-sized red-color local bus #9 that waits at the train station every day to take tourists into Phu Hai, Ham Tien and Mui Ne wards. The cost is currently (2017) 35,000VND per person.
The train offers a great view of the countryside and avoids the endless honking of horns and seemingly erratic driving. The dining car sells food and beverages, including hot soup, and is a comfortable 'hang out'.
You might consider going from Saigon to Phan Thiet by Taxi, instead of Open Bus or train. The departure times of the Open Buses might not suit your schedule and they are slower than a private car or taxi by up to two hours. The drivers often make various stops at rather bad restaurants. The ride by taxi takes 3 to 4 hours, depending on the road condition, and will cost $70-100 US-Dollars, depending on your ability to bargain. Talk with all taxi drivers in the airport to get the best prices.
There are a few toll roads on the way to Phan Thiet, so tell the driver, that you want a fixed price with all fees included. Using the taxi counter at the airport will usually increase the bill to more than 110$.
It takes about 3 1/2 hours driving from Ho Chi Minh city center to Phan Thiet. Taxis and private cars are available at all times of the day or night from the airport. However, arrangements must be made in advance if you wish to take a private car from the city center.
Motorbike taxis (xe om) are everywhere and their drivers will bug you each time you leave the hotel. Bargain hard to get appropriate prices (10,000 to 15,000VND is enough to pay for a ride from one place to another along the main strip). Taxis are also abundant, with fares slightly higher than HCMC but still reasonable (starting at 12,000 dong to around 20,000 dong).
[[Image:IMG_8421.jpg|thumb|350px|Bikes are the most common method of transport. You can also rent motorbikes and bicycles at many resorts and tour agencies. Since traffic is light, motorbikes or bicycles are a pleasant way to explore the surroundings. Motorbikes cost anywhere from 60,000 to 150,000 dong per day depending on how late in the day you start, how many hours you need them, and the age of the motorbike / type of motorbike (automatics can cost 230,000 dong). The locals say it's getting harder to rent because of bike thefts and police enforcement of Vietnamese driving licenses. Your hotel may rent to you, which may be a bit more convenient since they already have your passport.
Be very careful when riding a bike in Phan Thiet. Traffic is light, but nobody is aware of traffic rules, so you can find yourself in an accident at any time. For example, it is common to see Vietnamese riders turning left from a right lane, driving on the wrong side of the street or going through red lights. Also Vietnamese riders don't stop or even look when entering a main road from a secondary one. If you plan to ride a bike here, investment in insurance will be a wise move.
WARNING: Traffic police in Mui Ne
Be warned that if you rent a motorbike in Mui Ne, you are likely to be stopped by extremely "hardworking" local traffic police (we have been stopped twice in one day on two different spots - locals without driving license seem to be even used to it already and they form a line on the side of the road waiting for the police to go away before they pass the checkpoint). BOTH international or local Vietnamese driving license would be sufficient for you to make it through the checkpoint. Other Westerners we met on the checkpoint without proper international driving license were asked to pay 1,200,000 dong (approximately $50 USD). According to locals the normal fine should be more around 500,000 dong. In case police wants to fine you because you do not have papers for the motorbike itself, you should contact your rental agency. All in all, I would highly discourage driving here without proper driving license (either international or Vietnamese) unless you want to become valued donor of local police.
NOTE: Driving license of some EU countries (Czech Republic, Germany etc) entitles you to drive scooter when you just have license for a car. Unless, you have motorbike specifically mentioned in your international driving license (aka if there is just car mentioned) it would not be sufficient during traffic control and you would still have to pay the fine.
You can rent a jeep to visit the Red dunes, the white dunes, or the fairy stream. This can be done through any travel agency.
There are local buses that can take you into the Phan Thiet city center - blue bus (#1) and red bus (#9). The frequency is around 15-20 minutes, including weekends. You don't have to wait at the bus stop, just wait in front of your resort in Mui Ne ward, on the main street in Ham Tien ward, or on Nguyen Dinh Chieu in Phu Hai ward and wave at the bus. The ticket to take you to Co.Op supermarket (bus #1) or LotteMart shopping mall (bus #9) in Phan Thiet are 13,000 dong (October 2015). Change is given on the bus. There are also tickets for 15,000 dong and 17,000 dong which can take you further. The bus can be also used to travel around Mui Ne, Ham Tien or Phu Hai, however the cheapest ticket still costs 13,000 dong. The last blue and white bus back leaves from the bus stop opposite Co.Op supermarket around 8:30pm/8:40pm.
