October 25th If you didn’t read the last post, you should! Anyway – the overnight train was a blast. We finally went to sleep about 10:30 or 11:00pm and had to get up at about 5-5:30am to get off the train in Nha Trang. We had a short bus ride from the train station to the hotel. But because it was so early in the morning, we couldn’t exactly check in. So they had a closet we could put our big packs in and a bathroom we could use to change into beach-appropriate attire. The weather was pretty iffy but we decided to have fun anyway. It was a free day so we went to the beach, went swimming in the ocean and tried not to get pounded too hard by the good-sized waves. Once you got out beyond the breaking waves, it was awesome! After a little while it started to rain so we went for a walk. The guys wanted to find a volleyball. We probably walked 2-3 miles but we finally found one! It took some wandering around the back streets of Nha Trang but eventually, they got one. Back to the beach – we played volleyball in a circle for at least an hour. It was so much fun!!! I love my travel group. Such an amazing bunch of cool people!
The guys also created sand sculptures….
We were able to check into the hotel at about 2pm so I headed back and didn’t get lost exactly, just misremembered how many streets in from the beach our hotel was, so I basically took a long-cut to the hotel and met everyone there who had left the beach after I did. Ooopss. 😀 Dinner time: Lanterns Restaurant in Nha Trang; I had their sautéed tofu in tomato sauce. It was yummy, but not quite as delicious as the tofu and tomato sauce we had at the homestay. Slightly disappointing but it still tasted really good since I hadn’t eaten all day and was starving! We subsequently took a short walk through the night market. I almost bought a pair of aviator sunglasses, but they cost a total of about $6USD and I wasn’t willing to pay that for a semi-flimsy pair of sunglasses that will probably quickly get lost or broken in the rough and semi-tumble/packed environment that is my backpack.
There is an awesome bar/club in Nha Trang called Skylight Nha Trang; it’s on the top of a very tall hotel. Pretty awesome place and really nice views from the top!
Today was our boat tour/snorkeling day! It rained almost all day except for a short period over lunch. But we were determined to have a great time, and have a great time we did! We caught the boat at a marina on the southern end of the little Nha Trang peninsula. Our first stop was a fishing village on the Tri Nguyen island a short distance to the southeast of Nha Trang. As we left the marina, we saw the aerial gondola that connects the mainland to Vinh Nguyen resort island east of the marina. It’s huge!
Fishing village: we saw the little market, walked a few streets, saw some ladies creating and mending fishing nets, learned that they made the little brown circular boats with palm leaves (I think), seal it with cow plop, let it dry out to get rid of the smell, and then they put a final coat of a sealant that I can’t remember the name of now.
Sorry for the picture quality of these photos. I had my phone in a ziplock back since it was so incredibly wet.
As we walked out of the village and towards our boat we were going to snorkel from, we saw some fish farming in action. ….and it continued to rain… Then, we got to the snorkeling spot and jumped off the boat. The snorkeling was ok. The little bit of coral we did see was clearly dying and there wasn’t too many fish. We did see a couple of blue starfish which was pretty cool. While we were swimming, all of us felt a occaisional stinging prick. Initially, I thought it was just me since I’m a little bit nuts about small tiny biting creatures, but then later I asked my group on the boat if they felt it too… so I’m not the only one! Apparently there were tiny jellyfish that I never saw but definitely felt. Since I don’t have a go-pro or a waterproof camera, I took hardly any pictures because it was so extremely wet outside. But, other tour-mates did take pictures so I saved them off of our group facebook page to share with you guys.
Again, with the videos, I had to video them playing on my tablet. I wasn’t able to download them off of our tour group facebook page.
Lunch was delicious – locals cooked rice, vegetables, fish, chicken, green beans, spring rolls, and maybe a couple other things; it was all so good… everyone was stuffed.
Because it was raining so much, we skipped part of the tour which was supposed be a stop at a nice beach. But we decided to go back to the hotel early and shower up before we got something for dinner and prepared for another night train to Hoi An, Vietnam.