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Nha Trang

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Nha Trang Bay

Nha Trang is Vietnam’s most famous seaside resort-town. It's more lively and urban in character than other beach destinations like Mui Ne and Phu Quoc. It's also the scuba diving center of Vietnam.

Understand

Traces of human settlement in Nha Trang date back to the Cham Empire, though in times of Vietnamese rule, there wasn’t much more than small fishing villages. The French recognized that this beautiful bay, with its islands and white sand beaches, made for a perfect bathing spot, and began the transformation into a resort town. American soldiers agreed, and Nha Trang became a favorite vacation stop during the war.

The monsoon season is from October to mid December. Sea winds can be heavy, and sometimes the weather can get pretty chilly. Summer, naturally, brings many vacation goers into town and hotel rooms get somewhat more difficult to find.

Get in

By plane

Cam Ranh Airport (CXR), built on the grounds of an old American airbase in 2004, is located 30km from the city and serves only domestic destinations. Taxi fare from the airport to downtown locations is a fixed rate of 320,000 VND (with Nha Trang Taxi Company - maroon color taxi) though many hotels have their own buses. Do not offer to go by the meter here as it is about 100,000 VND more expensive than the fixed rate.

A cheaper option is to take the airport bus at 40,000 VND to the old Nha Trang Airport. They sell the tickets for this mini bus at a desk near the exit of the airport. The old airport terminal is in the city not far from most hotels and taxi's can be found there. Most city hotels should be reached by taxi for 30,000 dong or less. Mini hotel alley at 64 Tran Phu costs just 15,000 dong.

Mai Linh taxis also offer fixed price fares to and from the airport, starting at 180,000 VND for a small, 4-seat taxi. For the adventurous traveller, take a short taxi ride to a Phuong Trang bus stop in Cam Ranh, then catch the Phuong Trang bus, 40,000 VND to Nha Trang (about an hour). The bus stops and the buses are orange coloured.

After a major upgrade, the airport has since 2010 been renamed "Cam Ranh International Airport" and is looking to attact direct package tour flights from overseas.

By train

Nha Trang is a stop on the main railway-line connecting Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC or Saigon). The railway station is close to the cathedral in the northern part of town. If you want a soft-sleeper (the highest class available on Vietnamese trains), book your train ticket directly at the train station as far in advance as you are able. Having a private travel agent book this ticket will quite often result in you paying the agent for a soft-sleeper — the agent will book a hard-sleeper and you will not know until you board the train and it is too late to make changes. This is one of the most common scams in Vietnam! Soft sleeper rooms are 4 berth, hard sleepers are 6 berth. You can sit comfortably on a lower bed in a 4 berth room but in a 6 berth you will have to be very short in order to sit up straight. SNT trains (meaning Saigon to Nha Trang) have similar quality cars but are slower than the SE trains. The TN trains have the oldest and dirtiest cars and are the slowest so therefore are not recommended. Each of the SE, TN and SNT coded trains end with a number. If the number is odd it travels from North to South. If it is even, it travels from South to North.

The journey to Nha Trang from Ho Chi Minh City takes between 6-8 hours on the SE trains (but are often delayed), so a sleeper is not really necessary, a cushioned seat in the AirCon car costs 190,000 dong. The SNT trains take over 9 hours and travels overnight only.

For 445,000 dong (lower bed T1 or 400,000 dong for upper bed T2), you can book a soft sleeper on the SNT1 or SE1, SE3, SE5 or SE7 trains from Nha Trang to Ho Chi Minh City. These are the prices if you buy directly from Nha Trang train station. You will obviously pay more from an agent. Prices and times correct July 2011. Hotels will typically be able to buy the ticket for you for an additional 30,000 dong. The scenery on this journey is not that great compared to further north, so you are not missing out too much by travelling overnight.

The SE1 train departs Nha Trang at 8.26pm and arrives in Ho Chi Minh City at 4.10am. The SE3 train departs Nha Trang at 9.42pm and arrives in Ho Chi Minh City at 4.30am. The SE5 train departs Nha Trang at 12.39pm and arrives in Ho Chi Minh City at 8.00pm. The SE7 train departs Nha Trang at 8.41am and arrives in Ho Chi Minh City at 4.48pm. The SNT1 train departs Nha Trang at 6.40pm and arrives in Ho Chi Minh City at 5.20am.

The SNT2 departs Ho Chi Min City at 7.40pm and arrives in Nha Trang at 6am.

By bus

Most open tour buses arrive from Ho Chi Minh City in the south (10-12 hours) and Hoi An to the north (16 hours). They drop their passengers in the main tourist area around Bien Thu, while the public bus station is at 58, 23 Thang 10, about a 10 minute walk west of the center. North to Qui Nhon 4-5 hours.

By car

Private car rental with a driver are usually modern air-con cars and can be rented for ~1,000,000 VND per day.

Car rental prices (as mostly anything in Vietnam) usually increase during holiday seasons especially around Tet (Vietnamese’s New Year). Make sure to avoid high prices by booking it beforehand with the car rental services.

Get around

Today, most of the tourist infrastructure is in the southern part of town around Biet Thu, whereas most of the locals live around the Cho Dam in the northern quarters. Cho Dam Market is a popular destination for visitors as well, though.

Tran Phu is the backbone of the city, accompanied by a pleasant waterfront promenade, palm trees and the nearly 6km of beach.

Nha Trang has a reliable and easy to navigate public bus system, where the ticket fare does not exceed 3000 dong for a ride on a modern, air-conditioned bus with Vietnamese music. You will find buses nr. 3 and 2 the most useful, since they pass through the southern quarters. Alternatively, you'll find the usual selection of taxis, cyclos and motorbikes.

There is no destination in Downtown Nha Trang that justifies a fare higher than 20,000 dong/person. Taxis are a good option, but be sure they turn on the meter to get the cheapest price.

A wonderful option for seeing the sites is to hire a cyclo-driver for the day. I agreed upon a price for the entire day (Jan. 2009-USD$10 plus tip) and my driver took me to all the in-town highlights, the post office, and my choice of restaurants from 8AM-7PM. While English skills were basic, we were able to communicate. He also kept many of the touts away--a real bonus!

Its also easy to get around by bicycle. Nha Trang is quite flat and bicycles are easily found for hire, typically 20,000 dong for one day for a basic no gears bike. Locals on bicycles are more commonly seen at night when its cooler and no sun to burn their skin.

  • Easy Riders, 0909 596 580 (), [1]. Operators running easy rider tours out of Nha Trang, guests ride passenger on the motorbikes and get a guide each. Day tours are available and they specialize in multi day tours of the central highlands and Ho Chi Minh Trail through to Hoi An. Multi day tours involve securely attaching luggage to the back of the bike and include accommodation. You get the guides for the whole day, sharing most meals with them and stopping regularly for rests and for visiting local attractions. Accommodation is usually the best hotel in town (Central highlands are cheap) and the drivers are very safe. A tour of the central highlands is a great way to get off the tourist trail and see the beautiful countryside and real Vietnam. US$65 per day including accomodation.

See

The beach is the main draw here. While not up to the standard of Thailand's white-sand finest, it's certainly pleasant. You will likely see many women vendors walking along the beach selling fruit and hot, steamed seafood.