Vietnamese girl near fishing harbour
- Po Sha Inu tower is a derelict remainder of the ancient Cham culture that was built in the 8th century.
- Fish Sauce Plants, where the famous nuoc mam (fish sauce) is produced. Big jars harbour the concoction that, after months in the blazing sun, is sold all over Vietnam to add some spice to the food.
- The famous Red Sand Dunes (Doi Cat), are located in Mui Ne on the main coastal road at the intersection with the four lane (706) highway. The whole region is fairly sandy, with orange sand threatening to blow onto the coastal road in some spots. The red sand dunes that visitors visit are about 50ha (1/2km²) of open sand on a hillside with ten-meter undulations, staffed by dusty children with plastic slides who will offer instruction and assistance if you want to slide on the sand. Be careful of these children as they will offer to carry your bag for you as you go sliding, then steal your phone or wallet. There are so many boys that you won't be able to tell who did it. The dunes also offer nice views of the coast to the north. In all, it's worth a half-hour visit, especially if you have rented your own motorbike for the day. On the opposite side of the road are a series of small cafes where you can park your motorbike for a small fee if you ride there on your own. Most day tours sold by local tour operators include a stop at the dunes. A number of Mui Ne resorts are within walking distance of the red dunes (Sand Dunes Resort, Pandanus Resort, Nam Chau Resort, Malibu Resort and Blue Shell Resort). The trip by taxi from the middle of the Ham Tien resort strip would be about 150,000VND each way, and less by xe om. It is reachable by bicycle in 30-45 minutes, passing the Fairy Stream on the way.
- There are also White Sand Dunes located 24km north of the red dunes. They are much larger than the red dunes, extending up to 20 kilometers along the coast, and vendors offer dune buggies for rent to drive around the dunes. There are also the omnipresent children with plastic sleds to rent, as well as ostriches to ride. The deep blue lake below the entrance to the dunes and the dark green lotus plants on the shore provide stark contrasts to the white sand glistening in the sun, offering photographers delightfully starkly contrasting colors. Plan 1-2 hours for a leisurely stroll including stops for photos.
- Mui Ne Market and Harbor (Lang chai Mui Ne). Don't miss out on an excursion to Mui Ne harbor and market. Near the northwest end of town is an overlook with a splendid view of hundreds of colorful fishing boats moored in the bay. Further along into town, just off the main road, there is a small but colorful market. If you take your transport just down to the water, you will reach the fishing harbor, where you can purchase fresh seafood or purchase steamed crabs, shellfish, etc. to eat on the spot from local vendors. Walking along the beach, you'll pass by fishermen sorting out their catch, ship-wharfs and, at the southern end of town, a section where clams have been stripped of their shells for many years, so the sand on the beach is by now substituted with littered shells.
- The Fairy Stream (Suoi Tien) is a little river that winds its way through bamboo forests, boulders and the dunes, in parts resembling a miniature version of the Grand Canyon. Local kids will want to accompany you to show you the way (and of course earn a dollar or so), but since you're just following the stream, there's little need. For the most part, the stream is about ankle-deep and no more than knee-deep even at its deepest. It is sandy with few stones and can be walked comfortably barefooted. You can climb up the red sand hills overlooking the river valley and even walk there parallel to the river, however, the sand may be hot on a sunny day, so bring some footwear. Walking upstream for about 20 minutes, you will reach a small waterfall into at most waist-deep water, great to take a refreshing bath before heading back! To reach the stream from Ham Tien market, pass the intersection of the road heading up to the four lane divided highway. At this point, the name of the road changes from Nguyen Dinh Chieu to Huynh Thuc Khang. Continue east until you cross a small bridge. Coming from Mui Ne, the bridge is about two kilometers west of the town. The stream is underneath, you will see a sign pointing towards a path to the left, go that way to reach an easy place to enter the stream. If the boys at the entrance ask for payment, do not pay; all beaches and rivers are free to access in Vietnam.
