Cam Ranh Travel Guide
About Cam Ranh
Located between Nha Trang and Phan Rang – Thap Cham (Ninh Thuan), on important transportation axes of the country. Cam Ranh has enough favorable conditions for domestic and international exchanges. With a developing economy, expanding the product consumption market, it is becoming a dynamic economic center in the South of Khanh Hoa province and South Central Coast region. In addition, Cam Ranh tourism also has many advantages. Because it is a land with diverse natural conditions with flat terrain, forests, sea – bays. Moreover, temperate climate, mineral mud source, abundant hot mineral water are good conditions for resort tourism.
Best time to travel
The climate of Khanh Hoa in general and Cam Ranh in particular is quite temperate. The weather in the year has only 2 seasons: dry and rainy seasons. The rainy season is concentrated in the last months of the year from December 9 to 12, with the peak in October and November.
- You should travel to Cam Ranh from March to August. This time is sunny, the sea is very smooth. So it is very convenient to go to groups of islands.
- In the last months of the year, although it rains a lot, it is still sunny. If you can hunt cheap flights at this time, you can still arrange to go to Cam Ranh, Nha Trang. Just note the weather before the trip as there are times when a storm may occur.
Cam Ranh Travel Guide – How to get there
Cam Ranh is about 60 km south of Nha Trang and 40 km north of Phan Rang. It also has a very convenient road transport system: National Highway 1A passes through the city over 40 km, provincial road 9 connects the city center with To Hap town, Khanh Son district. And Nguyen Tat Thanh avenue connects the city with Cam Ranh airport and Nha Trang city. Cam Ranh Bus Station serves most intra-provincial and inter-provincial routes for the city.
From Saigon, high-quality sleeping buses to Cam Ranh are almost continuous departure with large frequency for passengers to choose. It will take about 8 hours and stop at the central bus station in Cam Ranh city.
From Hanoi, if you want to go to Cam Ranh, you can choose the trips with North-South itinerary (usually departing to Saigon or Southern provinces) and then getting off at Cam Ranh.
Cam Ranh is located on the North-South railway which is convenient for linking with the remaining provinces of Vietnam. However, there is only one small station, Nga Ba station that has been abandoned for more than 20 years. Since 2007, it has been rebuilt to accommodate customers.
From Saigon, only the SE22 train (going to Hue) departs at 11:50 and arrives at Nga Ba station at 6:58. There is no train from Hanoi that stops here. If you want to take the train you will only have to choose to get off at Nha Trang station. From there, if you want to go to Cam Ranh at a low cost, you can choose from Nha Trang – Cam Ranh bus.
Cam Ranh City has Cam Ranh International Airport. It is an important traffic of Khanh Hoa province in particular and South Central region in general. It is also the 4th largest airport in Vietnam by the number of visitors.
From Hanoi, there are daily direct flights to Cam Ranh by Vietjet, Vietnam Airlines and Bamboo. The round-trip tickets range from 2000-3000k with a flight time of about 2 hours. From Saigon, the flight time will be shorter (about 1 hour). The ticket price will only fluctuate around 1000k.
Vehicles used in Cam Ranh
For small groups of young people who want to be proactive and save costs, they can choose to rent a motorbike in Cam Ranh as a means of transportation. This option will be more mobile and can explore Cam Ranh city more comfortably.
Looking for safe & convenient to get around in Cam Ranh Bay? Taxi is the best choice. Groups with young and old people or large groups can choose a taxi to travel in the city.
Boats / Canoes
Boat/canoe is used for those who want to go to islands off the coast of Cam Ranh Bay such as Binh Ba or Binh Hung. Ships from Cam Ranh to Binh Ba will depart at the inland waterway port (Da Bac, Ba Ngoi). Ships to Binh Hung will depart at Bai Kinh (Ninh Thuan)
Cam Ranh Travel Guide – Where to stay
The number of accommodation establishments in Cam Ranh is not much outside the tourist attractions areas. Because the number of tourists coming and staying here for a long time is not available. So the infrastructure is also less invested.
Possessing Bai Dai, one of the beautiful beaches of the central coast, Cam Ranh also has relatively many resorts built right here. Although these resorts are far from the center, they possess relatively beautiful, isolated and quiet locations, suitable for relaxing.
