It was hard to sleep in my tent on the beach. It rained loudly off and on. Dogs barked. A cow mooed. Boat engines made noise. Sleeping on the beach is rough. Especially since I don’t have a mat or sleeping bag. But it was worth it.

There was no bánh mì ốp la available for breakfast at the little restaurant. From Hon Gom Sandbar I would continue to make my way north up the coast before heading inland to join the most scenic portion of the Ho Chi Minh Highway. I would be passing some beautiful places today, but unfortunately the weather did not cooperate. It was cold and rainy all day. It rained pretty hard, making it difficult to take pictures.

I rode past the impressive overlook of Dai Lanh Beach but couldn’t enjoy the view because of the rain. I stopped at a cafe on the beach for breakfast of rice porriage and coffee, and tried futilely to get warm and dry. It was still raining a little when I left.

I continued on AH1 up a mountain pass. There were many incredible views over beautiful bays. I could’t stop because it started raining hard again. I rode to the turnoff to Vung Ro Bay and took it. I rode a round a little but didn’t see much because I didn’t know where to go. There was a dirt road, but I didn’t feel like driving in the mud, so I headed back to AH1.

Dai Lanh beach on a cold, rainy day.
Dai Lanh beach on a cold, rainy day.

Once again, the scenery on the main highway AH1 was incredible. It went through fields with mountains in the distance. Not even trying to get off the beaten track you can still see lots of beautiful countryside.

It was incredibly windy. I stopped for lunch in a place that served busses. Oops. It was expensive and not good. I rode on and stopped at a cafe with a view looking over fields. Then I realized I missed the turnoff to Ganh Da Dia, which a traveler I met last night told me about. I sort of wanted to see the volcanic rocks, so I backtracked. But I cold not find the road. When I don’t have a place to stay I feel nervous, so I didn’t want to spend a lot of time looking. And it is too far out of the way. I continued north on AH1.

There were nice views from the mountain pass.
There were nice views from the mountain pass.

The road hit the coast again, and had spectacular views looking down over bays. But it started to rain again. I made for Quy Nhơn, which turned out to be a surprisingly big city. I drove around asking at hotels. I eventually found a cheap and decent guesthouse not far from the beach.

I rode around town a little. It seems like a pleasant place. Light traffic, cool weather, pretty lights, beach.

I passed through dramatic, moody countryside.
I passed through dramatic, moody countryside.
Farmers worked in their fields.
Farmers worked in their fields.
The weather improved as the road rejoined the coast.
The weather improved as the road rejoined the coast.
Motorbikes drove across a scenic bridge.
Motorbikes drove across a scenic bridge.
I passed bays full of fishing boats.
I passed bays full of fishing boats.
And more green rice fields.
And more green rice fields.
I had to stay alert for things in the road.
I had to stay alert for things in the road.
Finally I arrive in the pleasant seaside city of Quy Nhon.
Finally I arrived at the pleasant seaside city of Quy Nhon.
Terry
I'm Terry, former cubicle-dweller, and now traveler, photographer, writer, and entrepreneur. I quit my job in 2014 to travel to US national parks, then to South East Asia. I write about independent, flexible, long-term, budget travel. Sign up to my newsletter to get the latest news on what I'm up to. I hope you join me on my trek around the world.

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