- Taku Mountain, (About 30 kilometers west of Phan Thiet off of Highway 1A). An aerial tram takes you most of the way to the largest reclining Buddha in Southeast Asia. Spectacular views from the top of the mountain. edit
Kitesurfing is offered by many outfitters and hotels. Kite surfing instruction is available, starting at $50USD/hour, beginners package of 5 lessons start at $250 USD. Peak season is from November through March, with strong winds often occurring on a daily basis from 10-11am until the late evening. Gusty winds are seldom. With strong winds, the waves can be as high as four meters or more. The water is free of rocks, which makes it relatively safe to kite. However, it can get a bit crowded in the peak season as there are up to 300 kitesurfers in the water at the same time. Beginners and Students, who mainly practice close to the beach make things dangerous for swimmers. So watch out for other kitesurfers and swimmers and control the speed, in particularly because swimmers are difficult to see when the waves are high. Accidents between kitesurfers and/or swimmers happen from time to time and medical personnel and facilities that have to deal with victims of these accidents are often inexperienced and inadequate.
There are several kitesurfing schools along Rang Beach in Ham Tien and along both Ganh Beach and Suoi Nuoc Beach in Mui Ne. All employ Beach Boys who will help you to start and launch the kite and it is common to tip the Beach Boys with 1 USD/Day. If you bring your own equipment and don't want to carry it from your hotel and back each day, you can store it at one of the Kitesurfing Schools for $20 USD/week or $60 USD/month, including usage of their compressors and shower facilities.
If you are a beginner who can kitesurf independently without an instructor, but you are not yet fully capable of controlling the direction of your kite, you might want to avoid the area in the center of Ham Tien around Sunshine Beach Hotel and Sakara. This area has many kite surfers and swimmers. Try the western part of beachfront around Windchimes Kitesurfing School. There are fewer kitesurfers there.
Ganh Beach and Suoi Nuoc Beach in Mui Ne ward are suitable only for intermediate/advanced kitesurfers, but the area is much less crowded. The reason is that, unlike Rang Beach in Ham Tien, these beaches face east, directly into the wind. Rang Beach faces south, so the wind blows along the beach instead of directly into it. Two of the most professional schools in Mui Ne are Source Kiteboarding (details in accommodation section below) which runs lessons and rents equipment at Malibu Resort on Ganh Beach and Jibes 2 which runs lessons and hires equipment on Suoi Nuoc Beach.
Surfing girl on the Wave spot
- All-terrain vehicle. You can ride one on White sand dunes.
- Cooking class. If you want to learn to cook Vietnamese food, check out the cooking classes near C2SKY kitesurfing school (opposite Kim Shop), or in the Mia Resort in Ham Tien and in the Pandanus Resort in Mui Ne. You will learn to cook pancakes, Pho Bo soup, shrimp salad and fresh spring rolls. All ingredients are ready, you'll just mix them under supervision of Vietnamese cooks. The cost for these cooking classes is generally around 400,000 VND per person. The Pandanus also offers a cooking 'tour' wherein participants are first taken to the local market to buy the ingredients that they then cook.
- Day Tours. Travel agents and restaurants abound with day tour offerings. The standard half day tour ($10-13 USD) takes in the Mui Ne harbour, the fairy stream, and the red and white sand dunes. Tours normally start at either 5:00AM or 2:30PM so you can watch the sunrise/sunset over the sand dunes. Another tour that is very popular stops at the Poshanu Cham Towers in Phu Hai ward and continues to Taku Mountain for a ride on an aerial tram up the mountain to view the largest reclining Buddha in Southeast Asia.
- Sailing was newly founded in 2010 in Mui Ne. This water sport has been gaining popularity since Mui Ne is considered one of the best places in the world to sail. Classes are available and offered by Manta Sail Training Centre  on 108 Huynh Thuc Khang at $50USD/hour per person, taught by certified international and local instructors. This foreign-owned centre is the only sailing school in Vietnam. The sailing area around Mui Ne harbour is safe and quiet, with no swimmers and only a few kitesurfers.
