4 Days 3 Nights Ho Chi Min and Mui Ne – Day 2 (July 2013)

Day 2 – Mui Ne

We thought we could sleep a little longer after a long and tiring bus ride from Ho Chi Min City to Mui Ne arriving after midnight. Unfortunately, birds were already chirping happily outside our room at 6 am, so our sleep was cut short. As we didn’t really have a good dinner during the journey to Mui Ne, we went to the restaurant for an early breakfast.

Pandanus Resort Complex
Pandanus Resort Complex
Pandanus Resort Complex
Pandanus Resort Complex
Pandanus Resort Restaurant
Pandanus Resort Restaurant
Flowers Decoration at entrance
Flowers Decoration at entrance

Surprisingly, the restaurant was already so crowded so early in the morning. We found ourselves a table and started to collect food to begin our breakfast. The food was really good and the staff were friendly and keen to serve.

Breakfast time in restaurant
Breakfast time in restaurant
Main restaurant in Pandanus Resort
Main restaurant in Pandanus Resort

However, while I was queuing for my pho, a male staff holding a stack of empty bowls coming to the pho station found himself obstructed by the queue of guests. Instead of politely asking me to give way, he placed his hand on my back and moved me a little to make way for him to get through. Perhaps, he thought I was one of the locals and that I didn’t mind. This was probably due to a slip-up on staff training. Anyway, I didn’t let this incident mar my holiday in Mui Ne.

After breakfast, we went to explore the resort ground. The garden was very well kept, nice and clean. The resort compound was beautiful as well. Resort staff were polite and greeted us as we went around during our stroll.

Pandanus Resort Restaurant Building
Pandanus Resort Restaurant Building
Pandanus Resort Building
Pandanus Resort Building


Pandanus Resort hotel rooms building
Pandanus Resort hotel rooms building
Garden decoration pieces
Garden decoration pieces
Nice garden in Pandanus Resort
Nice garden in Pandanus Resort
Another garden decoration piece
Another garden decoration piece
Shelter in the garden of Pandanus Resort
Shelter in the garden of Pandanus Resort
Restaurant by the beach
Restaurant by the beach

We walked further down to the beach area and took a stroll on the beach. The beach was fine but not the best in Vietnam. The fishing village was just nearby. Beach chairs and towels were available for those who wish to hang out on the beach.

Deck chairs and shade at Pandanus Resort
Deck chairs and shade at Pandanus Resort
Beach at Pandanus Resort
Beach at Pandanus Resort
Beach at Pandanus Resort
Beach at Pandanus Resort

Next we went back to our room to use the toilet before heading out to visit the red sand dune just around the corner outside the resort. Since we arrived after midnight, we had a good look of our room this morning and checked out some TV programs for a while.

Not long after, having prepared with hats and sunglasses, we left the resort and turned right. Not far after the corner, we could see the red sand dune across the road. Some tour buses were also parked nearby along the road.

So we crossed the road and ventured up to the sand dune. It was a little tiring walking up the sand dune to have a good look at the surrounding. The sky was clear blue with the sun beating down on us. It was a magnificent sight indeed.

Amazing red sand dune
Amazing red sand dune
Red sand dune under clear blue sky
Red sand dune under clear blue sky

Once we reached high ground, we could see the endless boundary of this red sand dune. One edge had a belt of plants and vegetation. As we looked back from where we climbed up, we could see the resort among the trees and further ahead was the sea with some boats out there.

Boundary of the red sand dune
Boundary of the red sand dune
Pandanus Resort and the sea seen from the red sand dune
Pandanus Resort and the sea seen from the red sand dune
View from high ground on the red sand dune
View from high ground on the red sand dune

Next we tried to enjoy ourselves on this red sand dune. We observed some people sliding down the sand dune on some boards and then climbed back up for more. We didn’t do the sliding but we did walk up and down on some of the hilly terrain of this red sand dune.

Wonderful time on the red sand dune
Wonderful time on the red sand dune
Fun on the red sand dune
Fun on the red sand dune


Sand sliding on the red sand dune
Sand sliding on the red sand dune

After some time, it was getting really hot so we had to leave this nice natural attraction near Pandanus Resort. The very reason why we chose Pandanus Resort was because of its proximity to the red sand dune.

Footprints on the sands of time
Footprints on the sands of time

Back to the resort, we changed and went for a quick swim at the swimming pool. Because of the heat from the sun, we didn’t swim very long but we nevertheless enjoyed our swim.

We called reception to request for late check out but was denied even extending for just 30 minutes. So we had no choice but to have a quick shower. We then packed our bags and checked out by noon.

