During one of Vietnam’s bank holidays a few months ago, we decided to hire a scooter and head to Hoa Binh for a night. We chose the place purely because of it’s easy accessibility from Hanoi, at just a couple of hours of easy riding. It was our first time hiring a bike since moving to Hanoi just over 3 months ago, and despite Graham having a motorbike licence in the UK, the trip didn’t go as smoothly as I’d hoped.
Mui Ne is the adrenalin capital of southern Vietnam. There’s no scuba diving or snorkelling to speak of, but when Nha Trang and Hoi An get the rains, Mui Ne gets the waves: Says Lonely Planet, before going on to describe a beautiful beach that has maintained much of its charm. When we were there, however, only the closed kitesurfing shops hinted at Mui Ne’s adventure hungry nature. Out of the surf season, Mui Ne is still firmly on the backpacker trail, and I’m here to ask one question: why?
My alarm started shrieking at me at 5.30am one morning, which is a time I don’t particularly relish for anything, never mind what we had planned for this day. The previous day we had hired a taxi to drive us from Hoi An to Hue, over the Hai Van Pass. And today, we would be hiring a moped to go back to the top of the pass, and complete what turned out to be a six hour round trip and make it back to Hue in time for our bus. Any why were we planning to return to the top of the Hai Van Pass? Well, because it’s just so gosh darn beautiful. And to correct a terrible error from the day before.