Southern and Central Highlands, 7 Day (1950Km) HCMC - Đà Nẵng / Hội An
Updated: Dec 7, 2020
Southern and Central Highlands, 7 Day 1950km
HCMC - DaNang / Hoi An
DAY 1 (170km)
Saigon Motorcycles - Cat Lai Ferry (12km)
This map just gets you to the ferry.. As with all the maps just put your current location as the starting point if not exactly there if its only showing you a preview. This map is the only one in car mode as bike mode won't take you the best way. Many maps will have way points to take you the best but certainly not the shortest routes. Just clear them as you go. There is a cross, bottom left that you can hit to clear the next point. I tend to do this a few k's in advance on a quiet stretch. If you dont once you reach the point it will close the map until you hit continue. PLEASE don't share these and DELETE once you've used them. I really appreciate that. You can always get them from me again but i have put years and a lot of money into developing them for our customers so I'd like to keep them as one of our points of difference. Good luck, ride safe and I trust they help get the best from your ride.
Day 1, Cat Lai Ferry - Cat Tien (160km)
This is by far the best way I've been to avoid the traffic getting out of the city. The police are rather active in the first 10km or so from the ferry so watch your speed in that area. They generally sit on the HL13 so we map around that.
Three unavoidable stretches on the main roads but some great riding off it. The newly laid hotmix either side of the dam wall as good as it gets.
(A) gets you around the usual police stop.
(B) just after the very short section of highway is a good Pho breakfast stop if away early. Plenty of choices around there.
(C, D, E & F) are to keep you off the main arterials
(D) is a water park you might like to check out for a swim or just a break.
(E & F) if a Dam Wall and a great photo stop.
(G) is Spirit Garden Guesthouse or change to your chosen Cat Tien accommodation.
Mr Quoc 0931347345 is your host at Spirit Garden (250k) along with his wife and family which includes a pack of friendly Phu Quoc dogs. BYO wine or spirits but plenty of cold beer and good cheap food.
Get an early night and set your alarm for the dawn. The sun rises in front of your cabin while the roosters try and out do each other up and down the river. If your lucky the Gibbons can be heard singing along also.
A lovely experience not to be missed.
Day 2, Cat Lai - Dalat 365km
The DT725 is a nice ride and diverse in the countryside it runs through. As the roads open up many opportunities to go for the camera. We drop off it twice to check out Dambri and Elephant falls for a swim or refreshment break.
(A &B) just get you on the right road otherwise you get taken up the terrible QL20. (C) is Dambri Falls. Its 200k admission per person so not everyone opts in. It's a nicely set up attraction with toboggan ride, cinema, cafes but busy with locals in holiday times. If deciding against it. Delete from the map so you stay on the 725.
(E) is a good cafe rest stop but there are many in the area. (E) Elephant Falls is worth dropping into for a break. The falls aren't much bit the newly completed statue which you can climb up through the centre of offers some pretty good views. No entrance fee.
From there it's a relatively short ride to Dalat. The climb to the Plateau is an exception ride but be aware of the young lads using in to hone their riding skills.
Ms Dung has Dreams 02633833748. It's good value with a rooftop Jacuzzi, clean and comfy beds and a simple but generous breakfast is included.
Saphir 02633556005 is quite unique with some nice old BMW bikes and early Volkswagons around the place. Wooden elevator and period furniture make it worth the extra if with a partner. Skip the breakfast though. Very ordinary.
Cafe Gia Nguyen 0907634017. I don't often recommend coffee as it can be so inconsistent. This place is centrally located, open early, comfortable seating and never had a bad cup. Good starter!
One More Cafe 0767574814 a no brainer for breakfast particularly. Lorelle is the host and her passion for food is quite evident in her menu and food quality at very reasonable prices.
Down Under Sports Bar 0914820230.
Peter is your host and has great pub grub. The chicken parmigiana is as good as anywhere in Australia and has a great range of beers.
