Welcome To Da Nang

Da Nang is a major Vietnamese coastal city situated slap-bang in the middle of the country. Once a provincial backwater, the city’s economy has boomed in recent years, bringing with it all of the vestiges of modernity. Stroll along the Han riverfront and you’ll find gleaming new modernist hotels, luxury apartments and swanky restaurants, most of which offer a view of the turquoise water that hugs Da Nang. There may not be many conventional tourist spots in Da Nang, however the city is certainly a safe bet for a quick weekend getaway. Enjoy the city’s beaches, restaurants and nightlife, before heading off to any of Vietnam’s other central destinations.

Destination Highlights

  • My Khe Beach

Around six kilometers east of Da Nang, My Khe Beach is arguably one of Vietnam’s most beautiful beaches. Named by the American troops who visited during the Vietnam War, the white sand and turquoise surf has soared in popularity since Da Nang’s economic boom, and now boasts a number of high-end resorts and seafood restaurants. As well as being an ideal spot for sunbathing, My Khe Beach is also a popular spot for fishing, snorkeling, jet-skiing, and surfing.

  • Marble Mountains

A surreal tribute to Vietnamese Buddhism, Marble Mountains are cluster of five limestone and (you guessed it) marble hills around 15 minutes south of Da Nang. The peaks are said to represent the five natural elements such as water, wood, fire, metal and earth. Original 17th-century Buddhist sanctuaries and ornate pagoda temples are scattered across the mountains, often frequented by praying locals who wish to have their fortunes told. Any first-time visitors to Da Nang must climb the steps to the top of Marble Mountains, where a spectacular panorama across Non Nuoc Beach and My Khe Beach awaits. Or, if climbing a mountain sounds a bit too ambitious, use the readily available elevator service for 30,000 VND.

  • Phap Lam Pagoda

This opulent temple is set amongst manicured gardens, and beautiful Buddhist sculptures in a surprisingly central location. Despite this, upon entering the Pagoda visitors will be amazed at the shift in atmosphere, with locals praying quietly and even monks calmly going about their day to day business. It is considered very impolite to point your camera at those who are praying at the temple (and elsewhere in Vietnam!) so take extra precautions.

Transportation

Da Nang is easily reachable by flight from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. From the city, it is easy to reach UNESCO World Heritage sites of HueHoi An, and My Son Valley.

For a more authentic experience, and to see some of the majestic Vietnamese countryside, train routes operate from both the north and south of the country, with both fast and overnight options.

Even if you’re only planning on staying in Da Nang for a few days, downloading transport apps such as the South East Asian equivalent of Uber; Grab, will save you more than a few bucks on getting around and are safe, plentiful, and sensationally easy to use.

Accommodation

The hotels right on the beach in Danang are almost exclusively geared towards the luxury market, and often boast private beaches, spas and fine dining restaurants. They are predominantly located along My Khe Beach and Non Nuoc Beach, easy walking distance from 17th-century Buddhist sanctuaries, rivers, golf courses, limestone caves, and local handicraft villages. Costs can vary, but are generally between 12 to 300+ USD per night, with most sitting towards the middle of that.

Dining

Still an underrated tourism destination in Vietnam, Da Nang’s cuisine is unique, inexpensive, and due to its central location, varied. Backpackers, families and high-end travelers alike can sit down and enjoy a noodle or rice dish for under $2 US.

Turmeric tinted rice noodles known as Mi Quang is Da Nang’s hallmark dish. The dish is served with noodle, toppings and light broth. The toppings may make what the dish standout: a spoonful of grilled pork, shrimp, quail eggs and a generous bunch of herbs, peanuts and chilis as well as sesame crackers.

Da Nang is also known for its love of BBQ. Every day, a wide array of fresh seafood meat is scorched to perfection on one of the many street-side BBQ joints. Try Quan Com Hue Ngon at Tran Quoc Toan Street, where dishes start at 29,000 VND and feature a wide range of strange and delicious morsels such as squid, frog, octopus, pork, shrimp, and cow stomach.

Shopping

In operation since 1940’s during the French occupation, Han Market is a must-see for any first-time travelers to Vietnam. This local market is positively stuffed with myriad stalls and vendors peddling a huge range of goods, local produce, crafts, clothing and jewelry, not to mention an entire re dedicated to fresh fruit. For souvenirs, consider picking up some homemade ingredients such as dried squid, chili sauce or rice crackers, which keep for a long time and are difficult to buy in the west.

Suggested Tour Packages

16-DAY ESSENTIAL VIETNAM

Destinations: Ha Noi, Halong Bay, Ho Chi Minh City, Hoi An, Da Lat, Da Nang, Hue, Mekong Delta, Ninh Binh

Duration: 16 days 15 nights

Ho Chi Minh – Cu Chi – Mekong Delta – Da Lat – 7D6N

Destinations: Ha Noi, Halong Bay, Ho Chi Minh City, Ninh Binh

Duration: 7 days 6 nights

La Pinta – 2 days 1 night

Destinations: Halong Bay

Duration: 2 days 1 night

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When is the best time to visit Hanoi?

It is highly recommended you visit Hanoi during the months of October to early December. The air is cool and dry and there are not yet many tourists (compared to the peak season of late December to early January). The period after Tet holiday from March to April is also a great time to visit as there are many festivals in and around Hanoi. If you don’t mind the heat, summer is otherwise a good time to be as accommodation and tour activities are considerably cheaper than in winter time.

2. Is Hanoi a safe city?

Hanoi is a very safe place to be in, especially in Hanoi Old Quarter area. Here and there there can be petty crimes such as pick pocketing, so beware of your belongings. Single woman travelers have consistently rated Hanoi as one of the safest cities to travel in, with very low crime rate against tourists.

3. How long should you spend in Hanoi?

It really depends on how much time you have got. The minimum recommended duration is 3 days while you can stay as long as 3 weeks to fully enjoy the city. Although Hanoi does not seem to have a lot of things to do at first sight, one will have to dig deeper to know the must-dos. From nightly street food scenes to the hidden shopping alleys, and occasional visit to craft village, Hanoi may just well be your most special destination thus far. If you need some suggestion, contact us.

4. What should I buy in Hanoi?

Hanoi is famous for its Old Quarter where each street often specialize in one single product (production and sales). Once you get here you will know exactly what you should buy. Some ideas include conical hats, handcrafted bags, silverwares… Souvenir shops that crowd Au Trieu Street, Nha Tho Street or Hang Be Street also offer more extension selection: coffee, tea, essential oils, and silk. If there is no price tag attached, it is always good to bargain.

5. How cold does it get in Hanoi?

Hanoi weather often reaches a record low of 7 Celsius degree in late December or early January. However the humid wind often makes it a lot harsher than its sounds. If you plan to travel to Hanoi during this period, make sure to pack some serious sweater or jackets. In case you travel beyond Hanoi to the mountain region of Sapa, the temperature may even drop further.