- Swimming. The sea is wonderfully warm, but it can be quite rough during the windy season, with large waves and a strong rip tide. When the tide is in, there is not much of a beach to speak of in Ham Tien, but the beaches in Mui Ne are largely unaffected. Since large waves normally emerge after 11AM you might prefer to swim in the early morning hours, when the water is flat and free of Kitesurfers. Most mid-range and top-end resorts have swimming pools for their guests. Some are open for day use starting at 80,000VND per day.
- Running. Run the annual Mui Ne Half Marathon held on the gorgeous grounds of Sea Links Beach Hotel every September. Racers and spectators can enjoy a family friendly event with distances of 5k, 10k and 21k to choose from.
- Surfing. Sometimes you get good waves in mornings during the windy season and whenever there is a storm out in the ocean. Lessons, day trips and rentals are available, don't hesitate to ask around. While Phan Thiet is not the best destination in the world for regular surfing, it can be good place to give it a try.
- Windsurfing. If you like to do some windsurfing, go to eastern part of Ham Tien. Starting from Hai Au resort, there are some hotels that offer a good place to rent or store your gear.
- Water Sports. Most outfitters offer a host of water sports including kayaking, paddle surfing, and jet ski rental.
- Gym. Vegeta gym is located on 212 Nguyen Dinh Chieu. It is well equipped. Single entry costs 20000 dong (Oct 2015). Mainly visited by locals, it gets busy in the evenings but it's rather empty during a day. It closes for a midday break. The main drawback is the very loud music. There is also a public gym in Mui Ne on the street mid-way between the town's two stoplights.
- Nail Bar -"beauty salon is located on 25B Nguyen Dinh Chieu, in the "Nam Hai" hotel lobby. It is a place designed for relaxation and beauty. They offer a wide range of treatments: manicure, pedicure, eyelash extensions, waxing, Barber, tattoo, mehndi, braiding and dreadlocks, eyebrow shaping, face care and many more, with professional and sterile equipment.
Along the Ham Tien strip are dozens of small nameless shops; all selling much the same types of sundries and souvenirs. You can find packaged snacks (Oreos, cakes, biscuits, ice cream, etc), liquor, clothing, and lots of tourist supplies. Anything beyond very basic necessities should be brought with you. There are some pharmacies, but it would be wise to bring your own first aid kit.
Standard souvenirs offered include wooden and lacquered bowls, wooden statues, snake whiskey, and pearl necklaces. Compared with Ho Chi Minh City, souvenirs are almost five times more expensive in Ham Tien. The same small wooden bowl selling for $3USD in HCMC is priced at $14USD in Ham Tien.
Several travel agencies along the strip also double as used book stores. Most have a few shelves of English books, along with a small selection in German and French. Books cost 80,000 - 100,000VND and most shops will cut the cost in half if you trade in a book.
- Coop Mart, Phan Thiet (corner of Nguyen Tat Thanh and Tran Hung Dao), ☎ 3.835.440 - 3.835.455. 8:00AM - 9:30PM. A large, Western-style grocery store that also sells books, jewelry, and necessities. If you can't find what you're looking for in Mui Ne or Ham Tien, you may have better luck here. edit
- tropical mini golf, 97 Nguyen Dinh Chieu (close to Saigon Mui Ne casino), ☎ 0084640211720. a nice 18 holes mini golf in a Tropical garden with french restaurant and lounge bar. edit
- Lotte Mart, Khu dân cư Hùng Vương I (Take the red #9 bus from Mui Ne, Ham Tien or Phu Hai.), ☎ 062 3939 616, . 8AM - 10PM. Phan Thiet's newest shopping mall with four levels of shops, stores, a supermarket and a cinema complex. edit
Most resorts, particularly in Ham Tien, are surrounded by restaurants. The food is invariably fresh, well-prepared, and served in friendly and interesting surroundings. By all means get out of your hotel and try one of the local restaurants. The best restaurants are a motorbike ride away, found outside of the tourist/resort district on the ocean.
- Smoky House, 125 Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street. Offers large, high-quality meals, and offers all customers free ice cream.
