We’d only spent a few days in Da Lat, but I already knew that it was going to remain firmly at the top of my “favorite places in Vietnam” list.
Now, however, it was time to head to our next place in Vietnam and this time we were going to Nha Trang for a couple of nights.
First impressions are everything
The night before we were due to embark on the journey from Da Lat to Nha Trang, I received a WhatsApp message from the car company, Catthienhai Travel. I thought that this was a really lovely touch as it showed that they had their customers’ best interests at heart.
It was only a brief message confirming our pickup time and location, but it was still nice to know we had absolute confirmation of our upcoming journey.
However, at 10:00 am the following morning (the day of departure), just two hours before we were supposed to set off, I received another message from the company saying that the minivan was going to be delayed by an hour and wouldn’t pick us up until 1:00 pm.
Thankfully, the owners of the hostel we were staying at (Redhouse Backpackers Hostel) were incredibly kind and said we could sit in the lobby area until our transport arrived.
On the road again
Eventually, just after 2:00 pm, a driver from Cattheinhai Travel arrived at our hostel.
It didn’t seem like a good start with the minivan being two hours later than it originally should have been, but we were soon on our way and as for the minivan itself, I really couldn’t complain.
The interior was decked out with plush, reclining massage seats, we were provided with a free bottle of water each and a packet of wipes and there was music playing through the van, albeit very loud Vietnamese rap music!
It is always quite fearsome willingly getting into a car, bus or van in Asia as the drivers are always so erratic, but as it’s to be expected, you just have to get on with it.
Thankfully, the views on the drive from Da Lat to Nha Trang are absolutely stunning. The sharp, hair-pin bends of the road are terrifying enough, but if you just concentrate on the surrounding beauty, you’ll soon be distracted and you’ll be able to enjoy the lovely scenery.
We stopped at a small roadside cafe at 3:40 pm for a toilet and snack break (we got ice creams!) and then we were on our way again at 4:10 pm.
Arriving in Nha Trang
The minivan arrived in Nha Trang just after 5:00 pm, but as the driver couldn’t speak English very well at all, he couldn’t understand where we wanted to be dropped off so he made us get out at the side of the road miles away from our hostel.
I’d recommend having the address you need to be dropped off at in the local language to help avoid this issue in case your driver doesn’t speak your language.
Luckily, we found some free Wi-Fi and we booked a Grab taxi to our accommodation.