Vietnam’s wonderful coastline stretches for well over 3,000 kilometres. The majority of the coast runs north to south before the coastline turns west to reach the Cambodia border. There are many popular resorts on the coastline and of course, everyone who decides to travel in Vietnam and books a Vietnam packaged tour is likely to go to the UNESCO World Heritage site that is Halong Bay. Somewhere that is less well known that a Vietnam travel agency can include in an itinerary is Mui Ne down in the south; its sand dunes are stunning.
A visit to Vietnam has so much to offer; cultural, history, religion, cuisine, the people and the natural environment. It is difficult to fit everything in but if you have some time in the south and fancy a little time at the coast then Mui Ne is worth serious consideration.
The dunes may not match the shifting sands of Namibia that can be 300 metres high but they are nevertheless a great sight. Few settings at sunrise or sunset beat sand and sea. Tours to the dune in Mui Ne offer both sunrise and sunset. Which you decide to do is up to you but if you are prepared to get up early then pick sunrise because it will certainly be quieter and cooler as well. If everyone decides to take this advice of course, things will change.
You can get a quad bike to explore the dunes; there is little environmental damage that such bikes can cause to grains of sand that move anyway. Sand boarding has become popular as well and you can rent the boards locally while there will be refreshments available there also. It is not too commercialised and is unlikely to be so because of the number of places on the extensive coast to enjoy but it is a little different that the usual diving and water sports places.
Allied to a tour to see the dunes is the ‘’Fairy Stream’’, a stretch of water where the rock formations might be from another planet. If you paddle in the stream you will immediately cool down. There are restaurants along the bank and an ostrich farm that offers you the chance to ride an ostrich! Be warned! You can get a view of the whole area by scrambling up the rocks which to be fair are steep. If you are fit, and up for a challenge, the spectacular views are worth it.
Mui Ne is about 6 hours by bus from Ho Chi Minh City which is one of the main points of entry to Vietnam. You can fly in, get your visa to Vietnam on arrival and see Mui Ne as part of your time in the south before heading north. Alternatively, you may decide that the coast should be the final part of your holiday because you will need to relax and contemplate after seeing so much in the preceding days in this fascinating country.