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.
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 Budget Hotel
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.”
“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!”
“For the rest of our time in Mui Ne we just chilled by the pool and wandered around. It’s a cool little place.”
A sleeper bus from Mui Ne to Dalat costs about $6 took us +/- 5 hours.
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.”
Dalat Countryside Tour
“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 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.”
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.”
“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.”
“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.”
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.”
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.
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.”
“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!”
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:
Interested in Teaching English, volunteering or interning abroad? We’ll send you more info!