- Joe's - The Art Cafe, 86 Nguyen Dinh Chieu St, Ham Tien (Next to Backpackers and Full Moon Resort), ☎ +84(0)62-374-3447. 7am to after midnight. Joe's is the only place that stays busy in the low season... with live music every night all year round. Here are half a dozen of the nicest bungalows in Ham Tien and some budget rooms as well, but the cafe dominates the place with huge canopies above the gardens and sofas. It still has the cozy feeling of their old cafe offering Western fare, from cheap sandwiches and breakfasts to steaks and fajitas. They have a two group Italian espresso machine and Bobby Brewers coffees as well as a full ice cream bar and a 24 hour convenience store in front. The sandwiches with home cut (60,000 dong) are also recommended. There are a couple of big tvs with HD service for sports and movies, free pool table and foosball. The laid back music and seating goes great with Free WiFi. It's a great spot to find out what else is going on later so a lot of people go for the early happy hour to meet. It's a great place to access the beach. Check out the 99,000d pizzas in happy hour, 15,000d big saigon beers and the great selection of wines too. drinks 10,000 - 60,000 dong, meals 50,000 - 120,000 dong. edit
- Snow Restaurant and Club and Sushi Bar, 109 Nguyen Dinh Chieu St. Snow Restaurant famous for its coolness air-conditioned hall. European, Japanese, Russian and Vietnamese cuisines. All dishes are adapted under European taste and this is give you opportunity to try exotic dishes such as filet of crocodile or unusual fish and don't lose your enthusiastic for Asian food. After 10PM cocktail bar. Evening cinema-sessions. Free Wi-Fi Internet, free pool and free transfer from Taxi Malin to the restaurant and back to the hotel. Friendly staff.
- Sindbad kebab, (opposite Pogo club). You can find good beef/chicken/veggie kebabs, shawarma and tsasiki here. Open until 1am. (10.95533,108.23269) edit
- Santimatti pizzeria, 83 Nguyen Dinh Chieu St, . The best pizzas in town. Italian cousin at its best — pizzas, pastas, salads and wine. Place is nice looking, with good atmosphere. Locals and long stayers enjoy 10% discount — ask for you membership card. Owner is often in place, so expect fast and enjoyable service. (10.94314,108.19332) edit
- Pho Bo and sandwiches, (west of Pogo). The only place to have food in the middle of the night (since Joe's doesn't serve food late at night anymore). Go east just past Dragon Beach and you will see a small pavilion on the right. They serve nice sandwiches with chicken and scrambled eggs (30,000 VND). Also you can have Pho Bo here. (10.954996,108.224588) edit
- Lâm Tòng, 92 Nguyễn Đinh Chiêu, T:062-3847598. is right on the beach next to Jibes and 2 doors down from Joe's Cafe under some shady palms. You can even sit at tables in the sand. There's a little hut with hammocks strung (no hammocks, Feb 2016). Try one of the pancakes (bánh xèo) with condensed milk (sữa đặc), the fried fish with lemon, and the chicken fried in fish sauce. Cheapest seafood around, squid or shrimps for around 55.000 VND. Don't expect friendliness from the waiters, though.
- Deja Vu, Vietnam, 21 Nguyen Dinh Chieu, Phan Thiet, ☎ 01242136033, . 11.00-24.00. Everyday live music, a cozy shisha room on the roof, a cute garden with summer houses, and a playground for children are all a part of the experience at Deja Vu. The works of co-owner Tuna who was trained in the Soviet Union are also displayed inside the restaurant. The cuisine includes Vietnamese, European, seafood, and exotic dishes. Every Wednesday, Deja Vu features different attractions such as a Kung Fu Presentation and a Vietnamese Culture evening. edit
- Chillout Cafe, 155 Nguyen Dinh Chieu. 5pm-late. Chillout cafe - comfortable and cute atmosphere for companies and couples. Soft sofas, games and perfect music. Great and already legend Frozen exotic cocktails and absolutely the best water pipe (shisha) in town. And of course don`t foreget to try pastas and burritos. Most popular dish. $. edit
- Ganesh Indian Restaurant, 55, 57 Nguyễn Đình Chiểu, Hàm Tiến, tp. Phan Thiết, Bình Thuận, Vietnam. Probably the only Indian restaurant and yet very good Indian dishes, e.g. must try their naans and butter chicken! May be suitable for those looking for a restaurant that does not serve pork. edit
- Dong Vui Food Court, 246/2B Nguyễn Đình Chiểu, khu phố 3, Hàm Tiến, ☎ 0123 451 7858. The furniture throughout the center of this court is very eclectic, but like Joe's, it works and creates a nice comfortable atmosphere with very good music. There are a dozen or more food stalls with a wide range of cuisines, from Spanish to Peruvian to Indian to Thai and, of course, Vietnamese. Many of the stalls are owned and operated by foreigners, some of whom are kite surfers, so don't go here during the day. Try the Paella and the Piri Piri. edit
The 'bar scene' has changed dramatically in the past two years. Wax and Fun Key, two of the oldest establishments went out of business in 2016. DJ Station has rebranded itself and Pogo and Joe's are still great places to spend the early hours of the evening. The biggest addition to the scene is Dragon Beach.