Make sure that you visit in the right season, though. The beach can be disappointing when the weather is grey and the waves choppy. The experience is then one of murky sandy waters, a strip of standard brown sand with a multitude of empty beach chairs and no one to be seen.

The sites below can be toured in one day.

  • National Oceanographic Museum of Vietnam, 01 Cau Da (on the left of the commercial port entrance), 058-590-037, [2]. Admission VND15,000. Open 7AM-4PM. This is like an aquarium with popular and rare species of the sea. A perfect place to bring kids as they will get to see sharks, turtles, coral reefs, lionfish, sea horses, and many other creatures.
  • NhaTranglive, Thong Nhat Street & 2 thang 4 Street. (near Cho Dam Market), 090-714-3404, [3]. Free maps of city, drinks and tour travel guide book. Free use of wireless and computers. Largest collection of local painting by artists that lives in the area.
  • Alexandre Yersin Museum, 10 Tran Phu St., 058-822-355. Admission US$2. Mon-Sat 8-11AM and 2-4:30PM. This is a scientific museum of a Swiss-born, Dr. Alexandre Yersin (1863-1943), who arrived in Vietnam in 1891 to study infected animals. He then later on produced a serum from horses and buffaloes. In this museum, you will be able to view all of his work as well as his equipment. Yersin never went back to Switzerland as he spent the rest of his life in Nha Trang. Don’t try to take pictures. Do respect the rules since they're quite serious here.
  • Long Son Pagoda, Thai Nguyen St. Free admission. Open 8AM-5PM. At this pagoda, you will see a 79 ft. tall white Buddha. The pagoda was established in 1963 to honour the monks and nuns who died demonstrating against the Diem government.
  • Po Nagar Cham Towers, 2 Thang 4 St. Admission US$0.8. Open daily 7:30AM-5PM. These four brick towers were built by the Cham civilization between the 7th and 12th century to honor Yang Ino Po Ngar, mother of the kingdom, and the incense aroma emanating from within makes it clear that this remains a religious site for the local Buddhists of Nha Trang today. The longevity of these last vestiges of a once-dominant South East Asian civilisation should impress temple enthusiasts even if the insensitive restoration and surrounding mass of tourists don't. The small complex sits on a hill which enjoys views across Nha Trang's fishing village. It is a 20-25 minute walk (or short motorbike ride) from the main beach strip, however be prepared to wander through the 'real' Nha Trang, quite a shocking change from the showy built up beach side resort.
  • Fishing village, (Between the old and the new bridge.). The fishing village is located between the old and the new bridge. When the fishing boats are coming in or going out it is a beautiful sight.
  • Bao Dai Villa, (Near the oceanographic institute). The Bao Dai Villas are located on top of a small hill. You have a beautiful view of the Nha Trang bay from there. The wind is cool and it is a nice place to relax at when it is too hot in the city.
  • Vinpearl land, (Take the cable car...), [4]. From the harbour you can take the cable car over to the island where Vinpearl resort and Vinpearl land is located. They have a small tivoli and some restaurants, attractions here include Underwater World (aquarium), Water Park complete with many exciting water slides and wave pool, Amusement Park with roller coaster, pirate ship, bumper cars, 4D cinema and many modern arcade machines and musical fountain and laser show at night time, usually 7pm. All included in the one price. 320,000 dong.
  • Bicycle tour in the countryside, 1/12 Tran Quang Khai St,, 058.3521541, [5]. Biking tour in the countryside along Cai River,visit Traditional Villages ( making stoves, mats ) and Antique House,pass through the Immense rice field.Enjoy the fresh fruit on the way. USD33.
  • Chong rock.
  • Nha Trang Cathedral. Located on a hill overlooking the city, the cathedral shows the influence of French Catholicism. It's a Quaint, free and quick sight to see. The Nha Trang area still has a strong Catholic population. There are Catholic Shops located around the Cathedral.
  • Thanh Dien Khanh Fortress.

Beaches

Further afield from Nha Trang's expansive sandy bay are some excellent beaches without the backdrop of hotel towers.

  • Doc Let beach, (around 40 km north of Nha Trang). Doc Let beach is more tranquil, cleaner and beautiful than the beach in Nha Trang. It is well worth taking a tour there. Local fishermen families sell and prepare seafood which they will cook for you on the beach for a very reasonable price.
  • Cam Ranh beach, (On the road from Nha Trang to Cam Ranh airport). The road to the Cam Ranh airport is a very scenic road and worth going just to enjoy the scenery. As you have passed over the mountains there is a very long and nice beach (around 15 - 20 km from Nha Trang city center) which is clean and beautiful. You can buy seafood from small restaurants at the beach.

Waterfalls

  • Yang Bay Waterfalls, (40 km west of Nha Trang). At the Yang Bay waterfalls the Vietnamese have built up a concrete beach. It used to be a lot nicer before they built it but it is still a very nice place to visit. You can swim there, and walk around in the area. You should probably bring your own food and drink when you go there though.
  • Ba Ho waterfalls, Near Ba Ho village (Approximately 20Kms North of Nha Trang). A series of three waterfalls and a quite fast flowing at (some points) river tucked away in the forest. Its a good one hour trip from Nha trang by moterbike through some rough, off road tracks ( especially in the wet season ) If you decide to go without a guide its preferable that you travel with someone as a flat tyre out here can be a common occurrence as I found out, although these can be fixed in the village or most local houses for a small fee. the turn off from the main highway north of Nha Trang can be easy to miss (a Stone pillar )but most locals along the road should be able to point it out. from the turn off its a straight track to follow to the river, there are limited amenities there although you can buy food, like rice and chicken and cold beers or soft drinks are also for sale from locals who will guide ( Follow ) you up through the forest this is preferable to having to carry your own food and drink and the prices are reasonable a small premium for their trouble, the "guides " are pleasant enough showing you short cuts and footholds higher up the track. Taxis and motorbike guides are available in Nha Trang to take you there but its not too difficult to find yourself and in better weather, a pleasant drive, if your confident on a motorbike. be warned though that going off road on hired bikes can incur damage which you will be liable for.
  • Fairy Spring waterfalls.
  • Thap Ba Hot Springs and Mud baths, [6]. On the north side of Nha Trang. 50,000 dong for hot and cool swimming pools and thermal waterfall only. Pay extra for the mud! They serve food and drinks here also. Update Feb 2011, 50,000 dong for the hot swimming pool and waterfall, 100,000 dong for shared mud bath (if you are 5-8 people you will probably get put in the same tub), shower, hot/cold water jets, hot jacuzzi, and the hot waterfalls and swimming pool. There was also a package for 500,000 which included a massage among other extras.