Primavera 01689648125 is a great dinner spot if you like Italian five minutes walk from Dreams.
Oz Burgers 0933166007 for a comfort feed and a cold beer.
F Garden 02633556345 overlooking the lake if you get in early is a nice spot to chew the fat on the days ride before checking in to your hotel.
Day 3, Dalat - Nha Trang (240km)
This is one of my favourite days in the South. Lorelle is your host for breakfast at One More Cafe. Very cheap for the quality of the meals though 8am open so depends how early you want to get away. The morning ride off the plateu is a ripper. You'll see some ladies selling fruit and drinks just before the big decent. Great photo stop.
The left turn at the bottom of the range
(A to is very minority road through farmland. Some is unsealed so may be worth considering the longer way round in wet conditions. Similarly the track out to the waterfall is interesting in places too but they were laying concrete path last i was there so much better now I'd expect. Waterfalls are always better in the wet so worth the trek from where the road ends also.
(D) is the start of a nice valley ride following the Cai River. Only local traffic on this but quite narrow in places so care on blind corners. Opportunity for a swim through here if your keen before the climb up the range rewarded by the distant ocean and mountain views.
(E) is a great photo stop for this.
The ride down the range is great fun but the road in quite potholed in places so wary of this under heavy braking.
(F) will show you the best way to the coast &
(G) a great rest stop right on the beach on your way into town.
No shortage of accommodation options in Nha Trang so might be worth a hoels search for a bargain. Below are some of my favourites.
I like Chau Viet 0916270366 hosted by Ms Ha. A family hotel nettled at the end of the same street Cheers Sports Bar is in. Nothing flash but meets all my criteria. Bikes safely away, simple check in process, elevator, clean and tidy room with a decent bed and shower.
Starlet Hotel 02583525060 is well located and not too expensive. Boss Hotel (around 500km if you squeeze them) 02583884555 has comfy beds right amongst the action.
Andy and Van take a bit of beating at Cheers Sports Pub 0583525688 for comfort food. The breakfast is a cracker.
Scott at Cafe Culture 0778908606 also very good and does great pizza.
Hans Restaurant 0356271678 is reasonably new in a back street but offers a broad menu and good value for money.
Big Boy Garage incorporating the Forkin' Lekker Garden Cafe 0935836727. If you need your bike serviced or just want it checked over by capable mechanics Ashe is the man to see. Enjoy a coffee, beer or some food while that's happening or just pop in to meet some like minded bike people.
Day 4, Nha Trang - Quy Nhon (310km)
Cheers Sports Bar do a great breakfast if having a later start then it's the absolute coast road to Quy Nhon. Some beautiful coastline today, plenty of swim opportunities and no shortage of local quality seafood restaurants.
There are some unavoidable stretches on the A1 so be aware of the heavy vehicles that come with that. The up side you'll make good time on there leaving time for a few detours I've mapped.
(A) is a way point to get you around the coast initially
(B) is the start point to trek into Vietnams Easternmost point. My recommendation is to get an early start if doing this as it's quite a hike. Take water.
(C) Mui Dien is another area where there's quite a bit of walking to get a good look around the area.
(D) is a decent local restaurant for lunch but plenty to choose from in the area.
(F&G) two very nice resorts. King Hotel just before (G) on the opposite side a good one of many budget choices on the area.
If you'd like to spoil yourself Casa Marina Resort 02563696868 is lovely and relaxing 10km South of Quy Nhon. Around the $50 mark or for around $100 an absolute beachfront bungalow. Life's a Beach is a nice little bar just along the beach and a little further Wood Fired Pizzas as food options. There's a path through to Bai Xep a quaint little fishing village with supplies at local prices.
Royal Resort 02566549700 is on the beach also right in town priced similarly to Casa. Nice big rooms but a little more dated. Very nice pool area overlooking the ocean. For convenience directly across from the sports bar and an easy walk through the park or along the swimming beach.
