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Lifestyle, Nha Trang, Travel, Vietnam

COST OF LIVING: NHA TRANG, VIETNAM

May 13, 2016
Nha Trang City View

After spending three whole months in Koh Samui, Thailand the next stop on the list was Vietnam. Here I spent two months in a beach-side city called, Nha Trang and this blog will cover the breakdown of how much it cost to live there.

Rent

Within two days of arriving me and my boyfriend had managed to find a one bedroom apartment within the tallest building in city called Muong Thanh Nha Trang Centre. It was spacious and modern with high speed wifi so it was perfect for what we needed.

The views were pretty amazing too – one side looked out over the ocean with the beach below whereas the other side had views of the mountains which looked amazing at sunset. The overall location was also great as it was right in the middle of Nha Trang just across the road from the beach and just around the corner from all of the main bars and restaurants.

The apartment cost us $500 per month but this did not include water, electric and management fees. With these extra bills on top it came to a grand total of $600 per month which is the equivalent of around £415/€526.

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Getting To Nha Trang and Getting Around Nha Trang

From Bangkok we took a short flight to the capital of Vietnam called Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Siagon City). We stopped over for one night to enjoy the city and then headed back to the airport to catch a 50 minute internal flight to Camh Ramh Airport – the closest airport to Nha Trang.

Unfortunately we didn’t do our research prior to arriving in Nha Trang and thought that the airport was a lot closer than it really was. So we jumped in a taxi thinking we would arrive at our hotel within 15 minutes but instead it took 45-50 minutes, and the taxi meter just kept rising and rising! We ended up forking out over 500,000VND for the ride when it should have only cost 300,000VND for a pre-booked transfer.

My advice here would be book a transfer in advance and save your pennies, but if you have to get in a taxi I’d recommend you only get in a Vinasun or Mai Linh taxi as these two companies have the best reputations and run on meters.

Also living within a city we had the added bonus of not needing to rent a motorbike, like in Bali and Thailand, as everything was close by. However, for a day of adventuring where a bike is needed it shouldn’t cost you more than 100,000VND per day – but be sure to take the receipt with you on your journey as you might breakdown in the middle of know where like we did on our own little day trip – luckily for us we broke down on the top of a cliff-side and the view was amazing.

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Eating, Drinking and Basic Groceries

What I really loved about Vietnam was the cost of eating out and drinking. It was the cheapest place we had been to in Asia. A small bottle of the local beer cost around 8,000 VND (25p) at its cheapest and a cocktail would cost on average 80,000-120,000 VND (£2.50-£3.70) but there was always happy hour where you could get 2 cocktails for 1.

A local street food meal would cost around 30,000-70,000 VND (£1-£2.20) per dish or if you wanted to go to a proper restaurant you’d be looking at around 250,000 VND (£7-£8) and upwards for two people which would be including drinks. We eat out and went drinking a lot more in Nha Trang than we did in any other place because it was such good value for money and is a real perk of living here.

In terms of groceries here is a basic list and the prices of each item:

Milk – 37,000 VND

12 Eggs – 34,0000 VND

Bread – 25,000 VND

Bag of Sugar – 12,000 VND

Bottle of Beer – 12,000 VND

Bottle of Red Wine – 80,000 VND

Pepsi – 20,000 VND

Toothpaste -14,000 VND

Other costs of living that may be useful for you to know is the cost of beach beds on the beach. Here in Nha Trang it is known for its long golden beach stretch and is the place we spent most of our weekends. A bed for the day should cost you around 30,000 to 50,000 VND which is lower than what you pay in Bali. Also, if you wanted to head to the gym as well whilst you’re here then the prices you can expect range from  300,000 VND (£9) per month, 250,000 (£7) per week or 80,000 (£2.50) VND per day.

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Visas

Once we arrived in Ho Chi Minh City airport before passport control we headed over to a section designed specifically for those wanting to get visa’s on arrival.