Do

  • Boat Cruises – The going rate for a one-day multi-island tour is US$6, with snorkeling, fishing, and many other activities among the possibilities. Tours may provide lunch with drinks on board. Booking agents abound, so compare itineraries to find the best fit for you.
  • Sailing – Get a group together and rent out a captain for about US$40 for a best sailing experience. Call the Nha Trang Sailing Club, 058-826-528 for more information.
  • Biking and Rafting Tour, 1/12 Tran Quang Khai St, 058,3521541, [7]. Combination fast 30km downhill biking passing through minority village and meeting Raglai people. Then a 12km rafting trip down the Cai River. from US$45.
  • Relaxing – Thap Ba natural hotsprings: a must-have experience at an amazingly cheap price,(4$/pax) for the mineral pool and from 12.5/pax for the mudbath (incl.the mineral pool). More you are less it cost. Located on the outskirt of the city, this place provides the most relaxing services you can imagine (hot mud bath, mineral water bath and hot water pool and massages also available).
  • Live music at the cafes. Many cafes in Nha Trang have live music at night time. They vary in type and quality, so ask around. One favourite is Fuji cafe on Yersin street. They have live music Thursday to Saturday from 8.30PM to 10PM. A small entrance fee is added to the bill (around 30.000 VND) or checkout foreign performers at Red Apple Club, Guava Bar or at the El Coyote Mexican Restaurant (every Friday)
  • Cooking Classes - Lanterns Vietnamese Restaurant, 72 Nguyen Thien Thuat Street, 058 2471 674, [8]. Half day cooking classes for visitors to Nha Trang at a cost of US$24 per person. It is a great experience and a must do for someone looking for variety to their trip to Nha Trang and something a little different. It involves travelling to the local market in a cyclo, a guided tour of the marketplace, where you get involved in learning about local produce and buying the food you will cook. You then return to the restaurant where you prepare 3 dishes as chosen by the guests. It is a real fun day for all involved and an introduction to Vietnamese cooking and real value for money.
  • Gym, 12 Thi Sach St (off Tran Nhat Duat St), 0932 405 931. There is a large gym in town called Nha Trang Body Building Club, part of a leisure complex that includes badminton and tennis courts, basketball area and football pitch. The gym offers monthly membership passes for 150,000 dong. Novotel also have gym memberships for non-guests which includes swimming pool, sauna and relaxation room. Daily pass costs 200,000 dong, one month pass 1,400,000 dong, 3 months pass 2,700,000 dong. Monthly passes include one free massage, ask about this when purchasing. The 5 star Sheraton probably has the best gym in town with excellent views but costs $100 for one month and this doesn't include use of their swimming pool. (12.2407,109.1835)
  • Swimming Pools. Obviously people come here to swim in the sea but there are also a number of swimming pools around. Louisiane Brewhouse has a good one and free to use but costs 25,000 dong to hire a soft sun-lounger. A number of mid-range hotels also have pools some of which can be used by non-guests. Sea and Sun Hotel has a nice rooftop pool and costs 70,000 dong for non-guests. There is also an Olympic size outdoor swimming pool in Nha Trang that is hardly used but is used by many of the scuba diving companies for training purposes. It costs only 15,000 dong. Its a fair distance away from the main tourist area on the south side of the city, ask someone who works in a scuba diving shop for directions.


  • Easy Rider Vietnam, [9]. www.easyrider.vn [10] email:contacts@easyrider.vn (a motorbike and driver/guide) is a great way for a non-motorcyclist to tour the central highlands, providing access to places you would otherwise never know about. They speak good English, are from local villages, seemingly know everyone, and will probably find you before you find them. You will know the driver is legit when you are presented with a book, full of praise from other excited tourists. From about USD20/person for an 8 hour tour, up to USD60/day for long distance multi-day trips, often including accommodation. "A witty crew of freelance motorbike guides who where truly born to be wild whom's popularity is reaching cult proportions among travelers seeking an alternative to being herded around on the usual open tour bus trail." (Lonely planet February 2003)

Diving & snorkeling

Close off-shore from Nha Trang sit a series of islands that offer decent diving and snorkeling, easily accessible by day trip. The city has about two dozen dive shops, making for fierce competition and great value. For certification training, Nha Trang offers perhaps the best value in the world, with PADI open water courses available with full equipment rental for as little as US$250. A two-dive boat trip with equipment rental and modest lunch can be had for as little as US$45, also a phenomenal value.

Coastal and undersea construction has stirred up a lot of sediment in the area, so under-water visibility is sometimes not great. The area is heavily fished, so fish life is also limited. You wouldn't cross the world just to dive at Nha Trang. But if you always dreamed of getting a scuba certification, Nha Trang is a great place to do it, and any diver passing through would enjoy a couple of dips. The shops generally offer good-quality equipment and experienced, certified dive-masters. Diving goes on year-around, but in the October-December windy season, the boat ride can be a bit rough and diving is limited to a few sites in the lee of the islands.

Organization of the Nha Trang dive industry is sometimes complex. If you sign up for a trip with shop A, you might find yourself joined with a group and dive-master from shop B, which shares a boat with another group and dive-master from shop C, the boat itself being independently owned. Consolidation is especially active in the off-season, when few if any shops can fill a boat on their own. It's a good illustration of Vietnamese culture, which does not stand on ceremony, and loves a bargain, and is very skilled at making maximum use of resources. The local dive-masters are mostly great, friendly guys with lots of stories to tell.

  • Coco Dive Center, 2E Biet Thu, +84-583-522-900, [11]. is a vietnamese owned company, managed by "Seawolf" Jean Pierre, who imported recreational diving to Vietnam some 15 years ago. Very fair prices compared to most other diving facilities in town, services from snorkeling and introductory dives to Assistant instructor course. $38 for one dive (with snorkeling) and $55 for two dives. Their big boat offers a good comfort, even on windy days. Although, because of the size of the boat,they are unable to go to all the different divesites. English, French, German and Vietnamese fluently spoken.
  • Jeremy Stein’s Rainbow Divers, 058-826-528 is a high-touch, European-owned operation with partially expat staff. A two-dive boat trip costs US$50 (including water and fruit but not lunch), about double the best deals available in town (but much less than what Rainbow charges in other locations.) The operation is well-organized and very professional, catering to divers who aren't comfortable with the more low-key local shops.
  • Aloha Viet Nam Scuba Diving, 24/4 Hung Vuong, +84-122-903-7795 (), [12]. 6:30-21:00. is American owned company, Run by "BIG SHARK" Mark Scott, who is bringing diving with ALOHA to Vietnam. Very fair prices and services from snorkeling and introductory dives to Instructor course. $50 for TWO dives (with certification) and $60 for two Introductory Dives. The Boat has plenty of room for lounging and Never Rushed. American English spoken. http://www.DivingVietnam.com
  • Angel Dive, 1/33 Tran Quang Khai, +84 58 352 2461 is a mid-priced option for diving in Nha Trang. Expat Run, by a long living citizen of Nha Trang. PADI, SSI, SDI and TDI Certified., [13].
  • Octopus Diving, 62 Tran Phu St., 058-810-629, [14].
  • Scuba Zone, [15] 1/16 Tran Quang Khai, 058-527-208. [16]
  • Turtle Dive, [17] 1/38 Tran Quang Khai, 058-3527-885. [18]
  • Vietnam Explorer, 01 Hung Vuong St., Nha Trang City, 058-352-4491.

Work

  • Travel to Teach [19] works with a project teaching English and computer use to the kids that sleep on the beach. Crazy Kim's Bar (see below) is the headquarters for the project.
  • Volunteer in Nha Trang [20] Help NhaTrangLive to promote Nha Trang tourism and help the local community grow. Donate your salary to helping local children that can not afford to go to school get an education. [21]

Buy

As mentioned above, make sure you bargain with these vendors.

