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Info Nha Trang
Nha Trang is a coastal city and capital of Khánh Hòa Province, on the South Central Coastof Vietnam. It is bounded on the north by Ninh Hoà district, on the south by Cam Ranh town and on the west by Diên Khánh District. The city has about 392,000 inhabitants, a number that is projected to increase to 560,000 by 2015 and 630,000 inhabitants by 2025. An area of 12.87 square kilometres (4.97 sq mi) of the western communes of Diên An and Diên Toàn is planned to be merged into Nha Trang which will make its new area 265.47 square kilometres (102.50 sq mi) based on the approval of the Prime Minister of Vietnam in September 2012.
Nha Trang is well known for its beaches and scuba diving and has developed into a popular destination for international tourists, attracting large numbers of backpackers, as well as more affluent travelers on the south-east Asia circuit; it is already very popular with Vietnamese tourists, with Nha Trang Bay widely considered as among the world's most beautiful bays.Tourists are welcome to participate in the Sea Festival, held biennially. Nha Trang was the site of the Miss Universe 2008 Pageant on July 14, 2008 and Miss Earth 2010 was held on December 4, 2010. It was also the site for the April 14, 2015 season 8 finale of Face Off. Nha Trang has been approved to host the 2016 Asian Beach Games.
Historically, the city was known as Kauthara under the Champa. The city is still home to the famous Po Nagar Tower built by the Champa. Being a coastal city, Nha Trang is a centre for marine science based at the Nha Trang Oceanography Institute. The Hon Mun marine protected area is one of four first marine protected areas in the world admitted by the IUCN.
|TIME ZONE :||GMT + 7|
|LANGUAGE :||Vietnamese (official), English (increasingly favored as a second language), some French, Chinese, and Khmer; mountain area languages (Mon-Khmer and Malayo-Polynesian)|
|RELIGION :||Buddhist 9.3%, Catholic 6.7%, Hoa Hao 1.5%, Cao Dai 1.1%, Protestant 0.5%, Muslim 0.1%, none 80.8%|
|AREA :||252,6 km2 (975 sq mi)|
|COORDINATES :||12°15′N 109°11′E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 49.40%|
• Female: 50.60%
|ETHNIC :||Kinh (Viet) 85.7%, Tay 1.9%, Thai 1.8%, Muong 1.5%, Khmer 1.5%, Mong 1.2%, Nung 1.1%, others 5.3%|
|AREA CODE :|
|POSTAL CODE :||625080|
|DIALING CODE :||+84 58|
|WEBSITE :||Official Website|
Nha Trang is one of the most important tourist hubs of Vietnam, thanks to its beautiful beaches with fine and clean sand and the clear ocean water with mild temperatures all year round. There are several resorts — such as Vinpearl, Diamond Bay and Ana Mandara — and amusement and water parks, in the city and on islands off the coast. The possibly most beautiful street of Nha Trang is Tran Phu Street along the seaside, sometimes referred to as the Pacific Coast Highway of Vietnam.
Lying off Nha Trang is the Hon Tre Island (Bamboo Island), with a major resort operated by the Vinpearl Group. The Vinpearl Cable Car, a gondola lift system, links the mainland to the five-star resort and theme park on Hon Tre Island.
Nha Trang is a stopover for annual yacht races starting in Hong Kong. In recent years, the city has welcomed many five-star sea cruises. In addition to sailboat racing, Nha Trang provides a rich variety of tourist activities for visitors. Island hopping, scuba diving, water sports and other sporting activities can be enjoyed. The Nha Trang Tourist Information Center (a non-governmental organisation), located near the Cho Dam Market has been set up to provide information for visitors.
The local cuisine is most famous for fresh seafood and barbecued pork rolled in rice paper. The area's bird's nest soup is deemed one of the best in Vietnam. Bird's nests are collected in the wild, on bird farms on the islands off the coast and even in some houses in the inner city. The farmed bird in question belongs to the swiftlet group, popularly referred to as yến hàng (Aerodramus fuciphagus germani).
Long Sơn Pagoda is prominent for its statue of Gautama Buddha.
Recreation and nightlife
Scuba diving, kite boarding are available, as are catamaran sailboats. Winds are steady.
The nightlife is limited, but near theBiet Thu tourist district, it can go beyond midnight. The nightlife is therefore known as superior to other coastal towns such as Mui Ne, Da Nang and Vũng Tàu. It is usually busiest around the Vietnamese New Year period and can be worth visiting most of the year, with the possible exception of the rain period (especially November). Many tourists enjoy the Nha Trang River Cai boat ride (locally known as Song Cai, as "song" means "river" in the Vietnamese language).
From 1653 to the 19th century, Nha Trang was a deserted area rich in wildlife (animals like tigers) and was a part of Hà Bạc, Vĩnh Xương County, Diên Khánh Province. After just two decades in the early 20th century, Nha Trang underwent a rapid change. On August 30, 1924, the Governor-General of French Indochina decreed Nha Trang as a townlet (center urban). Nha Trang Townlet was established from the ancient villages of Xương Huân, Phương Câu, Vạn Thạnh, Phương Sài, and Phước Hải.
During French Indochina, Nha Trang was seen as de facto capital of Khánh Hòa Province. The colonial administration offices (like Envoy Office, Commanding Office, Trade Office, Post Office) were situated in Nha Trang. Local royal offices like Province Chief, Provincial Judge, Military Commander are in Diên Khánh city (a walled military city 10 km south-west of Nha Trang).
On 7 May 1937, the Governor-General of French Indochina by another decree upgraded Nha Trang Townlet to town. At this time, Nha Trang Town had five wards based on the ancient villages merged to make the town: Xương Huân, Phương Câu, Vạn Thạnh, Phương Sài, and Phước Hải.
On 27 January 1958, the president of the Republic of Vietnam, Ngô Đình Diệm by Decree 18-BNV abrogated the town status of Nha Trang and divided Nha Trang into two rural communes: Nha Trang Đông (Eastern Nha Trang) and Nha Trang Tây (Western Nha Trang), under the administration of Vĩnh Xương County.