Cam Ranh also has a lot of homestays. The majority are Binh Ba and Binh Hung. There are a few small homestay concentrated in the Binh Lap area and inside Cam Ranh city. The advantage of this accommodation type is that it is cheap. It also has many dormitories. So it is suitable for groups of friends traveling in large groups.
According to my experience, if you want to save money, you can rent motels or accommodation rooms around Cam Ranh town. There’s a lot of prices that only fluctuate about 50,000 VND / room only (Room without air conditioning, only fans). Or you can also go to the street No. 2 in the center of Cam Ranh. There are two quite large hotels, quite nice rooms but have a great quiet space. The price is only about VND 80,000 – VND 140,000 / double room / day (Room with air conditioning). Or you can also find some hotels in Cam Ranh on Highway 1. There are also many good hotels.
Places to visit in Cam Ranh
Binh Ba and Binh Hung Island
Binh Ba Island is one of the most famous “lobster” islands in Khanh Hoa province. It is also a tourist destination not to be missed in the wonderful “Tu Binh” discovery journey near Nha Trang beach town. Binh Ba Island promises to bring you days to experience a rustic, new and unique life in the vast sky.
Binh Hung Island is located in Cam Binh commune, Cam Ranh city. It is hidden at the foot of the pass of Binh Tien – Vinh Hy sea route. It is famous for its fine white sand, and clear blue water. This is one of three Tam Binh islands belonging to Cam Ranh deep-water bay.
Beautiful Beaches along Cam Ranh
Binh Tien: Binh Tien Beach is located right on the sea route to Bai Kinh and Binh Hung. The sandy beach in Binh Tien is long, soft, and smooth. It is very suitable for swimming, relaxing, taking a dip in the clear blue water. In the evening, you can bring a tent to camp on the sand and watch the stars. You can hear the sea and casuarina trees whispering in the ears and organize a BBQ party on the beach.
Binh Lap: Binh Lap is a recently mentioned name and is like a miniature Maldives paradise of Vietnam. To come to Binh Lap, you just need to drive a motorbike or rent a car to travel and visit. The beach still retains the wild beauty of nature because not many tourists know it. Going to the end of the road to Binh Lap will be the village of Tau Be. This is the place where most fishing people living.
Bai Dai: Bai Dai belongs to Cam Lam district. It is located between Cam Ranh Airport and Nha Trang City. It’s about 20 km from the center of Nha Trang city. Coming to Bai Dai beach, besides swimming, taking a walk to enjoy the fresh air, perhaps the attraction for tourists is seafood. The freshly caught shrimp, squid, and fish are processed on the spot. The price is not too high, so almost every visitor to this place cannot ignore these delicacies.
Tu Van Pagoda (Oc Pagoda)
Tu Van Pagoda is located in the heart of Cam Ranh City. The pagoda also has another name known by many people as San Ho Temple, or Oc Pagoda. The pagoda was built in the period from 1968 to 1995 under 5 generations of abbot. At first the temple was just a small temple, surrounded by an empty and desolate land. With the talents, diligence and creativity, the monks turned shells, snails, scallops, and corals into flexible, unique patterns, mingled with nature in an ancient space.
Tidal Lagoon/ Thuy Trieu Lagoon
Thuy Trieu lagoon with charming and poetic landscape will be a very interesting sightseeing spot when coming to Cam Ranh. The lagoon is located right near Cam Ranh airport, Bai Dai area. You can rent a motorbike or hire canoes to run on the lagoon at sunset to enjoy the feeling of tranquility here. If you use canoe, you can also visit the mangrove garden in the lagoon.
Gac Ma Memorial Monument
This will be a place where those who are still living in memory and grateful for the heroes and martyrs who sacrificed to protect the national sovereignty and islands. This is the place to replace the graves of soldiers who have not found corpses in the disqualified Truong Sa naval battle with the Chinese army in 1988.
Cam Lam Mango Garden
Visit the Australian Mango Garden and Western Mango Garden to experience the long-standing mango career in the Central Vietnam. Here, you will see how coastal farmers grow mangoes on this sandy land. Visitors to the garden will get a hand-picked mango to enjoy mangoes, cake and other specialties…
Cam Ranh Travel Guide – What to eat
Binh Ba Lobster
Binh Ba lobster is a blue shrimp with its own unique flavor and speciality in Binh Ba Island. Lobster dishes have many types of processing, but as simple as grilling or porridge cooking has also created a rich taste.
