Nha Trang, Vietnam
Our group loved Hoi An immensely so it made it hard to leave, but we knew we would have to move on to another town eventually. We decided to book a bus to Nha Trang since a massive rain storm was headed straight for Hoi An. A small VIP bus picked us up later in the afternoon, the storm felt slightly like a monsoon at this point with 12 hours straight of down pour. They dropped us off at the travel agency where we would be picked up by the sleeper bus. They were about an hour late, no surprise there! You are on Vietnamese time... I couldn't sleep on the bus so I was up reading the book "Wild" by Cheryl Strayed (you should read that book if you haven't already) especially if you're going out on your first solo backpacking adventure!
The wind and all the rain from the storm was really freaking me out. I had one of those feelings in my gut that something wasn't right. Around 3am our bus crashed. I'm not sure if the bus driver fell asleep or if he just lost control, but I felt the bus sway massively to the right, we hit the median. CRASH!!! BOOM!!! The driver overcorrected spinning us a few times on some dark random highway in the middle of Vietnam. I'm positive something hit us coming from the other direction, but it's all kind of hazy. Everyone was screaming, shocked and scared. This German man had the most delayed reaction... I'll never forget when the bus finally stopped spinning horizontally in the middle of highway, he sat up on the back chair and screamed AHHHH AHHHH AHHHHHH like it had just happened but he was about 30 seconds too late. There was a Brazilian girl bleeding from her head and many people shaking from nerves, including myself.
We all exited the bus quickly noticing the luggage bins were all open and our luggage all scattered on the highway. The back of the bus was smoking and the taillights shattered. The driver's helper started screaming to get back on the bus... No explanation for what happened... No "I'm sorry," just yelling for us to get back on. They took wrenches and hammers to the luggage bins securing the dented doors back into place. And just like that we continued to drive another three hours all the way to Na Trang stopping every thirty minutes to make sure the bus wasn't going to blow up. To say the least we decided as a group to not move onto the next destination for a few days, we took the time to enjoy Nha Trang's beautiful beaches and interesting nightlife.
Things to do:
- Beach, beach, beach and more beach
- Amigos Bar
- The Wave Bar
- Havana Club
- Crazy Kim Restaurant
- Walk along the boardwalk
Where to eat:
- Lac Canh Restaurant
- Lang Viet
- Bien Dong
- Vit Tiem 69 Bach Dang
Nha Trang is full of people on holiday from Russia. You'll feel like there are more Russians than there are Vietnamese at times. Take notice that a lot of restaurants have Russian names with the menu in Russian as well. The Havana Club even has Russian pool games. It's interesting to see the two cultures combined into one.
Where to stay:
- Mojzo Hostel - great hostel and rooftop area! $7 per night
- La Suisse Hotel - $13 per night
- Sunny Hotel - $22 per night
- Sheraton - if you're feeling super fancy or have points saved up hit up the Sheraton! $117 per night
Enjoy Nha Trang and all it's beauty!