- The Club, 56-97 Nguyen Dinh Chieu across from Saigon Mui Ne Resort. For the casino, discothèque, billiard, karaoke suite type. Has all the casual elegance you could want. The casino uses all computerized tables, meaning there are no live dealers. The touch-screens are, by admission of the manager, "very sensitive." If you make bets, even accidental (such as accidentally pressing the 'repeat bet' button), they are binding. Gambling here, particularly more so than any other casino, is done at your own risk. Vietnam has no regulations governing these sorts of enterprises, and ultimately a dispute will come down to who can bribe the police more.
- Pogo Bar, 138 Nguyen Dinh Chieu. Very popular place. You can expect surfers and expats here. Cocktails and buckets are cheap and very tasty. edit
- Pho 24, Middle of bay. Lam runs this great place which serves delicious pho and cheap beer and cocktails. edit
- Dragon Beach, 120/1 Nguyễn Đình Chiểu, khu phố 2, Hàm Tiến, ☎ 090 304 25 66. 1PM to 4AM. This is currently the hottest late night spot in all of Phan Thiet. Dragon Beach boasts two dance floors; one inside and the other outside. The crowd is usually a mix of gay and straight Vietnamese and Chinese in the early hours, especially on the weekends. After 1AM the crowd changes dramatically and becomes almost entirely westerners and tourists. The outside dance floor often has pole dancers, fire dancers and bonfires on the beach after midnight. edit
- Joe's Cafe, 86 Nguyễn Đình Chiểu, khu phố 1, Hàm Tiến, ☎ 062 3847 177. The best spot on the Ham Tien strip to spend an early evening. Live music nightly and good food. edit
- Old Fashioned Bar, 151 Nguyễn Đình Chiểu, khu phố 1, Hàm Tiến, ☎ 166 830 74 32. 7PM to 3AM. Probably the only place that can be called a bar or pub to European standards. No local alcohol (up to 30 bourbon and whiskey options), rock music and occasionally live, wide range of bar food and decent wine list. edit
Phan Thiet has literally hundreds of properties to choose from, in every price category (US$2-$500).
If a sandy beach is important to you, some research is called for before booking the Ham Tien area. Many "beach side" resorts are actually against a sloping cement wall that leads into the sea. The sand itself migrates up and down the long coast seasonally leaving some areas with expansive beaches and others with little at any given time.
A few bargain hotels have popped up on the inland side of the road, across from the beach-side resorts. If you stay on the inland side, you will need to pass though one of the resorts to reach the beach, which might or might not result in some hassle from the guards. The resorts jealously guard their lounge chairs and palapas, though the beach itself is open to everyone. If all else fails, you can always access a nice sandy stretch of beach via the Wax Bar at 68 Nguyen Dinh Chieu.
Remember that during Tet (Vietnamese New Year), hotels are booked way in advance.
NOTE: Beware, mosquitoes and sand flies are a big nuisance, so bring or buy either insect repellent or long-sleeved shirts and pants for the evening.
Go east of Pogo bar in Ham Tien or into Mui Ne to find best budget offers in the wards east of the city centre. If you're really on a budget, you might consider camping out at Longson on Suoi Nuoc Beach for $4 per night.
- Long Son Mui Ne Campgrounds and backpackers square.Website 706 St., Hon Rom, Long Son, Mũi Né. Tel. 84 90 268 64 89 Campgrounds with dorm and bungalow option, $4 for single tent, $4 for a double tent, $7 for the dorm; Special Prices on Friday. Tents come with mattress, pillows and blankets. In Mui Ne ward on Suoi Nuoc Beach. Clean beach, activities, bike hire, bar, Resort living at backpacker prices. $1 menu, $1 cocktails. Free-Wifi.
