South Central Coast

Quang Ngai - Around Quang Ngai - Sa Huynh - Quy Nhon - Around Quy Nhon - Song Cau - Tuy Hoa - Beaches North Of Nha Trang - Nha Trang - Around Nha Trang - Phan Rang Thap Cham - Ninh Chu Beach - Ca Na - Vinh Hao - Mui Ne Beach - Phan Thiet - Ta Cu Mountain


IDD Code:(+84) 58
The coastal drive between Tuy Hoa and Nha Trang on Hwy 1A provides tantalising glimpses of a number of beautiful remote spots, while others hide in the jungle along promontories and on islands. Decent accom-modation options are limited, but as a day trip there's plenty to discover if you've got your own wheels. Throw away the guidebook for a day and go exploring,
Dai Lanh Beach: While half of semicircular Dai Lanh Beach is eaten up by an unattractive fishing village, the south end is still shaded by casuarina trees, along with the hulk of an abandoned hotel project. About 1 km south is a vast sand-dune causeway worth exploring; it connects mainland to Hon Gom, a mountainous penin sula almost 30km in length. Boats for Whale Island leave from Horn Gorn's main village Dam Mon, set on a sheltered bay. It's possible to stay overnight under the trees right on Dai Lanh Beach if you's fussy about comfort. ThuyTa Restaurant (Tell: 842 117; tents 15,000d, r 70,000-120,000d) has tents, r as some ultra-simple straw-roof beach bun-galows. with brick floors and fans. Toilestv are shared, and for nonguests there's a charge of 3000d for the use of cold showers. Fresh seafood features prominently on the is expect mains to cost about 30,000d. Keep close eye on your gear; we've had a few re-ports of theft. Dai Lanh is situated 40km south of Hoa and 83km north of Nha Trang on Hwy 1 A. Any highway buses can drop you here there's a local train station.
Whale Island
A 15-minute boat ride from Dam Mon above. Whale Island is a tiny speck on the map- home to the lovely and secluded French-Whale Island Resort. While is night-rates are expensive for the sin bamboo beachfront bungalows, it discounts substantially depending on length of stay example, a five-night stay averages US per night for a single - less than half the;for one night- Prices include the two-hour car journey from Cam Ranh airport,boat transfers and three meals per day. Rainbow Divers have a pecma- nent base on the island, and the Nha TRANG office can take resort bookings and help transfers. Scuba-diving season ends in October, starting up again in mid-Febre Despite the damaging effects of dynamite! ing, environmental protection efforts (include- ing the transplanting of sea coral) around resort bay have brought about a marked crease in the number of marine species - form 40 to over 170.
Doc Let Beach
This lovely stretch of beachfront is It and wide, with chalk-white sand and shal- low water. Doc Let (pronounced 'yop lek') easily accessible from Nha Trang, and worth considering as a day trip (beach entrance fee 10,000d) or overnight stop. Although there's a small town nearby, the resorts on the beach are fairly isolated. If you're staying here, be prepared to do nettling but lay around.
Paradise Resort Quite separate from the busy part of the beach in the tiny village of Dom Hai, this simple place is run by a Frenchman and his young Vietnamese family. Accommodation is basic, but the flimsy new bamboo huts are atmospheric at least, fitted with mosquito nets and tiny fans. The price would seem hefty if it didn't include three meals, as well as free bottled water, tea, coffee and fruit. Being in the village you can explore the little food market, street stalls and colourful Buddhist pagoda, under the ominous presence of an abandoned American guardtower. Follow the blue signs past the turn-off for Doc Let Resort for 2km, turning right at a petrol station and then right again halfway through the village.
DocletBeachResort (bungalows fan/air-con 150,000/250,000d;Catering mainly to domestic tourists, this large complex with 28 concrete bungalows is nestled in a casuarina grove, right on the beach. Excellent for the price and setting, the rooms are clean, and facilities include a swimming pool, tennis courts, two restaurants, a bar and, of course, karaoke and massage facilities.
White Sand Doclet Resort & Spa ( r US$51. bungalows US$60-88;Designed with a view to Western tastes, this brand new resort provides an upmarket option, with nice linen, bathrobes, slippers and safes in all the rooms, All the bungalows face the beach, while the more expensive have king-size beds, a large bath, a huge TV and a DVD player. A nicely low-rise hotel looks over the pool, with very similar room facilities to the bungalows, all with a private balcony or terrace.
Head 35km north of Nha Trang on Hwy 1A, turning right (east) about 4km past Ninh Hoa. Continue for 10km past photogenic salt fields, looking out for the signs to the resorts. Make a left turn to take you through Doc Let village and then a right to the beach. There is no pub lie transport, but tour operators in Nha Trang offer day trips often coupled with Monkey Island, if you're planning on staying here, enquire at your resort regarding transfers.
Ninh Van Bay
This place doesn't really exist - except in an alternate reality populated by European royalty, filmstars and the otherwise rich and secretive. Occupying a secluded beach at the end of a dense jungle-covered peninsula north of Nha Trang, there are no roads to the seĀ¬cure home of Evason Hideaway & Six Senses SpaatAnaMandara( Access is strictly restricted to guests only, via a half-hour ride on the resort's speedboat from a landing point 14km north of Nha Trang. The resort even has its own time zone - setting the clocks an hour ahead in an effort to encourage guests to enjoy the sunrise.The traditionally inspired architecture and the dirt tracks between buildings give the illusion of a jungle village - albeit one where every dwelling is an elegant two-storey villa, each with its own swimming pool and round-the-clock butler service. As you would hope for the price, the facilities and attention to detail are superb, the staff are friendly and helpful, and the setting is simply magical.