Phan Thiet (Mui Ne)
Sitting approximately 250 kms to the east of Ho Chi Minh City, is the charming fishing village of Phan Thiet. Home to bustling markets, working fishing communities and colourful fishing boats, the wonderful town offers a fascinating insight into Vietnamese coastal life. But it’s the nearby long stretches of sandy beaches that draw most to the area.
Also often referred to as Mui Ne, the area encompasses numerous palm-fringed long sandy beaches that face out over the deep blue South China Sea. Due to the exposed nature of the coastline, the region is popular with windsurfers and kite-surfers. A walk from the beach, one will find impressive sand-dunes, some red and some white, reminiscent of a moonscape, that are both picturesque and enjoyable to explore. For the adventurous, sandboarding is on offer. If something more strenuous is desired, travel a little further afield by road, and there are mountains that will satisfy the keen hiker. Some of which have Buddhist pagodas, and all have stunning views of the tropical countryside, which its lush flora, and varied fauna. For those interested in history, there are ancient remnants of the Champa Kingdom nearby, Hindu worship towers that offer an insight into a Kingdom that thrived from the second to the nineteenth century and covered much of what is modern-day central and southern Vietnam.
Although recent development in the area has been significant, and there are many hotels and associated tourist businesses lining the main road, the area retains a laid-back feel and makes a charming escape from the hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City without having to travel too far.
If you would like a beach stay during your tailormade tour of Vietnam, then Phan Thiet is the perfect place. There are a couple of charming small resorts such as the boutique Cham Villas, located on the beach, and within walking distance of local restaurants and shops.
Due to its location, between Ho Chi Minh City and Dalat, it makes an ideal stop over between the busy city and the mountain town. The best time of year to visit is between December and April when the weather should be dry.
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