- Lan Anh, Huynh Tân Phát, Mui Né. Coming from Phan Thiet, turn left when entering the town, in the corner where there's a business called Nhà Tho. Local guesthouse in the town, close to shops, market and street food stalls. Perfect for experiencing local life. Owner family can barely understand english but are nice. Room with 2 double beds, fan, fridge, toilet and tv. Free WiFi. 150.000 VND / $7,5.
- Hon Di Bungalows, 70 Nguyen Dinh Chieu (km 13), Trl: 062-847014, firstname.lastname@example.org. Has simple but nice bungalows with fan and attached bath for US$10-12. There is a shady courtyard strung with hammocks, and four of the bungalows are directly facing the beachfront. A small restaurant and Internet-access cater for your needs.
- Bao Trang A nice small bungalow with a beach frontage a few doors away from Sinh Cafe ( turn right when exiting from Sinh Cafe office) Rooms are US$10 and $15 for fan and air-conditioned rooms respectively.
- Keng Guesthouse, 185 Nguyen Dinh Chieu (About 100m east of Phuoc Thien Pagoda), ☎ 062-3743312 (email@example.com). Simple and clean guest house with all the usual facilities on the quiet end of the main strip, about 15min walk to the bar and restaurant area. Very fair prices for food, fruit, or drinks. The owner can speak decent English and is very friendly, she will try to help you with whatever you may need. Dorm 100,000, rooms from 160,000. edit
- Guest House 20 20 Nguyen Dinh Chieu Tel 062 3741440 email firstname.lastname@example.org. Very nice guest house on main strip with beach access, double rooms start at just $15 and they also organise tours and transport for you. Very friendly staff, family owned and run and great rooms.
- Mai Am Guesthouse 148 Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street Beachfront bungalows with AC, working shower, and mesquito net - which is needed - and nothing more. Clean pool. Beach seating with chairs and mats, although some of furniture is falling apart. Can hear next door bar to 3AM nightly which may bother some. Also, they have these monkey cages in the courtyard for some reason. 30-45$ a night.
- Nam Chau Resort, Khu phố 5 Mũi Né, ☎ 062 3849 323. One of the best bargains in Mui Ne. This resort is quite large and it's 46 bungalows are spread around a very nice garden on Ganh Beach, just below the red sand dunes. It has a nice pool and a reasonably priced restaurant. The room charge includes breakfast and the room prices vary from season to season. $20-$40. edit
- Ngoc Suong Marina Hotel, directly across the road from TM Brothers Cafe, beside Tien Dat Resort. On the beach, with a swimming pool. Rooms have mosquito nets, A/C, satellite tv, and ensuite bathroom. Seaside room with private balcony is $40USD including breakfast.
- Xin Chao Hotel at 129 Nguyen Dinh Chieu. Newly renovated in 2012 this 20 room Hotel offers guests a choice of rooms in either the Villa or Poolside .The Villa ,a French Style Colonial building has been renovated and now offers guest a choice of rooms , all have A/C and ensuite facilities and TV. The Pool rooms are set out around a courtyard style pool with tropical gardens ,all rooms are ensuite, A/C and TV . Prices vary with the seasons but range from $15 -$60.For more information and to book please use the web site.
- Novela Muine Resort & Spa is located on the center of Muine Resort, about 13km from Phan Thiet City , and 8km from Red Sand hill, 200km from Ho chi Minh City, 200km from Nha Trang.
- Source Kiteboarding and Lodge, 148 HTK Mui Ne, ☎ +84 (0) 933192675, . A new (opened 2015) hotel and kiteboarding school run by the very friendly Julian and Siobhan. Room rates include brilliant breakfast and offers best sunset views in Mui Ne from rooftop terrace. At the east end of the beach just before Mui Ne fishing village. Also runs kite school based on Malibu beach. edit
- Anantara Mui Ne Resort, Mui Ne Beach, KM10 Ham Tien Ward, Phan Thiet City,Binh Thuan Province, Vietnam, ☎ (+84) 62 374 1888, . Anantara Mui Ne Resort is located in the southern coast of Vietnam. Tourist can easily go for afternoon hikes in the nearby sand dunes. The Resort includes 89 rooms, suites and pool villas designed according to Vietnamese tradition. USD 105. (10.941331,108.196684) edit
- Grace Boutique Resort at 144A Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street has the looks of a Mediterranean Villa from the street. This is definitely a mid to high end 'boutique' hotel. There are only 14 rooms, all very well appointed and with seaviews. The resort strong points are its well-trained staff, efficient and friendly service, a beautiful garden and a charming infinity pool. Rates include daily breakfasts. Discounts are offered during the low season and for long term stays. It is advisable to book well ahead during the holidays.
