Da Nang

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79 things to do

All Places Vietnam



Museum of Cham Sculpture

Founded in 1915 by the École Française d'Extrême Orient, it houses a collection of stone sculptures from the Hindu-practicing Cham civilization, which occupied much of central Vietnam in the first millennium CE through about the 14th century. The museum can be toured in about an hour. The sculptures are nearly all made of sandstone, and some have weathered badly over the centuries, but you can still appreciate the delightful artistic quality of the figures, which include shiva, garudas, nagas, lions, monkeys, and elephants. The collection also includes striking examples of the ancient Hindu icons of fertility: lingam altars decorated around the sides with rows of breasts. The sculptures were mostly removed from the facades or interiors of Cham ruins (which would have been looted otherwise.) The ruins themselves, such as nearby My Son, now tend to be crumbling piles of bricks and somewhat disappointing, giving little sense of the spectacular artwork produced by the Cham civilization. Any visit to My Son should be paired with a visit to the Cham Museum. The collection is also interesting to compare with Balinese sculpture and the early, Hindu phase of Angkor Wat in Cambodia.

SEE   —  #2, September 2nd Rd

Han River Promenade

The beauty of the Han River has inspired poets and composers throughout Da Nang's history, and any local will probably be able to sing you a few lines of ''Sông Hàn Tình Yêu Của Tôi'' (Han River, My Love) as they stroll the edge of the water. The promenade on the western bank of the river is well built up, stretching from the Dragon Bridge in the south to the city port in the north. The promenade passes underneath the iconic Han River Bridge, a swing bridge built in the late 90's, one of four bridges across the Han you can glimpse from here (the others are the Thuan Phuoc, Dragon, and Tran Thi Ly bridges). All of the bridges light up with colourful patterns at night, making a walk by the river a delightful (and certainly romantic) escapade. Locals often gather here in the evenings to watch the water, play hacky-sack, or bring their children for a run. During the Tet season, the promenade is festooned with sculptures and art. The annual Fireworks Festival is also based here, but you're better off seeing the show from afar, as it tends to get quite crowded.

SEE   —  along Bach Dang Rd


Marble Mountains

The group includes Kim Son (Mountain of Metal), Moc Son (Mountain of Wood), Thuy Son (Mountain of Water), Hoa Son (Mountain of Fire), and Tho Son (Mountain of Earth). Several Buddhist temples have been built into the caves and grottoes, and it's a popular pilgrimage site. The real fun, though, is at the '''Am Phu''' cave, where you can make the steep climb up toward the light and a view from the top of the mountain, surrounded by approving sacred images; or head in the opposite direction, physically and spiritually, down to the crude Hieronymous Bosch-esque statues of sinners getting their due in the caverns below, with appropriately eerie lighting. Either way, wear walking or climbing shoes. Open-tour buses will stop here, but you'll be rushed along; any motorbike taxi in Da Nang or Hoi An will be happy to take you and let you set the schedule. Guides are available. Watch out for the rapacious statue-sellers outside.

SEE   —  +84 511 961114 —  Map

My Khe Beach

Across the Han River from downtown, My Khe Beach—the northern edge of the fabled "China Beach"—is a wide, sandy beach long known for its beauty. Locals will often gather here as early in the morning as 05:00 to enjoy the surf while the sun rises over the ocean. Tourists often arrive later on, when the locals have already started their day; you'll probably find that by 09:00 or 10:00 the beach is mostly deserted. The beach isn't steep, meaning that you can swim far out and still feel your feet touch the bottom. During busy times, lifeguards float around in coracle boats, whistling at those who venture too far out. In the distance on Monkey Mountain, you can make out the giant statue of "Quan The Am" at Linh Ung Temple. There are change rooms and public showers you can use as you enter and leave the water, as well as motorbike parking for a small fee.

DO   —  Hoang Sa Rd


Ba Na Hill Station

Ba Na is 1,487 m above sea level in the Truong Son Mountains. It was formerly a 1920s French resort and once boasted 200 villas, restaurants, and clubs. It is known as the second Dalat or Sa Pa in central Vietnam. Its temperate climate, unspoiled forest, and spectacular views over the South China Sea and the Lao mountains made Ba Na a popular retreat for both the French and the wealthy Vietnamese. Today the area still attracts locals and tourists alike thanks to a new cable car system that was officially opened in 2009 and set two Guinness World Records for its height and length. Great view from the top but it's really useless to stay overnight since the accommodations are shabby and terribly overpriced (USD80-150 per night).