  • Bamboo, 15 Biet Thu St., 058-910-774. Open 8AM-9:30PM. This is a popular T-shirt shop in the area. Lots of tourists visit this shop to get T-shirts.
  • Groove Shack, 89A Nguyen Thien Thuat St., 058-524-738. Open daily 8AM-10PM. This is the place to update your MP3 player. Although the staff is not the most friendliest, the prices are acceptable. Have now moved into Old Guava bar.
  • Tashunco, 17A Biet Thu St., 058-827-035. Open 7AM-10PM. This is a mini Western market where tourists can buy products like chips, cheese, soda, etc.
  • Skateboarding and surfing – Anchor skateboard have closed up shop.

Surfing lessons can be had at The Shack on Long Beach (bai dai).

  • Maximark Supermarket, 60 Thai Nguyen, 058 3 818 727, [22]. Nha Trang now has a brand new large western style supermarket that's located near to the train station. Opened early 2010, it covers 4,000m2 in area, in a four-story building. The supermarket itself is on the 1st floor. There is a food court on the 4th floor that includes a Japanese restaurant called Sushi Sakura [23] and a Jollibee [24] fastfood joint. There is also an arcade games area on the 4th floor, 2,000 dong per tolken.
  • A Mart, [25]. There are a couple of well stocked modern mini-supermarkets in the main tourist area called A Mart. These are very much aimed at the tourist market and few locals will be seen shopping here. Cheaper prices for drinks, food and toiletry items will be obtainable from the more traditional family run small stores, especially so if you tell them what the supermarket price is and challenge them to offer you a lower price.
  • Shop Herman, 142 Ngo Gia Tu (Next to small market). Modern Fashion for bargain prices. Clothes from back home at half the cost.
  • TinPhú Computer shop, 03 Lý Tự Trọng - Nha Trang, 058.3524683, [26]. computer shop and designed beautiful website, logo, flash, banner ...

Eat

As expected from a large resort town, Nha Trang has no shortage of eating options to suit all budgets, from Vietnamese-style informal pavement cafes on plastic chairs to high end restaurants. Nha Trang is famous throughout Vietnam for its seafood but also offers a broad range of Western cuisine.

Budget

There are no shortage of pavement cafes for a cheap, satisfying and authentically Vietnamese experience. Offerings range from simple baguettes to banquets, with most of them seeming to have a seafood theme.

  • Hoa Hung bakery, 39 Phan Boi Chau St., 058-382-3141/ 72 Ly Thanh Ton St., 058-221-1992 Sponge cake < US$1, pate-chaud, chocolate cupcake, sesame toffee. Open daily 7AM-10PM. Founded from 1936 and recommended by the travel guide Le Routard, Hoa Hung is one of the best bakery in the country.
  • ChocoCiao chocolatier, 48 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai St., 058-627-0553. Delicious ganache, praline and truffle, with 45 flavors such as nutmeg, cinnamon, passion fruit, amaretto, whiskey, strawberry... < US$0.25 per piece. Open daily 7AM-10PM.
  • White House, 30B Nguyen Thien Thuat St., 058-524-438. Main courses US$6-8. Open daily 9AM-11PM. This place has a very innocent atmosphere and it is very relaxing while you enjoy your Western food.
  • Truc Linh, 21 Biet Thu St., 058-821-259. Main courses US$1-10. Open daily 7AM-11PM. Both Asian and Western food can be found here.
  • Lac Canh, 11 Hang Ca Street, 058.3.821.391. 7AM-9PM. What’s different about this restaurant is that you get to cook yourself. It seems that both locals as well as tourists love it. US$1-10.
  • Lac Viet Quan Chay, Vegetarian, Huynh Thuc Khang St. just Southeast of market, 1 1/2 blocks Northwest from To Hienh Thanh St. Plate of mixed vegetable and tofu/veg meat dishes with rice or a bowl of noodle soup, less than US$1. Just a little humble place, but a nice option for vegetarians and it is right next to the market that might be worth having a look.
  • Restaurant at Long Son Pagoda, (At the entrance to Long Son Pagoda). The restaurant serves vegetarian meals only. Great Vietnamese food.
  • Thien Thanh Restaurant.386 - 388 Le Hong Phong, (1km from Nguyen Duc Canh/ Nguyen Tat Thanh streets to the South, or 1.4km from Van Don street to the North), +84 (0)58 3880195 (, fax: +84 (0)58 3880192). Open hours 7AM- 22PM. This modern restaurant not only serves Vietnamese traditional dishes but also provides excellent Western and Asian menu. It ensures the best quality of foods as well as services. Especially you will feast on over 100 delicious fresh seafoods dishes cooked in different ways with the cheapest price. US$1-10.
  • Cyclo Cafe, 130 Nguyen Thien Thuat Street (corner of Tran Quang Khai Street). Open daily 8AM - 10PM. Great budget restaurant serving Western and Vietnamese food. Fruit shakes for 12,000 dong.
  • Lanterns Vietnamese Restaurant, 72 Nguyen Thien Thuat Street, 058 2471 674, [27]. Open daily 7AM - 11PM. A great local restaurant, in the heart of the tourist district, where you get to try some real authentic Vietnamese dishes. Great relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. They prepare some of the best local dishes in Nha Trang and have an offer of Western food for those who miss home. They also work closely with 2 local orphanages, where the children and their carers are invited to regularly dine at the restaurant. $1 - $7.

