"Overdevelopment without a watchful eye" has recently swallowed up stretches of previously empty coastline in both of these southern resort towns, putting the "amazing natural beauty" of their environs at risk.
Here is a representative sampling of additional anonymous comments from the panelists. They are not necessarily the views of the National Geographic Society:
"This area is fast becoming ruined by rampant commercial development. The Cham temple is not adequately protected from overcrowding by tourists and lacks adequate facilities such as restrooms. The once nice beaches are packed with hotels and bars. I would not return."
"My impression was too many hotels and visitors. Water quality was poor. I noticed that waste from some hotels was thrown into the sea. But the resort has some potential if it is carefully managed."
"During the last ten years, the Mui Ne coast has become completely built up with hotel developments. Most are speculative investments that sit empty for much of the time. Environmentally this coastline is under serious pressure from industry, agribusiness, and shipping."
"High aesthetic beach appeal and a friendly social environment. For a city of its size, it still displays some socio-cultural integrity. While new construction appears to be well planned, the destination runs the risk of overdevelopment in the near future."
2014 Traveler Photo Contest
See all the winning images from the 2014 Traveler Photo Contest.