On 22 October 1970, the government of the Republic of Vietnam by Decree 132-SL/NV reestablished Nha Trang Town on the ground of Nha Trang Đông and Nha Trang Tây and other rural communes — Vĩnh Hải, Vĩnh Phước, Vĩnh Trường, Vĩnh Nguyên, and villages Phước Hải (Vĩnh Thái Commune), Vĩnh Điềm Hạ (Vĩnh Hiệp Commune), Ngọc Thảo, Ngọc Hội, Lư Cấm Villages (Vĩnh Ngọc Commune) under the administration of Vinh Xuong County, together with islands Hòn Lớn, Hòn Một, Hòn Mun, Hòn Miễu, Hòn Tằm. Nha Trang Town was made the capital of Khanh Hoa Province. The town included two districts. District 1 covered communes Nha Trang Đông, Vĩnh Hải, Vĩnh Phước, and villages Ngọc Thảo, Ngọc Hội and Lư Cấm of Vĩnh Ngọc Commune, Vĩnh Điềm Hạ village of Vĩnh Hiệp Commune. District 2 covered communes Nha Trang Tây, Vĩnh Trường, Vĩnh Nguyên (inclusive of islands of Hòn Tre, Hòn Một, Hòn Mun, Hòn Tằm), Phước Hải village of Vĩnh Thái Commune.
Following that establishment, the government by Decree 357-ĐUHC/NC/NĐ dated 5 June 1971 divided Nha Trang into 11 urban zones, of which, district 1 covered urban zones of Vĩnh Hải, Vĩnh Phước, Ngọc Hiệp, Vạn Thạnh, Duy Tân; district 2 covered urban wards of Vĩnh Nguyên, Vĩnh Trường, Phương Sài, Tân Phước, Tân Lập, Phước Hải. Decree 553-BNV/HCĐP/NV dated 22 August 1972 renamed urban zones into urban wards. Decree 444-BNV/HCĐP/26.X dated 3 September 1974 merged islands of Hòn Một, Hòn Cậu, Hòn Đụn, Hòn Chóp Vung, Hòn Đỏ into Vĩnh Hải ward (district 1) and Hòn Ngọc into Vĩnh Nguyên ward (district 2) of Nha Trang Town.
On 2 April 1975, communist (Viet Cong/PRG/VPA) forces captured the city. On 4 April 1975, Khánh Hòa Military Commission (Ủy ban Quân quản Khánh Hòa) divided Nha Trang into three administrative districts: District 1, District 2 and Vĩnh Xương District. In September 1975, the districts were merged to become one entity, the town of Nha Trang.
On 30 March 1977, the Council of the Government (now the cabinet) of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam by Decision 391-CP/QĐ upgraded Nha Trang to city status, a county-level city under the administration of Phú Khánh Province (a province created by merger of now Phú Yên Province and Khánh Hòa Province). Seven communes of former Vĩnh Xương County, namely Vĩnh Thái, Vĩnh Ngọc, Vĩnh Hiệp, Vĩnh Lương, Vĩnh Trung, Vĩnh Thạnh, Vĩnh Phương was split from Khánh Xương County to become Nha Trang City territory.
On 27 March 1978, the provincial government by Decision 54-BT founded Phước Đồng Commune under Nha Trang City.
On 1 July 1989, Khanh Hoa was split from Phu Khanh Province to become Khánh Hòa Province as it was before, Nha Trang was made the capital of Khánh Hòa Province. On April 22, 1999, the prime minister by Decision 106/1999 recognized Nha Trang City the second class municipal city. On April 22, 2009, the prime minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng recognized Nha Trang City at the first class municipal city.
Nha Trang has a tropical savanna climate with a lengthy dry season from January to August and a shorter wet season from September to December, when 1,029 millimetres (41 in) of the city's total annual rainfall of 1,361 millimetres (54 in) is received from the north-east monsoon. During the wet season extremely heavy rainfall from typhoons is not uncommon, though the city is shielded from the worst winds.
Climate data for Nha Trang
|Record high °C (°F)||31.7|
|Average high °C (°F)||27.8|
|Daily mean °C (°F)||24.2|
|Average low °C (°F)||20.6|
|Record low °C (°F)||12.2|
|Source #1: Sistema de Clasificación Bioclimática Mundial|
|Source #2: General Statistics Office of Vietnam|
Nha Trang city has a metropolitan area of 251 km² and population of about 500,000. It borders Ninh Hòa town in the north, Cam Ranh city in the south,Diên Khánh town in the west and the East Sea to the east. The city is on the beautiful Nha Trang Bay, which was chosen by Travel + Leisure in two succeeding years as one of 29 most beautiful bays in the world. Nha Trang is surrounded on all three sides by mountains and a large island and four smaller ones on the fourth side (in the ocean directly in front of the city's main area), blocking major storms from potentially damaging the city.
Nha Trang's economy relies largely on tourism. In the suburban areas around the city, the shipbuilding industry has developed and contributed significantly to the local economy. Fishery and services are also important to the city. Khánh Hòa Province in general and Nha Trang is particular are among the largest contributors to Vietnam's annual budget revenues.Lobster farming on the sea is an important industry for the people living in suburb areas.
To the south of the city, by Cam Ranh Bay, several industrial parks are under construction and have been partly available for investors. Once the construction of the deep-water port on Van Phong Bay has been completed, this area will become the third important economic zone in the province (besides Nha Trang and Cam Ranh).
Nha Trang is subdivided into 27 wards and communes, of which 20 are urban wards: Vĩnh Hải, Vĩnh Phước, Vĩnh Thọ, Xương Huân, Vạn Thắng, Vạn Thạnh, Phương Sài, Phương Sơn, Ngọc Hiệp, Phước Hòa, Phước Tân, Phước Tiến, Phước Hải, Lộc Thọ, Tân Lập, Vĩnh Nguyên, Vĩnh Trường, Phước Long (founded in November 1998), Vĩnh Hòa (founded in April 2002); and 8 suburban communes: Vĩnh Phương, Vĩnh Trung, Vĩnh Thạnh, Vĩnh Thái, Vĩnh Hiệp, Vĩnh Ngọc, Vĩnh Lương and Phước Đồng. Since 1998, due to the high pace of urbanization, many urban planned zones have been built: Hòn Rớ, Bắc Việt, Thánh Gia, Đường Đệ, Nam Hòn Khô.
Internet access can be found in many hotels. There are not that many Internet cafes around now as most hotels typically have computers available for free use by guests or Wi-Fi.
When using the telephone at a hotel be sure to check their rates. Skype or Google Hangouts is free or low cost.