Mid-range

  • Salut, 16 Tran Quang Khai Street, 058.3.526.168. 6AM-11PM. 2 storey corner located restaurant (previously called Hello), serving Western and Vietnamese food. Good food and cheap cocktails.
  • Louisiane Brewhouse, Lot 29, Tran Phu (South along Tran Phu from the Sailing Club), 84 (58) 3 521 948, [28]. 8AM-11PM. Louisiane Brewhouse has it all: tasty locally brewed beers, fresh cakes and tarts (the chocolate and mango tart is a real treat), an in-house sushi restaurant with other Japanese fare, quality pizzas, steaks, Vietnamese food, and you can pick your own fresh seafood. Add to this a nice pool, decent live music, and the fact that it is right on the beach with their own loungers. Only the pool table was a bit of a let-down, with one ball missing and children messing about. They have a sampling tray of beer (200ml each of pilsner, witbier, dark lager, and the seasonal, either a red ale or 'crystal' ale) for 75,000vnd. You can get a 1 liter stein of any for 90,000vnd. Pizzas run around 100,000-200,000vnd, trays of sushi run about 150,000-250,000vnd, and desserts around about 35,000vnd each. This is a true find in Vietnam, with world class microbrewery beer in an idyllic location matched with a wide, very tasty selection of food. 30,000-600,000.
  • Texas BarBQ and Steaks, 26 Tran Quang Khai Street, 058-224-0979, [29]. 9am-10pm. A taste of Texas in Vietnam. They import their steak, chicken, and pork from the U.S. The ribs are smoked for 5 hours a day! Charcoal fired burgers and authentic Memphis and Texas BarBQ makes this a favorite for kids and adults alike. The owners, Charlie and Wayne always have great stories to tell. Nice waitress staff who speak good English. 60,000-550,000.
  • Tex Mex El Coyote, 17-18/86B Tran Phu (Airport Street, near The Light Hotel). 8am-12pm. The only Mexican restaurant in Nha Trang in brand new larger location. Corn tortillas, tacos, and fatitas are homemade as everything else. Best time to visit is Friday nights as they have live music from 8pm and also have some food and drink specials. (12.229458,109.197655)
  • Treffpunkt German Bar and Restaurant, 6A Tran Quang Khai Street. 9AM - 11PM. Great homemade German sausages, brown bread and Apple Pie. Sausages start from 35k Dong and brown bread is 10k Dong. The owner, an East German is very friendly and has great stories to tell about his Vietnam stay. 35,000-100,000.
  • Le Petit Bistro, 26D Tran Quang Khai Street, 058.3.527.201. In best tradition of small French Bistro, Le Petit Bistro offers affordable and fast, typical French Cuisine. One of the best selection of wines in Nha Trang makes this restaurant a popular venue to go for animated evening! Don't forget to eat the speciality of the house, Le Magret De Canard.All you can eat BBQ Sundays from 11am to 4pm free flow wine and beer cost is350,000 vnd 30,000-200,000.
  • Mughal House Indian Restaurant, 8 Biet Thu Street (across road from Asia Pacific Hotel). Serving good Indian food located in the centre of the tourist area.
  • Pasta House restaurant, 34 Hung Vuong Street, 058.3.522.206, [30]. Since 1999, Pasta House also offers Indian food. 28,000-67,000.
  • Buffalo Steak House, 1/18 Tran Quang Khai Street. If steak is what you want, look no further. Fantastic food, nice atmosphere, cocktail bar, run by a French couple. The 70,000VND local beef tenderloin is great value for money. 70,000-250,000.
  • Sailing Club, 72 Tran Phu St., [31]. Tel: 058-826-528. Main courses US$3-10. Open 7AM-11PM. This restaurant consists of Japanese, Indian, Vietnamese, and Italian food, giving you many varieties to satisfy your hunger needs. With many types of food offered, this place bound to be crowded and popular especially at night when it turns into bar.
  • Something Fishy, 12b Biet Thu Street (opposite supermarket in Biet Thu street), 3525039. Makes great fish and chips as well as fantastic steaks and burgers. Also good Aussie meat pies.
  • Good Morning Vietnam, 19B Biet Thu St., [32]. Tel: 058-815-071. Main courses US$4.5-9. Open daily 10AM-11PM. If you want to take a break from the Vietnamese cuisine, and change your appetite to Italian food, this is the place to go. On the menu are pasta dishes as well as other well-known Italian food.
  • Nha Trang Seafood, 46 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai St., 058-822-664. Main courses US$2-14. Open daily 9:30AM-10PM. Who ever would think seafood could be so cheap? Well, this restaurant serves fresh and scrumptious seafood any way you would like it. With an inexpensive price, everyone is here to enjoy their time. The service is also great just like their food.
  • Check-point (restaurant&bar), 27 Nguyen Thien Thuat Street, +84 58.3523806, [33]. Good restaurant, night bar and-military museum with real old black&white photos devoted to Pacific fleet USSR. Old soviet uniform and the weapon for photographing of visitors. The European, Russian, Vietnamese kitchens. The Russian head cook, benevolent Russian staff. Always cold beer and real Russian vodka. Qualitative meal and lethal drinks. Happy hours on beer and alcohol. Four floors and the central air conditioner, four toilet rooms, children's corner. Verandah, banquet room, disco-bar, BBQ.


Splurge

  • Ana Pavilion, Tran Phu Blvd., 058-829-829. Main courses US$7-20. Open 6AM-11PM. This is a fancy restaurant located inside the Ana Mandara resort. The food and the service here is exceptionally well-done. It is an Asian/Continental type of restaurant, and it is the most excellent on the coast.

Drink

Nha Trang at night offers plenty of bars, clubs, music, and merry people.

  • Altitude, 28th floor Sheraton Hotel. 4PM to 10PM. For a great view of Nha Trang at night, perhaps visit the highest bar in Nha Trang. Heineken costs 70,000 dong.
  • Booze Cruise, 110 Nguyen Thien Thuat St. One of the most popular bars in town. They generally show most major sporting events on their large flat screen TV. They make great burgers and pizza as well as limitless different types of cocktails. They also organise booze cruises! 350,000 dong including all you can eat and drink.
  • Crazy Kim Bar, 19 Biet Thu St., 058-816-072. Closed at 1AM. If you are young and wild, this is the place to be.
  • Guava, 17 Biet Thu St., . Closed at 1AM. Music is great here, but it is more suitable for younger crowd. Expat bar with comfortable lounge seating and movies in the daytime. Featuring resident DJ's and the only vinyl decks in Nha Trang.
  • Guava Sports Lounge & Restaurant, 34F Nguyen Thien Thuat. 7AM-midnight. Guava sports lounge is the second location in Nha Trang. Featuring satellite TV, 2 big screens, free high quality pool tables, darts and quiz nights. Restaurant featuring roast dinners, steaks, sandwiches and breakfasts. Has generator back-up for when mains power is off.
  • Ha Van 'A' Rooftop Lounge & Restaurant, 3/2 Tran Quang Khai, 5th floor, 058.3.525.454. 7AM till late. On the 5th floor of the Flamingo Suites' Ha Van Hotel, offering the coldest beers, drinks and cocktails. Small but very good menu of food. Great city views. One of expats favorite joint. Great fun every night. Internet stations and Wi-fi free (good connection). 50 inch TV for movies and sport events. Live NHL hockey available in the morning (Montreal Canadian mostly but other teams available, ask a day before). Football fans are welcome. Canadian run & managed. Ask for Mike or Nick. Great alchool at budget price but only quality products | no ethanol served here.
  • Ly Ly's Nudies, 81 Huong Vong Street (next to Bamboo). 6pm-10pm. A little outdoor smoothie shop that is the best value in town. 15,000 vnd for every drink! Stop by and chat with Ly Ly, a very nice young woman who speaks good English and is very friendly. The best place to get a juice or smoothie in town! 15,000 dong.
  • Patrick Wine, 67/35 Hung Vuong (In the alley behind Nice Hotel), (+84) 0903.102.418, [34]. 2 PM - 2 AM. Offering a charming blend of romance and revelry, Patrick wine is an insider's gem that is easily found. It offers hundreds of bottles of imported wine for sale. After 6 PM, there is a full bar and restaurant, featuring French and Vietnamese food. Crepes, pates, and local specialties at exceptional prices, with the wine shop still open. Check the website for live music dates. $2-6 for food.
  • Red Apple Bar, Nguyen Thien Thuat (South of the intersection with Biet Thu), [35]. Located in front of the Backpacker Hostel, this bar is easily identified by the neon red apple on the wall. Drinks range from cheap and massive to expensive and small, dependent on whether you are happy with no-name local brand spirits or would rather have a well-known brand from home. 45,000 dong will get you a "bucket" (approximately a pint of your chosen cocktail - quite strong), and the backpacker hosts who circulate through the bar will also often be giving away shots or other drinks to keep the mood flowing. Not a bad place to lose a night in Nha Trang.
  • Sailing Club, Nha Trang, 72-74 Tran Phu St. Open till late, and even later on Saturdays. Popular night club, with a good mixture between foreigners and local guests. They have a reasonable cover charge in the weekends, and it comes with a drink anyway. Every Saturday, except in low season, they have massive beach parties.
  • SinhTo20, 20 Hoang Hoa Tham St., 058-3525-870. This place has a very good yogurt and many kinds of cocktails. Prices are very reasonable.
  • Why Not Bar, 24 Tran Quang Khai St., 058-811-652. Open late. There is also a dance floor for whoever wants to dance. This bar is usually most popular after 2AM (when the Sailing Club closes) and lasts until 4AM. The bouncers have been reported to be unreasonably aggressive.
  • House of Sweets, 22B Hung Vuong, 058.3524008. They sell ice cream, milkshakes, fruit shakes and cocktails as well as desserts like cake.

