We met our driver while wandering by the side street of Mui Ne after our hearty lunch. Let’s call him, Manong LV, since I forgot to take note of his name and that’s what was printed boldly at the back of his shirt. He doesn’t speak english well, among others we spoke to about renting a motorbike for a day. Fortunately, his friend was able to hook us up to both of them who took us for an awesome afternoon cruise.
On our way to the sand dunes, the long and winding road of Mui Ne offers a respite to anyone who escaped from the chaos of the big city. A refreshing view of the beach on the side of the road. Who would have thought that Mui Ne is the driest place in all of Southeast Asia.
Further at the end of the town lies the most scenic Mui Ne fishing village. It’s beach is a riot of rich and colorful fishing boats which presents a glimpse of the local livelihood and bustling community of fisherfolks bringing produce to the shore.
Beyond the endless paved road, we were greeted with a herd of cows. This is why we love countryside, it’s not everyday that you get to experience a cow roadblock. We knew that we were nearing our destination when the trail transformed into a sandy terrain.
Further down the road, from afar, our first glimpse of Mui Ne White Sand Dunes, also known as Bau Trang. It looks undersized in this photo, but the impressive Saharaesque sand dunes deserves much appreciation on its own. The sand dunes transforms into distinct colors as the morning sets in, from bright white to gold to red at sunset.
Passing through Mui Ne Lotus Lake is a refreshing pleasure amidst the mid-day sun. Like an oasis in the desert, the lush greeneries deliver momentary bliss surrounding the massive sand dunes. Then you go all out under the sun and arid sands.
So weekendhaven was here.
Oh, happy days. There were only few tourists in the area so you can say that we almost have the entire scenic desert to ourselves. This wasn’t my first time though, as I have already done the Desert Safari Adventure in Dubai. That was one, breathtaking experience too. Surprisingly, Mui Ne white sand dunes presents the same serenity and a 360 degrees of picture perfect sandy paradise minus roaming camels and arabian nights.
For thrill seekers, ATVs and dune buggies are available for rent.
The ripples of sand dunes are so alive that whenever you ruin the pattern, a few minutes later, your traces are far gone. The orangey color signifies that it’s almost sunset. Pardon the barrage of selfies, can’t help it.
I have always loved the desert. One sits down on a desert sand dune, sees nothing, hears nothing. Yet through the silence something throbs, and gleams…
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince
More than a hundred photos later, we headed to our next destination to perhaps catch the sunset at Mui Ne Red Sand Dunes.
Sunset at Mui Ne Red Sand Dunes
Pausing for a moment to cherish the horizon from this side of the planet, filled with all sorts of rich orange and blue shades of sunset. There were more tourists here as well as locals, as it is more accessible from town. Looking for more adventure? Try sledding the steepy slopes. Kids here are more than happy to rent out their thin sheet of plastic.
Sadly, all good things come to an end. We headed back to town and stopped by at the fishing village to revel in what’s left with the beautiful glowing horizon.
Such warm and peaceful scenery, setting before our eyes brings calm to our over-zealous soul. As much as we want to hold on to this day, we were fascinated with the new experience, we were also thankful, but we knew we have to let go. For there is always a long road ahead, full of adventure.