Mobile SIM cards are readily available, mobifone seems the best option for tourists. Their SIM cards cost 50,000 dong or a little more depending where you buy it and come with about 100,000 dong credit for use in the first month. They also provide 3G Internet data packages, e.g., 1.5 Gb for one month costs 120,000 dong. Cellular Data info: APN: m-wap Username: mms Password: mms
Prices in Nha Trang
MARKET / SUPERMARKET
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||$0.70|
|Bottle of Wine||1 bottle||$6.80|
|Dinner (Low-range)||for 2||$9.50|
|Dinner (Mid-range)||for 2||$17.00|
|Dinner (High-range)||for 2||$|
|Mac Meal or similar||1 meal||$3.85|
|Beer (Imported)||0.33 l||$1.35|
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||$0.90|
|Coctail drink||1 drink||$|
|Men’s Haircut||1 haircut||$3.70|
|Mobile (prepaid)||1 min.||$0.18|
|Pack of Marlboro||1 pack||$1.60|
|Toilet paper||4 rolls||$1.15|
CLOTHES / SHOES
|Jeans (Levis 501 or similar)||1||$35.00|
|Dress summer (Zara, H&M)||1||$28.00|
|Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas)||1||$70.00|
|Local Transport||1 ticket||$0.30|
30 $ per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- meals in cheap restaurant
- public transport
- cheap hotel
70 $ per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- mid-range meals and drinks
Transportation - Get In
There are lots of domestic flights from Ho Chi Minh City, Vinh, Da Nang,Hanoi, Haiphong, with prices starting at 250,000 dong. Internationally city is connected to Seoul, South Korea and to a decent amount cities in China.
Cam Ranh International Airport , Cam Ranh town (30 km S from Nha Trang). Built on the grounds of the old American airbase in 2004.
Taxi fixed rate from the airport to downtown locations is 250,000 dong, if going by the meter it will be about 100,000 dong more expensive.
A cheaper option is to take the airport bus which goes directly to the city center. There are a few companies operating on this route, which buses can be found in front of the airport entrance. 50 000 dong, 30 mins ride (2016). In the opposite direction the shuttle bus leaves 2 hours before each scheduled flight.
Besides, some midrange and upscale hotels organise airport transfers, often for free.
For the adventurous traveller, take a short taxi ride to a bus stop in nearby town of Cam Ranh, then catch the bus to Nha Trang (40,000 dong, about an hour). Bus stops and buses itself are orange coloured.
Nha Trang is a stop on the main railway-line connecting Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. If you want a soft-sleeper (the highest class available on Vietnamese trains), book your train ticket directly at the train station as far in advance as you are able. Having a private travel agent book this ticket will quite often result in you paying the agent for a soft-sleeper — the agent will book a hard-sleeper and you will not know until you board the train and it is too late to make changes. This is one of the most common scams in Vietnam. Soft sleeper rooms are 4 berth, hard sleepers are 6 berth. You can sit comfortably on a lower bed in a 4 berth room but in a 6 berth you will have to be very short in order to sit up straight. SNT trains (meaning Saigon to Nha Trang) have similar quality cars, but are slower than the SE trains. The TN trains have the oldest and dirtiest cars and are the slowest so therefore are not recommended.
The journey to Nha Trang from Ho Chi Minh City takes between 6-8 hours on SE trains (often delayed), so a sleeper is not really necessary, a cushioned seat in the air-con car costs 190,000 dong, soft seats are 310,000 dong, soft sleeper about 500,000 dong (2012). There are 2 overnight and 2 daily SE trains. The SNT trains take over 9 hours and travel overnight only, departs Ho Chi Minh City at 19:40 and arrives in Nha Trang at 05:20, 535,000 dong (2012). The scenery on this journey is not that great compared to further north, so you are not missing out too much by travelling overnight.
Train station (1 km north from the city centre).
Nearly all long distance sleeper buses stop in Nha Trang. They come from Ho Chi Minh City (10-12 hours, 200,000 dong, both morning and overnight buses available, both are sleeper buses), Hoi An (12 hours). Sleeper buses usually drop off passengers on the side of the street somewhat near the tourist areas. From where it's only a short walk or $2 taxi ride to the required hotel.
Besides, there are hourly buses from Da Lat (3-4 hrs, 120,000 dong, hourly between 07:00-15:00) and a couple ones from Qui Nhon (6 hrs, 115,000 dong, at 07:30, 08:30, 13:00 and 15:30), Mui Ne (6 hr).
Bus station (10 minute walk west of the center).
Private car rental with a driver are usually modern air-con cars and can be rented for about 1,000,000 dong per day. Car rental prices (as mostly anything in Vietnam) usually increase during holiday seasons especially around Tet (Vietnamese New Year). Make sure to avoid high prices by booking it beforehand with the car rental services.
Transportation - Get Around
Nha Trang has two main beaches: a larger one south of the Cai river, and a smaller one on the north. The southern beach, lined by the Trần Phú avenue, is by far the most popular among the visitors. Tourism infrastructure catering to foreign tourists, including diving schools, tour agencies, western-style bars and international restaurants and cafes, is mostly concentrated in the southern part of the beach, between Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai and the old airport. In the central part of the beach, lie the upmarket, international chain hotels such as Sheraton, Novotel and InterContinental. The rest of the beachfront, as well as the northern beach, has infrastructure mostly aimed at Vietnamese tourists. A few blocks far from the beach, Nha Trang is a normal, bustling Vietnamese city.
In Nha Trang, as in the rest of Vietnam, motorcycles are the least safe but most convenient way of going around, especially to go to the beaches and sightseeing spots outside of the city. See the general advice for riding a motorcycle in Vietnam.
Nha Trang's city bus system is surprisingly useful for travellers that have more time than money. Buses are white and blue in color, have air conditioning, Vietnamese music, and are very cheap, typically costing less than US$ 0.50. While there is very few information available, online or otherwise, about city buses, there are not many bus routes such that it is relatively easy to understand them. In addition, buses are rarely crowded except on peak hours. On the negative side, buses are often infrequent and with limited working hours, drivers and fare collectors seldom speak English, and bus stops are often quite far from each other. Therefore, make sure that you have enough time and patience before going somewhere by bus.
Bus #4 is probably the most useful for visitors, as it passes through the main tourist area (between Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai and the old airport) as well as many points of interest, including the Vinpearl cable car entrance, the Hòn Chồng promontory, the Po Nagar towers and Nha Trang Cathedral, as well as nearby the Cho Dam Market. Visitors staying in the main tourist area can take the bus at Nguyễn Thiện Thuật.
Bus #3 also passes through the main tourist area, and can be used to go to Doc Let beach. While this would take at least 90 minutes, it is one of the few ways to go to Doc Let for travellers which do not have their own transportation.