Cafés

  • Le Timo Bakery, 19 biet thu street, 058-22-22-178

HAPPY HOUR: After 6pm: 30% off cakes/pies....Buy 1 get 1 free cookies/croissants/rolls This family-owned gourmet bakery is right next to "Crazy Kim Bar & Restaurant." It offers a marvelous selection of home-made cakes, brownies, pies, croissants, cookies, cinnamon rolls, ice-cream, and chocolates. Try the "Passion Fruit-Banana Crumble Tart" or the "Mango Mousse Cake" for a taste of the tropics. Sinful chocoholics mustn't miss the "Hard Chocolate Brownie" or the "Chocolate Mousse Cake." Hit the beach and cool off with a scoop of Pistachio ice-cream (perhaps combine with a slice of "Western Banana Cake" for an interesting fusion). Le Timo Bakery is sure to satiate every taste bud. Don't miss it!

  • Mocka Cafe, 74 Hung Vuong St, 0583-526-589. They serve here the best expresso, cappuccino and cafe latte of the city Happy hour everyday (30% off) from 3 pm to 6 pm

These 4 places are an alcohol-free zone. If you are not into the bar atmosphere, head here for some relaxation and a cup of coffee.

There are a number of cafés in Nha Trang, and you should check them out by seeing them directly. A few are listed below.

  • Nha Trang Bakery and Tearoom, 99B Nguyen Thien Thuat, 058-85-562.
  • Café Louisiane, Tran Phu St., 058-812-948.
  • Banana Split, 58 Quang Trung St., 058-829-115.
  • Rainbow Bar, 90A Hung Vuong St., 058-524-351.
  • HQ Cafe, 55/8 Nguyen Thien Thuat street.

Sleep

Staying in Nha Trang can range from luxury suites in five-star hotels and spa resorts to motels. There are quiet numerous options offered for everyone depending on the size of their pockets.

Budget

There are plenty of budget hotels in Nha Trang costing less than $20 per night and nearly all are en-suite and have the usual air-con, cable TV, fridge, bedside table, wardrobe and night light. Most also have wifi, if not in rooms, at least in the reception area. "Mini-hotel alley" at 64 Tran Phu is a good place to head for as it has a dozen or so budget hotels located in a relatively quiet alley near the beach and the main tourist area. Don't be surprised if you are followed by a motorbike rider, sometimes they can be helpful showing you where your hotel is but often they are just annoying but either way if you arrive at a hotel with one they will demand commission from the hotel, even if you have a booking!

  • Ha Tram Hotel, 64B/5 Tran Phu, 058.3521819, [36]. Newest hotel in mini hotel alley (opened 2011), close to beach and main tourist area in quiet and safe location. All rooms have air-con, en-suite with hot water, cable TV, wifi and fridge. Hotel has 15 rooms on 6 floors and has an elevator. US$10-15. (12.235320,109.196477)
  • Pho Bien Hotel, 64/1 Tran Phu, 058.3.524.858, [37]. Mini hotel close to beach and restaurants. All rooms have air-con, en-suite, cable TV, fridge and wifi. This place is clean, has a terrific location & really is great value for money. Room 503 (dble) has an enormous balcony with fabulous sea views & costs US$17 Hotel has an elevator and 3 internet computers to use in the lobby. Price range from US$10-20.
  • Nha Trang Inn & Suites, 15 B Nguyen Chanh, 0084 0915 576211, [38]. Nice and newly renovated hotel with elevator, free Wifi, free HBO in every rooms. It is very convenient close to the bus stations such as Phuong Nam, Phuong Trang so can transit easily to other city. From hotel you can see the beach. So enjoy and have fun. Manager can speak English and Czech $10 - $15.
  • Happy House Hotel, 64/13 Tran Phu, 058.3522.175. Budget mini hotel close to beach and main tourist area in quiet and safe location. All rooms have air-con, en-suite with hot water, cable TV and fridge. Hotel has 15 rooms on 5 floors and has an elevator. In December 2010, wifi worked only in the lobby, the signal did not reach any of the rooms. US$8-15.
  • Blue Star Hotel, Terrific hotel close to the beach with very helpful friendly staff. Six floors with an elevator and internet computers in the foyer. Wifi for the rooms, some of which have ocean views. Excellent value means book ahead. Rooms $10-15.
  • Blue House, 12/8 Hung Vuong St., 058-824-505. Staying here will make you feel more at home because it is structured like a shore house run by a family. They are very friendly and will welcome you warmly. Breakfast is provided and it is home cooked. Though there are only a few running the place, but the service is great. Your money is worth it here. Price ranges from US$6-13.
  • Aloha Motel, 26A Tran Quang Khai St., 058-224-0979. A quaint hotel near the beach with nice rooms. Plenty of restaurants and bars within minutes of the hotel and a 5 minute walk from the beach. Air conditioning, a small flat screen, and a refrigerator in each room. A small hotel, but nice, clean rooms and a nice staff. Prices from $10-15.
  • Nha Trang Hotel, 127 Thong Nhat St., (058)3.820.476. Fairly regular hotel with rooms from US$10.
  • Ha Thu, 64/2 Tran Phu., 058.522800. A budget hotel well worth the money, rooms ranging from US$6 to US$12 per night. Rooms are clean, and staff is friendly. There is a nice, new computer with internet in the lobby, free for use, as well as wireless internet in the lobby and in the rooms. The top floor room is huge, with a big, private, covered balcony with an incredible view of the sea as the sun rises. All of the rooms have air conditioning, except for the top floor room, but the windows open and a cool breeze from the sea makes me more than bearable.
  • Hotel Hoa Sen, 5H Quan Tran alley off Hung Vuong Street, 058-3526234. Average hotel where staff have limited english and reputation for disposing of guest belongings. Far better options available.
  • Viet Hai Hotel, 13B2 Hoang Hoa Tham St, 058.3.523.684, [39]. Mini hotel close to beach, central market, train station and cinema. All rooms have air-con, en-suite, cable TV, fridge and wifi. US$6-12. (12.2468,109.1940)
  • Thanh Ngoc 2, 14 Tue Tinh (tel : 058-517759). Excellent value for money. Low-season prices starts from US$8 and all room all equipped with TV, hot-water, air-con and spacious beds. New building (2007) and clean rooms.
  • Perfume Grass Inn, 4A Biet Thu St., 058-826-345, [40]. Family-run and flexible to travelers' needs. Within walking distance from all the bars and restaurants, too. Price range from US$15-25.
  • Dream Hotel, 96A/7 Tran Phu (tel: 058-524 247). Located directly across from the water park, away from the central shops, bars, and restaurants. This 2 star hotel is clean, safe, and comfortable. The staff are not particularly helpful with only basic English skills. My stay in January 2009 experienced major problems with the hot water for showers, elevator, and Internet connection. Although they advertise a roof top bar, this has closed. At USD$18-25, it is at the higher end of the budget hotels. The front room on each floor has an excellent balcony view of the water park and ocean, however this is a very noise street. A good choice if you are here to visit the water park, but not a good value for the money. All rooms include A/C, TV, and mini-fridge. WiFi does not actually work in all the rooms. Hourly Internet connections and computers are available in the lobby.
  • La Suisse Hotel, 34 Tran Quang Khai St, 058-352-4353 (), [41]. This is a quality hotel with budget prices. It has internet access including wifi in all rooms and three modern computers with slim LCD screens in their large comfortable reception area. They have an elevator. Free breakfast included in their rooftop bar lounge. Free pick up from train and bus stations with own mini-van. US$20-40.
  • Nha Khach Thai Nguyen Guest House, 18D Yet Kieu (tel: 0583502130/0905183038/0935636577). No so far from the beach, the owner is a nice and friendly woman, while you live there She will make you feel at home,if you want to share local life and feeling the Vietname warm you have to go there, good price for budget travelers.Dorm:2$-3$, Room with fan $4 and Room with aircom $6, they have free coffee,free wifi and tv cable. email: nguyenduythoai@yahoo.com
  • Hông Hà, 28-30 Thai Nguyen St. Right across the street from Nha Trang Railway Station. Six floors with elevator. On check-out they tried to charge us for damages to the room that were already there when we checked in. After looking pissed off we got our passports and checked out. Free and good Wifi for the rooms. Staff sleeping in the lobby for 24/7 access. Rooms $10-15.
  • Truong Giang hotel, 3/8 Tran Quang Khai, +84 58 3522125 (). A budget hotel with essential amenities and facilities, near the beach. Quiet and clean. US$8-20.
  • 53 Yersin Mini Hotel, 53 Yersin (from the bus station, walk to the big intersection and follow Yersin road), (). Neat, clean and nicely furnished, offers good value accommodation if you don't want to stay in the backpacker area. The owner speaks English and is very friendly. US$8.

