Nha Trang is a modern Vietnamese resort town, but you can still find a few traditional fishing villages in the area. The beach and nearby tropical islands attract tourists who either want to enjoy the calm sea or obtain their diving certificate.
Even though the beach is a popular attraction, Nha Trang has a lot more to offer. Visit the nearby fishing village and explore different places of worship such as the Po Nagar Cham Towers or the Nha Trang Cathedral, an impressive structure influenced by French Catholicism.
The nature around Nha Trang is also worth exploring. You can admire the city from the hills that surround it, travel 12 miles north of the city to see the Ba Ho Waterfalls, or take a tour of the tropical islands located east of Nha Trang.
Spend your afternoon at Bai Dai Beach, Doc Let Beach, or Bai Duong Beach if you want a calmer atmosphere. The beach is the perfect place to relax and to try some of the seafood sold by local fishermen. You should also plan on going scuba diving near the tropical islands across from Nha Trang.
Nha Trang is home to the National Oceanographic Museum of Vietnam, where you can see sharks and turtles as well as rarer species. Monkey Island is 12 miles north and lets you observe monkeys in their natural habitat.
The Long Son Pagoda is a religious site that dates back to the 19th century, and its 79-foot white Buddha statue is very recognizable. The Po Nagar Cham Towers were built by the Cham civilization between the 7th and the 12th century and are still used as a place of worship today.
Head to the Xom Bong Bridge area to find a small traditional fishing village. Watching the fishing boats coming back at the end of the day is an amazing experience.
The Tran Phu Promenade is where you will find most of the high-rise hotels. The area comes alive at night and is a great place for restaurants, bars, clubs, and shopping.
The monsoon season starts in October and ends in December. During this period, temperatures can be cold and the wind will make enjoying the beach difficult. Try visiting Nha Trang in the spring since the city can be crowded during the summer.
Cam Ranh Airport (CXR) is 18 miles south of the Nha Trang. You can take a minibus to the downtown area for ₫50,000 to ₫70,000 depending on the bus service you choose to use. Taxis are also available at the airport, and a trip downtown costs around ₫380,000.
There is a railway station in the northern part of town that is connected to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and several cities in between these two destinations. Taking the train from Ho Chi Minh City to Nha Trang should cost ₫190,000 for a seat in an air-conditioned wagon and ₫535,000 for a sleeper car. Traveling by train from Hanoi to Nha Trang should cost between ₫1,132,750 and ₫1,925,700 depending on the option you choose.
You can drive to Nha Trang by following QL1A if you come from Cam Ranh or from Ninh Hòa. Follow QL20 if you come from Dalat.
You can take the bus from Ho Chi Minh City to Nha Trang for ₫220,000. Bus fare from Qui Nhon should cost ₫115,000 and traveling from Dalat to Nha Trang should cost ₫120,000. Charter buses run from most major cities, and you will have a number of bus companies to choose from. The main intercity bus station sits about 540 yards west of the train station.
Consider staying at the Sheraton Nha Trang Hotel and Spa or at the InterContinental Nha Trang if you want an upscale beachfront hotel. There are many more affordable options that are close to the beach (although you may not get a view on the sea), including the Copac Hotel and the Vien Dong Hotel.
Biet Thu - this is the southern part of town where most of the hotels are. Biet Thu is close to the beach, and you'll be spoiled for choice when it comes to restaurants, bars, and stores.
Cho Dam - a little off the beaten tourist path, Cho Dam is worth visiting for the Cho Dam market, which is a great place to shop for silk and other textiles, souvenirs, fruits, and fresh seafood.
Vinpearl Land - this is a resort and amusement park located on Vinh Nguyen island across from Nha Trang. You can reach the island by taking a cable car. Plan on spending a day there to visit the underwater world aquarium, the water park, the amusement park, try some restaurants, and catch the laser show.
Nha Trang has an extensive and very reliable bus system. You should not have to spend more than ₫7,000 for bus fare. Two of the most frequent lines are the 4 and 6, since these routes take passengers through the Biet Thu area.
There are many taxis in Nha Trang but you should look for the white and green taxis or other modern vehicles. Fare should not be more than ₫20,000 but you will have to negotiate. You can also take cyclos and motorcycle taxis if you want to save money.
There are a few small, independent car rental businesses in the Biet Thu area. You can rent a car for ₫1,000,000 a day or rent a bicycle for only ₫20,000 a day.
You will find many stores in the Biet Thu area where you can shop for clothes, new and second-hand electronics, beachwear, skateboarding, surfing, and diving equipment. The Nha Trang Center is the only shopping mall in town. There are over a hundred stores where you can shop for clothes, accessories, and jewelry.
The Cho Dam market is the best place to shop for fresh food. There is also a Maximark Supermarket near the train station, and you will find different A Mart locations in the Biet Thu area. A quart of milk costs around ₫45,000, while a loaf of bread is priced at ₫14,000.
Nha Trang has one of the best bakeries in the country - the Hoa Hung bakery. You must try seafood during your trip; head to the Thien Thanh Restaurant for an affordable option or to Nha Trang Seafoods for a more upscale experience. You can enjoy traditional vegetarian fare at Phuoc Thien Com Chay and eat Western-style food at White House Hotel. If you want a more hands-on experience, visit Lac Canh, a BBQ restaurant where guests cook their food themselves. Spend an evening at the Fuji Cafe (Phú Sĩ Cafe) if you love live music, or go to the Ha Van Hotel and The Rooftop Lounge on a Tuesday night to take part in the weekly trivia quiz event. Most meals should cost ₫22,000 to ₫113,200 while a meal at a more upscale place should cost ₫226,500 to ₫317,100.