- Shades Resort across from Joe's Cafe at 98a Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street Has 8 lovely studios/apartments complete with kitchens, jaccuzzi or rainshower, preloaded computers and 42 inch sony flatscreen TVs and a lovely view. The site includes a lovely swimming pool and a bar with Bon Cafe coffees made with fresh milk from Dalat. Prices drop to less than half in low season and there are also long term rates available, but generally you can think of it as 45-200 USD a night. Rates include daily breakfast, daily bottled water, laundry service. Great view, the beach is wider or narrower according to the season.
- Blue Ocean Resort at 54 Nguyen Dinh Chieu has rooms and bungalows starting at $80 for a single room and up to $256 for an ocean-side family bungalow. The rooms are beautiful, the food is exquisite and the property is serenely beautiful. Only meters from many of the kitesurfing schools, particularly Windchimes, which is directly outside the property.
- Cham Villas Boutique Luxury Resort at 32 Nguyen Dinh Chieu has 6 Villas with beach front view and 12 villas with garden view. Each villa has a king size bed, bathtub overlooking a small private garden and a large private patio with comfortable club chairs and a day bed to reflect and relax.
- Pandanus Resort, Quarter 5, Mui Ne, ☎ 0623849849, . checkin: 14:00; checkout: 12:00. This is the largest and most beautiful resort in Mui Ne. The six types of accommodations are spread throughout ten hectares of beautifully landscaped gardens. The pool is enormous. The room rate includes a huge buffet breakfast, wine and cheese in the afternoon, and a tour of the town of Mui Ne as the fishing boats are coming in. USD $109 - $269. edit
Free WiFi connections can be found in several resorts and restaurants. Joe's - The Arts Cafe has a good WiFi connection.
There are a few Internet Cafes along the strip with ASDL connections and charging 5,000VND/hour.
Access to Facebook is blocked (as beginning of 2012) by certain Internet Service Providers. You need to use proxy server to overcome this.
If you are staying for long time, upgrading your ADSL plan at VNPT office could be a good idea.
Laundry services are offered by several restaurants and hotels. Upscale hotels charge 1,000 - 5,000VND per piece of clothing. Budget hotels and restaurants charge 15,000VND/kg. Confirm they will machine wash and dry your clothes (and if not, go elsewhere). Be sure to check your clothes immediately when you pick them up: t-shirts have gone missing and if you don't realize until the next day it is almost pointless to go back and ask.
There are a couple ATM machines along the strip. Vietcombank has a 24hr ATM near 12.3km marker, with another ATM located just past it. "BIDV" ATM opposite Kim Shop will give you maximum 3,000,000 VND at once (others will limit to 2,000,000 VND only).
Sand flies on beach can cause allergic reaction on your legs. If you experience this, just use anti-mosquito spray all over your legs before you enter the beach, it will minimize amount of bites you'll have.
There are dozens of small travel agencies along the Ham Tien strip that sell daily excursions around the area, as well as airline, rail, or open tour bus tickets to other cities. Be sure to shop around since some unscrupulous agents will often overcharge the unwary buyer.
Note of Warning on one tour company: Victor Tourist Company (part of Victor Cafe) charges a cheap price 300,000 - 340,000 dong to Hoi An, however, the overnight bus was severely overloaded with people sleeping on the floors and make shift beds placed over the bathroom. Not what you get from other tourist companies like Sinh Cafe.
The bus journey to Nha Trang takes about 5 hours. Departure for Nha Trang is at about 1 PM and 1AM.
|This is a guide article. It has a variety of good, quality information including hotels, restaurants, attractions, arrival and departure info. Plunge forward and help us make it a star!