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Travel Guide Asia Vietnam Nha Trang

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Introduction

Beach at Nha Trang

Beach at Nha Trang

© All Rights Reserved daveh

Nha Trang is an incredible Vietnamese town right on the beach front. The Government backpacker bus route includes Nha Trang and is a must see destination for unwinding after a 10 hour bus ride from Hoi An. The water temperature is great, merely watch out for getting in, the break is small but powerful and your swimwear can easily be sucked off!

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Neighbourhoods

  • Vinh Hai
  • Xuong Huan
  • Phuong Sai
  • Van Thang

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Sights and Activities

Mama Hahn party boats are ideal ways to head out and see the nearby islands and relax in an inflatible tractor innertube with a cocktail! On the islands there are also options for jet-skiiing for around $15 for 15 minutes. Splitting this cost with a friend is a good suggestion. There are other alternatives to Mama Hahn and you can jump from boat to boat.

Rainbow Divers is one of the 3 diving operations based in Nha Trang and has the most awareness in the town. Many people wear the compants polo shirts in exchange for dives. This company was started by an English man, another company, Octopus Diving, was started by a German-Dutch couple.

The diving in Nha Trang isn't particularly amazing and there are same priced dives, with more to see, in Thailand. This areas' biodiversity is most similar to the eastcoast of Thailand, Koh Tao, yet there is only one Japanese Garden coral reef, and that is in Koh Tao. However, since the Tsunami in 2004 people are choosing to head to the Pacific/South China Sea.

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Events and Festivals

  • Thap Ba - Po Nagar Festival
  • The Sea Festival

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Weather

Nha Trang has a tropical savanna climate with a lengthy dry season from January to August and a shorter wet season from September to December, when 1,029 millimetres of the city's total annual rainfall of 1,361 millimetres is received from the northeast monsoon. During the wet season extremely heavy rainfall from typhoons is not uncommon,[2] though the city is shielded from the worst winds.

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Getting There

By Plane

Cam Ranh International Airport. (IATA: CXR) serves Nha Trang and is located 30 kilometres south at Cam Ranh. It is the 4th busiest airport in Vietnam. There are lots of domestic flights from Ho Chi Minh City, Vinh, Da Nang, Hanoi, Haiphong, with prices starting at 250,000 dong. Internationally the city is connected to Seoul, South Korea and to a decent amount of cities in China.

By Train

Nha Trang is a stop on the main railway line connecting Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. 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 can. 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.

The journey to Nha Trang from Ho Chi Minh City takes between 6-8 hours on SE trains (often delayed), so a sleeper is not really necessary, a cushioned seat in the air-con car costs 190,000 dong, soft seats are 310,000 dong, soft sleeper about 500,000 dong. There are 2 overnight and 2 daily SE trains. The SNT trains take over 9 hours and travel overnight only, departs Ho Chi Minh City at 19:40 and arrives in Nha Trang at 05:20, 535,000 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.

By Car

Private car rental with a driver are usually modern air-con cars and can be rented for about 1,000,000 dong per day. Car rental prices (as mostly anything in Vietnam) usually increase during holiday seasons especially around Tet (Vietnamese New Year). Make sure to avoid high prices by booking it beforehand with the car rental services.

By Bus

Nearly all long distance sleeper buses stop in Nha Trang. They come from Ho Chi Minh City (10-12 hours, 200,000 dong, both morning and overnight buses available, both are sleeper buses), Hoi An (12 hours). Sleeper buses usually drop off passengers on the side of the street somewhat near the tourist areas. From where it's only a short walk or $2 taxi ride to the required hotel.

Besides, there are hourly buses from Da Lat (3-4 hours, 120,000 dong, hourly between 07:00-15:00) and a couple ones from Qui Nhon (6 hours, 115,000 dong, at 07:30, 08:30, 13:00 and 15:30), Mui Ne (6 hours).

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Getting Around

By Car

Tourists are advised to take Mai Linh (preferably) or Vinasun taxis, where the drivers usually use the meter and do not attempt to cheat on tourists. A ride inside the city of Nha Trang should never cost more than a few dozen thousand dong. On the other hand, going to places outside of Nha Trang by taxi can cost hundreds of thousand dong, and possibly much more if you would like the driver to wait for you to bring you back to the city.

