The main attractions of the coastal town of Nha Trang are the monumental Cham Towers and white sand beaches. The area is also known to have the best coastal climate in Vietnam.
The port was established in 1924 and became a popular recreational spot for American sailors during the Vietnam War. Nha Trang's earlier existence, however, goes back to the Cham Kingdom, a civilization that originated with the migration of Malay-Polynesians. The Cham people are one of Vietnam's ethnic minorities with their own language. In their unique culture, the women select their husbands and give their property to their daughters. Over the years, the Cham have acclimated to the ways of the Vietnamese, while at the same time retaining many of their ancient customs.
The two-tiered city of Nha Trang offers both a sleepy seaside community and a bustling city center with buildings dating from the French colonial time to post-1975 Vietnam. The palm-lined seafront is dotted with food stalls and a scenic landscape is dotted with the characteristic Cham Towers.
Nha Trang and its beaches have every potential of one day being developed into a major seaside tourist destination, but for now you can still enjoy a relaxed resort town with a lively market, wide streets and uncrowded beaches.
The ship is scheduled to dock at Cau Da Port, about 3.5 miles from the center of Nha Trang. Taxis and trishaws are generally available outside the port gate. Fares should be established before leaving the port area. Be aware that drivers can be very aggressive, trying to get your business.
The street just outside the port gate is a great place to find a wide range of typical souvenir items. Various galleries display and sell works of local artists. Other items of interest may include embroidered linens, carpets, woodcarvings, ceramics and lacquer ware. Plenty of shopping opportunities can be found along the beach front. The local currency is the dong; purchases can be paid for in U.S. dollars.
There are a number of restaurants and cafÃƒÂ©s along the beachfront area specializing in seafood. At resort hotels you can find a mix of regional and international cuisine.
Places of interest
Museum at the Pasteur Institute
Founded in 1895, the institute performs research in microbiology and virology. The museum features displays of old research equipment, various memorabilia and research books.
Built in the early 1920s, the institute contains a small exhibit of marine creatures and plant life, including a collection of preserved specimens.
Approximately 3.5 miles from the port are Nha TrangÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s famous sand beaches. The area can be reached via the Silversea shuttle bus to the Hai Yen Hotel. The beach is just across the street from the hotel.
Private arrangements for independent sightseeing may be requested through the Tour Office on board.