13th November, 2017
Hello from the glorious Nha Trang.
Nha Trang is a coastal resort city in southern Vietnam. Best known for its long, white sandy beaches. The beach runs for miles and is surrounded by lush mountains. It is so beautiful and unlike anywhere else I have travelled.
A few days before we arrived, Nha Trang was hit by Typhoon Damrey, the strongest cyclone in 16 years. Lives were lost. Homes destroyed. We weren’t quite sure what we’d be faced with on our arrival. As we drove from the airport to our hotel, the damage was evident. Trees were uprooted, power poles were down with power lines sprawled across the roads. Piles of rubble and bricks on every corner. Street signs blown over. It was sad to see. With this said, the Vietnamese continue to smile. To work together with the clean up, and to move on.
We arrived with a warm welcome from the team at Novotel Nha Trang.
One thing I have noticed with the Vietnamese people is that they’re so willing to please, and always making sure everyone is happy and satisfied.
We were treated with connecting rooms. The kids thought it was pretty great having their own split level room to themselves with a balcony and sea views. The perfect spot for some school work!
The Novotel Nha Trang is the perfect Hotel for families. Spacious, well laid out rooms with a huge bathroom and a very impressive mosaic tiled shower.
A work desk and separate seating area for lounging. Fully stocked minibar and a balcony with sea views as far as the eye can see! Located on the main strip, directly across from the beach- take your pick of eateries, or dine at the hotel. Happy Hour is 5-7pm each night in the bar on the ground floor. Buy one, get one free. Who could resist?! (I strongly recommend the Mojito..!)
The Buffet breakfast caters for everyone, with a huge selection ranging from traditional Vietnamese to the Western delights we know and love. Juice and yoghurt bar, breads and pastries, fresh tropical fruits, bacon and eggs and much, much more.
The swimming pool was on Level 3 and had a great view over the town. So many beautifully coloured rooftops. A little rain didn’t worry the kids – jumping in and making the most of having the pool to themselves for an hour or two.
We ventured out most evenings and tried a few different places for dinner, once again using TripAdvisor as a guide. (It is yet to let me down!)
I can strongly recommend Omar’s Indian Restaurant. Lamb Rogan Josh was the stand out dish and do yourself a favour and order some garlic naan – massive and delicious!
We also tried Olivia’s – fabulous beef Phở and some of the best vegetarian spring rolls I have had…and I have tried my fair share! Cute little setup too, with both indoor and outdoor dining.
Lanterns was also great. A very popular place – always a sign of good food. I had the Vietnamese Chicken curry. It was creamy, with just the right amount of spice. The kids had burgers – a big hit also.
LIVIN Courtyard Restaurant was great – and SO Melbourne! Gorgeous courtyard decked out with a huge painted wall mural and festoon lights. We ordered way too much food, but still managed to get through it all. Andrew had the rib platter, I had the veggie burger (YUM!!) and the kids had tacos. They serve craft beers and awesome coffee too.
We ate at Rainforest twice. Once for dinner and once for Brunch. Amazing design – several levels with walk bridges and hammocks. Sandpits and indoor slides. All made from bamboo and timber. It was divine. We dined whilst sitting on swings – the kids loved it!!
We spent our days adventuring around the town. We did lots and lots (and lots) of walking. Caught taxis when little legs were weary and most nights we were in bed by 9pm. It’s been wonderful to get out of the busy city of Saigon and take things down a notch in Nha Trang. The pace is a little slower and everyone is pretty chilled.
There are little convenient stores on most streets, so it’s easy to stock up on snacks every couple of days.
I find myself constantly stopping to snap pictures of the pretty pastel buildings.
We stumbled across a local produce market one afternoon when wandering back to the hotel. The streets were full of locals selling their goods. Meat, banh mi, fruit, vegetables, and beautiful fresh flowers. Authentic Vietnam at it’s very best. I just loved seeing this!
We headed out on foot to the Long Sơn Pagoda (the big white Buddha). You can see him perched atop of the hill from anywhere in the town. It was remarkable.
Being up so hight, the Pagoda had received a thrashing from the typhoon, but it was still breathtakingly beautiful and I would definitely recommend visiting. Wear some good walking shoes though, lots of stairs to climb!
For our last day in Nha Trang, we took the recommendation from a local restaurant owner and we headed to I Resort for mud baths and a soak in the hot mineral springs. We also paid a little extra ($9AUD) for entry to the water park.
The mud bath was awesome and such a unique experience. It was hot and slippery and made our skin feel amazing!! We spent the afternoon on the water slides and chilling in the infinity pool which looks out over the river. It was a pretty great day!
We have only been away for 10 days, but it feels like weeks. I’m not sure if that means we’re relaxed, or if it’s purely because we have crammed so much into 10 days – but either way, we’re happy.
That’s all for now from Nha Trang. We have really loved this place. It has definitely left a huge impression on our hearts.
Stay tuned for our next stop…
A very big Thank you to Novotel Nha Trang for welcoming my family as guests of the hotel and making us feel at home. We hope to see you again some day x
(As always, all words and opinions are my own)