You know how Vietnam already amazed us at first sight, when we discovered Hoi An a couple of months ago. This time, we decided to go to Phan Rang for a kite surfing trip. The day the wind was low, we decided to hit the road to the Vinh Hy-Binh Tien Pass. We had no idea the coast was hiding such incredibly scenic roads...
We read later with no surprise that the Vinh Hy-Binh Tien Pass is actually ranked at one of Vietnam's best scenic motorbike rides. You could think it would make it so popular it would be crowded, but not at all. We barely crossed a few tourist buses, and not one westerner. We had the chance to meet the locals -mostly people on holidays from Saigon.
The vibes are really chilled, the views jaw-dropping and the beaches absolutely dreamy. Hop on for one scenic drive in South Central Vietnam...
A road trip to the Vinh Hy-Binh Tien Pass
Picture a windy road along the coast, crossing fishing villages and goats wandering along the road, sunshine and turquoise waters... You're not on the French Riviera -could be, except without the traffic nor the boulangeries. You're in a still-kind-of-secret heaven for bikers, in South Central Vietnam.
Where is it the Vinh Hy-Binh Tien Pass ?
The 16-kilometer pass runs along the coast and Chua Mountain in Ninh Thuan Province, where there are unique dry forests in Vietnam. It's situated right between Cam Ranh (60kms, 1h30 drive from the airport) and Phan Rang (60kms, 1h10 drive).
It's 380kms North East of Ho Chi Minh City.
We started from Phi Kite School on the DT702, it took us about 45 minutes to get to Bình Tiên on a motorcycle. The road is very good considering you're in Vietnam, and there's pretty much no traffic -not many trucks and buses.
driving on wonderful vietnam
On the right, we can see the waves crashing on the shore. On the left, workers having their break on the rice fields...
This is all so rural and quiet. A few local shops on the side of the road, the kind that offers petrol, food, plants, anything you want. We feel like we're the only lucky westerners who have discovered that part of Vietnam. All the tourists we meet are Vietnamese.
After a little while on the road, we stop by the side for a rest. An old woman sells fresh drinks and fruits under the shade of a tree. There is a family of Vietnamese traveling from Saigon, having a break too. The woman directly comes to me to hold Noah in her arms. She gives him his bottle of water and play with him while I photograph of the views. The man insists to pay our drinks.
We try to communicate with a few words and a lot of signs. We spend a nice moment, all together.
This is exactly why we travel. For these little instants of pure simplicity.
The road continues to amaze us with spectacular views at every corner.
Then we finally get to Bài kinh, where we find a bunch of floating restaurants serving seafood. It's been recommended by a local, but unfortunately, it tastes like a bad tourist trap, with 100$ dishes and drunk waiters on the restaurant. According to other tourists we meet, locals would try to trick you to go on a "tour" on Dào Binh Humg island once you're on the boat and steal your money. So much for a great stop... We chose the only cheap dish on the menu and leave early, as we don't feel comfortable there at all.
We've talked with our local friend again afterwards, who confirmed the seafood was excellent there. But I don't get how local people can afford such high prices... I'm not sure we're paying the same amount at the end of the meal.
The best is probably to go with a local.
the road continues, until we see afar what seems to be a paradise beach...
This is Binh Tiên beach. We drive all the way to the village, then drive some more to finally get there. It's a long way, sometimes a bit tricky, especially on a motorcycle. That's why there's few people on the sand, and only locals. Not an easy access. Secret spot!
It's so beautiful and it reminds us Noordhoek beach in Cape Town. A long stretch of white sand, so long you can't see where it end, fringed with trees, hidden from the civilized world, that seems to be still wild and perfect.
The magnificent drive continues until sunset, we're not sure where we are, still in Vietnam, or somewhere in the Mediterranean coast? It's absolutely magic, and far from the exuberant picture we had of this country. Unexpected.
a motorcycle trip in vietnam with a baby
Driving in Vietnam with a baby could seem like crazy but it's not -it depends of your experience with motorcycles + the region where you're planning to drive. I don't know if it was the season (July) or if it's always like that, but the roads were really quiet, with only a few cars and -yes, sometimes a lot of traffic, if we talk about goats.
Don't forget to stop often to offer water to your baby, wear light clothes, a hat, all the classic essentials. + Read my post about traveling in Southeast Asia with a baby for more tips!