SEE   —  Map

Ride a motorbike up the Hai Van Pass

The Hai Van Pass is a great day trip from Da Nang (or Hoi An). The road was called "a deserted ribbon of perfection—one of the best coast roads in the world" in the BBC show ''Top Gear''. Since the tunnel opened, most heavy traffic has diverted from the pass, making the ride much safer, and you'll only meet a few trucks ferrying live animals or dangerous goods, plus quite a few motorbikers coming to enjoy the views. Make sure you ride down the north side of the pass all the way to Lang Co and enjoy the view of the lagoon set against a background of mountains. Make sure you fill up your tank before hitting the pass (there's a petrol station a few kilometres before the road starts climbing) as you won't find petrol there.

DO   —  Map


Bread of Life Western Bakery and Eatery

Take out delivery for orders over 100,000 dong. Bread of Life is run by an American couple who use the business as means of providing training for young Vietnamese deaf. All baking, cooking and serving is done by the deaf and profits go into school for teaching deaf Vietnamese the Vietnamese sign language and English. They serve breakfasts, lunch, and dinner from a menu that includes pizza, pasta, hamburgers and other Western dishes. Good coffee and fresh baked pastries and cakes every day. The quality is high and you will enjoy interacting with the staff. Orders are accepted in person or by phone for a variety of breads a day ahead then you can pick them up in the restaurant.

EAT   —  +84 511 3565185 —  4 Dong Da

My Khe Beach Hotel 1 and 2

These hotels, both under the same management, are comfortable and very reasonably priced especially given that they are just the other side of the beach road from My Khe Beach, but still only a five minute or less moto ride from downtown. My Khe 1 is older, has smaller rooms, but the electricity does not go off in the room when you leave; My Khe 2 has very large rooms, caters more to groups of Saigon tourists (My Khe gets lots of Vietnamese business and government travellers, plus some tourists and some Lao visitors, business or government). Staff at both places are friendly and pleasant, with adequate English. The only downside is no in-room Internet access.

SLEEP   —  +84 511 6260 214 —  Truong Sa St


Com Nieu Nha Do

''Cơm niêu'' is a type of rice that's baked in a clay pot and served with any number of sides—beef, chicken, fish, hot pot—but it's the way it's served that catches your attention. Waiters come out of the kitchen bearing hot clay pots straight out of the oven, pull out hammers, smash them at your table, and fling the crusty, baked rice inside back and forth across the room. Otherwise, the food is what you'd get at a normal restaurant, but it's fun to see the show. Located near the airport, just across from March 29 Park. There are many of these restaurants on Nguyen Tri Phuong St, but this one is a favourite.


Cham Island Tour

Pick up at hotel at 07:00, transfer to Cua Dai beach harbour by an air-con bus. Cruises to the Cham Islands board at 08:00, travelling by wooden boat for 1 1/4 hours or by speed boat for 30 minutes. On arrival, there are visits to Hai Tang Pagoda, the boat shelter, a local market at Bai Lang, then cruise to Bai Chong for swimming and snorkelling to see the coral reef before having lunch at a local restaurant on the island. Relax for a while after lunch and get ready for cruising back to Cua Dai Beach harbour. Departure is at 15:00 and transfer back to your hotels.

DO   —  +84 510 8505605 —  Map

Motorbike ride up Monkey Mountain

If you feel like a ride with an amazing view, rent a motorbike and make your way up the side of Monkey Mountain (aka Son Tra Mountain), where an American army base was once located. Although access to the base is closed off, you can still follow Hoang Sa Rd. for a good distance and enjoy getting lost in the beautiful scenery on this road that hugs the mountainside while offering an expansive view of the Pacific Ocean. You can also stop off at Linh Ung Temple along the way, both to pay your respects to ''Quan The Am'' and to enjoy the wonderful view.