After checking out, we went back to the restaurant for lunch. The ambience of the restaurant was very good. The restaurant was rather empty and it seemed most guests were out exploring attractions in Mui Ne. We ordered some local dishes and found them very delicious. The restaurant staff were very friendly and personable.

Spices in the restaurant
Spices in the restaurant
Delicious local dishes for lunch
Delicious local dishes for lunch

Before leaving Pandanus Resort, we went to the spa for a look. The place was very nice and conducive. However, we had other matters to settle and also to check into another resort, so we left Pandanus Resort.

Main building complex of Pandanus Resort
Main building complex of Pandanus Resort

We crossed the road outside Pandanus Resort to wait for a local bus to travel to the office of Phuong Trang Bus Company in the middle of Mui Ne Beach. There was a convenience store over there so we went in for a look while waiting for the bus.




Soon the bus came and we boarded the bus. The cost was just 9,000 VND per person. This bus travelled along the coastal road in Mui Ne passing many resorts and some shops. The journey was rather interesting to sit on the bus with the locals. It was such a hot day and yet all their women folks were wrapped up with a few layers to protect themselves from the sun. There were young and elderly and when all seats on the bus were occupied, they just sat on the floor.

Not long after, we arrived at the touristy part of Mui Ne with a number of resorts, cafes, restaurants and shops along the road. We went into the office of Phuong Trang Bus Company and spoke with the staff to confirm our seats for the bus back to Ho Chi Min City for the next morning. We were requested to ask our resort to call them the next morning for instruction on pick up location.

Having settled our bus reservation to Ho Chi Min City, we roamed around this stretch of Mui Ne but didn’t buy anything. This location wasn’t as secluded as Pandanus Resort with many tourists hanging out here. It should be a hive of activities at night when this place would be lighted up and tourists come out for drinks and dinner. After this, we went up to a waiting Mai Linh taxi and asked the driver to send us to Amaryllis Resort.

In about 15 minutes, we arrived at Amaryllis Resort, which was not along the main road. This resort looked like some former colonial buildings which was pretty eye pleasing. Check in was smooth and trouble free. Welcome drinks were promptly offered. We were escorted to our room by one of the staff.

While the exterior of this resort was appealing, our room was rather basic. The room was spacious and clean but furnishing was not as good as Pandanus Resort. The bed was rather firm but still comfortable. Unfortunately, the two pillows were quite soft and flat to our liking.

Clean and firm bed but flat pillows
Clean and firm bed but flat pillows
Shower stall in the toilet
Shower stall in the toilet

The TV in the room was small and also dated. TV programs were mostly in Vietnamese so there was nothing much to watch. Wifi on the other hand wasn’t bad in the room. Toilet was clean and came with a shower stall.

Two bottles of  mineral water were provided and coffee and tea making facility was included in the room. Writing desk was simple with a stool pushed underneath.

So our deluxe room was actually of lower standard compared to the standard room we had at Pandanus Resort. Anyway, for US$66 a night inclusive of breakfast, we were not really complaining.

Small and dated TV set
Small and dated TV set
Seats next to TV set
Seats next to TV set

From our room balcony, we could see the swimming pool below. The beach and the sea were just further away from the pool after the lines of trees. Having settled down in the room for a while and found the TV programs unsuitable, we changed and went for a stroll on the beach.

Balcony view of swimming pool
Balcony view of swimming pool


Swimming pool view from room balcony
Swimming pool view from room balcony
Another swimming pool view from room balcony
Another swimming pool view from room balcony

As we walked through the resort ground passing the swimming  pool towards the beach, we found the resort ground nice and pleasing. It was very neat and well kept. There were beach chairs on the beach. They seem to be under utilized. Anyway, this wasn’t the high season yet in July.

Small but nice swimming pool
Small but nice swimming pool
Amaryllis Resort Building facing the swimming pool
Amaryllis Resort Building facing the swimming pool
Colonial style building in Amaryllis Resort
Colonial style building in Amaryllis Resort
Nice and quiet swimming pool
Nice and quiet swimming pool
Another corner of swimming pool
Another corner of swimming pool
Garden ground in Amaryllis Resort
Garden ground in Amaryllis Resort

The beach over here nearer to Phan Thiet City was cleaner than the beach at Pandanus Resort where a fishing village was just nearby. It was already later part of the afternoon, there were some beach goers out there enjoying the beach and having fun in the sea.

Phu Hai Beach at Amaryllis Resort
Phu Hai Beach at Amaryllis Resort
Nice beach late afternoon at Amaryllis Resort
Nice beach late afternoon at Amaryllis Resort
Phu Hai Beach at Amaryllis Resort
Phu Hai Beach at Amaryllis Resort
Beautiful Phu Hai Beach
Beautiful Phu Hai Beach


Having fun at Phu Hai Beach
Having fun at Phu Hai Beach

Further towards the left, there were some very interesting fishing boats in the shape of a circular tub. Some fishermen were also tending to their fishing nets. This was the first time we came across such interesting fishing boats.