Mid-range

  • Memento Resort, 15 Le Chan St.,Nha Trang, [42]. This resort is in the country side around 15 kilomters west of Nha Trang. In the middle of the rice fields you will find this little family owned resort. If you like a traquil place and want to enjoy the country side, then this is the place for you. They also have a swimming pool at the resort.
  • Vien Dong Hotel, 1 Tran Hung Dao St., 058-821-606. Price ranges from US$35-45. Well-known and affordable, with all the basic amenities needed plus some live entertainment at night.
  • Que Huong Hotel, 60 Tran Phu Blvd., 058-825-047. Another hotel within the walking distance to the beach. There is a nice restaurant accompanied with a pool hall and some disco. Great amenities offered as well as the services. Price ranges from US$55-105.
  • Nha Trang Lodge Hotel, 40 Tran Phu St., 058-810-500, [43]. For those who love the view of the ocean, this is the hotel to stay at. Most rooms overlook the beach giving you an extraordinary sea views. Rooms are equipped with phones, satellite TV, a minibar, etc. Service is great. Price ranges from US$60-170 per night.
  • Starlet Hotel, 32-34 Tue Tinh (Down Tue Tinh, just before the Hospital on the left), [44]. checkout: 12PM. This place has a bit of a business feel, but its very clean rooms have classy, attractive decor, if lacking a bit in character. Many of the rooms offer balconies with fantastic city and sea views, its location is great, and the included breakfast buffet is nothing to turn your nose up at. There is free wifi in the rooms, a good selection of reasonably priced room service, and it has a pool and gym. The staff is very friendly, and you can change dollars at the front desk at decent rates. $40-50.
  • HQ Cafe and Apartments, 55/8 Nguyen Thien Thuat street., 058 6252524 [35]. Double rooms, 1 and 2 bedroom apartments in the centre of the nightlife and restaurant area of Nha Trang. Rooms have free use of an inroom computer with internet, fridge with minibar, satellite TV, LCD TV. There is a coffee shop that serves coffee and juices in the foyer. Prices range from $22 to $49 US per apartment a night.

Splurge

  • Nha Trang Hilton Bed & Breakfast, (+84) 58-3820-476. It's is the only type of its kind, a bed & breakfast in Vietnam. Most lodging are in forms of resort and hotels, but this unique living arrangement; the Hilton Bed & Breakfast (not related to the Hilton Hotel) allows guest to interactive with the local Vietnamese and share in with their daily life & activities. This included the traditional morning walk to the beach (only 4 minutes away) for a morning dive into the warm bay. Then it is to the coffee table (street vendors) for a morning chat and taking in a new day. Back home for a big Vietnamese breakfast before helping one kid get ready for school. Then onto the road to drop off the little Ms. Nhi before exploring Nha Trang in your own personal car or motorbike. Other stay back to learn traditional Vietnamese cooking and prepare lunch for all guests. Yes, free cooking school. This include a trip to the local market for fresh produce, meat & fish. Lunch is a family thing and dinner is usually dinned at one of the many local restaurants or on a boat cruising the bay.
  • Six Senses Hideaway, 058-3728-222. [45] The only way to get to this resort is by speed boat to Ninh Van Bay. Price ranges from $405 to 1,255 per night. This is more of a private resort, suitable for whoever wants to get away from everything to spend time relaxing with love ones. This resort lurks itself between the rocks and mountains and oversees the white sand beach. Dining is fabulous in the open air where the breezes slightly stroke through your hair. While taking your time to have a lovely dinner, the sun will slowly set, giving you a miraculous view of Nha Trang at night. Of course, there are many other amenities that are endless to meet your needs. You would think Six Senses Hideaway secluded enough? To make this resort even more secluded, they have added their own private beach located two bays over. So, if you would want more privacy, this is the beach to rent. The downside is you can only rent this for a day, but it will be worth it.
  • Evason Ana Mandara & Six Senses Spa, Tran Phu Blvd., 058-3522222. [46] if you don’t mind the price, this is the spot to go all out and get the once in a lifetime royal treatment. It has been known to be the finest resorts in the region. Finest in all aspects from the setting of the place to the hospitality to the food and to the people. Available fine-dining restaurants where the food can alter to your own tastes. Of course, there are many other amenities that are endless to meet your needs. Price ranges from US$210-450 per night. The resort also offer great tours. Make sure you take advantage of that to learn more about the area and the culture.
  • Yasaka Saigon-NhaTrang Hotel, 18 Tran Phu St., 058-820-090, [47]. This hotel is a Japanese and Vietnamese joint style. Service here is very friendly, and it has all the amenities you would need. What is good about this hotel is that it is just walking distance to the beach. Price ranges from US$100-355 per night.
  • Sunrise Beach Resort Nha Trang, 12 Tran Phu St, 058-920-999, [48]. This resort is all polished marble and white columns with 10 floors. It has a great view of ocean-side as well as the sky from its glass rooftop. Price ranges from US$140-500 per night.
  • Diamond Bay Resort & Spa Nha Trang Diamond Bay, Song Lo 058-711711 [49] This extremely spaciously laid out resort hosted the 2008 Miss Universe pageant. Hotel rooms, suites and villas. Enormous pool (non chlorinated) spa, fitness, several restaurants & bars, tennis, expatriate exec. chef and expatriate GM. Two private beaches. Prices range from $125-600 per night. Book with wotif.com.au for USD57 per night with breakfast for 2 garden view room.
  • Novotel, 50 Tran Phu (in the central tourist location), +84 (0) 58 6 25 69 28, [50]. Four star hotel. Awesome staff, food, room, internet. Smaller pool, but the ocean is less than 100 meters away. $105.
  • Sheraton, 26-28 Tran Phu, [51]. Five star hotel with swimming pool, gym and open air bar on 28th floor with great views across Nha Trang beachfront.
  • Vinpearl resort. Vinpearl resort is on an island in the Nha Trang bay. You can get too and from the island by cable car. It is a 5 star hotel with the biggest pool in Vietnam. If you stay here, you can have unlimited access to the water park etc. It's quite expensive though.

