So, Mui Ne. I don’t have an awful lot to say about this weirdly popular destination other than, skip it.
Mui Ne is a beach resort town along the South China Sea in Southeast Vietnam. With a long, palm-lined stretch of sand, it has steady wind conditions that make it a top destination for windsurfing, kite surfing, sailing and other water sports.
If water sports aren’t your thing, this place offers absolutely nothing you can’t find 100 times better anywhere else.
What to do in Mui Ne
People come to Mui Ne for the beach and I can’t seem to understand why. The beach is average at best. Being brutally honest I wouldn’t even say average, it’s crap, dirty and covered in litter. Never have I seen so much rubbish washed up on a beach.
Our nice walk along the beachfront soon became very depressing when you’re faced with hundreds of overly expensive seafood restaurants (pushy service staff included) using the sea behind them as a trash can. Beer bottles, plastic bottles, and styrofoam all piling up on the beachfront behind directly behind the restaurants. How is this allowed?
These same restaurants sell everything from snapper to sharks, eels, frogs and even turtles. I mean each to their own, people are going to eat these things. But seeing tourists and locals eying them off and taking pictures of these animals in only inches of water didn’t sit to well with us.
Excursions and Attractions in Mui Ne
You’re able to do a few day trips in this small beach town. Notably the sand dunes, the red sand dunes and something they call ‘The Fairy Stream’.
Personally we didn’t do any of these. The fellow travellers we met all advised us not to waste our time. So I’m going to tell you what I heard about them, but obviously, I could be wrong.
The best out of the three was apparently the sand dunes. Here you can explore some sand dunes which is something different for Vietnam I suppose. Beware of the plastic bag wind storms and also the endless quad bikes zooming round. These quad bikes are expensive to hire and massively underpowered, with some people saying the upkeep and mechanical soundness of them isn’t great. A couple we met said they tried two and they both broke down within 10 minutes.
The red sand dunes, more of the same but red, of course.
Last but not least the ‘Fairy stream’. Often described as the worst tourist attraction ever. My favourite description of this I heard was;
A stream of knee-high dirty brown water that is promised to get better but never does.
You and two hundred other tourists navigate your way down a stream of litter and crap (literal crap), through a tiny depressing zoo and past ostriches being ridden by children (WTF). Only to get to the end where you find and underwhelming waterfall. Then of course you have to wade back through shit only to run home and disinfect yourself.
But like I said, you give it a go, I dare you!
Mui Ne Backpacker Village
The only saving grace of our two days in the town. Mui Ne backpacker village is like a resort for the poor! With cheap dorm rooms and food and drink deals it’s perfect if you’re backpacking on a budget but want to feel like you’re not!
They have a good-sized pool, which is very busy (but clean) and generally just a good atmosphere with a wide range of people to meet.
Like most hostels they run entertainment every night of the week and everyone gets involved.
We had a great 2 nights here and highly recommend it to anyone who accidentally finds themselves in Mui Ne!
Check it out here.
Would I Come Back?
I definitely will not be returning to Mui Ne. I mean it’s not the worst place in the world, but it really did nothing for me.
We were going to skip it, but as we have two months in Vietnam we decided we may as well check it out.
In my opinion it is skippable! Spend the time you would be wasting Mui Ne somewhere else, like nearby Dalat for example.
If you have limited time in Vietnam as it is then Mui Ne is not the place for you.
Have you visited before? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Some first hand experience of the excursions would be great!