DO   —  Map

Metro Cash & Carry

An international chain of cash & carry supermarkets, Metro carries most of the things you'd expect to find in Western supermarkets: a variety of groceries (including fresh, fully refrigerated meat, if you're squeamish about buying meat at the open market), clothes, home and office supplies, electronics, and more. It's a little far from the city centre, but it's easily accessible by taxi, so you can stock up and carry all your bags home easily. You can also arrange for delivery at a nominal cost.


Han Market

A typical Vietnamese market, with vendors selling everything from shoes to silk and souvenirs, from candles to coffee and candied plums. The upper part of the building is mainly dedicated to clothing, accessories and silk, while the lower part is mainly dedicated to foodstuffs. There's an extensive fruit and vegetable market on the side that's closest to the river, from which you can access the Han River promenade. Be prepared to haggle for prices, like at any neighbourhood market.

BUY   —  119 Tran Phu St

Memory Lounge

Quite possibly the most expensive place to go for coffee in Da Nang. Just north of the Han River Bridge, the high-end Memory Lounge overlooks the river—in fact, it was built directly on top, jutting out onto the river and accessible from the promenade. Built by the wife of a former president of South Vietnam, it's quite a fancy affair—with foreign chefs blending Asian and European cuisines and using organic and sustainable ingredients to create an impressive menu.


Karma Waters

This is the only vegan Western friendly restaurant in Da Nang. It's owned by a Viet/Kiwi couple, and it is a family place. If you are looking for a place that avoids white sugar/MSG/and gluten this is your best option. The cafe is clean and right in the city centre. Menus are in English, and the staff is also very friendly and good with English. You don't have to be a vegetarian or vegan to have a good meal here. Has a sister restaurant in Hoi An.


Blue Whale

One of a number of seafood restaurants looking out onto My Khe Beach, the Blue Whale is a great place to get acquainted with what the beach really has to offer. Their menu features a wide variety of seafood cooked in many different ways—steamed, grilled or baked, or in hot pot or sashimi—along with a number of local specialties. The tab will be a little high, but the food and the ambience should more than make up for it.


Bao Nam Tran

Private, popular place for coffee, business dealings, meals and light Vietnamese pastries, drinks and desserts. The restaurant/coffee house's ancient Vietnamese architecture; incorporating heavy dark ornate wooden panels and furniture mixed with modern amenities (escalator) is a must-see. Wireless Internet connection and a selection of reading material is available. The restaurant has a lovely ambience at night.


Hoa's Guesthouse

Hoa the owner will make you feel at home. Very friendly atmosphere and is the local gathering place. Very popular among expats from Da Nắng and Hoi An. Closed during Tet. As of June 2015 Hoa only offers homestay since his guesthouse license has been revoked by the district authority and is in the process to get a new one. His place is still open. He Can also recommend English speaking motorbike mechanics.

SLEEP   —  China Beach

Apsara

A reasonably good, somewhat expensive place with a huge, mostly seafood menu and performances of traditional music on some evenings. Food style is Vietnamese with some Chinese influences, and some Western dishes thrown in. Caters to overseas tour groups; tour buses are often seen parked outside. One of their specialties is mantis shrimp, a delicious creature halfway between a shrimp and lobster.


Oceans Western Goods

A small shop that specializes in Western goods, featuring things that are hard to find elsewhere, whether at Big C or Metro: spices, oatmeal, Nutella and baking supplies. If they don't have it, there's a good chance they can order it. Fixed (though expensive) prices for everything. Indispensable if you're spending any length of time in Da Nang.

BUY   —  30/7 Tran Phu St

17 saloon

Wild West-themed bar with live cover rock band from the Philippines every night except Mondays. Music starts around 9.15pm. Expensive drinks but happy hour until 9pm, 2 for 1 Tiger draft beer only, 99,000 dong. You can order as many as you like before 9pm to drink throughout the night. So buy 2 draft beers and have 4 beers to drink that night.

DRINK   —  Map

Hoan My Hospital

Established around ten years ago, many expats in Da Nang find Hoan My to be a good approximation of a Western hospital, with many doctors and nursing staff having been trained in America, Europe, Australia, and elsewhere. The downside, of course, is that costs of care approach those of Western hospitals but much lower than Family Medical.


