Situated in Binh Thuan (Bình Thuận) province, Phan Thiet (Phan Thiết) is about 200km away from Ho Chi Minh (Hồ Chí Minh) City. This is a place for recreation, exploration and recreation with beautiful, un-spoilt beaches, fishing villages, and stunning sand dunes as well as idyllic seaside resorts. Tourists could spend days lazing on the endless sandy beaches, playing fun water sports, enjoying delicious fresh seafood, and golfing. Next to Phan Thiet is Mui Ne (Mũi Né), a palm shaded bay featuring with a bombing beach resorts in Vietnam (Việt Nam). Mui Ne is an eco-tourist stop which is still in primitive background and about 22 km away from Phan Thiet City to the east.
Mui Ne used to be an isolated stretch of beach in which pioneering tourists camped on the sand in the early 1990s, yet it was too wonderful to be ignored.
Visiting Mui Ne, visitors can walk under rows of coconut trees running along the beach with the blue sea on side and white sand dunes on the other. In fact, Mui Ne is well-known for its beautiful beach, where you will enjoy not only the nature but also many tasty fresh seafood dishes.
1. Ke Ga Lighthouse
First and foremost, when it comes to Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions, this place cannot be skipped. It is believe that Ke Ga Lighthouse is one of the most beautiful lighthouses in South Asia area.
Just about 30 km south of Phan Thiet, along the beach and on a small island, Ke Ga Lighthouse is an impressive stretch of beach with strikingly intricated and colorful formations along the shore.
The design of this lighthouse is performed with the use of granite which are brought from France, and due to this, it looks like a real architectural marvel. The lighthouse’s height is about 64m above the sea level, and is considered as the highest lighthouse in Vietnam.
This lighthouse is rather far from Mui Ne (about 30km South) and thus it is not a common Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions.
This lighthouse is situated on the small rocky island, and about several hundred meters from the sea shore, and tourists can take photos and see it from the sea shore. However, if you really want to explore the lighthouse in more details, then you can swim across the island or use a fishing boat from the shore to reach the lighthouse or to order a tour. Really, the lighthouse on Ke Ga (Kê Gà) Island, along with the wonderful scenery around, makes up a spectacular landscape and impresses most tourists when visiting here.
2. White Sand Dunes (Aka Bau Trang Sand Dunes)
Among Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions, Bau Trang (Bàu Trắng) Sand dunes might be the most well-known one. If you want to have a perfect family holiday, then a trip to these enormous sand dunes will be definitely your choice. Also known as Bau Sen (Bàu Sen), Bau Trang Sand Dunes may be the biggest drawing card in Mui Ne, about 65km northeast of Phan Thiet. These dunes’ colors range from gold to true white. If you are looking for a place for an afternoon nap or a perfect picnic spot, then consider the small stands of pine trees sitting on the southern end of the lake there.
The trips to these dunes often include a stop-off at the Fairy Springs. According to the name of these Bau Trang sand dunes, there is a lake with fresh water located right in the middle of the huge sand dunes. From distance, tourists will see a cool color of green covering the white color of sand dunes. The dune splits Bau Trang into two parts, named Bau Ba (Bàu Bà) and Bau Ong (Bàu Ông).
Nowadays, Bau Trang sand dunes become among the most impressive Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions because it relieves the scorching air of the vast sand dunes. Travelers could reach this site by using motorbikes, Jeeps or even on foot. It is said that the best time to come here are in the early morning and at sunset.
3. Co Thach Pagoda (Chùa Cổ Thạch)
Also known as Hang Pagoda, Co Thach pagoda was established more majestically by Ho Cong Diem. The paths as well as stairs leading up to this pagoda are beautifully made of stone. The sides of the balcony are purposely decorated with dragons. A statue of Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara stands on a small rock mountain by the sea, and the pagoda consists of a statue of Sakyamuni Buddha.
Adjunction to this pagoda is Ca Duoc (Cà Dược) multicolored rocky expanse stretching for about 1 km along the coastline. Nowadays, there is a tourism village named Co Thach built with a lot of attractive stilt-houses to those who visit here to enjoy the beautiful natural landscape.
