INTRODUCTION | GUIDE | MAP | RELATED POSTS
Between the two most popular beach towns in Vietnam – Mui Ne and Nha Trang – lies Ninh Thuan Province, one of the most sparsely populated, least developed, and driest regions in southern Vietnam. But Ninh Thuan’s rugged coastline – where blue bays meet rocky cliffs and sandy coves hide between huge boulders – is just as captivating as its more famous neighbours. Inland, clear rivers flow off the fertile slopes of the Central Highlands, before meandering through Ninh Thuan’s parched landscape of sand dunes, arid hills, and desolate plains: this is Vietnam’s desert. In recent years, ambitious new roads have opened up access to Ninh Thuan’s unique and enthralling natural beauty. I’ve pulled together three of my previous motorbike guides to create the Ninh Thuan Loop.
GUIDE: THE NINH THUAN LOOP
ROAD TRIP DETAILS:
- Total Distance: 250km
- Duration: 2-3 days
- Route: Phan Rang-Ca Na-inland-Cam Ranh [MAP]
- Scenery: coastal, beaches, desert, rivers
- Road Conditions: good paved roads & highways
ROAD TRIP CONTENTS:
ABOUT THIS LOOP:
The start and end point of this route is Phan Rang City, at the centre of the loop. However, you can easily approach the Ninh Thuan Loop from Mui Ne, to the south, by taking the new White Sand Dune Highway towards Ca Na; or from Nha Trang, to the north, by taking the scenic airport road towards Cam Ranh. The best time of year is December to February, which is the height of the dry season. If you start early you can complete this loop in one day, but I recommend at least two days. Scroll down for my map and guide of the Ninh Thuan Loop. (See related posts for more travel tips in this area)
Below is my map of the loop followed by three links to three separate motorbike guides which describe in more detail each section of this loop: including directions, sights, accommodation, and food. Alternatively, click the motorbike symbols on this map and follow the links in the box to go to the relevant motorbike guides. (For an alternative/extension of The Burnt Road in Section 2 try The Cai River Road.)
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SECTION 1: MUI DINH COAST ROAD
The Ninh Thuan Loop starts in Phan Rang. Head south on the new bridge which now connects the city with the wild and windswept Mui Dinh Pomontory. A fabulous new coast road winds around this boulder-strewn peninsular to Ca Na beach. Click the image below or read the full guide HERE
SECTION 2: THE BURNT ROAD
After heading north on Highway 1 back towards Phan Rang, the loop turns inland; past the ruins of Cham temples, through acres of vineyards, along clear rivers, and into the dust and sand of the driest region in Vietnam. I call this the Burnt Road. (For a longer alternative to this try The Cai River Road.) Click the image below or read the full guide HERE
SECTION 3: NUI CHUA COAST ROAD
Sweeping off the parched plains and back to the coast, a spectacular new road rounds Nui Chua Peninsular, where jungled hills plunge into the ocean, revealing ribbons of white sand and gin-clear water, before returing to Phan Rang and completing the Ninh Thuan Loop. Click the image below or read the full guide HERE
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