Long Coffee

Crazy popular ''cà phê cóc''-style coffee shop in Da Nang that serves and sells its own brand of coffee—not the best, according to some, but very popular with locals. It's always busy, noisy and smoky, but that's part of the atmosphere. Go there with a local friend to shoot the breeze and enjoy a quintessential Vietnamese experience.

DRINK   —  123 Le Loi

Waterfront

Open to street. View of Han River. Modern international decor, bar on ground floor. Good gathering place. Comfortable seating. Good selection of local & imported beer & large selection of wines by the glass or bottle. Good service. Full restaurant for lunch and dinner on 2nd level, balcony seating. Owned by expatriates.

EAT   —  150 Bach Dang

Furama Resort

One of the first resorts built in Da Nang, and probably still the only one with a five-star rating. 198 rooms and suites. The resort has its own dive centre, spa, and health centre. Club Tourane opens daily from 20:00-02:00 with a Filipino Band. Hai Van Lounge serves cocktails and light snacks. Many restaurants.

SLEEP   —  +84 5 1138 47333 —  Truong Sa St

Festival Disco

The newest disco and the only one on the My Khe Beach side of the river. It's part of a complex with a restaurant and karaoke rooms. If you buy the staff a drink here (a normal thing to do in this kind of disco-night club) they can be very aggressive about drinking it fast and running up a big bill for you.

DRINK   —  Map

Red Sky Bar and Restaurant

An expat-run Western restaurant. The food is excellent, always delicious with generous portions. The staff are good and know how to look after customers and make them feel at home. Prices are above average by Vietnamese standards, but not too expensive for the quality of food and service received.


Red Hot Bar

A real late night place. ("Late night" is more flexible in Da Nang than in Hanoi. Most of the time discos and places like Red Hot, an approximations of a Thai girlie-bar, close at 01:00 or 01:30, but if the police decide to crack down, they may unexpectedly close at midnight or 00:30).

DRINK   —  179 Nguyen Van Linh

Hoa's Guesthouse at China Beach

The gathering spot for backpackers in the evenings, as Hoa hosts "family dinners." For about USD1.50 you get treated to an all-you-can-eat buffet, courtesy of Hoa's wife. Picnic tables are full of travellers inside this tiny cafe, starting around 19:00. Closed during Tet.

EAT   —  Map

Green Town Bar

One of relatively few bars open past the witching hour and most expats drop in there for either an early evening or late night drink. The view is excellent with an outdoor terrace and 2 big pool tables inside. The prices are very reasonable. Food is available until 22:00.

DRINK   —  50 Bach Dang St

Sa Sa Gelato

A good place to satisfy your sweet tooth. Each scoop of gelato is about 15,000 dong; chose from many local fruit flavours and the regulars, like chocolate. Sa Sa also serves sundaes and other treats to enjoy. Take home available. The staff has basic English.

EAT   —  Map

K + S Cafe

Perhaps the only English speaking, English menu place in this part of the beach. Try the excellent beef stew for 65,000 dong or mango chicken for 70,000 dong. The avocado shakes are really good too, 25,000 dong. Nice little place with big chairs and tables.

EAT   —  next to roundabout

Family Medical Practice

Family Medical Practice is a national group with clinics in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City as well as in Da Nang. Costs are higher than at regular Vietnamese hospitals, but the care is good, and trusted by expats; the resident doctors are expats themselves.


Danang Souvenirs & Cafe

Specialises in tourism souvenirs and gifts about Vietnam and Da Nang. They design their own products, and there is a wide range to choose from, including such typical souvenir products such as t-shirts, teddy bears, key rings and magnets.


Hai Quynh Café

Known as the "Rock Coffee Shop", where you can enjoy coffee and listen to rock music at the same time. You can request songs. Usually, they play ballads and soft rock in the daytime and hard rock and metal in the evening (very loudly).

DRINK   —  468 Hoang Dieu St

Night Sky Hotel

Opened early 2015. Brand new hotel with large Samsung TV with lots of good reception cable TV channels. Free breakfast included. Nice quiet location but a little out of town but their free bicycles more than makes up for that.