4. Po Sha Nu Tower
About 7km to the North East of Phan Thiet City, Poshanu Towers are situated on Mr. Heaven (Ông Hòang) Hill. Established by Champa (Chăm Pa) people in the 8th century, this large temple complex worships the Shiva Genie, whom was strongly respected by Cham (Chăm) people. Next to these towers, a temple used to be available, yet it was buried for over 300 years. Within the major tower, you will discover an altar, on which a symbol of the existence of Shiva Genie, a couple of Ligo-Yoni, is worshipped. These towers were restored during the stage of 1990 – 2000.
Usually, the local fishermen come here to pray the Gods for safe process of fishing and a big catch.
In order to get Po Sha Nu Tower, you can walk on foot from the central area of Mui Ne beach. It is situated about 5km away from Phan Thiet.
5. Ta Ku Mountain
Trekking up to Ta Ku Mountain, one of interesting Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions, is a great way to enjoy impressive sceneries. Just a drive of about 40 minutes from Phan Thiet can take you to this mountain, about 200 km east of Ho Chi Minh City. The trekking up process of 4.5 hours will be a little strenuous yet the breathtaking scenery from the top would be a great reward for every tourist. Right at the summit, you can enjoy a picnic lunch. For those who love trekking, this trip would be a great experience.
6. A Large Reclining Buddha
Situated rather far from the resort, this mountain is 694 meters in height, with the temperature at the top by several degrees lower than at the bottom. Despite the distance, it is definitely worth reaching this mountain. The mountain itself has some attractions, which are wild jungle, the magnificent scenery, the funicular, the largest statue of reclining Buddha of Vietnam, and the pagoda.
Those people who love something wild, then the idea of walking on foot through the wild jungle here. Climbing to the top, near the pagoda, there is a restaurant and tourists could spend the night in the hostel within the pagoda or in the Guesthouse at the top.
7. Van Thuy Tu Temple – Whale Museum
The Van Thuy Tu (Vạn Thủy Tú) temple was established in 1762 in order to honor a legendary whale, which was strongly believed to save fishermen caught in the bad weather at the sea. A local practice arose annually to pay homage to Mr. Whale. The major attraction is the 22-meter long skeleton of the whale which is thought to be the biggest in Southeast Asia. It is well-mounted, very large, and worth a look.
This whale worship is said to be derived in Cham and Khmer cultures, yet it is still practiced these days in Vietnam. A variety of Vietnamese and Chinese cultural relics and about 100 whale skeletons are kept at this temple.
8. Fishing Harbor
Another great attractions in this list of Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions is Fishing harbor. On the way from resort to Mui Ne village, travelers usually stop at a Marina that offers great views of the Bay. The coast here is dotted with many fishing boats. Though it is not really a beautiful harbor, it is still a good place for you to stay for a few minutes to take pictures and admire the view. It is said that the best time to take photos here is at dawn, but to get good shots, gradient filter usage is recommended.
9. Fish Sauce Plants
One of the most well-known products in Phan Thiet – Mui Ne is fish sauce, also known in Vietnamese as Nước Mắm. That is why you should not skip visiting fish sauce plants to see how fish sauce is produced. Most exotic Asian cuisine use fish sauce. Despite the so-called factory here is strongly characterized with local conditions (everything is done on the street), it still produces the best Vietnam sauce. However, sometimes, the smell here is not for those with “Faint of heart”. Actually, the producing process of fish sauce here is very similar to the production of oyster and soy sauce. A large number of small fresh fish-anchovies will be thrown in large vats of pure salt, where it will be fermented. As a result, this will create a not so-good smell. The finished product for a lot of unaccustomed seems too quickly-smelling. Nowadays, Phan Thiet becomes one of the most famous manufacturers of Vietnamese sauce in the world.