Stay safe

Nha Trang generally has a low crime-rate, though the risk of petty crime especially late at night is high compared to most other places in Asia. The most common crime is pickpocketing after midnight on the beach near the Sailing Club. During the day, it is relatively safe. Still, staying cautious at all time is best. Do not wear too much jewelry, and keep an eye on your belongings. It would be smart to travel in groups when you are out roaming the streets at night. Also, people coming home from the clubs should take a taxi.

Do not keep money in your passport. If you want your hotel to look after your money for you, they will usually be happy to do so in their hotel safe and have procedures on how that is done. Passports are kept separate to other valuables as they need access to these for reporting each day you stay to the government. Therefore never store money in your passport. Keep some money in a different pocket to your wallet/money belt. No point displaying them when paying for small purchases.

Motorcycle robbery is fairly common in Nha Trang - banknotes and wallets have been snatched from tourists' hands. Be very wary when leaving bars and nightclubs - male tourists receiving a lot of attention from young Vietnamese women have later discovered that their valuables have been taken from their pockets. If hiring a motorbike, check to see what coverage your insurance company give, often none, for riding motorbikes in Asia.

Contact

Internet access can be found in many hotels and through cheap internet cafes all over town. There are not that many internet cafes around now as most hotels typically have about 3 internet computers available for free use for their guests. Most hotels and many restaurants and bars also provide free wifi.

When using the telephone at a hotel be sure to check what service provider they use. A Skype phone will cost a few dollars US for a lengthy phone call whereas a land line charges US$1 per minute, be wary. Mobile SIM cards are readily available, mobifone seems the best option for tourists. Their sim cards cost 50,000 dong or a little more depending where you buy it and come with about 100,000 dong credit for use in the first month.

Contact the NhaTrangLive [52], tourist information center at (84) 90.714.3404. It is a privately own business that provide free information to tourist and travels. They give away free city maps and allow people to use their wireless internet connect. There are many travel agents dotted around the main tourists area, more and more appearing all the time in an already saturated market. A good option is Jungle Travel [53]. Most hotels offer some level of booking services for onward travel and local tours.

Cope

Get out

There are several other beaches in the vicinity of Nha Trang. About 30 km north of Nha Trang, just when past the village of Ninh Hoa, a peninsula juts out into the South Chinese Sea, and on its northern coast rides its tinier brother, Hon Khoi. Several resorts are located on the eastern beach of Hon Khoi, where you find palm-trees, white sand and turquoise waters. To get there, follow the highway north past the turnoff to Dac Lac Province/Buon Ma Thuot. Then look out for a sign reading "Doc Let-Resort", close to a filling station. A taxi will take 2 persons for about 200,000 dong, while a Xe Om should not be more expensive than 100,000 dong. Or catch a through-bus plying highway Nr.1 and jump off at the turn off. There will always be some motorbike-drivers waiting to take you. Whatever place you choose to go, be sure to reserve a bungalow in advance.

  • Bai Dai (Long Beach) At 20km south of Nha Trang, this is best keep secret in town. Fantastic blue water and a nicer (less steep and better sand) beach than in town. Come there to find fresh seafood serve at many shacks with deckchairs right on the beach. Best to go by motorcycle or ask your hotel to organise a taxi for you(and don't forget the pickup back). Walk a kilometer or so and you will find yourself alone on that fantastic beach. Do it now, they have begun to build access roads for the soon to come resorts.
  • Ba Ho (3 lakes) About 20km north of Nha Trang are a collection of 3 small lakes and scenic waterfalls. The entry cost is 10,000D and you may want to bring some sturdy shoes to climb across the rocks and swimming gear for a dip when you get there. Hire a taxi or take a motorcycle to get there. It will take about 45 minutes from the entrance of the tourist area to the lakes. There is an orphanage very close to the lakes (take a right turn when you get to a T-junction in the rice fields) that would really benefit from any gifts of vegetarian food (take milk, tofu, yoghurt etc). Call Dieu An, the nun on 0905 823807 - she speaks Vietnamese however.

Resorts

  • Doc Let Beach Resort, sign-posted; Tel. 058.3849.663, Fax 849.506. The best known place and closest to the mainland. Though it started out as a traveller's secret, it quickly became a destination for domestic tourists, who basically flood the place during weekends and holidays. There is some socialist charm to the not so "white palm beach turquoise waters"-like architecture of the place, but it's definitely not the old Robinson-feeling you might be craving. A 333 beer plus 6 huge langoustines will set you back all of 90,000 dong!
  • Jungle Beach, 058.3622.384 (), [54]. 64km north of Nha Trang and run by a Canadian-Vietnamese couple, all meals are included. If you are looking for a beautiful beach in a very remote and quiet location then this could be your paradise. Keep in mind that they dont have hot water here. This resort also charges 20 dollars for car transportation each way. Extra drinks will cost from 15000 to 20000 vnd. 25 dollars pp inc meals for rooms with shared bathrooms and 35 dollars pp inc meals for rooms with a private bathroom.. (12.431662,109.287186)
  • Paradise Resort, Nha Nhi Thien Duong, follow the signs from Doc Let-Resort through Dong Hai-village, 0084-58-670480 (, fax: 0084-58-670479). Run by an elderly gentleman and his Vietnamese family. Vladimir is a very interesting, jovial guy and his family cooks up wonderful food. beers are cheap and you just mark a chit on a sheet on the refrigerator to keep track of your total. He is also a bit cheap, and may scrintch on the water supply to your bungalow. Just tell him to turn it back on! The beach in front is beautiful and usually deserted except for some village kids. It is very easy to sleep a week away there in a hammock kissed by sea breezes. Usually a wonderful bunch of travellers there to socialize with at meals and in the evenings. You can rent a motorbike in Nha Trang for the easy ride up to Doc Let. Any buses can also drop you on the main road for a 10 minute walk to Paradise. Vladimir will also drop you in Nha Trang on the back of his scooter if he's going into town. Bungalows are US$16-18 (US$11-14 for a single person), depending on how close they are to the beach. Meals are included, and prices for drinks are reasonable. Water, fruits, coffee and tea are free..



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