Posts tagged ‘Nha Trang’

In all we spent just under a month in Vietnam.  It was enough time to traverse the long, thin nation from south to north, hitting all the major tourist destinations while leaving enough time to dawdle in some areas.  While I was not able to keep up with regular updates on each place (thereby sparing you all the details), here’s a summary of the main areas we visited in Vietnam that I did not post elsewhere.

Dalat

A welcome relief from the scorching heat of Saigon, alpine Dalat in the Central Highlands was our first destination from Saigon as we slowly headed north.  After a wild ride that Paul so eloquently (and entertainingly) documented, the tranquility and cool temps of this city were exactly what we needed.

Founded as a French hill-fort town in the 1920s, Dalat soon became the most desired getaway from the steamy Mekong delta for the colonists.  The many French villas that sprung up in subsequent decades have been converted to either Party offices or hotels.  The city preserves its holiday appearance with a lake, parks and green spaces, and a lively evening market with grilled foods, clothing, and handicrafts for tourists.

We chanced upon the Peace Hotel, a backpacker haven conveniently located in the city center and right next door to the Easy Riders, known for their expert cycling tours through the region.  We had a comfortable twin room quietly facing the back patio with a nice hot-water bathroom and mosquito nets for only $10, an incredible deal after several days of Saigon city prices.  I was still heavily congested from the cold I had been battling so an agreeable room in a mild climate was just what I needed.

Continue reading ‘Vagabonding in Vietnam Part I — Southern Sojourns’ »

My first dip in the South China Sea in Nha Trang, Vietnam

So, we’ve been in Vietnam for just over a week and what an incredible journey this has been so far.  But before I start posting the typical here’s what I did in this-or-that city, I’ll begin with a simple picture of Vietnam from yesterday evening:

Booming waves crash against the golden sand as I run barefoot and slowly along Nha Trang beach on the South China Sea.  I am getting some exercise to try and put my cough and congestion to bed after a long cold that has dogged me almost since I arrived in Asia.  What begins as a simple mission to stretch my lungs soon turns into a contemplative encounter with the lovely Vietnamese people on a 20-minute stretch of sand…

I pass a young father with his daughter at the end of a wooden pier, holding hands.  She is wearing her primary school uniform and smiling towards the sea, her communist red bandana and silken black hair blowing in the strong ocean breeze.

Continue reading ‘Sunlight and Shadows on a Vietnam Beach’ »