There are some great seashore restaurants in Cam Ranh and the food is delicious and wash it down with some Vietnamese beer too. Cool breezes to enjoy the evenings in a town that is growing and getting used to tourists.
Although there wasn't much to do in term of nightlife or hotspots for people to do during the evenings in Cam Ranh. There are a lot of karaoke bars however.
During my travels here I went to at least 3 of them along with friends and companions and enjoyed myself considerably. Each time we went, all 4 of us, We got what was a private room with a TV and collection to thousands of songs (alot of English songs are available too). Biscuits, chips and drinks, couple of beers each and you're looking at about $100,000 -$180,000 dongs. Very cheap for a very good night out. Hours will fly by so quickly you will not need much else to do.
There is also a park area where alot of kids or anyone for that matter to hang out and order drinks and chat night away (can't remember the street but it is not hard to miss during the evenings). Cam Ranh seems to be build around 4 major roads, one being the main road for Nha Trang northwards and Saigon in opposite direction. Traveling along this and you will go pass the main post office building and not far from there, the park hangout area.
The main specialty drink is Ngoc Mia (or sugar crane drink) and these are very very cheap compared to Saigon standards. Only 1,500 dongs each or you can buy almost 10 for AUD $1. Also available are these hotdog cakes. Inside is a hotdog or Frankfurt wrapped in a toasted sandwiche piece with butter and they smell absolutely beautiful. They make them fresh on the spot and bring them out to your table whilst you sit back and relax or chat away. Fantastic Service!!!
Dress Code: Anything you feel comfortable with. Pajamas?
To get to Binh Ba Island, we caught a ferry ride over which took about 50-60mins. The ferry operate To and From Cam Ranh harbor twice daily. One in early morning and early afternoon. Not anyone can just book a ferry and head on over. I had to let the authorities know and proof of having a place to stay whilst over on the island.
Being a very small island of only 1.5kms long and 400m from left beach to right, there is no needs for roads on the island. I could probably cover the entire village in a short 5 min walk. More if I wanted to sightsee and walk up the two hills on the island or beaches. I never saw anyone ride a scooter at all during my stay here. I remember staying at my hosts place and we called in for some beer for dinner. Less than a min later after the call, the delivery man was already outside our front door with our beer. Awesome service!
A small community lives here on this island and everyone pretty much know each other by name and anything that goes on, everyone knows. :)
This was enough for me to ensure a very Safe and Interesting place to visit.
Earlier this year, I was fortunate to do what most backpackers of, run off the beaten path and do what no other tourists done. I visited and live among the locals on a small fishing village of Binh Ba Island, Cam Ranh on my way to Nha Trang during my travels.
This island is a good 40+ min ferry ride from Cam Ranh harbor. Island itself is about 1.5kms wide and narrowest point only 400m from left beach to right. Island was used as a French post in the past. Few buildings and sites remains to this day. One is an old mansion now deserted and believed by locals to be haunted and sightings of spirits are known by everyone on the island. Many people are frighten of going near it especially at night hence myself quickly running pass it when traveling back from the beach. :)
A 1000+ population community lives here with primary schools, hospital, small market and a village sheriff. There are no hotels or major restaurants or tourist hot spots. That is why no outsiders are ever over here. Only way to get over is be invited and have a place to stay authorized by the police. Two main streets intervine each other with houses on each sides. Everything can be reach by walking distant and during my stay I didn't see anyone ride a scooter at all.
I stayed here for almost a whole week on this island living with a local family and experiencing an ordinary day. A typical day insisted pawn/fish feeding by boat in morning/afternoon, this is if you're a shrimp breeder like my host. Relaxing and sleeping in between. Night times involves drinking coffee/beer at one of 5 small cafes. Behind this island included the whitest and lightest clear blue beach I've ever seen.
It is not everyday you get to experience life and a culture of people completely difference to your own. Being a frequent traveler and always seeking adventure and meet new people and cultures always helps and gives me a greater understanding to enjoy and cherish new experiences. This adventure I will never forget.