Just returned from a delightful long weekend at Whale Island Resort and I would gladly return again the next time I want to unwind in simple seclusion near Nha Trang.
This is very much the reserve of those people looking to escape the high rises of the city and instead wile away their days swimming, eating, reading, and lounging about. Thanks to the lethargic pace and limited number of rooms, there is almost a communal sense to the place with a shared identity between the sun worshipers that permeates every aspect of day to day life.
Admittedly, I was a bit concerned by the last review from Presutto, but then I discovered that my fears of pollution were largely unfounded. As boat people do occupy the other end of the bay they can end up clogging the surrounding waters with rubbish, but at the resorts beach this is only the case after a storm passing through the area and thanks to the diligent staff who are out on garbage patrol every morning at dawn and the collective efforts of the resorts sedated guests, there is little real trace of pollution in the azure waters of the resort's private sheltered bay. While one cannot say the same about some of the island's other beaches accessed by jungle paths, in truth this was of little real concern to most of the guests who became so sedated by the peaceful lifestyle that virtually no one ever felt like departing the main beach.
In the end however, we utterly loved our tastefully decorated spotlessly clean bungalow meters from the beach that was a steal compared to many similar spots in Vietnam. Similarly, the meal plan is a great bargain as each meal is huge and the staff can easily adapt the meals upon request for just about anything. ONE TIP we discovered was to order a purely vietnamese meal that ended up consisting of fried shrimp cakes, sauteed baby calamari, salad, summer rolls, rice, a glass noodle soup with crab, and a large grilled fish. For no extra cost this was a massive amount of good food for two people and a real treat that I would highly recommend. Other then that, I must say that the staff were friendly with a decent amount of english and in true french tradition, there was a nice cocktail menu and a lovely wine selection.
All in all, this is a place that most Vietnamese skip altogether and if you are looking for massive buffets, motorized watersports, modern amenities, and an active nightlife, then you had best stick to the city. However, for those of us looking for a few nights of utter peace and tranquility, its hard to think of a better place to recommend in the region.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An idyllic tropical paradise on a small island in stunning Van Phong Bay, Whale Island, also known as Ile de la Baleine or Hon Ong, is a low-key, initimate resort two hours north of Nha Trang. Offering a desert island experience, Whale Island nestles amongst swaying coconut palms and a pristine sand beach.Thirty one traditional-style bamboo thatched bungalows offer beds with mosquito nets, pillar fans, plus en-suite bathrooms with shower. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Whale Island Hotel Nha Trang
- Whale Island Nha Trang