A Very Different Vietnam
Trip Start Apr 17, 2001
279Trip End Ongoing
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Nha Trang is one of those home-away-from-home places. If you keep your mind on all the new Western friends you're sure to meet here, you can almost avoid the Vietnamese people altogether. It's a place where you can say you've been to a foreign country and have the passport stamp to prove it. Where in just about any restaurant or bar you can listen to the the likes of Marley, Morrison and Dylan. Over and over and over.
There's a Novotel and a Sheraton right on the beach. A new Crowne Plaza will soon join them. Take a stroll to the beach though and you're likely to see that the surf's just a tad too strong to actually fo into the water. Not to worry – especially if you've brought the small-fry - there's a Canada's Wonderland type amusement park
Most of the restaurants have a small Vietnamese section at the back of their menu. Ellen and I have learned to stay away from it, though. Vietnamese food in Nha Trang isn't very good. And that's good for the Vietnamese restaurateurs because they can make more money cooking the home-away-from-home grub that Westerners demand. Nha Trang is so unforeign that you could probably spend an entire week here and the most foreign thing you'd have to do is be served by a waiter with an accent.
Nha Trang does have some interesting architecture, and its public works department does some amazing tree foliage trimming. But if you're looking for something a little more ethnic, you might try Toronto's east-end Chinatown. The Vietnamese food in the Broadview and Gerrard district is far superior to anything we've found in Nha Trang.
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