SLEEP   —  Map

Red Beach Resort and Spa

All rooms are equipped with LCD TV with cable channels, balcony/lanai/terrace, Air conditioning, complimentary breakfast, private toilet, and bath. Restaurant, spa, swimming pool, Pearl Island tour and water sports facilities.


Big C supermarket

Large supermarket complex with a mall beneath it and food court above. Good. Their is also a [https://www.cgv.vn/en/theaters/showtimes/index/city/danang/name/cgv-vinh-trung-plaza CGV cinema] on the top level.

BUY   —  255 Hùng Vương

Bun Cha Ca Cha Lat

A very modest little place that serves ''bún chả cá''. Great place for an honest-to-goodness Vietnamese noodle breakfast. Kept pretty clean nowadays, but do clean your utensils and glasses before use anyway.

EAT   —  61B Le Hong Phong

Grand Tourane Hotel

The hotel includes 189 rooms with 22 floors. It offers 02 conference rooms, restaurant with Asia and Western food. Its facilities include spa and swimming pool, fitness room/gym, bar, and café


Bambino

Quiet location, good food wine selection. Australian steak grilled to order. International, French and local foods, run by a French couple. A good place for a quiet meal with friends.

EAT   —  122 Quang Trung

Pulchra

The resort is an all-villa with 31 villas only in a 10 hectare beach front property. The first resort in Danang to offer a "Cham" experience in terms of architecture and cuisine.


Golden Pine

This is a popular bar opposite Memory Lounge on the river side. Open till 4am or last customer, they play music on request from customers. Lots of regulars here and a casual vibe

DRINK   —  Map

One Opera Da Nang

206 air conditioned rooms, all of which have cable TV, Internet, minibar, and shower with bathtub. Has spa and swimming pool, fitness room/gym, and restaurant, bar and café.


Koi Sushi, Bento and Sake Bar

Japanese Sushi bar with big bento boxes and the largest Sake list in town. It's one of the few places in town that serves late, 7 days a week. Clean bathrooms and Air-Con.

EAT   —  +840901991165 —  53 An Thuong 2

Danang Backpackers Hostel

Cheap, clean and spacious hostel. Breakfast included, free playing billiards, free beer every night, fast Wi-Fi. Comfy beds, A/C, hot shower. English speaking staff 24/7.


Salem Spa Garden

The construction area of Salem Spa Garden is 1000m2, with 45 beds which are designed according to a spa standard and ecological space with different types of room.


Sao Minh Business Hotel

Spacious and cosy rooms, all equipped with air conditioning, TV with cable channels, and mini-bar. Facilities include business centre, restaurant, and bar.


Sanouva Danang Hotel

The Sanouva Danang Hotel is a new city hotel right at the center of Danang. The Hotel feels warm, very friendly and welcome you with a pleasant service.


Trendy Hotel

Nice view of the Han River Bridge, with a river view available in the deluxe rooms. Offers motorbike rental for 30,000 dong/hr or 150,000 dong/day.


Daia Hotel

A friendly old hotel. The owner is involved with charity. You can visit "The Northwind Broom Workshop" and "Bo Mung Orphanage".


Da Nang bus station

It's a few kilometres out of the city but is serviced by local buses such as #2 which goes to the town centre and #1 to Hoi An.

OTHER   —  Map

Linh Ung Temple

Stunning views of the sea, the sky, and a 67 m tall statue of "Quan The Am" facing the ocean. The pagoda was built in 2010.

SEE   —  Hoang Sa Rd

Lotte Mart shopping centre

Large shopping complex with [http://lottecinemavn.com/en-us/rap-phim/a-nang/lotte-cinema-a-nang.aspx cinema] on top level.

BUY   —  Map

Da Nang Women's Hospital

The Women's Hospital has a very good reputation in Da Nang for its quality of service, especially for prenatal care.

OTHER   —  +84 511 2222 055 —  26C Chu Văn An

Café Vi Lan

Comfortable, typical coffee shop that plays soft music and plays HBO movies on mute. Upper floor is air-conditioned.


