Beef noodle soup, chicken with rice, grilled pork, and fried squid are but a few of the mouthwatering options of Vietnamese cuisine. Yet, for those who steer clear of eating animals, a Vietnamese vacation can contain a surprising amount of delectable delicacies. Nha Trang is known for its long, broad beaches and its laid-back party vibe, but did you know that the city also has an impressive selection of vegetarian-friendly restaurants and dishes to boot? In between long walks on the beach and day trips to surrounding natural spectacles, Nha Trang’s dining scene will make the vegetarian traveler feel like royalty.
Nha Trang’s beaches are the stuff of dreams. Vast expanses of white sand, turquoise water that comes in rolling waves towards shore, and balmy, salty air. All along the main beach, chairs and umbrellas are available to rent, and you can chill the day away with a coconut (fresh from the source!), grilled-to-order seafood, and tropical fruits. However, the best place to park is Louisiane Brewhouse, where you can hunker down on the beach or alongside the restaurant’s beachfront pool. In addition to relaxing with the ultimate view, Louisiane is the perfect spot to eat and drink to your heart’s delight—vegetarian and otherwise. Sip the brewery’s unique beers and indulge in a smattering of local and international eats. The French fries are to die for.
Amazing vegetarian options at local restaurants
Once you’ve showered the sand off (or not; whatever floats your boat), there’s a strong chance the hunger pangs will strike. Sitting on the beach can be debilitating! Luckily, Nha Trang’s dining scene is surprisingly vast and vegetarian-friendly. For a hearty meal in a vibrant setting, head to Lanterns Vietnamese Restaurant, a buzzing spot in the town’s central walking area. While there’s plenty of meat and fish on the menu, Lantern offers an expansive selection of local vegetarian options, including crunchy banh xeo (savory pancake with vegetables), fresh spring rolls, and soul-warming clay pots. For a glass or two of wine and too much food to finish, a meal at Lanterns will only set you back about 7 USD per person—a great bargain in this resort town. Yen’s Restaurant, a few blocks away, is another great option for vegetarian and carnivorous diners alike. Live music and outdoor seating make Yen’s a meal to remember.
If you want to eschew meat altogether while sampling the best of Nha Trang’s local fare, Co Tam is the perfect spot. Start off with a stroll out of Nha Trang’s touristy streets and wander the winding side streets several blocks inland. The air still smells of salty beach, but here it mingles with the scents of mint, coriander, lime, and spice. At Co Tam, a fully vegetarian restaurant, diners can sample a delicious array of local dishes, sans their meaty components. Opt for the my quang, a traditional Central Vietnamese noodle dish, the lightly-fried tofu, and the banh beo (a chewy rice cake). As you make your way back to the main part of town, swing by the Nha Trang Night Market for a sweet finishing touch to your meal. Che, or Vietnamese dessert soup, is a local favorite.
The best vegetarian banh mi in the world
Your skin is glowing, your mind is relaxed, and your belly is nearly full. As the Nha Trang vacation comes to an end, it’s time to enjoy one of this beachside town’s finest vegetarian delights, and an unmissable Vietnamese treat: banh mi, the Vietnamese sandwich. An assortments of topics, herbs, and sauces pressed between a fresh French baguette, banh mi (literally meaning “bread”) makes a great meal or snack. For a mind-blowingly tasty banh mi chay (vegetarian banh mi), seek out the cart on Hung Vuong Street. The woman at its helm makes all of her faux meat products from scratch, from the “pate” spread to the strips of “pork.” Even meat lovers will be going back for seconds.
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Beyond the beaches, vegetarian food awaits
People don’t necessarily travel to Nha Trang for the slew of vegetarian options, but it’s high time they started! With lengthy veggie-friendly menus at the town’s busiest restaurants, beachside bites without a hint of meat, and meat-free snacks galore, Nha Trang has expanded its reputation beyond its stunning beaches and youthful nightlife. So pack your swimsuit, put those carnivorous cravings away, and get yourself down to Nha Trang.
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