I didn’t have very high expectations for Mui Ne as I hadn’t heard much about it and didn’t think there was much going on. It used to be a little fishing village but now it’s a lot more built-up, mainly with seaside resorts and hotels. We decided to check it out on our way down to Ho Chi Minh, and I’m glad we did – it was so different to anywhere else we’d been in Vietnam.
We stepped off the bus feeling very groggy after travelling for what seemed like forever, having taken two sleeper buses from Hoi An. Found our bags in the midst of the chaos of people getting on and off the bus, usually a very stressful ordeal with bus drivers shouting and sweaty people pushing past. We checked into Mui Ne Backpacker Village, one of the Vietnam Backpacker hostels. It seemed decent, had a pool, a little bar/ restaurant area, and was in a good location for the tourist attractions.
We only stayed a couple days but that’s all you really need. On the first day we were so shattered from the journey, we spent the day chilling by the pool, playing cards, napping, then had some drinks in the evening with the other backpackers. I always find that the slightly more underrated places turn out to be the most fun. I’d expected to have a few chilled nights in Mui Ne as I hadn’t heard anything about the nightlife there, but we ended up in a buzzing beach club called Dragon Bar, dancing with the drunk locals into the early hours!
The next day we forced ourselves to get up and go on a tour we’d booked through the hostel. With a pounding headache we set off squashed into the back of a jeep for our day trip out. First stop, the Fairy Spring. Essentially it’s a little stream you walk barefooted through, amongst the crowds of tourists, waiting for the path to clear a bit so you can get a photo with no other people in it. Even though it was sweltering hot and your bare feet would burn if you didn’t walk in the water, it was a pretty cool experience but not one I’d write home about. Although, the red sand and rock formations made for some striking photos!
From there we visited the white and red sand dunes, which are about a half an hour drive apart from each other, so allow for enough time – we only just made it in time for sunset at the red sand dunes.
At the white sand dunes you can hire quad bikes to ride around the dunes for about 15 minutes, split it between a few of us it cost about £20 each. Slightly overpriced in my opinion but it is a massive tourist attraction. George and I took turns driving, whizzing around the dunes. I was terrified at first because I felt so out of control but thank god there was a guy sitting on the front to help, otherwise it would’ve been a disaster. It was still so fun and worth it for the amazing views over the dunes – felt like we were in the desert in Africa, not in Vietnam!
The red sand dunes were pretty cool too! Not as exciting as the white dunes but the views were impressive – one of the guys we were with had a drone so we got some stunning snaps of the surroundings!
After an adventurous day out we were all starving, so we tried a restaurant called Modjo nearby the hostel that was recommended for its steaks. I can honestly say this was one of the best steaks I’ve ever had. And the bill only came to about £7 each. It was served on a boiling hot stone which meant you could cook it exactly how you liked it – it came with two sides and three sauces of your choice. If you go to Mui Ne you must try this restaurant, it felt like a little bit of luxury – something we weren’t very used to in our backpacker lifestyle.
Hope you enjoyed hearing about our short but sweet visit to Mui Ne!