Buses are always paid with cash. Fare collectors can provide you change, but avoid using large bills. As in other cities in Vietnam, buses often do not completely stop to allow people to board, and even when they stop, they will often start moving as soon as the first person climbs the stairs of the bus. Therefore, do not stop or try to pay the fare as soon as you board the bus; instead, find a place to sit or stay and the bus fare collector will walk towards you.
Although not as treacherous as in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, walking in Nha Trang is certainly no walk in the park. Zebra crossings are almost meaningless as no vehicle will ever stop for pedestrians crossing the street, and the few traffic lights in the city are systematically ignored. Pavements are often unusable for walking, as they are almost entirely occupied with parked motorcycles, kiosks and restaurant tables, such that pedestrians are expected to walk mostly in the road. See the general advice for crossing the road in Vietnam.
One of the few pleasant places to walk in Nha Trang is the walking path along the beach, which is quite well-maintained and lined with nice gardens, monuments and public places, although sometimes interrupted by motorcycle parking lots.
Tourists are advised to take Mai Linh (preferably) or Vinasun taxis, where the drivers usually use the meter and do not attempt to cheat on tourists. A ride inside the city of Nha Trang should never cost more than a few dozen thousand dong. On the other hand, going to places outside of Nha Trang by taxi can cost hundreds of thousand dong, and possibly much more if you would like the driver to wait for you to bring you back to the city.
A wonderful option for seeing the sites is to hire a cyclo-driver for the day. This runs about USD15 plus tip. All the in-town highlights, the post office, and my choice of restaurants from 08:00-19:00. English skills may be basic. The driver will keep the touts away--a real bonus!
Nha Trang is quite flat and bicycles are easily found for hire, typically 20,000 dong for one day for a basic no-gears bike. Locals on bicycles are more commonly seen at night when its cooler and no sun to burn their skin. However, note that if you have no experience with Vietnamese traffic, you should think twice about using a bicycle as your main means of transport in Nha Trang.
- BEST RATED -
- BEST VALUE -
- Nha Trang Beach. The city's main beach, south of the Cai river, is about 6 km long and lined with a beautiful, well-maintained promenade containing walking paths, gardens, monuments and leisure spaces. The beach itself has a broad strip of sand, and the calm waters are extremely inviting for swimming - but care is needed, as the waters get deep very quickly. While Nha Trang's beach is hardly one of the most beautiful beaches of Southeast Asia, it can still provide one of the best urban beach experiences in the region. You will see many female vendors walking along the beach selling fruit and hot, steamed seafood. Vietnamese typically come to the beach during sunrise and sunset, with the Russians occupying the beach en-masse during the peak sunshine hours. Make sure that you visit in the right season. The beach can be disappointing when the weather is grey and the waves choppy. The experience is then one of murky sandy waters, a strip of standard brown sand with a multitude of empty beach chairs and no one to be seen.
- Bai Doung Beach (1.5 km N on Tran Phu St over the main bridge). North of the Cai river, Bai Duong beach is smaller than in the main tourist area. It is a beautiful beach, but the sewage channels make it somewhat less appealing. The beach is mostly popular among Vietnamese visitors, and hence quite empty during peak sunshine hours. Near the beach there are several seafood restaurants catering to Vietnamese tourists. It can be reached using bus #4.
- Hon Chong (1.5 km N on Tran Phu St over the main bridge). Scenic rock formations in the sea. The disposition of the rocks, as well as the sculpture of a giant fist mark in one of them, is mysterious and a source of several folk tales. You can climb the rocks and get some nice views of Bai Doung Beach and the nearby islands. It can be reached using bus #4. Entrance 22 000 dong, including dance performance.
- Hòn Tre island has several nice beaches, but unfortunately, almost of all them are of exclusive access to guests of the Vinpearl resorts. The exception is the small beach in front of the Vinpearl Land's waterpark, which is accessible for those who bought a ticket to Vinpearl Land. The beach offers waterports and contains a Russian restaurant.
Outside of the city - beaches
- Doc Let Beach (Around 50 km N of Nha Trang). Located in the Ninh Hòa district north of Nha Trang, Doc Let is a beautiful, long beach with shallow, crystal-clear waters. The water has weak waves, but it is still excellent for swimming. Local fisher families sell and prepare seafood they will cook for you on the beach for a very reasonable price. The southern part of the beach contains the Ninh Hòa fishing village, where the north of the beach contains some relatively inexpensive resorts or it still underdeveloped. The best parts of the beach are the ones in front of the resorts, with the rest unfortunately with a lot of rubbish thrown by locals. You can pay a fee to rent a chair and use the showers/restrooms of White Sand Doclet resort or Paradise resort. Doc Let beach can be reached from Nha Trang using bus #3, by motorbike, and by some day tous generally aimed at Russian visitors. If you are staying in a resort there, the resort may offer you transfer services for a surcharge.
- Long Beach (Bai Dai beach) (On the road to Cam Ranh airport). Located in the Cam Lâm and Cam Ranh districts, 20 km south of Nha Trang, Bai Dai is in the middle of a frenetic process of development, with upscale resorts being built nonstop in the beachfront. Even so, the beach is very long and it is still possible to find yourself alone if you walk enough. It has beautiful blue waters, soft sand and it is pleasant to walk upon as it is less steep than the beach in Nha Trang, but rubbish can also be a problem in areas which are not in the front of resorts. Seafood is served at many shacks with deckchairs right on the beach. Probably best to go by motorcycle.
- There are several other beaches in the vicinity of Nha Trang. About 30 km north of Nha Trang, just when past the village of Ninh Hoa, a peninsula juts out into the South China Sea, and on its northern coast is its tinier brother, Hon Khoi. Several resorts are on the eastern beach of Hon Khoi, where you find palm trees, white sand, and turquoise waters. To get there, follow the highway north past the turnoff to Dac Lac Province/Buon Ma Thuot. Then look out for a sign reading "Doc Let-Resort", close to a filling station. A taxi will take 2 persons for about 200,000 dong, while a xe om should not be more expensive than 100,000 dong. Or catch a through bus travelling Hwy 1 and get off at the turn off. There will always be some motorbike drivers waiting to take you. Whatever place you choose to go, be sure to reserve a bungalow in advance.
- A-Mart, 27 Biet Thi St (Corner just beyond Crazy Kim's if walking away from the sea). There are a couple of well-stocked modern mini-supermarkets in the main tourist area called A-Mart. These are very much aimed at the tourist market and few locals will be seen shopping here.
