6 a.m. Half asleep. On the bus. Stuck in traffic. It was a great start to the day! Luckily, I dozed off until we made it to the beach resort town of Vung Tau! However, between my snoozes I couldn’t help but notice the stark difference between the city and the rural areas on the way to the coast. As soon as we starting cruising on the open road outside of the city, it was clear that these parts of the country are far behind, developmentally speaking. There were plenty of businesses, but there were also an abundant amount of stray dogs, trash-filled plots of land, and run-down buildings. I can only imagine what these towns were like before the development they did experience!
Before I knew it, we were entering Vung Tau. It looked just like any other beach town. Our first stop was to hike up the mountain to meet Christ the King of Vung Tau. Let me tell you, it was not a cool hike (temperature-wise) or an easy one. I was quite honestly feeling the heat, but I was eager to see the view from the top. When we finally reached the feet of Jesus, we were instructed to remove our hats and shoes, and to leave any belongings behind. To my surprise, it was much cooler in Jesus than it was outside, even though he towers at the top of a mountain in the blazing sun. The part that did catch me off guard, though, was how incredibly tight the staircase was. Let me just say that I had to get way too up close and personal with way too many strangers to reach the shoulders of Jesus.
Like they all say, the path to Jesus is definitely worth the hard work! I couldn’t believe the view! Absolutely breathtaking. I would include a picture, buuuuut I did not look near as picture worthy at the top as when I first started the trek. So enjoy this one instead!
After hiking back down, we boarded the nice air-conditioned bus to start our next journey. The resort that we went to provided an excellent family-style, multi-course lunch with an excellent on-the-beach view.
The only facility of the resort that was rather underwhelming was the bathroom/changing area. I’m so accustomed to having many rooms and showers at these types of places, but they did not have anything like that here. There was barely enough room to change, plus the consistent lack of air-conditioning made it kind of tough. Other than that, the resort was amazing – even better than I was expecting!
Another aspect of the beach that caught my attention was the amount of trash washed up throughout the sand. Pollution is NOT a joke, people! Save our oceans!
I spent the rest of the day chilling in the relaxing infinity pool and “cold tub,” as it’s way too hot here for a hot tub! This day of serenity was exactly what I needed, and now I can say I’ve been in both sides of the Pacific Ocean!