Nha Trang Grilled Fish Noodle Soup
The sweetness of the fish broth, the little sourness of the tomatoes plus the greasiness of fried fish pies, the pungency of chili…All off them make diners can not help from bristling whenever enjoying.
The oysters of Thuy Trieu lagoon is delicious because of its sweet meat. People catch shellfish by hand or by rake at low tide. Guests can enjoy the oysters cooked with tamarind sauce, grilled oysters, salad or sautéed garlic or oyster porridge.
Vietnamese Pancakes (banh xeo) in Cam Ranh is made with crunchy seafood crust (shrimp, squid). It is also served with fish sauce and herbs, minced mangoes. The crunchy sweet, sour, spicy, and salty taste blends in each piece of cake to give an indescribably delicious taste.
Cam Ranh Chicken
There are many restaurants in Cam Ranh but you should choose the restaurants in Cam Thuan Ward. With a spacious garden, cool green trees, hammocks for guests to lean back and forth between the trees in the garden, Cam Thuan especially attracts guests.
If you choose any chickens, the owner of the restaurant caught them and quickly took them to processing. To make it delicious, chicken is dipped into crushed green and sour chili. Regarding the sauce, each shop also has a unique recipe. Chicken is already delicious and fresh, so even without fussy processing, it is still very delicious. Even if it’s just a few simple dishes such as steaming, baking, boiling, porridge …
Flying shrimps are crispy, wrapped with rice paper and vegetables and served with dipping sauce. Basically, this dish is quite similar to grilled spring rolls but uses flying shrimp.
Snail dish is though just playful, but extremely attractive. Snails placed on the tables of luxurious restaurants or selling on the corner also have a strange charm to those who wander in the coastal city and want to learn the specialties of this place.
Cam Ranh Itinerary and Travel Expense
I would like to recommend a Binh Hung – Binh Ba trip for 3 days 2 nights. This schedule comes from Saigon, using the vehicle as a sleeper bus. With other means or departure place, you should pay attention to recalculate the timeline accordingly.
Day 0: Saigon – Cam Ranh
You depart from Saigon at night, take a bed car to Cam Ranh. Early morning you will be in Cam Ranh. Have breakfast and prepare luggage to go to Binh Ba
Day 1: Cam Ranh – Binh Ba
After arriving, board the train to Binh Ba from Ba Ngoi port. It will take about 45 minutes to reach the island. On the way, the train will go through Cam Ranh Bay, cages for raising seafood in the sea … When arrived, check in the hotel and prepare luggage to enjoy.
Take a walk around the island to visit Binh Ba village communal house and people on the island. At noon, you can order seafood at the accommodation or at the house on the island.
In the afternoon, continue to walk around the beach, take photos and check-in with Bai Nom, Bai Chuong, Bai Nha Cuoi, Bai Sa Huynh …
In the evening, relax, order barbecue, sing and socialize
Day 2: Binh Ba – Binh Hung
From Binh Ba, you can contact people to rent boats to go directly to Binh Hung. If not required, they will have to return to the shore and move the road to Bai Kinh to continue to Binh Hung.
Go to Binh Hung, you can visit some places on the island like Hon Chut lighthouse, An Hill area …
Evening sleep on Binh Hung island
Day 3: Binh Hung – Bai Kinh – Saigon
From Binh Hung, take a boat back to Bai Kinh and hire a taxi to go back to My Thanh intersection to catch the car back to Saigon. If you have time, you can continue to explore Binh Lap and Binh Tien to complete the journey to discover Tu Binh.
My expense for a 3-days-2-night trip for 2 people is:
- Phuong Nam bus ticket: 500,000 x 2-way = 1,000,000 VND
- Rent a motorbike + petrol: 400,000 VND
- Hotel: VND 1,600,000 / night, including breakfast.
- Eat and drink for 3 days: VND 1,000,000
- Boat to island + entrance ticket: VND 200,000
Total: 5,800,000 VND/2 people