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Nha Trang is a coastal city in Vietnam surrounded by mesmerizing blue water, mountainous islands and some of the best seafood in Vietnam. The city is well known for its pristine beaches and excellent scuba diving and is fast becoming a popular destination for international tourists.
Nha Trang has a stunning city beach – bright blue water looking out to the mountains, a beautifully landscaped promenade, and countless swanky-lookin’ beach bars to indulge yourself with a fancy schmancy cocktail on a plush lounge chair in the sand.
Break away from the city, and you’ve got a number of stunning islands with breathtaking crystal clear water to explore, easily accessible by boat. Just go to the Nha Trang port, tell them you want a boat to explore the islands, and voila! Smooth sailin’. The big con? While the water is absolutely jaw-dropping with its 100 shades of blue, the islands can get pretty littered, so buyer beware.
Best time to visit Nha Trang?
The best time to visit is between February and May. Nha Trang weather enjoys an average mean temperature between 26 and 27°C. If you’re a diving enthusiast, the peak diving season in Nha Trang runs between January and October. However, the very best time to enjoy clear waters and coral-rich dive sites is from April to August. That’s when rainfall is at its lowest in Nha Trang.
How to get to Nha Trang?
You can get to Nha Trang by airlines from some countries that have direct flights (Russian, China, Korea, Japan, Thailand..). Some big cities in Vietnam have daily flights to Nha Trang such as Ha Noi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, Hai Phong… by Vietnam Airlines, VietJet Air, Bamboo Airways. You also get to Nha Trang by train from Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang City or Ha Noi Capital.
Places to visit in Nha Trang?
Nha Trang attractions are set against a stunning backdrop of white sandy beaches, verdant mountains, and untouched islands. Great for history buffs, Nha Trang is home to remnants of the Champa Kingdom, Buddhist temples, and gothic-style Catholic churches while natural hot springs, salt fields, and unique waterfalls offer a myriad of sightseeing and recreational activities.
Po Nagar Towers
Commonly known as ” Thap Ba”( Lady Tower), Po Nagar Cham Tower in Nha Trang is situated about 2km from Nha Trang City Center, is nowadays still an actively site for worship by Cham, Vietnamese Buddishts and Chinese. This impressive Tower lie on a lush hill with stunning views overlooking Cia River estuary and colorful fishing boat. Po Nagar Cham Tower is a featured artwork of Cham Architectural Art and Sculpture that are still a mystery to many researchers. Besides beaches, Po Nagar Cham Tower is one of must things to do in Nha Trang.
Hon Mun (Mun Island)
Hon Mun Island is situated on the south of Nha Trang Bay, Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province, 10km from the city’s centre. Named Hon Mun (Ebony) because in the south east of the island, it has high-rise cliffs with dangerous wattles forming caves and grottoes, especially its stones are as black as ebony, which could rarely be found in other areas.
In the black-rock caves of Hon Mun, every year flocks of swallows migrate to the area and build their nests. Hon Mun sea was planed as the first marine protected area of Viet Nam. Due to the island’s location adjacent to the hot sea-currents from the equator, suitable to the development conditions of corals and various types of tropical sea creatures, the sea bed of Hon Mun is home to an abundant and diverse group of marine species. Here, visitors can dive snorkeling, ride glass-bottom boat or walk under the sea to admire the magnificent water world of Nha Trang sea. Mun Island is the scene for well-known sites such as “Madonna Rock” and “Coral Garden” where divers can view the kaleidoscope of bright fish and coral. It takes 15 minutes to get there by boat and is so popular it can have up to 10 boats moored off its shores at any one time.
Tam Island is located in Vinh Nguyen Ward, to the south of Nha Trang Bay, 3 nautical miles from Nha Trang Port, Khanh Hoa Province. Tam Island offers many kinds of water sports such as jet skiing, boating, windsurfing, parachute pulling, adventure diving… Other than that, tourists can enjoy camp-fire nights on the fascinating island.
Carpeted with a green tropical forest throughout 4 seasons, the long sandy coastline winds like a mermaid exposing the smoothness of the Creator by thousands of pampering waves onto the shore all day and night. Underneath the uneven cliffs is the blue water as clear as crystal abounds with many kinds of coral reefs blooming in hundred-pink and thousand-purple colours, and hundreds of schools of fish swimming heartily here and there like visitors flocking to festivals. All seem to be fairy like and dreamlike.There are 200 nice and colourful camps on the island. When attending the camp-fire, visitors will drink can wine, eat baked-meat and sing all night.
Tri Nguyen Fish Pond
Tri Nguyen Fish Lake is situated on Bong Nguyen Island, also called Hon Mieu Island, Nha Trang Bay; half an hour from Cau Da Port, Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province. It is a lake on the sea which people dam up with stone embankment. Hundreds of nice and precious marine creatures are bred in the lake, looking a real marine museum.
Visitors may take a walk around the lake or seating on the house close to the edge of the water, they can see many kinds of colourful sea-fish that live in the clear blue water of the lake.In the island also has Bai San Beach, one of the beaches that are attractive to many visitors.
Van Phong Bay
Van Phong Bay is located 50km from Nha Trang toward the north. There is a sand hill that is 18km long, situated between the main land and two islets creating a bay with a very beautiful landscape.
This beautiful landscape is endowed with wonderful natural sceneries and beaches of fine sand, an ideal temperate climate, surrounded by hills, mountains and tropical forests. The sea is all the more embellished with colorful coral reefs, vestiges of mangrove forests, rare sea creatures in an ideal environment. These are great potentials for the development of ecological tourism in Van Phong. In the plan toward the year 2010, Vietnam National Administration of Tourism declares Van Phong as “the most important region for tourism development”. There are many forms of water sports and uphill tourism here, including sea diving, water skiing, sail boating, mineral water bathing and hunting.At present, Van Phong is ranked 1st of the 4 ideal sea tourist centers by the Sea World Association.
