In early July I went with a group of Vietnamese to a bona fide RESORT – The Cliff Resort in Mui Ne. I’ve never been to such a classy, blatantly rich-people destination before. Goodness!

It really had it all. Great food, great service, clean rooms, amazing acrylic artwork in the rooms (notable… trust me), and a private beach. This was the off season, so there weren’t a million billion people here on their holidays, which was so pleasant.

I don’t have much to say about this place, except that it was absurdly relaxing. This was the same trip as our stop at the waterfalls in Dong Nai. Click through for some pictures of my stay, and see why it’s basically always the best time to visit Mui Ne… but that early July is exceptional.

Phan Thiết is the economic hub of the province, while Mui Ne, a couple dozen km north, is the tourist hub. We stopped in Phan Thiết for seafood (natch), one of several all-seafood meals I ate (and paid for later the next week with a nasty gout flareup… but it was worth it and so cheap). This is the main thoroughfare into the ocean – you can see the halogen light rigs  on some of these boats that are set up for squid fishing (…’squidding’?).

The beach was ridiculously pristine – free of trash, clutter, people, salespeople, and, most importantly, children. The water was warm and the surf was incredibly relaxing. I won’t deny that I got a pretty nice tan (or as ‘tan’ as I get, which is usually kind of bright pink).

At night we could see the squid fishing boats off the coast, using their enormous halogen rigs to lure the plankton that squid eat up to the surface, where they’re ambushed and turned into delicious food (not that there’s much prep).

It was definitely fun to play in the ocean, but that wasn’t all of it. There were two freshwater pools (as if you couldn’t tell from my rooftop pano at the top of this post), one with a bar, and they were glorious, barely occupied, and open 24 hours. This is the life!!
There was a great buffet on Sunday morning – western and Vietnamese foods, freshly pressed juices, bo kho (maybe my favorite Vietnamese soup), and a ton of seafood. More pastries than I’ve seen in one place… perhaps ever. And bacon! And brewed coffee! What sorcery is this?!

Couldn’t resist one more picture of me in the swimming pool. It was really wayyyy too gorgeous for words. I taught my friends the sidestroke. Thanks for these cool waterproof pictures, Trung!

Here’s a picture from the seafood restaurant we ate at before we left for HCMC… kites herding kids on the beach. Thank you, kites. Your job is important. Keep those beaches clean.

Mui Ne is a nice place, I’ve decided. If it’s possible, I hope to return to this resort sometime in the next couple years. I don’t even have much to say about it because I was so blissed out of my mind for the whole two days on swimming, sand, surf, and seafood.

Next time… I’ll try to venture out of the resort a little more and look around – we did zero sightseeing here, probably because all of the Vietnamese have seen everything already. But even if this is the coolest part of Mui Ne (and I’d believe it), it was definitely worth it.

Have you been to Mui Ne? Got anything I should put on my agenda for next time?