One of Vietnam’s best-known beach cities offers blue-green waters and white sand close to cafés, historical sites and restaurants serving delicious local cuisine.
Nha Trang became a popular beach getaway over the course of the 20th century. Today it attracts visitors from all over the world and has recently seen a period of rapid development. Although apartment buildings and upmarket hotels are now a common sight around the beach and tourist areas, it only takes a short walk to find the narrow streets and houses that represent the Nha Trang of old.
Nha Trang’s main beach is by far its biggest asset, and its beauty lives up to its fame. To escape the crowds, however, head across the bridge to Bai Duong Beach where the waters are calmer, the sand is cleaner, and there are fewer people to obstruct your view of the sea.
To explore the world beneath the waves, organise a diving session with one of many schools in the city. Instructors are excellent and rates are low. Snorkelers can access the biggest and best range of marine life by jumping aboard a boat and heading out to the nearby islands. Anyone looking to try their hand at surfing can take lessons or just rent a board and go.
The weather in Nha Trang is warm and fine before October and after mid-December. If you are visiting in the wet season, which includes winter, the city has plenty of indoor attractions to keep you busy on a rainy day. Vietnam’s National Oceanographic Museum and a museum dedicated to the bacteriologist Alexandre Yersin are both well worth a visit.
Experience local heritage at the Po Nagar Cham Towers. A relic from the Cham civilisation of the eighth century, this temple complex is still a place of worship today. Other landmark buildlings include the Long Son Pagoda temple and Nha Trang’s cathedral, a dramatic French neo-Gothic construction.
At night, enjoy the excellent restaurants and bars all around the city. Note that things usually wind down well before midnight.
Nha Trang is a place to spend hot summer days lounging on the beach or sipping a cool drink at a café. If you ever need a break from the beach, you’ll still find plenty to see and do inland.