Da Nang, a dynamic and contemporary city in Vietnam, offers a wealth of attractions and activities for visitors. In this comprehensive Da Nang Travel Guide, you’ll find everything you need to know about the top things to do, travel information, and useful tips to enhance your trip.
As my first destination in Vietnam, Da Nang captivated me with its unbeatable value, delectable Vietnamese cuisine, and captivating street scenes. It’s a remarkable city that leaves no one disappointed.
Being a flourishing coastal city, Da Nang boasts stunning sandy white beaches that have garnered recognition from Forbes as one of the world’s most breathtaking. It’s the perfect beach getaway for travelers seeking adventure and relaxation.
Beyond the beaches, Da Nang offers a plethora of other captivating sights and scenic spots to explore at your own pace. Don’t miss the opportunity to plan day trips to nearby attractions, including the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Hoi An and My Son. This beach city serves as an excellent introduction for novice travelers venturing into Vietnam.
This essential Da Nang Travel Guide is your companion for a short trip to Vietnam’s most vibrant city. We’ve curated a list of the most enjoyable and rewarding things to do in Da Nang, along with recommendations for the best beaches, accommodations, and local cuisine. Get ready to make the most out of your Da Nang experience!
Best time to visit Da Nang
For tourists planning a trip to Da Nang, the best time to visit is typically from February to April. During this period, the weather is pleasantly warm and slightly cool, making it ideal for exploring the city and engaging in outdoor activities. Many travelers from around the world flock to Da Nang during these months to enjoy the fine weather and take advantage of all the attractions the city has to offer.
From May to August, the weather in Da Nang becomes noticeably hotter, with temperatures often reaching up to 40 degrees Celsius. Sightseeing during this time can be quite exhausting due to the high temperatures. It is recommended to plan your activities accordingly and take measures to stay cool and hydrated.
The rainy season in Da Nang spans from September to January. During this time, you can expect more frequent rain showers, and the climate becomes relatively unpredictable. It is advisable to pack appropriate rain gear and plan indoor activities as backup options.
By considering the weather conditions during different months, you can choose the most suitable time to visit Da Nang and make the most of your trip.
How To Get To Da Nang City
The Da Nang International Airport is conveniently located, providing easy access to the city center. It is situated just 10 minutes away from the heart of Da Nang. There are several transportation options available for travelers to reach the city from the airport.
Taxi: Taxis are readily available outside the arrival hall, offering the fastest way to get to Da Nang city. The journey typically takes around 10 minutes, and the fare, depending on the distance, is approximately 110,000 VND for a one-way ride.
GRAB: Similar to Uber, GRAB is a popular e-hailing service in Southeast Asia. It can be used to travel from Da Nang Airport to the city center, as well as for transportation within Da Nang itself. Before your trip, ensure that you have the GRAB app installed on your smartphone. You can easily request a ride and specify your pick-up and drop-off locations. The cost for a 10-minute one-way trip is approximately 100,000 VND.
Private Transfer to Hoi An: If your destination is Hoi An, you have the option to pre-book a private transfer service. This convenient and hassle-free option ensures a direct transfer from the airport to your hotel in Hoi An. It provides a reasonable price and eliminates concerns about potential taxi scams.
By choosing the transportation method that suits your needs, you can swiftly and safely travel from Da Nang International Airport to your desired destination.
Where To Stay
If you’re seeking relaxation and tranquility in Da Nang, staying at a beach resort is highly recommended. There are numerous beautiful resorts and accommodations available that offer the perfect escape in Danang. The best part is that the prices for accommodations in Da Nang are relatively affordable, considering the world-class facilities and services provided.
Two popular picks among travelers to Da Nang are Premier Village Danang Resort at Bac My An Beach and Four Points by Sheraton Danang at My Khe Beach. These resorts offer exceptional experiences and are highly recommended for a memorable stay in Da Nang.
Another option to consider is Star City Hotel & Apartments. Situated along the banks of the Han River, it provides a breathtaking panoramic view of the Han River, the Dragon and Han Bridges, and the city. This accommodation offers a unique and picturesque setting for your stay in Da Nang.
Whether you choose a beach resort or a riverside hotel, Da Nang offers a range of options to suit your preferences. Enjoy the serene atmosphere and top-notch amenities as you unwind and indulge in the beauty of this coastal city.
Things To Do in Da Nang
When visiting Danang, there are countless activities and attractions to enjoy. We have compiled a list of must-see places and experiences in our Da Nang Travel Guide below.
Within the city of Danang, immerse yourself in the vibrant downtown area by exploring the local market, witnessing the mesmerizing Dragon Bridge performance, or taking a leisurely stroll across the romantic Love Bridge. Don’t miss the opportunity to bask in the sun and sea on the pristine beaches or venture to the Son Tra Peninsula for a breathtaking panoramic view of the city.
