Friday, March 21, 2014

March 10th – Here Comes The Sun in Nha Trang

After a week without seeing the sun, it finally came out for us in the relaxed holiday resort of Nha Trang. Actually, after a week of us moaning about the incessant cloud and rain, was it a little churlish to complain that it was too hot? Yes it was, because the weather was gloriously sunny, a factor which immediately put everyone in a good mood.

Every time we come back to Nha Trang, we find that it's grown some more – the line of high rise hotels along its long stretch of beach is getting steadily more crowded and higher. Yet, in spite of the city's growth, Nha Trang actually has a fairly laid-back atmosphere for a Vietnamese town. The market is relatively quiet, and the people are less pushy than Ho Chi Minh City, while the traffic hasn't yet hit the uncontrolled levels of most other large Vietnamese cities.

Given the fact that the town is based around a beautiful bay of white sand, it's no surprise that Nha Trang has an unashamed tourist focus; while, it's interesting to see that much of that focus is on Russian tourists. Most of the restaurant and bar signs had Russian versions in Cyrillic; while the presence of people standing up as they sunbathed and turned beetroot-red, was a sure sign that Nha Trang is becoming a major destination for Russian tourists.

This was only a short day in port, so today was all about getting a taster of Nha Trang's atmosphere – what we saw, we liked. The town's developing a decent tourist infrastructure, but so far, it's retaining a relaxed air to it. In fact, Nha Trang seems to have everything going for it – the only danger is falling into the trap of overdevelopment.

It'll be interesting to see how Nha Trang goes in the future - my gut feeling is that the town will do very well indeed.