Friday, 19 July 2013

Mũi Né to Nha Trang

Check out was at 11.30am and we wanted to enjoy a last swim in the pool/ocean before checking out so we got up early enough to enjoy both before breakfast, although the noisy kids who were up before us meant there was no need for an alarm clock.

Last minute snacks in Mũi Né while we
waited for our bus - tasty!
Since the banana pancakes had been so good the day before we decided that a second take was in order, followed up by one last dip after which we showered, packed and checked out. With not much to do till our bus at 1pm we wandered along the one road in ‘town’, window shopped, explored the beach and generally passed the time till 12.30 when we thought we should eat something before the bus trip even though neither of us was particularly hungry. It was a good thing that we did though as the bus was an hour late, which meant we didn’t arrive in Nha Trang till 7pm, even though the driver drove like a madman, with only a brief toilet stop en route. 

When we disembarked we wove our way through the throngs of touts that swarmed the bus, offering either a cheap hotel or taxi ride or both. We ignored the numerous, repetitive offers and walked the 20 minutes to our hotel that we’d already booked, although had we known beforehand that our room would be on the 4th floor we may have reconsidered at least the taxi ride… 

The view from our back sleeper seat
from Mũi Né to Nha Trang
We dropped our bags and went straight out to book a snorkelling tour for the next day and also find some food. We discovered that both things were a bit more expensive then we’d expected, but we were in a touristy town so that’s the way it goes. Even so, it didn’t take much searching to find a quality cheap local phở and then we stumbled on night markets where we enjoyed coconut steamed buns, sweet milk with jelly and thai styled sweet tapioca with banana. 

With the food criteria well and truly met, it was off to the travel agent we’d liked best to book our tour. We learnt that we were in for an early start the next morning, as before 8.30am we had to change rooms, book trains tickets, find some breakfast and get to the travel agent to board the bus… Unfortunately when we went to pay for the tour we discovered that we were missing quite a large amount of money (well large in terms of dong). We carefully traced back our spending as we had been keeping a very accurate daily budget and we realised that the money went missing when we were staying at Sunrise Hotel in Mũi Né. In fact, we were almost certain of when it must have happened, as Dave always wore his money belt except for the first morning when we’d hurried down not to miss breakfast and he’d left the money belt by the bed. 

Dessert at night markets in Nha Trang
We weren’t expecting our room to be cleaned in the 20 minutes we were gone for breakfast, but when we returned to our room we realised that the cleaning ladies had been. We didn’t think anything of it at the time as it didn’t look like anything had been touched other than the bed made up, and they were smart enough not to take everything out of the money belt so until we had cause to count it we didn’t realise how much was actually missing. Since this didn’t happen till we were in the next town, there really wasn’t much we could do. Thankfully we never travel with a significant amount of money so in the grand scheme of things it wasn’t a lot to lose, but it did tarnish our pleasant memories of our stay in Mũi Né somewhat…

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