Bumping along on the local mini bus, the guy in the seat in front of us was practicing bad magic tricks on his neighbours, while the guys behind were smoking out the windows, we where on a hunt for a small village that even the locals hadn’t heard of. A week earlier in Saigon, whilst sipping coffee and waiting for a 6:30am bus, we crossed paths briefly with two overly awake and perky brits, who handed us a business card and told us to find the place on it.. now if that wasn’t a reliable recommendation, I don’t know what is.
We had spent a night in Nha Trang to break up the journey from Da Lat, before heading north to just below the town of Quy Nhon, to the village of Bai Xep. The business card the brits had given us was for a place called “Life’s a Beach”, a newly opened guesthouse run by a couple of Brits (Gavin and Steve) that had a few rooms right on the beach…you literally walk out of your room onto the sand! We treated ourselves to one of the new two-story bamboo cabins, complete with upstairs balcony with deck chairs and sweeping views overlooking the cove; in fact we could see the ocean from our (extra comfy) bed… heavenly!
We wouldn’t say our stay at life’s a beach was action packed, far from it in fact. We spent our few days there walking along the beach, looking around the village, drinking coffees in the deck chairs and jumping in the huge waves that rolled onto the shore. We enjoyed the delicious nightly communal dinners, cooked by local ladies from the village, and spent the rest of the time sharing stories, playing cards and having a laugh with the owners and some new Belgian friends we met there as well…. it’s a tough life…
We spent our last day at life’s a beach sampling some of the local rice soup with various animal organs (the intestines were particularly chewy), while locals looked on laughing as we tried to convince them we were enjoying it, and looking out at the beach on the rainy afternoon and almost convincing ourselves we could be in Northern Ireland. It was difficult to pull ourselves away from Bi Xep, but alas one of Vietnam’s top sites awaited us.
Next time tourists…lots of tourists