- Bamboo, 15 Biet Thu St, . 08:00-21:30. Popular Vietnamese boutique chain T-shirt shop.
- Maximark Supermarket, 60 Thai Nguyen (Near the train station), . Large Western-style supermarket. It covers 4,000 m2 in area, in a four-storey building. The supermarket itself is on the 1st floor, a cinema on the 5th floor and a food court on the 4th floor that includes a Japanese restaurant called Sushi Sakura and a Jollibee fast food restaurant. There is also an arcade games area on the 4th floor, 2,000 dong per token.
- Nha Trang Center, 20 Tran Phu. New shopping and entertainment complex on the main beach road. On the 3rd floor is a multiplex cinema, 10 pin bowling alley, a games arcade, mini 5D cinema and a food court. On the 2nd floor is the Citimart supermarket. On the ground floor are KFC and Lotteria fast food restaurants.
- Shop Herman, 142 Ngo Gia Tu (Next to small market). Clothes from back home at half the cost.
- Sunsport Sportwear Stores, 97 56A Nguyen Thien Thuat St, . Major brands available: Nike, Adidas, North Face, Speedo, Greg Norman.
ATMs are common but the vast majority have a transaction limit of 2 million dong or less. Agribank give 3 million dong per transaction with $1 fee.
- Far East Rock Cafe, 86 Nguyen Thien Thuat. 08:00-midnight. Popular restaurant and bar with both tourists and expats in the main tourist area serving international food at great prices. Many drink deals also. Well managed and maintained, plays lots of rock videos, especially from the 80's.
- Tiem Banh Hoa Hung, 39 Phan Boi Chau St and 72 Ly Thanh Ton St, . , Bakery with sponge cake less than USD1, pâté chaud, chocolate cupcake, sesame toffee. Founded in 1936.
- Hy Lap Greek Mini Restaurant, 1 Trang Quang Khai St (The end of the road), . Awesome small restaurant with simple but delicious Greek food. Great staff, including the two Greek owners. 50,000-100,000 dong.
- Lac Canh, 11 Hang Ca St, . 07:00-21:00. What’s different about this long established restaurant (25 years) is that you get to cook, yourself, and both locals and tourists seem to love it. It's famous for its thinly sliced beef, marinated in chilli source that you cook with your own mini tabletop BBQ. Large San Miguel bottled beers are served by San Miguel-attired servers for 18,000 dong. USD2-10.
- Lanterns Vietnamese Restaurant, 34/6 Nguyen Thien Thuat St, . 07:00-23:00. Local restaurant with authentic Vietnamese and also Western dishes. Relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. Expect a large crowd there every night during dinner. They work closely with two local orphanages, where the children and their caretakers are invited to regularly dine at the restaurant. The restaurant also offers a half-day introduction to Vietnamese cooking, which includes travelling to the local market in a cyclo and a guided tour of the marketplace to teach you about local produce that you will buy and subsequently cook. Cost for the class is 540,000 dong. Mains 60,000-150,000 dong.
- Thien Thanh, 386-388 Le Hong Phong (1 km from Nguyen Duc Canh/ Nguyen Tat Thanh St to the south, or 1.4 km from Van Don St to the north), , fax: 058-3880192, e-mail: [email protected]. 07:00-22:00. This modern restaurant not only serves Vietnamese traditional dishes but also provides excellent Western and Asian menu. Over 100 fresh seafood dishes. USD1-10.
- Truc Linh 2, Biet Thu St, . 07:00-23:00. Both Asian and Western food. Especially popular for seafood. Truc Linh has been here for years but the original corner one is now the location of a new high rise hotel.USD1-10.
- Cyclo Cafe, 130 Nguyen Thien Thuat St (Corner of Tran Quang Khai St).08:00-22:00. Great budget restaurant serving Western and Vietnamese food. Fruit shakes for 12,000 dong.
- BBQ Un Inn. Great new place along side the river. Same owners as Lanterns. Their speciality is bbq pork ribs.
- Good Morning Vietnam, 19B Biet Thu St, . 10:00-23:00. Pasta as well as other Italian food. USD4-9.
- Louisiane Brewhouse, Lot 29, Tran Phu (S along Tran Phu from the Sailing Club), . 08:00-23:00. Microbrewery with locally brewed beers, restaurant with fresh cakes and tarts, sushi, quality pizzas, steaks, Vietnamese food and seafood. Pool table, live music and own loungers right at the beach or pool available. Chaises longues at either the pool or beach are 40,000 dong per day. Even if you get a chair on the beach, you still have pool access. They have a sampling tray of beer for 100,000 dong. 30,000-600,000 dong.
- Nha Trang Seafood, 46 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai St, .09:30-22:00. Serves fresh and scrumptious seafood. Inexpensive prices and good service. USD2-14.
- Le Petit Bistro, 26D Tran Quang Khai St,. Traditional small French bistro, offers typical French cuisine. Big selection of wines. speciality of the house: Le maigret de canard. All you can eat BBQ Sundays from 11:00-16:00, 350,000 dong. 30,000-200,000 dong.
- Sailing Club, 72 Tran Phu St, . 07:00-23:00. This restaurant serves Japanese, Indian, Vietnamese, and Italian food. Crowded at night, when it turns into bar. USD3-10.
- Salut (Formerly, Hello), 16 Tran Quang Khai St, .06:00-23:00. Two storey corner restaurant serving Western and Vietnamese food.
- Texas BarBQ and Steaks, 26 Tran Quang Khai St, .09:00-22:00. A taste of Texas in Vietnam. They import their steak, chicken and pork from the US. The ribs are smoked for 5 hours a day. Charcoal fired burgers and authentic Memphis and Texas BBQ. Nice waitress and staff, who speaks English well. 60,000-550,000 dong.
- Ana Pavilion, Tran Phu Blvd (In the Ana Mandara Resort), . 06:00-23:00. An Asian/continental restaurant, and it is excellent.USD7-20.
- Lac Viet Quan Chay, 72 Huynh Thuc Khang St (SE of market, 1.5 blocks NW of To Hienh Thanh St), . Vegetarian restaurant. Plate of mixed vegetable and tofu/veg meat dishes with rice or a bowl of noodle soup, less than USD1. A small, humble place, but a nice option for vegetarians and it is right next to the market.
- Restaurant at Long Son Pagoda (At the entrance to Long Son Pagoda).The restaurant serves vegetarian meals only. Great Vietnamese food.
