The last thing you'd expect to find in a country with tropical rainforests is sand dunes, but Vietnam is a bag of surprises. Mui Ne houses two kinds of Sahara-like sand dunes - red dunes and white dunes. The White Dunes are the larger dunes and are best visited in the mornings and evenings. The Red Dunes offer a better location for photography and sand sledding. Whether you jump, slide or simply run through the dunes, it is exceptionally difficult to not let their beauty overwhelm you. Mui Ne is Vietnam's the most western style resort beach. The city itself is typical Vietnamese fishing community sporting a fleet of beautiful fishing boats but little to see or do in town. The beach beside it, however, spreads in glitzy contrast. Expensive western resorts and hotels line the beachside while cheaper guesthouses can be found across the road or closer to town. A variety of water activities are available including surfing, kite surfing, jet-skis, and sailing. Beach and roadside bars hop with cheap drinks and electro music late into the night. Jibe's is a popular hangout among the young and tireless. Close to town are red coloured sand dunes but the farther away and much larger white sand dunes are worth the extra half-hour trip.

This southern Vietnamese beach town has a lot more to offer than its pretty 12km long coastline. The wind swept dunes can be explored on foot or by a 4-wheeler (rented on site). Fairy Stream also deserves an honorable mention. This 1-hour nature trek through the stream’s vibrant orange clay bed is a sure-fire way to get in touch with the natural world. The contrast of the bright blue sky, orange rocks, and emerald-green shrubbery is picture perfect.

THINGS TO DO IN MUI NE

SIGHTSEEING

Sunrise And Sunset At Mui Ne: The little village of Mui Ne is definitely magical at two moments of the day: in the early morning (sunrise) and at the late afternoon (sunset). Dozens of brightly colored boats adorn turquoise waters. Things seem to be sunk in a luminescent light, which is highly recommended to enjoy. In fact, this maybe one of the most favorite things to do in Phan Thiet – Mui Ne experienced tourists reported.

Fairy Stream: Kick off your shoes and walk through the crystal clear, ankle deep water of the Fairy Stream. It may seem like a tourist trap but this is one of the best Mui Ne attractions. It is actually quite quiet so you can enjoy taking in the scenery of the limestone formations around you. The colours mixed together of brown, red and yellow make for Instagram-worthy pictures and there is a small waterfall at the very end.

Kite Surfing or Wind Surfing: When it comes to Mui Ne activities kite surfing or wind surfing are on the top of the list. Get adventurous and give either a go as both are widely popular in Mui Ne as it is one of the top spots in Asia to practice the sports. What makes Mui Ne special for many tourists is its consistently strong winds, making it ideal for kite –surfing. kiteboard capital of Vietnam, if not of Southeast Asia, Mui Ne is a veritable Mecca for those people who are water-sport lovers. Seemingly, there are hundreds of beginners and pros clamor for space offshore, diving and dipping, twisting and turning in the surf. The area is usually referred to by the water sport industry as “Mui Ne Bay”; despite the bay is more precisely the “Bay of Phan Thiet”. Windsurfing is considered as one of the most popular water sports in Vietnam. There are a large number of fans of this sport, both locals and tourists who are looking for some rejuvenating options for recreation in Vietnam.

Red Sand Dunes: Guaranteed you will be offered a plastic sled upon your arrival at the red sand dunes by women and children. If you’re seeking a bit of adrenaline it will be a fun ride down the slopes of sand. Or you can choose to stroll through the sand and see the beautiful views.

White Sand Dunes: Now, it’s no surprise that you’ll be visiting the White Sand Dunes (Bau Trang) since it’s the main attraction for many tourists visiting Mui Ne but to magnify that experience, climb on board an ATV (all-terrain vehicle) and start biking across the White Sand Dunes instead.

Fishing Village: At the north end of Mui Ne bay you’ll find stunning views over the bay that is filled with colourful fishing boats. It really is a beautiful place to stop even if it is just for a quick picture. But it’s also a good place to catch sunset and sunrise.

Mui Ne Lotus Lake: Situated around 62 Km from Phan Thiet city, and around 30 Km from the Mui Ne Beach, the Lotus Lake is one of the largest freshwater lakes in the region and is covered with pink lotuses for most portion of the water. The reason behind its popularity is the presence of white sand dunes just adjacent to the lake, making it another marvel of nature.

Tien Thanh Beach: Tien Thanh (Tiến Thành) Beach, outside of the city, was normally not on most official tours. Maybe, it was because this beach is hard to reach till recently. Nevertheless, nowadays, there is a new road along the beach made it easily accessible. It now appears on a few lists of attraction in Phan Thiet – Mui Ne. There are a number of isolated beaches which are ideal for an impromptu picnic if you love such kind of thing. One of the most favorite secluded beaches recommended to visit is Hon Rom (Hòn Rơm) Beach, which could be reached by simply driving past the Red Sand Dunes towards the White ones.

