I finally feel relaxed. This will be my vacation from my vacation the last few days. Nga Trang beach is a Beach town. It reminds me of Vietnam’s version of Santa Monica. A very city-like, so it’s not a beach like Sihanoukville, Cambodia. Or the Southern Thai beaches we were at where they were secluded beach islands with only a few beach huts. It’s manicured streets filled with shops and restaurants. A working established city where locals are making money, doing things with their own lives. It doesn’t seem like they rely on tourism to make all their money. Most other places we’ve been to seem as if the most money was to be made in Tourism.
Burma was a peaceful country where no one haggled you or ripped you off. Cambodia and Thailand people bug the shit out of tourists. In Vietnam, they rarely bother you, besides a few motor bike taxi’s here and there. The people in this town at least seem the most sophisticated out of the other places we’ve been to.
Nightlife in Nha Trang
Last night after my post around 9 pm, I went out looking for dinner. Chad stayed in so I was alone, but feeling safe to wander. I found a pub and grill called Rainbow Bar, which I saw a lot of foreigners inside. I needed somewhere with more tourists so I felt safe walking alone at night as a solo female traveler in Nha Trang. Most of the local pubs were filled with middle aged Vietnamese men. They had everything on the menu as a typical backpacker-type pub would. I saw sushi. I knew that it would unlikely be of high quality, but I had to have it. It was (in our standards), the most unfresh, dry sushi ever. But it still, ironically, hit the spot.
The owner apologized for the obnoxious drunken boys and noise. I said it was fine, I loved it. The owner of this bar, among all the other bars and nightlife scene in Nha Trang, are all run by Expats. These are individuals from Australia, London, Canada, etc that have stayed in Nha Trang. The owner introduced me to a Vietnamese guy who was raised in Canada but came to Vietnam 8 months ago and started his own club promoting company. His name is Jerry in his late 20’s. A super fun, friendly guy, reminded me of old friends back home. He organizes pub crawls every night and coincidentally, this bar I was at was the first stop.
I was introduced to other travelers: 5 girls from Ireland I ended up hanging with the whole night and a bunch of other college fraternity-like, boisterous boys on summer vacation. I felt at home again, in college, bar hopping in shorts and flip flops.
Clubs in Nha Trang
The next stop was Guava club. The very cool loungy club, owners/managers were all Canadians that happened to meet in Vietnam and are running this club together. We played some bar game called 7-3-1. Where we had a pile of bottle caps and threw it at the lines of liquor bottles. And the one you hit, the bottle 7 to the left, and 3 from the right, and 1 to the top, they mix into a shot for you. It could be yummy or deadly. 20 minutes there and chatting it up with the Canadian managers and learning their stories.
They blew the whistle, and we were on to our final destination of the night: Sailing Club on the beach. Beautiful outdoor club right on the beach, the epitome of the euphoric nightlife in Nha Trang. Sailing Club is open-air with upbeat music. Infinity song came on: “Here’s my key, philosophy. A freak like me. Just needs infinity…”). It made me HAPPY!!!!! Me and 2 of the Irish girls ran around dancing, singing and taking pictures.
Late Night Drunk Food + Creepy Locals
The club closed around 2 and some of them wanted an after-hours club. I preferred food like usual. We found a food cart outside the club and got a baguette sandwich each. There were a few locals there, a woman in her late 30’s or 40’s and 2 men. They were ODD. The woman sat right next to one of the Irish girls and started massaging her hands, then massaging her feet, and getting all touchy-feely. Then a man sat on the other side of the other Irish girl (I had jumped up and stood on my own by then — just a generic thing to do when I’m not given my proper space, esp. among strangers). And he attempted to touch her. Both the girls hopped up and said fuck off.
The girls were wonderful to walk me back to my guesthouse. Beautiful big room. Proper showers. Of course still no Hilton hotel, bed bug-infested I’m sure but comfortable.
I had my first bowl of pho today. Plain tasting, not so good. But I do have a few more days here to find the best Pho in Vietnam!! Off to the beach now and some shopping. I have a goal to finish the books I brought. “Day of Empire” by Amy Chua, “Major World Religions” by Huston Smith, “Nasty Bits” Anthony Bourdain, and almost done with the book I picked up here: “Piano Tuner” by Daniel Mason. Very ambitious I must say, but I hope it happens.