Nha Trang is the most ‘touristy’ place I have seen since I arrived in Asia. As a result, being the tourist snob that I am, I departed and headed south. After a couple of banh mi of course. A couple of days ago I mentioned that I had a banh mi served on someones maths homework. Amazingly, exactly the same thing happened today. Twice! From different vendors who were at least 2 streets apart!And this wasn’t just some long devision – this was really heavy maths. The only thing I can think is that Vietnam has a really good education system and the kids are rattling these equations out every night until their pen runs out.
I managed to find a road following the coast south of Nha Trang which was totally empty and had the bonus of giving me a huge tailwind – much of the time I was cruising along at 35km/hr on the flat. There was a bit of confusion as to which town I was in at one point, even when asking locals. Most people don’t seem to know, even when you show them the place name on the map. I’m wishing they studied more geography at school and didn’t spend so much time on maths making banh mi wrappers.
This afternoon after stopping at a hotel just outside Cam Ranh, I went for a wander around the neighborhood. I’m pretty sure it’s the first time a white person has been there for a while. I ended up being invited to sit down with 3 generations of family for a good half hour communicating using basic sign language which was quite the experience. OOH, I just felt a little earth quake..
For dinner I took the advice of a Vietnamese staying at the hotel. “Cross the bridge and it’s about 200m – you can’t miss it” He was right enough – there must have been 10 places that looked like they could serve food with nobody in them, and one that had so many people crammed in that I had to squeeze on the end of a big group. Fantastic fish soup with rice.
I screwed up the picture posting a bit – the one with the beach is the amazing empty coast road to the Nha Trang airport, the other one is from the roof of my hotel/clothes drying area. The road in the foreground is the main A1 road that goes down Vietnam. Amazingly, the hotel has solar powered hot water tanks on the roof – having a shower with hot water was a nice surprise!!
Tomorrow I plan on heating up to Dalat which sits at 1500m altitude and is about 120km away. No prises for guessing how much climbing I’ll be doing tomorrow then! A long day ahead.