Po Shanu Cham Towers: Po Shanu Cham towers are similar to Thap Po Nagar in Nha Trang. The Cham Kingdom extended over coastal Vietnam hundreds of years ago, and these beautiful towers have been around since the 9th century, at a time when the Cham flourished. The towers are located on Ong Hoang Hill, so you will get beautiful views of Phan Thiet and the coastline from up there.



SHOPPING:

  • Saga Du Mekong: Concentrating on casual wear for females, males and children, this high quality shop offers products made from all-natural fibers of cottons, bamboo and linen. The French-style design combined with local Asian inspiration and modern cuts create are noticeable features of Saga Du Mekong. The clothing here is designed and manufactured in the factory of the same name in Nha Trang, which provides products for many stores across Vietnam. Along with a wide array of clothing, the store carries organic soaps and other health supplements and accessories like necklaces, belts, and hats. Just take a tour of the factory outlet at no.61B Khuc Thua Du (Khúc Thừa Dụ) Street in Nha Trang, and you can see first-hand how normal clothing is made.
  • Cham Pottery: The Cham Pottery of Binh Thuan Authentic is hand-made in those local villages around Binh Thuan province. Cham people are famous for their pottery skills, and highly sought all over Vietnam and worldwide. The tradition extends back for over 1,000 years and a few similar designs have been found in excavation around Cham towers, as what are still produced today. In addition to the mentioned-above products, you can also find other items in Binh Thuan authentic, like Cham ethnic costumes, local embroydery with scenes from Binh Thuan Province, Ethnic minority language-learning materials, Fisherman”s baskets, and many types of natural candies that are made from fruits and grains produced locally.
  • Long Beach Pearl: Long Beach Pearl is one of Vietnam’s most renowned jewellery brands, where you can purchase one-of-a-kind designs at reasonable prices. All of its bracelets, pendants, rings, and earrings are made with authentic pearls from Co To, Quang Ninh, Nha Trang, and Phu Quoc Island. Catering to any budget and preference, designs range from affordable freshwater pearls in silver to rare Tahiti pearls and diamonds in black gold designs. Long Beach Pearl also offers jewellery sets made with precious gemstones such as rubies, sapphires, and topaz. Its English-speaking staff are very friendly and informative in how to choose, wear, and care for your pearls.
  • Mui Ne Market: Mui Ne Market is a small outdoor market by the beach, where you can get your hands on lots of tropical fruits and inexpensive clothing. The best time to visit is in the early morning, where you’ll see fishermen bringing in their catch of the day with locals fervently bargaining for the freshest produce. It’s also a good place for photography as there’s an impressive display of fish, vegetables and clothes on both sides of Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street.
  • Mui Ne Handicraft: Mui Ne Handicraft at Java Restaurant offers a selection of beautiful handicrafts made by disadvantaged locals. A five-minute drive from Ham Tien Market, it’s where hearing-impaired children learn to sew and paint while others create handmade clothes, blankets, jewellery, and bags. You can also shop for textiles woven in traditional Cham patterns and have a local tailor produce a custom made outfit at affordable prices. Best of all, profits from the sold goods at Mui Ne Handicraft are given back to the locals who made them.

CUISINE:

Seafood: While there are many international restaurants serving kebabs, curries, quesadillas, burgers and pizzas, you should forego those cravings and try some local seaside restaurants for authentic Vietnamese seafood dishes. You will come across many lined up on the beach strip, from small shacks with a few chairs laid out, to mom-and-pop shops serving a small, yet delicious menu, as well as more upscale, larger restaurants with a diverse offering. No matter what you choose, know that your ingredients are fresh and your palate is in for a wild ride.

Fish Salad: Fresh fish with juice and marinade with ginger, galingale, minced garlic, lemon is a favorable food for locals. The fish named Cá Mai is main ingredient for that dish. The recipe is simple and ingredients are easy to prepare. Fresh fish is cut into flat pieces and put neatly on a dish with some red hot pepper and roasted peanuts on top. Fish salad is served with noodles, herbs, vegetable, rice paper and dipping sauce made from fish sauce, sugar, lime juice, chopped garlic and chili. Fish salad with its unique taste and ingredients is crazy good. When you are in Mui Ne, don't miss the chance to try fish salad.

Thick Noodle Soup: Thick noodle soup is a popular food around central and southern areas of Vietnam. Thick noodle soup here is a perfect combination of thick rice handmade vermicelli and delicious pork - based broth. The broth is made from simmered pig’s bones and minced pork. the local people have thick noodle soup for their breakfast treat.

Rice Pancake : This cake has a beautiful saffron color because the dough of it is made of rice flour together with egg yolk and saffron juice. This dish looks like pancake at first sight; the dough is pour into a small hot pan then they add some shrimps, fat pork and soya sprouts on top and when the cake is well cooked they fold it in half of circle. Khoai cake is served with the herbs, other vegetable and a bowl of fish sauce.

Round Rice Pancake: Banh can is a specialty of Phan Thiet, Mui Ne. Banh can is made of puree rice with the filling of spring onion. The special point of this dish is it is cooked in small earthenware pots without oil. When the cake well cooked it will inflate and crisp. Banh can is served with fish sauce with cracklings on top.