By Public Transport

Nha Trang's city bus system is surprisingly useful for travellers that have more time than money. Buses are white and blue in color, have air conditioning, Vietnamese music, and are very cheap, typically costing less than US$ 0.50. While there is very few information available, online or otherwise, about city buses, there are not many bus routes such that it is relatively easy to understand them. In addition, buses are rarely crowded except on peak hours. On the negative side, buses are often infrequent and with limited working hours, drivers and fare collectors seldom speak English, and bus stops are often quite far from each other. Therefore, make sure that you have enough time and patience before going somewhere by bus.

Bus #4 is probably the most useful for visitors, as it passes through the main tourist area (between Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai and the old airport) as well as many points of interest, including the Vinpearl cable car entrance, the Hòn Chồng promontory, the Po Nagar towers and Nha Trang Cathedral, as well as nearby the Cho Dam Market. Visitors staying in the main tourist area can take the bus at Nguyễn Thiện Thuật.

Bus #3 also passes through the main tourist area, and can be used to go to Doc Let beach. While this would take at least 90 minutes, it is one of the few ways to go to Doc Let for travellers which do not have their own transportation.

Buses are always paid with cash. Fare collectors can provide you change, but avoid using large bills. As in other cities in Vietnam, buses often do not completely stop to allow people to board, and even when they stop, they will often start moving as soon as the first person climbs the stairs of the bus. Therefore, do not stop or try to pay the fare as soon as you board the bus; instead, find a place to sit or stay and the bus fare collector will walk towards you.

By Foot

Although not as treacherous as in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, walking in Nha Trang is certainly no walk in the park. Zebra crossings are almost meaningless as no vehicle will ever stop for pedestrians crossing the street, and the few traffic lights in the city are systematically ignored. Pavements are often unusable for walking, as they are almost entirely occupied with parked motorcycles, kiosks and restaurant tables, such that pedestrians are expected to walk mostly in the road. See the general advice for crossing the road in Vietnam.

One of the few pleasant places to walk in Nha Trang is the walking path along the beach, which is quite well-maintained and lined with nice gardens, monuments and public places, although sometimes interrupted by motorcycle parking lots.

By Bike

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. However, note that if you have no experience with Vietnamese traffic, you should think twice about using a bicycle as your main means of transport in Nha Trang.

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Drink

In the evening, the best bar is Blue Gecko, where Snow will serve you the best drinks and the best music. After 1 in the morning, all bars generally closed and people congregate at the Sailing Club on the beach (all bars and this club have free entry). A walk back to your $3 for a room hotel is merely a few minutes away. Be careful, it should be safe, but you never can tell.

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Sleep

There are plenty of budget hotels in Nha Trang costing less than USD20 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 Wi-Fi, 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. Hostel dorm beds are available for USD 5-7 per night. 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.

Upscale

View our map of accommodation in Nha Trang or use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)

Booking.com

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Keep Connected

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

Vietnam's international dialing code is +84. To call to other countries from Vietnam, start with 00, followed by the international number, usually without the first 0. International and domestic phone calls are available in almost every hotel or internet café. International phone charges are high in Vietnam and hotels often add a mark up fee so it is smart to always check the rates before dialling. Public phones require phone cards, which are available at post offices.

Some common and useful phone codes are:

  • 00 - International call prefix
  • 110 - Operator
  • 113 - Police
  • 114 - Fire Department
  • 115 - Medical Aid/Ambulance
  • 116 - Directory Assistance
  • 1080 - Information

Post

Vietnam Post is the government owned national postal service of Vietnam. Services are generally fairly reliable, cheap but not overly fast, except express services. Express Mail Service (EMS) ensures that letters and small parcels are delivered within 24-48 hours domestically. International EMS is associated with over 50 countries worldwide, with a delivery time ranging from 2 to 10 days. Regular services are cheaper but much slower. Most post offices keep much longer hours than most other official businesses, usually starting from 6:30am until 9:30pm and also open on Saturday and even Sunday. You can buy stamps here and they also offer other services like money transfers. You can also try other companies to send parcels, for example with DHL, TNT and UPS.

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Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 12.2515
  • Longitude: 109.1968

Accommodation in Nha Trang

We have a comprehensive list of accommodation in Nha Trang searchable right here on Travellerspoint. You can use our map to quickly compare budget, mid-range or top of the range accommodation in Nha Trang and areas nearby.

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This is version 24. Last edited at 3:27 on Aug 2, 17 by sleepBot. 4 articles link to this page.

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