10. Red Dunes
Also called as the yellow, Golden, pink or less white dunes, these Red Dunes are no less beautiful than white sand dunes. This place is very close to the resort area where tourists could reach even by using bike. It is also conveniently combined with a visit to the White sand dunes along with the Red Canyon by tourist agents. In fact, the dunes aren’t red yet orange or yellow. They just become reddish in certain light.
Located near the Mui Ne village, you could approach it by using a bike or motorbike. Park your vehicle on the roadside cafes.
11. Red Canyon
Situated about 25 kilometers north of resort zone, on the way to the well-known white sand dunes mentioned above, the Red Canyon stretches out to about 2 km. Travelers make a stop here for several minutes to walk around and make beautiful photos. Go down to the bottom of this canyon in order to feel its large size, and the go a little deeper.
Tourists can get this site by using a rented transport or with an excursion in the same direction of the white dunes. If you book a tour, remember that not every tour makes a stop there, so you should clarify.
12. Lotus Lake
When it comes to Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions, this might be a little-known attraction. Yet, if you have a chance to visit the White dunes, do not skip this Lotus lake as it is conveniently located right at the entrance to the White sand dunes. There are a few small lakes as well as ponds, in which lotus grow. The biggest lakes include Bau Sen (Bàu Sen), Bau Xoai (Bàu Xoài), and Bau Trang (Bàu Trắng) – they are all called Lotus lakes. The plants here blood all year round.
However, to be honest, a visit to this lake is just worth if you go to the White sand dunes because it is very far from resort zone. Coming here, you can enjoy blooming lotuses and take photos of them. Yet, swimming in the lake is not recommended because it is very large and easy to get lost legs in stems and algae of the lotus.
13. Fairy Stream (Suối Tiên)
Also known in Vietnamese as “Suối Tiên”, this stream is a little river winding its way through boulders, bamboo forests, and the dunes behind the village. Most parts of this stream are about ankle-deep, less than knee-deep even at the deepest point. You can walk comfortably on your barefoot as it is sandy with several stones. You could also climb up the red sand dunes overlooking river valley and even walk to the parallel level to the river, yet the sand might be hot on those sunny days, so it is better for you to bring suitable footwear. If you walk upstream for approximately 20 minutes, there is a waterfall which becomes a great place to take a refreshing bath before coming back home.
14. Dragon Fruit Plantation
In Phan Thiet city, you will see a lot of dragon fruit plantations, also called as Dragon’s Eye. Some of the plantations are situated along the main roads. You can find a lot of such plantations at mount Taku which is located along the highway QL1. If you get out of the road a little bit, you could see even more impressive field.
15. Mui Ne Market
The coastal road goes straight to the town. Right at the town’s entrance, you can see hundreds of colorful fishing boats moored in the sea bay. Off the major road, there is a small, colorful market where tourists and locals could buy fresh seafood as well as steamed crabs, or shellfish.
Walking along the coastline, tourists will pass by fishermen who sort out their catch as well as ship-wharfs. At the end of this town, you will see a lot of shells of clams have been on the beach, so the sand on the beach is substituted with littered shells.
16. Lao Cau Island (Cù Lao Câu)
Belonged to Phuoc The (Phước Thể) Village, Tuy Phong (Tuy Phong), Binh Thuan (Bình Thuận) province, Lao Cau island is a deserted island which is situated approximately 9km from the coastline. There are a large number of stones with different shapes on the island. This is considered as one of the less-known Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions.
17. Ta Cu Pagoda (Chùa Tà Cú)
Also called as Linh Son Truong Tho (Linh Sơn Trường Thọ)Pagoda, Ta Cu Pagoda is perched at about 400m on Ta Cu Mountain. The Lying Sakiyamuni Buddha, located behind the pagoda, is 49 meters in length, and 6 meters in height. This makes the scenery here is much enchanting, along with diverse rocks, a long coast, and surrounding forest.
There, you have discovered 17 out of most recommended Phan Thiet – Mui Ne attractions. To be honest, in short, “Phan Thiet – Mui Ne” is a paradise that you absolutely should not skip when coming to Viet Nam and I bet that you will have a wonderful experience in your life.