Kham Duc: Review

I really didn’t expect much from Kham Duc. And when you don’t expect much you’re always surprised.

Bordered by two large mountain ranges on either side Kham Duc is a beautiful spot and as we rolled down the main road (of which there really is only one) a friendly local rolled up next to me asking if I needed any help leaving me once again reflecting on the kindness of the Vietnamese people.

Given I didn’t have any accommodation lined up he turned out to be a very useful chap as he literally took us around to every accommodation option in town (of which there are about 4). The final option being his least preferred due to the extreme cost that turned out to be 200 to 300 thousand VND or about 10-15USD.

Needless to say I was absolutely stunned when I was taken to my top floor, corner, hotel room complete with super king bed and full bath.

Just what a weary traveler needs after a hard days slog riding a severely disabled motorbike.

Not that I’m one to do hotel reviews this place really does deserve a couple of photos…

Kham Duc Hotel Room

Note the lightning fast Wireless connection shown on the top left of the above image.


And above is the view from the hotel balcony.

Being rather bemused by this oasis in the middle of nowhere I did some digging and established that the owner of the Be Chau Giang Hotel is also the owner of the local Gold Mine; the largest employer in the region. Apparently accommodation options in Kham Duc were so limited the owner needed to set this place up for his international workers.

Later that day I was unfortunate enough to meet a few of these mining folk down in the hotel bar who were completely uninterested in any form of conversation with the exception of a few grunts and gestures. Must have been a hard day at the mine or more likely the tail end of a 14 day shift. Eitherway it was a Saturday night and I was committed to doing something so if no one at the hotel was going to talk to me I’d find some people who were unable to talk to me so I ventured into town to accost the local Kham Ducians.

Now there really isn’t a huge number of options to choose from in Kham Duc but eventually I found a pool hall that wasn’t actually pool rather a three ball deflection game that the local teenagers taught me via sign language and allot of laughing at my expense. It was all good fun with either side knowing only the bare minimum of each others language to the point where I was invited to play another game at a local street corner. I can’t remember the name of the game but I’m pretty sure it was something like “Let’s see how drunk we can get the New Zealander on our violently strong Rice Wine…!”.

The answer to that game was drunk enough and at some point in the morning I managed to remove myself from my new circle of friends (some of whom I’m sure were now not only struggling understand me but also each other!) and stumbled the 10 meters from the center of town to my hotel.

And so ended my first night in Kham Duc.

After a rather late start my sole objective the following day was to get Jonny looked at. His behavior was becoming quite unacceptable and even though my next stop was going to be Hoi An, a rather established town, I held grave fears that he may not be up to the job.

The unbelievably helpful staff at my 5 star 10USD a night hotel pointed me in the direction of a trusty mechanic that Jonny and I managed to track down and to both of our surprise, although Jonny was doing his best not to get too excited, the mechanic spoke impeccable English.

Brilliant. So I launched into a diatribe about dirty injectors, spark plugs and various other dire scenarios whilst my new mechanic friend simply smiled, shook his head, put Jonny up on his forks and showed me that he was unable to turn the front wheel.

Failed front wheel bearing you say? And you can replace the wheel bearings and give the bike an Oil change for 100,000 VND (5USD)?

You really have to love the mechanics in this country.

So after 30mins Jonny was once again his powerful self and ready to tackle the next leg in the adventure to the resort town of Hoi Ann.

As for Kham Duc. Well I was pleasantly surprised and although 48 hours was enough the quality of the accommodation and thanks to the friendliness of the locals Kham Duc scores a –

Solid 7/10

Related Links:

Pleiku to Kham Duc – Leg 5
Kham Duc to Hoi An – Leg 6

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