0043 Swimming at night (Viet 004—new)

Da Nang Travel Blog

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Day 031: 14 hours, 10.7 kms

 Next morning, still thrilled by yesterday’s experience I continue on south.  The bus to Danang full of some more whiney backpackers which sort of taints the mood a bit and when I reach Danang I’m hounded by a couple of hotel/tour hustlers that I’m just not in the mood for... I wander around in circles trying to throw them off my trail…

Danang looks like a pretty modern, fast growing city.  When I sit down in a little shady plaza to play my set I’m joined by a bunch of construction workers from a nearby skyscraper that are on their lunch break.  They don’t speak any English, so our communication is limited. 

It’s awfully hot out, so I wuss out and spend a couple of hours in a cybercafé until things cool off a bit.  Then I head across the river on a beautiful modern bridge head towards the coast.

On the other side is a different sort of neighbourhood.  A lot of large fancy homes are being built--  Looks like this is a popular place for wealthy Vietnamese to build vacation homes.  The main road, in contrast is lined with street eateries, each with a motley collection of chairs where locals relax and enjoy various snacks.

Finally, as dusk settles, I reach the ocean.  There are a couple of fancy restaurants and some not so fancy ones--  but Danang beach clearly caters to natives, not foreigners…  doesn’t look like the place to find cheap backpacker lodging. 

But I must take a swim in the ocean.  Swimming in the sea here in Vietnam is yet another ritual of this pilgrimage that simply must be performed. 

I stop for a bowl of soup at an upscale eatery, thinking they might be able to watch my bag for me, but they’re shutting down early for some reason.  So I head further down the road to a simple palm leaf shelter/restaurant and ask if they can watch my bags for me for a small fee.  They accept--  although they seemed a bit concerned about me going out to swim alone in the darkness…

I head out into the water in pitch blackness... and enjoy a very memorable swim.

I go back to pick up my bag.  Since there’s no transportation out here, and I don’t feel like taking the long walk back to the city, I grab a “scooter taxi” instead.  Soon I’m back in the bustle of downtown Danang…

The hotels are a bit pricey--  finally I accept a ride from yet another scooter taxi who promises to take me to a very cheap place.  He does good on his promise, and takes me to a scrappy 2 dollar joint…

Relieved, I quickly drop off my bag and head out again to explore the city just a little bit more.  I head down the road a bit past trendy little cafés and juice bars where the youth of Danang hang out…

In Vietnam you find some really cool juice bars. This one is a mini-jungle with walls covered with foliage, little waterfalls, ponds and bridges--  and it caters only to locals.

A nice to chill out and finish off my day…

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Da Nang
photo by: Vanessa_Mun_Yee