Funtastic Hostel

New hostel as of Feb 2014. Comfy beds, big lockers, good Wi-Fi, friendly English speaking staff, breakfast included

SLEEP   —  115 Hai Phong

Dang Viet Hotel

Air-con, comfortable beds, fast Wi-Fi, hot showers, refrigerator and international cable TV. Staff speak English.

SLEEP   —  +84 5 1139 41445 —  11-12 Ho Nghinh

Trúc Lâm Viên

Pleasant garden-style café. Food is a little expensive; worth it mainly for the décor. Tends to be a busy place.


Karma Waters

Sustainable tour operator and vegetarian restaurant operates Da Nang-Hoi boat tours and shuttle service.


Bamboo Bar 2

Popular haunt for expats. Bamboo 2's owner speaks excellent English, there are always foreigners there.

DRINK   —  Map

New Phuong Dong Disco

New Phuong Dong has a resident Ghanaian DJ and many visiting singers from Saigon and Hanoi.

DRINK   —  20 Dong Da

Trieu Chau

Serves a wonderful lau Thai lan (spicy Thai-style fish soup).

EAT   —  Map

Nha Nghi 278

Cheap, but nice guesthouse with Wi-Fi, hot water, air-con.

SLEEP   —  +84 5 1138 44877 —  278 Le Van Hien

Thien Duc Motel

An OK option, although services are far from superior.

SLEEP   —  +84 511 382 5232 —  187 Dong Da

Tuy Anh Chinese Chess Coffee Shop

Hangout for coffee-drinking Chinese chess enthusiasts.

DRINK   —  79 Le Dinh Ly St

Hyatt Regency Da Nang

200 comfortable rooms and 27 ocean-view villas.


Limoncello

Great Italian food with homemade limoncello.


Immigration department

For visa extensions.

OTHER   —  7 Tran Quy Cap

Scorpions

DRINK   —  140 Yen Bai St

CheRo

DRINK   —  79 Le Dinh Ly St

About Da Nang

The regions surrounding Da Nang (My Son, Quang Nam) were founded by the Cham Hindus perhaps 3,000 years ago, serving as the capital city and centre of the Hindu Champa Dynasty. Vietnamese invasions into the region in the 17th century significantly halted Cham development.

Given that Da Nang was the first point of colonial invasion, many vestiges of French architecture are present in the historic buildings.

Until relatively , Da Nang was somewhat hostile to foreigners, a consequence of the attitudes of those who controlled the provincial government. In the early 1990s, however, this changed, and since then the provincial (actually autonomous city) government has been enthusiastically pursuing foreign investment and infrastructure development. Da Nang has some of the best roads in the country. The coast road is at least four lanes from northern provincial boundary to southern provincial boundary. Compared to either Hanoi or HCMC, traffic in Da Nang is always relatively light, although huge trucks blast through every now and again and there are brief rush hours.

The city is often overlooked by tourists but it is one of the friendliest to backpackers in all of Vietnam. My Khe Beach, known to American GIs as China Beach, is now home to a small community of guesthouse owners, marble statue shops, and other various trades. Some of the most beautiful and isolated beaches in Vietnam are found here, among some of the friendliest people. This is a must-stop for the budget traveller.


There are many remnants of the "American War" left over in Da Nang. During the war, many monuments and buildings were destroyed. On the way to My Khe Beach, the ruins of a military base remain in the form of helicopter hangars; however, these are now more easily spotted at the airport, which serves both civil and military flights.

The city has grown rapidly, and had a population of 1,046,876 in 2015. This growth had been outward and infill, but now there are high-rises going up. Development is visible and rapid; the city has expanded tremendously, and several multi-storey buildings and more beach resorts are under construction. This involves redevelopment of areas near the city beaches across the river, with whole blocks of old housing being razed, new roads paved, and luxurious villas constructed.

The downside to the very laid back, less serious and frenetic aspect of Da Nang is that even locals frequently complain that there is nothing to do except drink, which they do a lot. This is not really true: there is a zoo, a soccer stadium, many tennis courts, pool halls, several large modern discos/night clubs, the beaches, and Son Tra Peninsula. However, it is also true that coffee and beer drinking are the most common leisure activities of most local residents.


Source: wikivoyage