The next stop after Phan Thiet is Mui Ne. When it comes to places where you can surf in Vietnam, Da Nang or Mui Ne are so well-known that they are often mentioned. Many surfers, mainly kite surfers, seem to be in this area. Mui Ne refers to the area east of Phan Thiet. Many of Phan Thiet’s surf spots are located in Mui Ne.
The main surfing spots are on the east coast side of the Google Map above and the waves primarily form in winter. I visited in summer 2019 and there were no surfers in the sea.
Mui Ne market on the Mui Ne peninsula. There is a small town of Mui Ne centred around this market. There were a few foreigners, but there were almost no shops for foreigners and it was a town for local people.
The Mui Ne peninsula is no different from the rest of the country, with intricate, undeveloped settlements or resort developments built for commercial interests along the coastline.
Photo taken from the Mui Ne peninsula towards Phan Thiet. The vast golden orange land is beautiful. The beach is littered with a lot of rubbish.
Fishing town on the Mui Ne peninsula. If there were waves, this amount of rubbish might make it unsafe to surf.
Residential area situated in front of the sea. These areas of land with height differences are like a maze, with steps and slopes that make it difficult to move around. It is possible to get lost on the way to the beach.
Local beaches in Mui Ne is not safe to go barefoot.
Large quantities of dried fish. On this day, the temperature was nearing 30°C.
Since arriving in Phan Thiet, the weather has been warm and sunny, so sunburn and heat stroke protection is essential. I was hit by heat stroke many times on this trip, which took away my strength and energy.
Vietnamese dog cooling its stomach. Mui Ne is also basically free-range.
It is a relief to find a favourite shop or stall at each location. Coffee, coconut and sugar cane juice were always bought here in Mui Ne. In Vietnam, some people work properly and others do not. It is a characteristic of Vietnam that locals are concentrated in places where the level of work is stable and in the local price range. When I choose a restaurant, I like places with a lot of people coming in and out of the shop, a neat and tidy shop, and a shop where the owner is passionate about his work and is a permanent resident. Passion in particular is all-important. Vietnam is also home to many restaurants with dogs. Dogs are reasonably comforting, but from a hygienic point of view I don’t like such restaurants because they are very dirty. In Vietnam, it is not customary to wash hands after touching dogs. In fact, very few people have the habit of washing their hands. The choice of decent places to eat and drink on a trip along the Vietnamese coastline is limited and the situation continues to be difficult.
Surfing spot beach of Mui Ne. You can surf in front of the resort hotel or in front of deserted areas. The waves on this day were small, weak and knee to waist high. No surfers.
The tip of the Mui Ne peninsula has a beautiful view. There are often cemeteries on high ground with a view of the sea like this. This was one such place.
This is a beach where fishermen are active. Both sides are probably surf spots. The beach is dirty and smelly.
Fishermen’s beach between resort hotels. The smelliest beach in Vietnam so far. There were maggots in the rubbish.
The white, elongated thing in the image shown above is a maggot. This was a significant moment for the impression of surf spot beaches in Mui Ne. If possible, I don’t want to surf here.
Cattle herding and walking are not uncommon on country journeys. There are still places where cows can walk freely. This is a good thing in Vietnam, where rules are loose.
You can surf on this beach, which can be seen by the side of the road.
Main surf spot area in the winter. I saw rideable waves several times.
This restaurant near the coast seems to have a crocodile meat dish. There was also a variety of other meats.
Huge herds of cattle, which I have never seen before. Good for animal lovers but more feces on the beach.
This red clay, muddy beach is probably the main surf spot during the winter. At this time of year, there are few surfers in summer and there is not even a hint of surfers here. The waves are about knee deep and too small to ride.
There is a long stretch of beautiful, wide bypass road from Phan Thiet city centre to Mui Ne. The scenery and air quality are excellent and the drive is very comfortable. In the countryside, I think living by car is optimal because of the long distances you have to travel. If you travel with a scooter like I did, you get tired from travelling and the day is all over very quickly for you.
There are vast sand dunes on both sides and ongoing project developments. If the development continues, the city will look very different from what it is now and traffic on this road will increase dramatically.
Local bike repair shops can be found everywhere. I often ride off-road and have my bike tyres inflated. I only use these local shops to get air. This is because we have had more than one painful experience and have become more attentive to the process. For the Vietnamese, repairs are often done with a very short-term perspective, limited to the moment. It is really common for a machine to work immediately after repair, but not tomorrow. It is also common for the parts to be replaced by second-hand parts and downgraded. Things you can’t see inside when the lid is on, such as electronic repairs, dental and surgical care, cooking, these are all based on trust.
Mui Ne sky and vapor trail. On a clear night, the starry sky looked very beautiful.
This panini is the only non-Vietnamese food I have eaten in Mui Ne town. It’s a relief because I was growing weary of the local delicacies.
I think that banh xeo may be my favourite Vietnamese food. The reason is that it is always freshly prepared. The open kitchen cooking is also safer and more hygienic. I don’t eat raw vegetables for hygiene reasons, as they are often leftovers from other customers.
Fishermen selling seafood on Hon Rom Beach. You can have it cooked and eaten on the spot. Depending on the location, the food is cheap and very tasty.
Hon Rom Beach is also covered with litter, without exception. Plastic rubbish is conspicuous. We are still at the beginning of our Vietnam coastline trip, but we are worried about the future due to the dirty coastline. My preliminary image of the trip is enjoying a reserved point breaks with beautiful sea water and scenery that breaks down in sequence. That’s how I felt. However, I was able to judge that such a situation would be hard to find if I went on like this.
Shallow Hon Rom Beach. Like Kugenuma Beach. No waves.
(Surf trip record: Mui Ne and Hon Rom, Binh Thuan Province, Vietnam – August 2019)