Coffe & Drink
Iced Coffee, Nguyen Thien Thuat St. Coffee shop in similar style to the large chains such as Starbucks and Costa Coffee, i.e. espresso styles, lots of comfy seating inside and out with upstairs seating too. They also sell cakes and pastries and have a small food menu too.
Sights & Landmarks
- Po Nagar Cham Towers, 2 Thang 4 St.07:30-17:00. These four brick towers were built by the Cham civilization between the 7th and 12th centuries to honour Yang Ino Po Ngar, mother of the kingdom, and the aroma of incense emanating from within makes it clear that this remains a religious site for the local Buddhists of Nha Trang today. The longevity of these last vestiges of a once-dominant SE Asian civilisation should impress temple enthusiasts even if the insensitive restoration and surrounding mass of tourists don't. The small complex sits on a hill which enjoys views across Nha Trang's fishing village. It is a 20-25 min walk (or short motorbike ride) from the main beach strip, however be prepared to wander through the real Nha Trang, quite an abrupt change from the showy built-up beach side resort. Public Bus 4 stops near the Cham Towers. 21,000 dong.
- Long Son Pagoda, Thai Nguyen St. 08:00-17:00. At this pagoda, you will see a 24 m tall white Buddha. The pagoda was established in 1963 to honour the monks and nuns who died demonstrating against the Diem government. Beware of scammers claiming they are students studying in the temple, demanding that you offer a donation to the school before going up the pagoda. These students have no affiliation with the school and entry to the pagoda is free. Free.
- Nha Tho Nui Cathedral. On a hill overlooking the city, the cathedral shows the influence of French Catholicism. The Nha Trang area still has a strong Catholic population. There are Catholic shops around the cathedral.
Outside of the city - other attractions
- Diên Khánh Citadel, Diên Khánh Townlet (12 km W of city).Citadel was built by French officer Olivier de Puymanel for Nguyễn Ánh in 1793. It housed royal palace, private houses, warehouses and jail. It was fenced by walls of 3.5m height, surrounded by moats of 4-5 m deep and 10 m wide. Originally it had 6 gates, but only 4 of them remained.
- Fairy Spring waterfalls (Suối Tiên) (about 20 km SW of Nha Trang. Go 10 km W of Nha Trang to Diên Khánh, go 5 km through the old Diên Khánh citadel to Diên Phước village, turn left 4 km to Suoi Tien village, then right 1 km to the stream). Fairy Spring is a small, cool stream and swimming hole much visited by local kids on weekends. The swimming hole is at the end of a short jungle walk. It is a pleasant place to visit in summer. In winter the water is too cold to swim. The stream's source is the area of Hồn Bà, the highest peak in the province. Bottled and canned drinks are available, but no food is sold here yet. The area is slowly being developed and will eventually become a resort with a hotel, bungalows, and restaurant. 10,000 dong per person, 3,000 dong per motorbike.
- Ba Ho Waterfalls (near Ba Ho village, approximately 20 km N of Nha Trang). A series of three waterfalls and a fast flowing river tucked away in the forest. There are limited amenities, although you can buy food like rice, chicken, beers and soft drinks. Taxis are available in Nha Trang to take you there, but its not too difficult to find yourself and with good weather it's a pleasant drive, if you are confident on a motorbike. Its a good one hour trip from Nha Trang by motorbike through some rough, off-road tracks (especially in the wet season). The turn off from the main highway north of Nha Trang can be easy to miss (a stone pillar), but most locals along the road should be able to point it out. From the turn off it's a straight track to the river. You may want to bring some sturdy shoes to climb across the rocks and swimming gear for a dip when you get there. It will take about 45 minutes from the entrance of the tourist area to the lakes. There is an orphanage very close to the lakes (take a right turn when you get to a T-junction in the rice fields) that would really benefit from any gifts of vegetarian food (take milk, tofu, yogourt, etc.). Call Dieu An, the nun at +84 90 5823807. She speaks only Vietnamese. Entrance fee 20 000 dong.
- Hon Ba Nature Reserve (64 km away from the city). Located at the summit of Hon Ba mountain at 1,514 m above sea level.
- Monkey Island (Hon Lao) (20 km N of Nha Trang). Catch a ferry to Monkey Island (the pier is 1km further north of island), which is full of monkeys, has a 10:00 circus and simple go-cart track.
Museums & Galleries
- Alexandre Yersin Museum, 10 Tran Phu St, . M-Fr 07:30-11:30 and 14:00-17:00, Sa 07:30-11:30. This is a scientific museum of Swiss-born Dr. Alexandre Yersin (1863-1943), who arrived in Vietnam in 1891 to study infected animals. He later produced a serum from horses and buffaloes. In this museum, you will be able to view all of his work as well as his equipment. Yersin never went back to Switzerland and spent the rest of his life in Nha Trang. Don’t try to take pictures. Do respect the rules as they're quite serious here. 26,000 dong.
- Khánh Hòa Museum, 16 Tran Phu St,. Mon, Wed, Fri and Sun 8:00-11:00, 14:00 – 17:00. Exhibition presents Cham statues and artifacts of the ethnic minorities of the Nha Trang area. One of the rooms is devoted to Ho Chi Minh and his personal belongings.
- National Oceanographic Museum of Vietnam, 01 Cau Da (left of the commercial port entrance),. 07:00-16:00. This is like an aquarium with popular and rare species of the sea. A good place to bring kids as they will get to see sharks, turtles, coral reefs, lion fish, sea horses, and many other creatures. 30,000 dong.
- Impressions Museum, Buu Doa - 10, . 9am-8pm. Not really a museum. 3D art paintings to interact with. Great for selfie addicts, but don't go alone! Ideally go as group of 3 or more. Two is OK, but it will be difficult to take photos of the two of you together. Not easy to find, located on the other side of the old airport from the main tourist area. Receives mixed reviews, many consider it over-priced. 150,000 dong.
Things to do
- Water Puppet Theater, . Water puppetry is a Vietnamese original folk art that dates back as far as the 11th century when it originated in the villages of the Red River Delta area of northern Vietnam. Today's Vietnamese water puppetry is a unique variation on the ancient Asian puppet tradition.
- Cinema. There are two multiplex cinemas. One on the 3rd floor of the Nha Trang Center shopping and entertainment complex has three movie theatres with an estimated 120 seats each. US films are in English with local subtitles. The second cinema is the Lotte Cinema, on the 5th floor of the Maximart Supermarket, near the train station. 70,000 dong.