Phan Thiet sweet Potato Cake: Banh re is a kind of snack that every kid love to eat. It is made from sweet potato. After washing and rejecting the cover of sweet potato, the locals shave sweet potato into fibers and fried it till it is well done with good smell. Next, they dip fried sweet potato into caramel for a while then put it on a tray to dry out. People come to Mui Ne usually buy banh re as a gift when returning home.

Lau Tha (Seafood hot pot): Seafood hot pot is always listed as a must for all foodies coming to Mui ne. Firstly, you pick the fresh fish then process them extremely carefully and dip fresh fish into lime juice to get rid of fishy smell. Come along with fresh fish is boiled pork and fried egg that are cut into fibers. You will eat this dish with roasted rice paper, broth and raw vegetable. The important thing is the dipping sauce; it must be made of pure anchovy fish sauce of Phan Thiet.

Kem bo: Da Lat is usually cold in the evenings, people like to eat avocado or fruit ice cream around this time. The fatty flavor of the ice cream combined with the taste of avocado, the famous fruit of this mountainous city, turns this simple snack into an amazing dish.

Rice Paper And Shrimp Pate: Rice paper dip in shrimp pate is a familiar food of the locals. Shrimp pate is mixed with chopped garlic and red hot pepper. To enhance the taste, you can add a little lemon juice on the mixture. People cover rice paper and boiled quail eggs then eat the fried fertimented paper withshrimp pate and spices. This is a very simple but tasty dish for tourists those who want to try out the street food in Mui Ne.

NIGHTLIFE:

  • Pogo Beach Bar & Restaurant: Pogo Beach Bar & Restaurant is an open-air nightlife venue set along Nguyen Dinh Chieu, featuring live music, free Wi-Fi, pool tables, and daybeds, as well as extensive food and alcohol menus. Open all day, guests can browse through its collection of books and board games while night-time is reserved for movie nights and DJ sets. There’s also an elevated beachfront wooden deck with beanbags and pillows – perfect for watching the sun set into the horizon. Hosting DJs from all over the world, Pogo Beach Bar & Restaurant’s music policy ranges from deep house and soul to reggae and pop.
  • Deja Vu Mui Ne: Located in Nguyen Dinh Chieu street, Deja Vu Mui Ne attracts the music lovers with some kind of music such as jazz, rock or traditional performance. This place also offers booze or snack. Especially, Shishas and Tobaccos are offered at the rooftop. Moreover, you can play a game of pool in the indoor art room or you can enjoy some beer with the barbeque on the outdoor patio. In addition, this place offers the lion theatre, kung fu performances, ethnic Vietnamese fashion shows, and snake wine,.
  • Jibe's Suoi Nuoc: Located along the private beach within Fullmoon Village Phan Thiet. Overlooking the East Sea, cozy cushion seats and breezy terrace. Jibe's Suoi Nuoc is the best place for nightlife with beers, wines, and cocktails.
  • Ratinger Lowe: This a charming German Restaurant and Bar that offers plenty of rattan seats and plush cushions. You can relax under the shade of the tree. The menu is German Beers include Radler, Erdinger, and Pilsner or wine or tropical cocktails. If you are hungry, you can take several German Dish including wiener schnitzels, bratwurst, roast beef, and various cold cuts.
  • Drinking and Partying: There are a number of places recommended for one to visit to fully appreciate the nightlife offers at Mui Ne. One such place is Old Fashioned Bar, the only mixology bar in the entire beach at an amazing location with mind-blowing cocktail offerings. However, there are those who are for the party and for such, Mui Ne nightlife does not disappoint. One party venue at the beach is the Déjà Vu Bar and Restaurant. Here, Mui Ne goes over and above generic partying senses to provide more unique and diverse sitting areas. From the artistic living rooms with pool tables to the tropical garden with a playground for children, Déjà Vu Bar and Restaurant caters for all ages with amazing offerings that cannot be found elsewhere around the beach.

TRANSPORTATION:

  • Jeep: Travelling by jeep is ideal if you’re looking to visit the iconic Red and White Sand Dunes of Mui Ne. Due to its popularity amongst foreign visitors, there are plenty of tour operators offering roundtrips at various price points. Expect to pay about USD$35 if you prefer driving on your own while private sunrise or sunset tours cost USD$30 upwards.
  • Motorbike Hire: Renting a motorcycle is ideal if you’re looking to have complete independence of where you want to go in Mui Ne. Motorcycles in Mui Ne are relatively easy to ride as they are less than 150cc and fitted with semi or fully automatic gearboxes. Do note that traffic can get rather chaotic during peak hours so make sure to ride with caution.
  • Taxi: Metered taxis are easily found outside prominent hotels, resorts and landmarks, making them one of the most convenient ways of exploring Mui Ne and Phan Thiet. It is also a popular choice for travellers arriving from Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat International Airport, taking approximately four hours to reach. Not only can you enjoy a comfortable ride, most taxi drivers can speak English as well.