Day 9 – Saturday 2nd January – Dalat to Nha Trang

After a (double!!) omelette breakfast, we set off at 9am. The journey to Nha Trang should take 4 or 5 hours and we’ll drop from 1500m to sea level.

The first part of the journey took us through the agricultural area outside of Dalat. There were valleys crammed with green houses, growing a huge array of vegetables and fruit, like we’d seen yesterday. After this we made our way through an undulating landscape of pine forest. After a little while we stopped to take photos of a Rong house, a traditional Vietnamese house. The people around here are from hill tribes that make up about 16% of the population.

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The houses are on stilts to maximise the land, as often animals are kept below the building.

As we drove on we headed up towards a pass which marked the point at which we started out descent to the coast. The weather here was misty and a fine rain made sure that we didn’t get many views. The road is not as good here with potholes, although it’s far from being the worst road that I’ve travelled on.

As we descended the cloud lifted and we were able to glimpse deep wooded valleys and waterfalls coming down on the side of the road.

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We stopped for lunch at a roadside restaurant. It was cheap at only £2 each including a beer, but the food was disappointing.

A further hour or so drive, we arrived in Nah Trang and headed to our hotel. Our room has a sea view, just about, although we are one block back from the beach. Or room is huge and I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a bigger bed!

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There was an optional trip this afternoon to the local mud baths at the Thap Ba hot springs. Ed decided not to go so I met the others who were going and we drove the 10 km north of the town. The mud baths have a set order and after a quick shower you get into a bath and they add the ‘mud’ which is actually more liquidy than I thought it would be. After half an hour you get out, shower again and then get into another pool with hot spring water. The temperature of this was like a bath!  Finally we headed to the mineral pool, stopping at the waterfall to have a light water massage!  All in all a very pleasant experience, although I’m not sure of any of the supposed health benefits! 

We got back to the hotel and I met up with Ed who had been for a walk along the beach.

I had a quick shower and then we went for a walk and drink before meeting the others for tea. It was one of our fellow travellers birthdays so we are at a restaurant near the beach called Louisiane.

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There was also a small brewery at this restaurant and so we sampled a couple of their brews, and I had far too much to eat!

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Having eaten far too much, we headed back to the hotel to prepare for tomorrow’s adventure… a boat ride and some snorkeling! 

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