King Hotel 02563647646 is clean, tidy and well located at the budget end.
Reece and a girl nicknamed Docker are the publicans at the Quy Nhon Sports Pub 0792905201. Great atmosphere with a rooftop bar overlooking the ocean, cold beer and good pub food.
Chris and Toan are the hosts at Sisters Pizza 02566283939 as an alternative do great Italian. Service and atmosphere very good.
Early morning there's a Vietnamese couple who do the best Banh Mi I've had in Vietnam across the street from the sports bar. There is a few there. Look for the one that toasts them. Delicious!
Day 5, Quy Nhon - Mang Den (285km)
The map reads at 287km but it's only that if you want it to be. There's a few detours that add nearly 80km. The longest to check out a couple of lakes that you can decide on depending on time. Once you turn onto (Truong Son Dong) it gets quite isolated and you'll make good time. Make sure you are fueled up and take water. Not much in the way of services through there. Dak Ke is a nice quiet little village to explore around with plenty of accommodation options.
(A) is a Buddhist Temple
(B) a hydro dam wall
(C) is the airstrip back in the supply trail days
(D) to check out the Vinh Son Lakes
(E) the Kon Chu Rang rangers station
(F) there is bottle fuel and cold refreshments
(G) a great little coffee shop ++
(H) Dak Ke Lake
(I) what looked to me as the pick of the accommodation though I haven't stayed there
Theres a plethora of accommodation options in the area. These looks like pretty good value.
Resort Dakke Mang Đen
At the higher end this is a nice spot.
091 792 69 26
Sum Villa - Homestay Măng Đen
Haven't stayed here but looks good at around 400k.
096 322 02 66
Mang Den - My Khe (165km)
There's not too much in the way of attractions on this ride though for me the whole ride is an attraction. The area around (A) on the map is stunning. Once you get off the range I've diverted you to a minority road and through some lovely village country. Once into My Khe you'll notice plenty of fresh seafood restaurants along the beach road. I find them expensive and the beer is never cold. The restaurant attached to the hotel is as good as any for my money.
(A) Deo Violak is a great photo stop. Also a few bends before when you're looking down over the road ahead.
(B) Just gets you on the right track.
(C) good rest spot with some photo opportunities
(D) the My Khe Hotel is great value. The rooms and location very good for the money.
My Khe - Danang (230km)
In terms of distance this a short day and a pleasant uncomplicated ride but if Hindu ruins are of any interest to you it can be a very big day.
I'm not much for pergoda's and temples so choose to visit just to more elaborate and famous but I do find My Son interesting. You can literally spend hours exploring the various sites.
(A) just gets your on the correct route out of My Khe and across the A1.
(B) a temple, compared to what is to come a bit lame but right on the route so maybe a rest stop and photo opportunity.
(C) is just a way point the right way to
(D) a lake side rest stop. Plenty of cafe options in this area but also around My Son if your not yet ready for lunch.
(E,F,G&H) are the best of the ruins sites.
My Son Group G is a World Heritage archeological site. These Hindu temple ruins date back as far as the 4th century and in my opinion a must do. 150k entry fee and surprisingly very few tourists generally. Many restaurants around the area offer Be Thui. Rare cooked Veal wrapped in leaf with vegetable. Quite a treat and not often offered.
From there its a simple ride into Danang or Hoi to your proffered accommodation or to the Danang Railway Station if sending the bike back.
Sea Flower Hotel 0913867668
Well located and good value in the midrange.
Like Nha Trang though a plethora of options so go a hotels search for a bargain.
Dirty Fingers 02363552297 is a great sports pub just a few hundred meters South of Sea Dragon. Scott is your host and good simple pub food.
Olivias Prime Steakhouse 0908163352 at the high end if you want to spoil yourself is exceptional. Same owner as Dirty Fingers.
Salt Pub and Restaurant 0777424282 nearer to Hoi An is my favourite. Travis is the host and its exceptional western cuisine in the midrange right on the beach.