Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Mui Ne

The overnight bus trip from Hoi An to Mui Ne was a pleasant surprise for us after some of the bus experiences we had in previous countries.  It was clean, comfortable, and left on time.  We booked an open bus ticket from Hoi An through Saigon (our last stop in Vietnam) through Sinh Tourists.  The cost was $20 each and the open bus ticket allows for flexibility in timing and number of stops you want to make along the way.  There are Sinh Tourists offices in every city and they are usually located close to the touristy parts of town, so it is easy to find a place to stay once they drop you off at their office.

When we arrived in Mui Ne we headed straight to the hotel to meet Kate, Lizzie, and Claire (Kate's older sister).  Located right on the water with large swimming pool, the Hai Yen Hotel looked like a perfect spot to relax for a couple of days and the room cost only $15 per night.  The girls hadn't arrived yet, so we decided to have a quick bite to eat and jump right in the pool.  It was refreshing.

We spent the entire day reading our books and swimming.  The hotel is located right near the local fishing village so we could see the local fishermen in their small boats rowing by.  We met a lovely Australian couple, Ian and Jan Flanders, who were retired and traveling around South East Asia for 6 months.  We all went to dinner and told our stories. Meeting people from different countries and of all ages has been one of the best parts of this trip for us.

We decided to continue with our tradition of big nights out in beach towns (please see Byron Bay and Surfer's Paradise posts) and go to a local bar called Pogo which was conveniently located next to our place.  The girls had lunch there earlier in the day and said the food was really delicious.  Unfortunately, the bar was empty that night.  After sharing a bucket of vodka and 7UP we jumped in a cab and asked to be taken to a place we could dance.  The driver first took us to what looked like a very expensive bar that seemed too quiet.  We then asked to go where the locals are.  The WAX bar was exactly what we were looking for!

It was packed with locals and a couple of westerners.  After sharing another bucket we were ready to hit the dance floor which was fairly empty at the time.  Lizzie decided she would start pulling local girls up to dance. Lee got up on the platform.  And Kate and Courtney danced and snapped loads of pictures. Before we knew it it was 4 AM and we were completely drenched from jumping around.

One our way home we stopped and had some burgers at a restaurant called Joe's which is open 24/7.  The owner, Joe, is from Vermont and moved to Vietnam 10 years ago.  Courtney and the girls got to talking with Joe about how the country has changed since he had moved here. Unfortunately, Lee missed out on the stimulating conversation because he was passed out on the big, comfy couch.  It proved to be a good night once again.

We all decided to spend the day in Mui Ne and leave on the 3 PM bus to Saigon.  We woke up early and took a walk on the beach, hung out by the pool, and then hopped on a bus to Saigon.


  1. I love the photo of you two. So awesome to hear about all the interesting friends you're making a long the way.

  2. Awww typical Lee passing out after a long night of dancing! And I LOVE that shirt on you Court. Beautiful!! Was that made for you there? Miss you both more and more everyday!