Travel

Part 4: Mui Ne to Nha Trang via Dalat | A Photographer’s Travel Itinerary for Backpacking in Cambodia & Vietnam

Ntobeko Ntombela

Ntobeko Ntombela

September 14, 2018

We’re already onto part four of our blog series with photographer Sian Owen. For anyone travelling or teaching English in Vietnam, the rest of this blog series will be great insight on places to stay, things to do and what to see in this magnificent country.

← Part 3: Sihanoukville to Ho Chi Minh City        |       Hoi An: Part 4 →

 

A backpacking route through Cambodia and Vietnam

Backpacking route through Southeast Asia.

 

Mui Ne

Sian took a sleeper bus from Ho Chi Minh to Mui Ne which cost a 120 000 Vietnamese Dong and took 8 hours.

Mui Ne Fishing Village

The serene Mui Ne Fishing village.

 

Accommodation

Mui Ne Budget Hotel

Activities

Mui Ne day tours

“We did the sunrise tour and booked through our hotel, which only cost $6 each. It started ridiculously early at 4 am, and they drove us to the white sand dunes (about an hour away) for sunrise. Sadly, it was pouring with rain so we didn’t have the best time.”

White Sand Dunes, Mui Ne.

White Sand Dunes, Mui Ne.

 

“They then took us to the red sand dunes, the fishing village, and the fairy stream. I can only imagine how much more beautiful it would all be in perfect weather!”

 

Red Sand Dunes, Mui Ne.

The breathtaking Red Sand Dunes of Mui Ne.

 

Fairy Stream, Mui Ne.

Fairy stream, Mui Ne.

 

Mui Ne Fishing village, Vietnam.

Mui Ne Fishing Village, Vietnam.

 

“For the rest of our time in Mui Ne we just chilled by the pool and wandered around. It’s a cool little place.”

 

Dalat

A sleeper bus from Mui Ne to Dalat costs about $6 took us +/-­ 5 hours.

Relaxing Coffee shop in Dalat.

Relaxing Coffee shop in Dalat.

 

Accommodation

Dalat Alan Hostel

“Highly recommend staying here. It’s super cheap, clean, the staff are unbelievably friendly and they have ‘free’/ included breakfast and dinner which is such a win! Great opportunity to meet other backpackers during meal times.”

Activities

Dalat Countryside Tour

A beautiful flower farm in the Dalat countryside.

A beautiful flower farm in the Dalat countryside.

 

“The tour costs $13 dollars per day, and they take you to the flower farms, coffee farms, elephant waterfall, silk factory, cricket farm, happy Buddha and the crazy house.”

 

The stunning Elephant Falls in Dalat.

The stunning Elephant Falls in Dalat.

 

“The Kopi Luwak coffee farm is a must. You have to try a cup of the ‘weasel shit’ coffee – so strong but so smooth! You’ll pay a fortune for that coffee anywhere else in the world.”

 

Fresh coffee bean at Kopi Luwak coffee farm, Dalat.

Fresh coffee bean at Kopi Luwak coffee farm, Dalat.

 

 100 Rooftop Bar

 

“You can’t go to Vietnam and not go here, it’s one of the coolest bars i’ve ever been to. It’s a maze, with literally so many levels. One thing which you must do, is go all the way to the top. It was honestly one of my favourite experiences.”

 

Central Market

Strawberries Dalat central market.

Delicious looking strawberries from the market.

 

Some of the fresh goods available at the market.

Some of the fresh goods available at the market.

 

Canyoning Tour

A jump during the canyoning tour in Dalat.

A jump not suited for the fearful.

 

“I didn’t do the tour, but my boyfriend Brett did, and he loved it. It costs $30 and includes abseiling, waterfall jumps, zip-­lining and lunch. When he got back we rented a motorbike and we drove out to the countryside just to see where he did it all. It’s a place called ‘Ankorette’ and you drive through a gorgeous forest, the river and the waterfall are unbelievably beautiful.”

 

Coffee

“I drank so much coffee here. Brett & I also had the best cup of hot chocolate (cocoa) that we’ve ever had. I can’t remember the name, but it was on the main street next to the central market in Dalat, and is above Len’s chocolate bar.”

 

Coffee sipping Dalat.

Coffee sipping in Dalat.

 

Nha Trang

A moment capture in the Nha Trang center.

A moment captured in the center of Nha Trang.

 

A regular bus from Dalat to Nha Trang, is about $5 and it takes you close to 3 hours to get there.

“It drives down this gorgeous mountain pass so its very easy to be completely glued to your windows. The whole way there you will be watching the view.”

 

Quite but festive Nha Trang market.

Quite but festive Nha Trang market.

 

The only reason we went to Nha Trang, was because there was an airport. We wanted to fly to Danang (to get to Hoi An.) Alternatively, we could have caught a sleeper bus for +/-­ $20 from Nha Trang to Hoi An, but it takes 16 hours. It’s apparently completely exhausting being in a sleeper bus for that long, so we paid an extra $10 or so and booked a flight which was only 1 hour to Danang.

Accommodation

 Truong Giang Hotel (nothing special)

“Nha Trang looks nothing like the pictures you see of it on the internet! It was probably my least favourite place. The beach is dirty, it’s expensive, and completely crowded with Russian tourists.”

A photo captured by a local Vietnamese lady.

A photo captured by a local Vietnamese lady.

 

“I wouldn’t even recommend staying one night there – just use it as a base to get to the airport if you’re planning on flying to Hoi An.”

“The only thing we enjoyed about Nha Trang was the food!”

Some spicy Vietnamese delicacies.

Some spicy Vietnamese delicacies.

Yen’s Restaurant in Vietnamese

“This was probably the best food I had when during my whole 5 week stay in Vietnam, try order the Chicken curry clay pot or the caramelized chicken stir-fry.”

Ganesha Indian Restaurant

Unreal food. We thought we knew what hot food was, especially coming from South Africa which has a huge Indian influence in food, but this was by far the hottest food we’ve ever eaten.

Sian Owen is a South African Business Science graduate and photographer. She specializes in wedding and lifestyle photography. This series of bog posts follows her recent trip through Cambodia and Vietnam, showcasing the incredible beauty of these two fascinating countries.

To see more of Sian’s amazing photography, here are her contact details:

Website: www.sianowenphotography.com

Facebook: sian.owen.photography
Instagram: @sianowenphotography@sian_owen
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +27 79 981 0981

Interested in Teaching English, volunteering or interning abroad? We’ll send you more info!

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