Prior to our arrival we had applied for approval or sponsorship letters online which would allow us to get a three month, single entry tourist visa on arrival. This cost $15 per letter and then once you get to the airport you will also have to pay a stamping fee which is $25 or you can pay in local currency, but I’m unsure exactly of the price of this.

Upon arrival we filled in about two forms, paid our money and waited for the immigration officers to put the visa on one of our passport pages. This whole process took no more than 20 minutes and once you have it you just carry on through passport control as normal with three whole months to spend in the country.

Conclusion

Overall, living in Nha Trang was very cheap (the cost of rent, eating out and drinking) however, after about a month you do start to get very bored of the city. There isn’t much to do except go to the beach and if you want to explore other places its an over night bus or a flight away which can be a real pain and cost a lot of money. We ended up leaving Vietnam after two months and headed back to the island of the Gods – Bali.

Follow the links to explore the cost of living in Bali or Koh Samui

Bars, Hotels, Nha Trang, Vietnam

A DAY OF LUXURY: SHERATON NHA TRANG HOTEL & SPA

April 13, 2016

The Start Of The Day

I was invited to experience the outstanding hospitality of the Sheraton whilst I was in Nha Trang, Vietnam and it did not disappoint. As soon as me and my boyfriend arrived at around 8am the staff were ready to escort us to the lift and whiz us straight up to their 28th floor restaurant and bar called Altitude. As soon as you walk out of the lift we were greeted by incredible views of the city and the ocean, and of course the staff, who were making us feel so welcome.

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Rise & Shine Breakfast

We enjoyed the launch of their breakfast menu, Rise & Shine at their super-cool rooftop venue. The theme was white and blue and huge cushy sofas were spread out along the entire room facing out towards the floor to ceiling windows where you could enjoy a coffee whilst watching the city come alive for the day. The venue then opened out onto an outdoor terrace fitted with high, comfortable table and chairs shaded by big blue umbrellas. However, we chose to sit slightly inside as it was far too hot to brave the sunshine so early in the day.

Breakfast offered free-flow coffee and tea and the food menu offered several options including Vietnamese noodle soup, Banh Mi (which is a Vietnamese style baguette), fruit platter or pastry basket. They also extend their menu to wide selection of fresh fruit juices, smoothies and a number of different types of coffees. I recommend trying the Vietnamese coffee, it’s kind of like an espresso but tastes almost like chocolate!

The price for one person is set at 150,000VND (£4.70) or for two people it is 200,000VND (£6.30). The staff members were so attentive throughout our breakfast and the food was wonderful. All in all it was a phenomenal way to begin the day.

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The Pool

With access to the hotel pool, I then spent the rest of the morning at their luxurious fresh water infinity pool which was, again, set against the backdrop of the stunning views of the ocean. It was such a relaxing place to be and we didn’t want to leave at all. Here in this part of the hotel you will find a complete wellness complex that includes facilities such as a luxury spa, huge gym, steam room and sauna rooms, and also Jacuzzis. They even have a beauty salon and cooking school, so it’s safe to say that there is enough going on at the Sheraton to keep you busy should you stay there!

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Sunset At Altitude

Later that evening we then returned to enjoy the sunset at happy hour at the same venue that we enjoyed our breakfast, Altitude. We ordered Pina Coladas and Strawberry Daiquiris which were superb! Sometimes in Vietnam you order a cocktail and it can be completely undrinkable, however the cocktails at the Sheraton were delicious and really generous in size which is always a great sign. At happy hour, between 4pm-7pm you can order a cocktail, beer or cider and you’ll get one for free. They also provide you with a little snack of homemade potato chips on the side which is a really lovely touch, again it is these little things that really reflect the quality of the venue.

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Conclusion

Overall, my experience of the Sheraton Nha Trang was simply wonderful. The staff are a credit to the hotel and the facilities are excellent. The combination of the views, the quality of the food and drink, and the luxurious environment set out by the Sheraton made for an unforgettable day.