- Boat cruises. The going rate for a one-day multi-island tour is USD 6, with snorkelling, fishing, and many other activities among the possibilities. Tours may provide lunch with drinks on board. Booking agents abound, so compare itineraries to find the best for you.
- Swimming pools. Obviously people come here to swim in the sea, but there are also a number of swimming pools. Louisiane Brewhouse has a good one that is free to use. Hiring a soft chaise longue costs 40,000 dong. The Yasaka Saigon Nha Trang Hotel coffee shop in Yersin St has a small shady pool for free use. A number of mid-range hotels also have pools, some of which can be used by non-guests. Sea and Sun Hotel has a nice rooftop pool and costs 70,000 dong for non-guests. There is also an little-used Olympic-size outdoor swimming pool in Nha Trang. Some scuba diving companies use it for training purposes. It costs only 15,000 dong. It's a fair distance away from the main tourist area on the south side of the city. Ask someone who works in a scuba shop for directions. This is now closed the public (I was told it is for clubs only use). There is another large public pool at Yersin st, opposite the hospital, for 30,000 dong. Another option is Central Park on Tran Phu, near Louisiane Brewhouse. Buy a deckchair for 60,000 or 120,000 and swim for free. Has a small diving board for kids, a lazy river, and a pool bar.
- Gyms, 12 Thi Sach St (off Tran Nhat Duat St), . There is a large gym in town called Nha Trang Body Building Club, part of a leisure complex that includes badminton and tennis courts, basketball area and football pitch. Daily pass 20,000 dong; monthly pass, 200,000 dong. Besides, Novotel Hotel also has gym memberships for non-guests, which provide access to the swimming pool, sauna and relaxation room. A daily pass costs 200,000 dong, one-month pass 1,400,000 dong, 3-month pass 2,700,000 dong. Monthly passes include one free massage; ask about this when purchasing. The Sheraton Hotel probably has the best gym in town with excellent views, but costs USD100 for one month, and this doesn't include use of the swimming pool.
- 10 pin bowling. On the 3rd floor of the new Nha Trang Centre shopping and entertainment complex. Half-price games after 22:00 on Friday and Saturday nights only (happy hour).
Amusement and mud bath parks
- Vinpearl Amusement Park (Take the cable car). From the harbour you can take the cable car over to the island where Vinpearl Resort and Vinpearl Land are located. They have a small tivoli and some restaurants, attractions here include Underwater World (aquarium), water park with water slides and wave pool, amusement park with roller coaster, pirate ship, bumper cars, cinema, arcade machines and a laser show at night time, usually 19:00. All included in the one price. 600,000 dong for Adult, 450,000 dong for children under 1.4 meters tall, 430,000 dong for elderly above 60, free for children under 1 m.
- 100 Egg Mud Bath, Nguyen Tat Thanh Blvd., .Amuzement park featuring mud baths, pools, hydrotherapy showers, jacuzzi and a big garden.
- I-Resort, To 19 - Xuan Ngoc - Vinh Ngoc. Offers mud and mineral baths, waterfalls and a lot of pools.
- Thap Ba Hot Springs and Mud baths (Suối Nước Nóng Tháp Bà) (4 km NW of Nha Trang). Costs 50,000 dong for the hot swimming pool and waterfall, 100,000 dong for shared mud bath (if you are 5-8 people you will probably get put in the same tub), shower, hot/cold water jets, hot Jacuzzi, and the hot waterfalls and swimming pool. A massage by trained masseuses and entrance to the hot swimming pool costs 150,000 dong. There is also a package for 500,000 which included a massage among other extras. A VIP spa package will cost you USD100 or more. If you carry on a further 500 m past the mud baths you arrive at a railway bridge across the river that connects to a tunnel. It's a very scenic spot that's popular for wedding photo shoots. USD4 mineral pool, USD12.50 mudbath.
- Waterland Thach Lam Stream Amusement Park, 14 Cuu Long Street, Phuoc Hoa Ward (20 km S of Nha Trang), . Offers simple rafting, grass sliding. A fair amount of people are dissatisfied with the park, claiming it isn't worth the money, and that the canoe rides are too easy. 130 000 dong.
- Yang Bay tourist park (40 km west of Nha Trang), .7:30 - 17:00. At the Yang Bay waterfalls the Vietnamese have built up a concrete beach, as well as sort of eco park with a zoo. It used to be a lot nicer before they built it, but it is still a very nice place to visit. You can swim there, and walk around in the area. Just to mention, tourist park receives a lot of negative reviews. 100 000 dongs adult, 70 000 - child.
Diving & snorkelling
Close off-shore from Nha Trang sit a series of islands that offer decent diving and snorkelling, easily accessible by day trip. The city has about two dozen dive shops, making for fierce competition and great value. PADI open water courses with equipment rental are available for USD250. A two-dive boat trip with equipment rental and modest lunch can be had for USD45.
Coastal and undersea construction has stirred up a lot of sediment in the area, so underwater visibility is sometimes not great. The area is heavily fished, so fish life is also limited. You wouldn't cross the world just to dive at Nha Trang. But if you always dreamed of getting a scuba certification, Nha Trang is a good place to do it. The shops generally offer good quality equipment and experienced, certified dive masters. Diving goes on year round, but in the Oct-Dec windy season, the boat ride can be a bit rough and diving is limited to a few sites in the lee of the islands.
Organisation of the Nha Trang dive industry is sometimes complex. If you sign up for a trip with shop A, you might find yourself joined with a group and divemaster from shop B, which shares a boat with another group and divemaster from shop C, the boat itself being independently owned. Consolidation is especially active in the off-season, when few if any shops can fill a boat on their own. It's a good illustration of Vietnamese culture, which does not stand on ceremony, and loves a bargain, and is very skilled at making maximum use of resources. The local divemasters are mostly great, friendly guys with lots of stories to tell.
- Aloha Mark Scott's Diving Vietnam, 24/4 Hung Vuong, , e-mail: [email protected]. 06:30-21:00. USD60 for two dives (with certification) and USD70 for two introductory dives. The boat has plenty of room for lounging and never rushed. American English spoken.
- Angel Dive, 1/33 Tran Quang Khai, , e-mail:[email protected]. Expat-run, by a long time resident of Nha Trang. PADI, SSI, SDI and TDI Certified.
- Jeremy Stein's Rainbow Divers, . European-owned operation with partially expat staff. A two-dive boat trip costs USD75 (including water and fruit, but not lunch), about double the best deals available in town. The operation is well-organised and very professional, catering to divers who aren't comfortable with the more low-key local shops.
