Monday, July 28, 2008

Nha Trang

Recently famed for holding Miss Universe. Nha Trang is a huge coastal tourist destination full of hotels, restaurants and neon lights.

However, if you are after a more peaceful time, some beautiful countryside is only minutes away....

Memento Nha Trang

"Tucked away in the midst of rice fields, winding earthen roads and small orchards, Memento is a country classic that takes advantage of its size to offer a quaint getaway for families and couples.

Located on the coastal Dien Hoa Commune, Dien Khanh District, Khanh Hoa Province, Memento Country Home offers guests Vietnamese-style thatched-roof cottages that exude the aura of a 1930s village surrounded by streams, brick courtyards with mango and jack fruit trees".


The new road from Nha Trang to Dalat rises steeply out of the countryside and the temperature steadily drops.


Dalat is very much a tourist town. Tour buses by the dozen run up and down its hills, and small hotels line its streets. The vast majority of visitors are Vietnamese on short package tours, drawn by the scenery, vivid blue skies, fresh air, flower-filled parks, and local edible treats.

Ana Mandara Dalat

"Set in the cool climate of the rural highlands of Central Vietnam, Evason Ana Mandara Villas Dalat comprises 17 French colonial villas each originally constructed between the 1920's and 1930's and lovingly restored to their former glory."


The road heading NW out of Dalat quickly turns into a rocky footpath and is inpassable during the rain. We covered just a 40km stretch in nearly 3 1/2 hours, passing only two other bikes and one small settlement.

Lak Lake

About 60 km south of Buon Ma Thuot is Lak Lake, overlooked by the old Summer residence of Emperor Bao Dai which has been renovated into a hotel. Surrounding the lake is Jun Village, home of the Jun people.

The villagers have a peculiar form of fishing where they attach metal rods to a car battery and run the rods through the water zapping and stunning the fish.

Buôn Ma Thuột

Buôn Ma Thuột is the capital city of Dak Lak Province, in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. A pleasant place with plenty of parks and excellent coffee.

Jungle Beach

"Tourists rave about Jungle Beach, Nha Trang. Run by a Canadian expat, the place is eco-friendly, basic living at beachside".

Very basic....

Ana Mandara Nha Trang

"Evason Ana Mandara Nha Trang reflects the image of an old Vietnamese village, with its warm hospitality, rich culture and unique tastes. It is surrounded by private tropical gardens, offering simplicity, serenity and refinement together with spectacular views of Nha Trang Bay."

Friday, July 04, 2008

Jo Jo's opening

New wine and coffee bar on Hai Ba Trung from The Al Fresco Group.