DA LAT & MUI NE
We have a longer drive today than usual so we are on the road from 9am. Don’t really have time to stay in both places so just driving through Da Lat and staying in Mui Ne. Had 2 options, keep to the amazing coastal route or head over the mountains. Think a change in scenery was the way to go and looking forward to some windy roads.
HIS BIKE FELL APART
My bike didn’t like it to say the least and there were times I thought it wasn’t going to make it. Phil’s wasn’t much better but because he has the Honda Wynd I couldn’t keep up with him on the incline. There was some brilliant views to stop at and give the bikes a break but we knew we couldn’t stop for long as we had so much ground to cover.
WHERE IS MUI NE?
Heading down to Da Lat was good fun and we stopped at some random Shack of a bar / shop were we seen these group of Vietnamese in fluorescent green jackets. We actually seen them earlier in the day when we were getting my bike looked at. The guys were so keen for photos and really nice, whilst the girls just stare and giggle. We got a few photos and they loved that we knew what cheers means in Vietnamese so they said it all the time (Yo).
The leader was the best English speaker and was interested in what we were doing and if we liked Vietnam before asking us to come with them for lunch, surprising how often this happens. We had just arrived and only opened a beer so we said we would leave in 5mins and catch up with them.
THE LONG DAY CONTINUES
As it was mostly downhill we put the foot down and tried to catch up but never found them, not sure if they stopped early and we couldn’t see them because there is no way they were faster, most of them were sharing bikes! We were so gutted! Probably another thing we missed out on because of time restraints.
I would have loved another experience with the locals, because staying at the guesthouse was so nice! Could you imagine that happening at home, not a chance! Anyway, made it to Da Lat and had a drive around and got my bike looked at again, the guy was busy and didn’t seem too interested. Bite to eat, FaceTime the rents and then off to Mui Ne. Today is turning into a long long drive!
Da Lat is in the mountains so it’s all pretty much downhill from now so we can enjoy giving it a good go and a that we did! It was like a race track with no other cars on the road and before no time you could smell the breaks. But we couldn’t hold off as we were trying to get off the mountain roads by dark as our headlights are so ineffective.
Heading down the mountain Phils bag rack snapped off taking the tail light and Phuc Yoo (the teddy) with it! I couldn’t stop laughing it was hilarious! I stopped straight away but he didn’t even notice and kept ploughing on until he eventually noticed I was no longer behind him. It was at least another 5 minutes before he got back to me and even then he didn’t realise. With the luggage thrown across the road and my bike on the ground he thought I had crashed until he got close enough looked the bag and looked where ti should have been!
It was getting dark at that stage and we had planned to get the mountain roads done before it was dark but it came in pretty quick. Before we knew it, it was pitch black and I mean pitch black. Our headlights were pointless and Phil’s tail light was causing problems. Because there was no red cover on it, every time he broke it was like a full beam in my eyes, again I couldn’t stop laughing because he didn’t realise he was blinding everyone behind him.
It was just as well the roads weren’t that busy and reminded me of the country roads back in Northern Ireland. Most of the time you couldn’t see anything, cars coming the other way gave the only clue as to where the road was and when they got close enough you couldn’t see anything so just hoped for the best! We ended up following 2 couples on their bikes as their headlights allowed us to see as well but their bikes were a lot better than ours and we had to put a bit of a shift in!
When we got to Mui Ne, we experienced another problem. The place is a sand zone and quite often there are areas of the road covered in sand but again you don’t see this until it’s nearly too late. Then the final part of the descent down to the coast was fun and a bit more relaxed. The roads were good, albeit still dark but we found a lorry we could follow but again when it could it flew down the roads much faster than we could, good fun though.
Found a hotel (sports hotel) was pretty good considering it’s a quiet town. Not sure Phil likes the local accommodation or the dorms. After the long day its by far the dirtiest we have both been though. Since it’s his holiday I give him free run on where to stay and what to eat as he normally disagrees with me! The first reatuanrat but decent but he wanted to shop around which is fair enough. 30 minutes later we decided to head back to the original resto which was closed by this stage!haha