One of the first things people do on arrival in Nha Trang is to head straight down to the beach. And what a beach! Facing east out over the East Sea and palm lined, it's definitely a place to hang out.
Because of this there are a lot of water-based activities such as diving and snorkeling as well as sailing when the weather permits. A fast-growing destination, you can be sure that Nha Trang will change from year to year.
Nha Trang is flanked by 71 islands, and the sea at most times of year, is crystal clear so the plethora of boat trips daily heading out plus the easy availability of booking agents is self-explanatory. Trips are not expensive and are more often than not party cruises but with a fair amount of snorkeling and fishing fitted in between the drinking. Check whether lunch is included or not and compare deals before booking.
If you are not an extremely early riser then charter a boat the day before. Most hotels can handle the booking but the place to book in person is the Cau Da Dock.
Biking trips are the best way to enjoy the beautiful countryside of south central coastal area of Vietnam. Some organized tours take you through rural areas, visiting some historic sites along the way. You can also combine biking with rafting down the Cai River. Tours usually includes light lunches.
Biking and Rafting Tour
Address: 1/12 Tran Quang Khai
Shamrock Irish Pub, organizes a variety of rafting trips catered for each age group. Address: 56a Nguyen Thien Thuat
As Vietnamese food is beginning to be appreciated worldwide, a cooking class is a good introduction to this wonderful cuisine. A half-day class usually begins with a trip to the local market to select fresh herbs, spice and meats. Back in the kitchen, you will be taught how to handle a wok and the correct way to chop, slice or grind.
Lantern, 72 Nguyen Thien Thuat
Sheraton Hotel, 28 Tran Phu, Tel: +84 58 388 2222
Nha Trang has 10 or so dive shops, so this is a 'buyer-friendly' market! Students looking for certification will find that the value for money here is superb, with PADI open-water courses available with full equipment rental. A two-dive boat trip with equipment rental and snacks can be had for a very reasonable sum. As with everywhere in Asia, check what you are getting for your money and make sure you speak to the Instructor who'll be teaching you, not just a 'salesman'. Diving, and especially training, should not be chosen by price alone.
Check out Nha Trang's attractions by bike. The Hon Chong Promontory, the Po Nagar Cham, Long Son Pagoda, with its huge seated Buddha, and Bao Dai's Villas. All these sights are within a hired bike ride away from each other.
Established in Hon Tam Island in 2010, the new centre for hot air balloon rides now operates from near Pham Van Dong Street.
The hot air balloon has solid handrails and a protective net. The ride takes you to a height of 150 metres, and includes a 15-20 stop so you can enjoy the panoramic bird’s eye view of the city and take those hard-to-get aerial photographs of the bay and the sea beyond.
Address: Pham Van Dong Street, or inquire at travel agents.
Golfers will not feel left out in Nha Trang, where a few professionally designed 18-hold golf courses are to be found at:
Vinpearl Complex, in Hon Tre Island, just across the bay of Nha Trang;
Diamond Bay Golf Course, at Diamond Bay Resort, Nguyen Ta Than, Tel: +84 58 371 1666
The mud baths at Thap Ba natural hot springs are a healthy and fun way to spend a few hours. The best time of day to go is between 12:00 and 15:00 when they are less crowded. You will be offered single or shared mud baths and obviously the single ones are more expensive yet the communal tubs are more fun. Shower off in mineral-rich water afterwards or let the mud dry on you first for additional benefits before showering.
Nha Trang Paintball runs two paintball excursions a day. You will be given a gun, protective gear and equipment. An instructor is on hand to divide teams to compete for the matches. Booking is required. Bring towels and a change of clothes.
Address: 117 Nguyen Thien Thuat
Tel: +84 128 380 3593
The same applies for renting out a yacht except this is a calmer (albeit more expensive) way to go out island hopping from May to September.
Dividing the cost among a group is a good way to go.
Tel: +84 58 382 6528