After heading back from the Mekong Delta to Saigon we decided to travel up the coast to the small village of Mui Ne, a popular weekend getaway for the Saigon locals. We used the Viet Nhat Bus Company this time, instead of the Phoung Trang (also known as FUTA) company which we used on our previous trip. The ticket costs 180000 Dong (£6) which was a little more than the other companies but the trip only took 4 hours instead of anywhere up to 7. This is because this bus leaves Ho Chi Minh at 08:00 and travels the length of the country all the way up to Hanoi in the north, so doesn’t stop in many places on the way. We stopped once at 11:30 for a toilet break and arrived at the Viet Nhat Bus Terminal in Mui Ne at 12:15. The bus stops here for 30 minutes for lunch and then carries on up the coast all the way to Hanoi. However it was here that we got off, and after grabbing a cheap, nice lunch at the bus terminal, we then were given a free lift to our hostel. One thing to note that as it’s a long distance bus, its a sleeper bus so you basically have to lay down the whole way. I’m 6ft tall and managed to just squeeze in the bed, but I’d say if you’re any taller this probably isn’t the option for you.
The hostel we chose was the Mui Ne Hills Budget Hostel for $5 a night for a bed in an 8 bed dorm. There are beds for $3 a night in a 12 bed dorm but there weren’t any of these beds available at our time of booking. The rooms however are pretty dark, the beds are quite squeaky and there is only one shower and toilet available for each room. However it is so worth it. You get access to the Mui Ne Hills Bliss Hotel across the road which has 3 swimming pools, there is staff available all day to serve you food and drink, plenty of sunbeds available and free towel rental. The drinks are very reasonably priced at £0.50 a beer, breakfast is served between 7-10 every day with 22 different food options and any 2 drinks on the menu for 45000 Dong (£1.50). There is a wide range of food available, both local and western and I can’t say I had a bad meal. We decided that after 3 months of being on the go, we needed a place to stay and relax for an extended period of time. We enquired about staying some more nights, and for the same price we were paying for the dorm, they gave us an upgrade to a deluxe double room, with its own balcony and power shower. Now me and Holly are not a couple, a couple of mugs maybe, but it seemed silly to turn down this opportunity, so in the end we spent 9 nights in total here, sleeping back to back every night!
In the 9 days I was here I only left the resort 5 times. Once for suncream, aftersun and to look at the beach (it was windy and dirty), another time for money, once to get a haircut and once to watch the football in a bar at the end of the road. The other time was for a trip around Mui Ne to see what it had to offer, visiting the white and red sand dunes, a small fishing village and the fairy stream. At the fishing village there was a lady carrying nets down to the beach, but she dropped some on her way down. I decided to do my good deed for the day and pick them up and help her carry them down, she was very thankful. The trip cost 60000 Dong (£2) for a lift to all these places and the trip took around 4 hours. I’d say it’s definitely worth doing, at the sand dunes you can rent quadbikes or sandboards, the fairy stream is beautiful and the fishing village is very picturesque. A driver drops you off at these places, you go out and explore and then head back to the car at a decided time. I’m going to add a picture album to show you my 9 days here, so I don’t have to write any more and can soak up the rays for one last day!