Interesting and unusual fishing boats at Phu Hai Beach
Interesting and unusual fishing boats at Phu Hai Beach
Fishermen tending to fishing nets
Fishermen tending to fishing nets

This stroll on Phu Hai Beach was very enjoyable as my dear wife and I walked on this stretch of the beach holding hands forgetting about all the cares in the world.

Some shells on the beach
Some shells on the beach
Beautiful late afternoon at Phu Hai Beach
Beautiful late afternoon at Phu Hai Beach
Long shadows late afternoon at Phu Hai Beach
Long shadows late afternoon at Phu Hai Beach
Beautiful view of the resort from the beach
Beautiful view of the resort from the beach
Amaryllis Resort seen from Phu Hai beach
Amaryllis Resort seen from Phu Hai beach
Beach chairs of Amaryllis Resort
Beach chairs of Amaryllis Resort

After that we went for a swim in the swimming pool. The water in the pool was still warm and good for swimming this late afternoon where the sun was already at the far end of the sky. However, the water was salty and seemed to be sea water. The depth of this swimming pool ranged from 0.6 metres to 1.8 metres. We were the only swimmers using the pool so we enjoyed ourselves thoroughly and had a good swim.

Grand Amaryllis Resort in front of swimming pool
Grand Amaryllis Resort in front of swimming pool
Nice warm water in swimming pool
Nice warm water in swimming pool

Back in our room after our stroll on the beach and our swim in the pool, we showered and rested for a while. The day was almost gone and so we relaxed a little before dinner. We were deliberating where we should go for dinner. One option was to return to the touristy stretch of Mui Ne Beach we roamed earlier before coming to Amaryllis Resort to look for a nice restaurant for dinner. Or we could simply remain in this resort and go for dinner at the restaurant here.

We finally decided to stay at the resort to have dinner. We didn’t see the point of incurring a few hundred thousands VND for taxi fares back and forth for dinner at the touristy spot in Mui Ne. So we approached the restaurant and found the restaurant empty. We had the whole restaurant to ourselves for dinner which was great. The setting of this restaurant was outdoor alfresco dining in a nicely lit up former colonial building. In fact, it was quite grand.

Interior of the restaurant of Amaryllis Resort
Interior of the restaurant of Amaryllis Resort
Nice ambience in colonial style restaurant
Nice ambience in colonial style restaurant


Empty restaurant during dinner
Empty restaurant during dinner
Grand and romantic alfresco dining in colonial style resort
Grand and romantic alfresco dining in colonial style resort
Swimming Pool at night view from restaurant
Swimming Pool at night view from restaurant

The waitresses were very friendly and helpful. One of them could even speak Mandarin which was great. We ordered the local dishes recommended and they were tasty and delicious. We were glad we remained behind to have dinner here at the resort. The food prices were very reasonable as well. So it was a great dinner indeed where my dear wife and myself were the only guests in this colonial style building restaurant.

Delicious and tasty local dishes for dinner
Delicious and tasty local dishes for dinner

After dinner, we explored the resort a little. There were a few places to sit at the lobby. There was a cozy lounge in the resort as well but it was empty. Having spent sufficient time roaming the lobby area and checking out other facilities, we returned to our room to rest.

Sitting area in resort lobby
Sitting area in resort lobby
Sofa sets at lobby area
Sofa sets at lobby area
More sofa sets at lobby area
More sofa sets at lobby area
Cozy lounge in Amaryllis Resort
Cozy lounge in Amaryllis Resort
Cozy but empty lounge in Amaryllis Resort
Cozy but empty lounge in Amaryllis Resort

There wasn’t much to do in the room as the TV was dated and programs limited. So chatting with the children back home via wifi kept us going during the evening. Sharing our nice pictures with them, especially those on the red sand dunes, and getting to know how they were keeping up back home was a pleasure much better than the TV programs.

Eventually, it was time to go to bed as our adventure in Mui Ne was coming to an end. Instead of spending three nights in Ho Chi Min City, travelling all the way to Mui Ne was fruitful even though we had only one full day to spend here, especially when transport cost by public bus was only a few USD per way; it was very worthwhile.

We had an early morning bus to catch to go back to Ho Chi Min City. As such, having a good night sleep was essential for the long bus ride back to Ho Chi Min City. Soon we entered dreamland reliving the fun we had during the day. The next day would be another great day.


Continue to Day 3

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