This article is still in the process of being written. You would think that now that I’m on holiday I would have more free time…
Nearly five years ago my wife and I moved to Quy Nhon City, the capital of Binh Dinh province, on the coast of south central Vietnam. Prior to that I had lived and worked for over ten years in Ho Chi Minh City and after all that time, I had had enough of the traffic, pollution and crime.
Quy Nhon was quite literally a breath of fresh air. The city offers a far more relaxed lifestyle, with beaches, hills and countryside all within a few minutes drive from my home. We get nine months of summer here a year, and the winters are mild – it rarely drops below 20°C (roughly 70°F). It can get quite hot around April and May, but since I haven’t experienced a winter since 1999 that doesn’t phase me.
Quy Nhon is off the well-worn tourist trail between Saigon and Hanoi. This is partly because Highway 1 and the railway line pass ten kilometres inland of the city and partly because there isn’t much in the way of tourist attractions here. On the plus side, it means that you can enjoy a peaceful coffee at a beachside café without being hassled by people selling sunglasses, cigarettes, shoeshines and whatnot. I’d estimate that there are less than twenty westerners residing here, out of a population of around 300,000. This means I can go weeks without seeing another European face (aside from several of my western colleagues).
The city is blessed with a huge number of seafood restaurants, fishing being one of the major industries here. The best ones are clustered along the Xuan Dieu St, the coastal road, towards the end of the Quy Nhon peninsula.