- Octopus Diving, 29 Tran Phu (At Louisiane Brewhouse), , e-mail: [email protected]. PADI Five Star Dive Center offering a full range of PADI courses. Fun dives, nitrox, snorkelling and Discover Scuba Diving trips to Hon Mun Marine Protected Area everyday. International team of instructors and divemasters. Very small groups, maximum of 2 students on a course and only 2 divers with a divemaster, personal service.
- Biking and Rafting Tour, 1/12 Tran Quang Khai St, .Combination fast 30 km downhill biking passing through an ethnic village and meeting Raglai people. Then a 12 km rafting trip down the Cai River.USD45+.
- Surfing Shack, Nguyễn Tất Thành, Khánh Hòa (on Bai Dai beach about 21.6 km south of Nha Trang). Bar, restaurant and surf club/school.
- Altitude (28th floor, Sheraton Hotel). 16:00-23:00. For a great view of Nha Trang at night, perhaps visit the highest bar in Nha Trang. Heineken 100,000 dong.
- Skylight. 8:00–14:00, 16:30–00:00. 360˚ Skydeck & Rooftop Club. Besides, it also features a Skywalk, located on the 43rd floor. Entrance 50,000-150,000 dong depending on time and day of the week, price includes 1 drink.
- Booze Cruise, 110 Nguyen Thien Thuat St. 10:00–2:00. One of the more popular bars in town, though also one of the most expensive. They generally show most major sporting events on their large flat screen TV. They make great burgers and pizza as well as limitless different types of cocktails. They also organise booze cruises. 350,000 dong including all you can eat and drink.
- Crazy Kim Bar, 19 Biet Thu St, . Closes 01:00. If you are young and wild, this is the place to be. 50,000 dong large beer.
- Ha Van 'A' Rooftop Lounge & Restaurant, 3/2 Tran Quang Khai, 5th floor (On the 5th floor of the Flamingo Suites Ha Van Hotel), . 07:00-late. Offering the coldest beers, drinks and cocktails. Small, but very good menu of food. Great city views, and a favourite of expats. Internet stations and Wi-Fi free (good connection). 50-inch TV for movies and sport events. Live NHL ice hockey available in the morning. Football fans are welcome. Canadian-run & managed.
- Ly Ly's Nudies, 81 Huong Vong St (Next to Bamboo). 18:00-22:00. A little outdoor smoothie shop that is the best value in town. 15,000 dong for every drink. Stop by and chat with Ly Ly, a very nice young woman who speaks good English and is very friendly. It's not very clear whether it still operates (2016).15,000 dong.
- Patrick Wine, 3/3 Tran Quang Khai St (Next to La Suisse Hotel), . 14:00-02:00. Offering a charming blend of romance and revelry. It offers hundreds of bottles of imported wine. After 18:00 there is a full bar and restaurant, featuring French and Vietnamese food. Crepes, pates, and local specialities, with the wine shop still open. Check the website for live music dates. USD2-6 for food.
- SinhTo20, 20 Hoang Hoa Tham St, . This place has a very good yoghurt and many kinds of cocktails. Prices are reasonable.
- Spicey Fingers (Formerly, Bar Oz)), 26b Tran Quang Khai St, . Small bar and restaurant in the main tourist area. Cheap beer, food not so cheap, but extensive menu.
- The Wave Bar and Restaurant (Formerly Club Blue Dragon), 126 Nguyen Thien Thuat, . This friendly spot has a pool table (free), dart board and TV. Clients are also encouraged to play DJ from the bar's iTunes selection. The owners are super friendly. You'll never feel lonely here.
- Why Not Bar, 24 Tran Quang Khai St, . One of the most popular late night bars for the young Western crowd in Nha Trang. 50,000 dong buckets until midnight, couple dollar beers, cheap mixers and various drink specials throughout the rest of the night. Begins getting crowded between 22:00-24:00. Dance floor, pool tables, cheap drinks available until late. By midnight the entire backpacker crowd will be at this bar. Although a place gets lots of very bad reviews, reviewers mention petty theft, being beaten up by stuff, often wrong and increased prices in a total bill.
Safety in Nha Trang
Nha Trang generally has a low crime rate, though the risk of petty crime especially late at night is high compared to most other places in Asia. The most common crime is pick pocketing after midnight near the Sailing Club. During the day, it is relatively safe though bag snatching on the beach is no uncommon, so don't take any valuables to the beach. Staying cautious at all times is best. Do not wear too much jewellery, and keep an eye on your belongings. It would be smart to travel in groups when you are out roaming the streets at night. Also, people coming home from the clubs should take a taxi and not a motorbike taxi. Single males walking back to their hotels in the early hours from clubs and bars such as the Sailing Club and Why Not Bar, especially if a little drunk, should beware of ladies approaching, typically in twos or threes, but often with a couple of guys on motorbikes watching closely from a distance ready to be get-away drivers or to get involved if things get nasty. They come over all friendly and touchy-feely, first checking to see what valuables you have and where, then relieve you of them. Often the victim doesn't even know he's been robbed until he gets back to his room or after he wakes up. This is almost becoming a tourist attraction in the sense you can watch this spectacle almost nightly, perhaps helping out a fellow drunken tourist being robbed. Unbelievably, no police are seen, and no hotel or bar security gets involved.
Do not keep money in your passport. If you want your hotel to lock up your money, they will usually be happy to do so in their hotel safe and have procedures for doing that. Passports are kept separate from other valuables as they need access to these for reporting each day your stay to the government. Better than giving the passport to the hotel is handing over a photocopy (personal data page and visa). It is never a good idea to give your passport to anyone other than officials. Never store money in your passport. Keep some money in a different pocket to your wallet/money belt. No point in displaying it when paying for small purchases.
Drive-by motorcycle theft is fairly common in Nha Trang. Banknotes and wallets have been snatched from tourists' hands.
If hiring a motorbike, check what coverage your insurance company gives for riding motorbikes in Asia, and it is frequently none.
Do not argue with locals who try to hustle money from you. This includes tourist touts, moto taxis, etc. They can become violent and aggressive easily, often resorting to the use of rocks or even concealed weapons. Although they can be a bit harder to get rid of than in other places, it is best to avoid these people altogether.
There was one negative report about TM Brothers buses. It's claimed, that they have a bad reputation, and some of the seats are broken and you can find cockroaches on the bus. However, their buses are usually a few dollars cheaper than other companies.