Nha Trang is a coastal city and capital of Khanh Hoa Province, on the South Central Coast of Vietnam. It is bounded on the north by Ninh Hoa district, on the south by Cam Ranh town and on the west by Dien Khanh District. The city has about 392,000 inhabitants, a number that is projected to increase to 560,000 by 2015 and 630,000 inhabitants by 2025. An area of 12.87 square kilometres (4.97 sq mi) of the western communes of Diên An and Diên Toan is planned to be merged into Nha Trang which will make its new area 265.47 square kilometres (102.50 sq mi) based on the approval of the Prime Minister of Vietnam in September 2012.
Nha Trang is well known for its beaches and scuba diving and has developed into a popular destination for international tourists, attracting large numbers of backpackers, as well as more affluent travelers on the south-east Asia circuit; it is already very popular with Vietnamese tourists, with Nha Trang Bay widely considered as among the world’s most beautiful bays. Tourists are welcomed to participate in the Sea Festival, held biennially.
Historically, the city was known as Kauthara under rule of the Kingdom of Champa. The city is still home to the famous Po Nagar Tower built by the Champa. Being a coastal city, Nha Trang is a centre for marine science based at the Nha Trang Oceanography Institute. The Hon Mun marine protected area is one of four first marine protected areas in the world admitted by the IUCN.