After two days in Nha Trang we continued our motorbike journey towards the north. Our original idea was to take a longer route, return to the mountains and then again back to the coast and Hoi An. Eventually, we decided to go for the coast route though because it was shorter and quicker. And we don’t regret it at all as this section has been one of the best on our trip by now! Our motorbike functioned without problems too and we only had to stop by for fueling up and oil changing.
The coastal road north from Nha Trang is also partly mountainous and gorgeous deserted beaches, sand dunes, rice fields and lush hills surround the landscape. We stayed away from the highway as much as possible but from time to time we had to drive on Highway 1. The journey from Nha Trang to the next bigger city Qui Nhon was about 200 kilometers. We divided it for two days as we didn’t want to hurry. There were so many nice things to see on the way and we wanted to have breaks without a hurry.
Many people looked like they had never seen foreigners before. Sometimes the whole neighborhood gathered to stare when we had lunch or drank coffee. They will probably talk about the weird visitors in the village at least for a week.
On this route we got to experience loads of Vietnamese countryside, fishing villages and gorgeous landscapes. Sometimes we left the main road and stopped by in random small villages where we apparently shocked the locals’ day with our appearance. Many people looked like they had never seen foreigners before. Sometimes the whole neighborhood gathered to stare when we had lunch or drank coffee. They will probably talk about the weird visitors in the village at least for a week. But still, everyone was very friendly and smiling. This is Vietnam at its best! At the latest at this point we realized how much we would have missed if we didn’t go for the motorbike trip across Vietnam.
Day 1: Nha Trang – Hon Gom peninsula
Our first stop right after Nha Trang was Ba Ho waterfalls where you can go swimming beside admiring the views. We found the waterfalls at the end of a small countryside road and there we some other travelers on the spot as well. We dared to leave our luggage and other stuff on the motorbike in a guarded parking area and went to explore the waterfalls. A small refreshment was needed indeed at least after we had hiked on the rocks around the waterfall for a good while.
When we got almost to the top of the waterfalls, we jumped into the cool water for swimming. There were small fish in the water that attacked us immediately and started to eat our skin. Normally you have to pay for this kind of treatment but this time we got rid of the dead skin cells for free…
The destination of our first day was Hon Gom peninsula that is also the easternmost point in Vietnam. The whole area is really remote and almost deserted and you won’t run into other tourists there. At the northern side of the peninsula, there is one of the most amazing beaches we have ever seen. There was no single person or building on this 15 kilometers long beach but it was completely deserted! Can you imagine an empty paradise beach with light sand and crystal clear water? A morning swim on this beach was as perfect as it sounds.
We ended up staying overnight in a small fishing village Dam Mon that had only motel Hai Ha. A quite decent room cost $6,50. After leaving the motorbike at the motel, we started to wander the village’s narrow streets. We felt ourselves like world-class superstars when the people stared at us mouths open and greeted us, some in a more shy way and some more eagerly. They were clearly not used to see foreigners over there. We didn’t give autographs however but it wasn’t actually far. We haven’t had so much fun for a while as laughing at people’s reactions in this small village. At some point, we stopped by to eat at a small noodle stall. The owner lady was quite pleased when we praised her soup.
Day 2: Hon Gom – Qui Nhon
In the morning our journey continued along Highway 1. Driving next to trucks on a winding mountain road was not enjoyable at all. Luckily we could escape the traffic to a smaller coast road quite soon. The beautiful coast landscapes continued on this route. Sometimes we were driving very high and then went back down to the sea level.
On the way, we went to visit Da Dia Reef that seemed to be a popular sight. The place is known for gorgeous rock formations that look like they were molded from concrete but that actually were created by nature in some funny way. The rocks offered a nice view of the nearby beach and the surrounding cliffs and fishing boats were floating on the ocean. Da Dia was also a nice rest place and we got to drink our ice coffees while relaxing in hammocks.
We reached Qui Nhon city in the afternoon where we had already booked a hostel in the morning. Also this city was completely unknown to us beforehand even though it has more than half million people. We continued the trip again in the morning so we didn’t really explore the places beyond the hostel bar. The city seemed quite nice though and the local beer tasted good after a long day of motorbiking.
In the next part we will continue the story about our trip to Hoi An! You get to read all our motorbiking articles behind the motorbiking tag.