Located in the north of Hon Tre Island, about 4km off the coast of Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province. Vinpearl Land is a unique destination and holiday experience, in front of white sand beaches and turquoise sea, backed to a range of hills and tropical greenery. It is an international-class 5-star entertainment-tourism complex with all modern comforts, offering a 5-star resort & spa, Sofitel Vinpearl Resort & Spa, the biggest amusement park in Viet Nam, Vinpearl Amusement Park.
From the Station of Vinpearl in Tran Phu Street, after just about few minutes traveling by speed motor-boat or ferry or more than 10 minutes enjoying Nha Trang’s panorama from Vinpearl cable-car system, the longest sea-crossing cableway in the world, visitors will be on Vinpearl Land – The Vietnamese Pearl.Visitors in Vinpearl Land will enjoy their stay in a 5-star hotel resort and spa. With hundreds of beautifully designed rooms, including a number of luxurious rooms and presidential suites, the resort can satisfy the most fastidious visitors by bringing them comfort, privacy, convenience, and perfect services.
Vinpearl Resort and Spa has 700m long natural beach in Nha Trang and modern outdoor swimming pools covering an area of 5,700m2 (the largest one in the Southeast Asia) with lots of coconut trees, green grass, nice plants and trees. Besides, there are beauty and health care services in Viet Spa and other relaxing activities, tours – in combination with sports for all ages. A diversified system of restaurants serves from typical Vietnamese to other Asian and European flavor.
What to eat in Nha Trang?
Nha Trang is not only famous for beautiful beaches and fresh air but also for delicious local food with the rich taste of the sea. All makes Nha Trang become an unforgetable destination for people of all kinds.
Nha Trang is chock full of seafood eateries that are set along sandy white beaches. Supplied by local fishing villages, you’ll find an assortment of giant prawns, squid, urchins, crabs, jellyfish, and shellfish of all shapes and sizes. Seafood is priced by weight, where you’ll pick your choice of live or frozen sea creatures. Once the price confirmed, you can have it steamed, barbecued, fried, or prepared in a hotpot. Highly recommended dishes include pan-fried squid with pork stuffing in tomato sauce, grilled red snapper, and shrimp in tamarind sauce.
Lac Canh’s Grilled Beef
Lac Canh’s grilled beef is very popular and believed to be presented for 40 years in Nha Trang. There is a saying “A trip to Nha Trang without Lac Canh grilled beef just makes you understand a half of Nha Trang”. The key lies in the marinated recipe which a few of Mr. Han Hon Minh’s family members being allowed to know and forbidden to reveal it. Beef is marinated in honey and 10 special secret spices. Especially beef is chopped into cubes, easy to eat. Pork is grilled by eaters. It’s as you are having a barbecue in your house.
Grilled Fish Noodle
If Ha Noi is famous for Pho, Hue for Bun Bo Hue, Nha Trang is country-renowned for its Grilled Fish noodle. The broth is light, pure and a little sweet. It is stewed from bones of mackerel and sailfish. Grilled fish is made from fresh mackerel. Hence, each piece of grilled fish is very chewy, juicy and so fragrant. You will not stand against a bowl of vermicelli full of tasty chewy fish cake, fresh herbs and dipping sauce for sure.
Grilled Fermented Pork Roll
As a tasty dish you cannot miss, Nem Ninh Hoa has contributed to enrich Nha Trang cuisine. This food has 2 types, which are nem chua (fermented pork) and Nem nuong (grilled pork). Nem nuong is made from pork grinded till it’s smooth. Nem chua is made from thigh and skin of a pig, which are marinated in special spices then rolled in gooseberry leaf and wrapped by banana leaf. Ater being fermented naturally for 3 days, nem chua is available to serve. Because the process of making Nem is completely handmade, Nem is soft, sticky, and tasty. You can try this food with vegetables and rice paper. Do not forget to eat with certain special sauce for Ninh Hoa grilled pork.
Pho Nha Trang
Besides seafood, you can also find the classic pho noodle soup in Nha Trang. Pho is actually rice noodle in Vietnamese, and is served in a flavourful soup with beef or chicken meat, bean sprouts, lime wedges, and greens such as basil, mint, cilantro, and onions. A side of chilli sauce or fish sauce is also provided if you’re looking to spice up your pho. You can enjoy this popular breakfast staple between VND 20,000 and VND 30,000 at any local restaurant in Nha Trang. Another variation of the classic pho is bun bo hue (beef rice vermicelli) which has a much bolder broth with lots of lemongrass and pork.
Ca Ri Ga (Vietnamese Curry)
Ca ri ga is a type of Vietnamese curry that’s served with rice, noodles, or warmed baguette. While India, Cambodia, and Thailand play an important role in the creation of Vietnamese curries, the flavours of Vietnamese is considerably milder and lighter – great for lunch or a light dinner in Nha Trang. Ca ri ga is made with a combination of chicken, carrots, sweet potatoes, ginger, and peas cooked in a rich coconut curry sauce.
Nha Trang squid pancake
Squid pancakes in Nha Trang are similar to pancakes in Saigon but the size is smaller , more crispy. In addition to the required ingredients, these pancakes also have fresh squid and shrimp. All squid are fresh and taken from the wharf. Then, they are washed and cooked immediately to preserve the freshiness. After a while, the ink inside the squid bursts, blending out. Having “Banh Xeo” with fresh vegetable and delicious sour, spicy fish sauce will create an extremely bold flavor which you find it hard to forget.