Venturing beyond the city limits, we highly recommend planning trips to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Hoi An Ancient Town and My Son Sanctuary. Additionally, Ba Na Hills, an enchanting French-colonial entertainment park atop a hill, should be included in your Da Nang Travel Guide.
In summary, here are the top activities and attractions featured in our Da Nang Travel Guide:
- Relax on the beautiful beaches of Danang
- Explore the bustling Han Market for a unique shopping experience
- Indulge in a traditional Vietnamese breakfast at a local market
- Visit the iconic Pink Cathedral in Danang
- Rent a motorbike and journey to the scenic Son Tra Peninsula
- Discover the serene beauty of Linh Ung Pagoda
- Marvel at the majestic Lady Buddha, the tallest in Vietnam
- Witness the captivating performances at the Dragon Bridge
- Take a romantic stroll across the Love Bridge
- Delight in the flavors of Da Nang’s famous Quang Noodles
- Enjoy the cool climate and stunning vistas at Ba Na Hill
- Immerse yourself in the charm of Hoi An Ancient Town
- Embark on a day trip to the historic My Son Sanctuary
By following our Da Nang Travel Guide, you’ll make the most of your time in this captivating city and create lasting memories of your Vietnamese adventure.
Relaxing on Da Nang Beaches
Immerse yourself in the serene beauty of Da Nang’s beaches, a must-visit for outdoor enthusiasts. With easy access from the city center, Da Nang offers a variety of picturesque coastline options.
Da Nang’s beaches are open year-round, allowing you to enjoy them at your leisure. Pack your swimwear, towels, and sunscreen for an unforgettable beach adventure. Two standout beaches are My Khe Beach and Non Nuoc Beach.
My Khe Beach, ranked among Forbes’ top global beaches, captivates with its 20-mile stretch of pristine white sands and azure waters. Enjoy sunbathing, fishing, snorkeling, jet-skiing, and surfing. Nearby, upscale resorts and seafood restaurants add a touch of luxury.
Non Nuoc Beach, a short drive from the city, spans five kilometers of Hoa Hai Ward’s coastline. With soft sands, gentle slopes, clear waters, and mild waves, it offers a tranquil ambiance. Take a barefoot stroll and indulge in sunbathing, jet-skiing, and surfing, accompanied by delectable local seafood.
Experience the allure of Da Nang’s captivating beaches, surrounded by stunning natural beauty. Whether seeking relaxation or thrilling water sports, these beaches provide an unforgettable setting for your adventure.
Shopping in Han Market
The Han Market, also known as Chợ Hàn, is a vibrant traditional market in Da Nang that offers an immersive experience into local life and ASEAN culture. Located near the picturesque Han River Bridge, this central market has been operating since the 1940s during the French occupancy. With its two-story covered building, Han Market houses hundreds of stalls, creating a haven for shoppers.
At Han Market, you’ll discover a wide range of products, ensuring there’s something for everyone. From locally produced handicrafts, trendy T-shirts, and stylish accessories to delightful dried foods like nuts, coffee, pickles, and snacks, you’ll find enticing items to bring back as souvenirs. Even the locals flock to Han Market to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats for their daily needs, showcasing its significance in the local community.
Embrace the lively shopping atmosphere and make the most of your visit by bargaining with the friendly vendors for the best prices. Han Market is known for its reasonable prices, making it a great place to find bargains. However, do keep in mind that the market can get crowded, so be prepared for a bustling and bustling experience.
Overall, a visit to Han Market promises an unforgettable glimpse into local life, an opportunity to interact with friendly locals, and a chance to bring home unique treasures from Da Nang’s local markets. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere, indulge in the variety of offerings, and enjoy the cultural and shopping delights of this ASEAN market.
Have a Vietnamese Breakfast in Local Market
Start your day at Han Market by indulging in an authentic Vietnamese breakfast. In the morning, head to the small food court located at the center of the market, where you’ll find a wide array of local Vietnamese dishes.
Savor the flavors of Mi Quang, a delicious dish of turmeric noodles, or enjoy a comforting bowl of pho, a beef noodle soup that’s a staple of Vietnamese cuisine. Crispy Banh Xeo pancakes, Bun Thit Nuong (dry noodles with grilled pork), refreshing Goi Cuon (Vietnamese spring rolls), and many other local specialties are also available. The best part? Each dish is reasonably priced, usually costing no more than VND 30,000. Treat yourself to a tasty and affordable breakfast experience in Da Nang.
To complete your breakfast like a true local, pair your meal with a cup of Vietnamese coffee. There’s nothing quite like starting your day with the rich and aromatic flavors of Vietnamese coffee, perfectly complementing the vibrant tastes of the noodles and other dishes available at Han Market. Don’t forget to try the local sauce that accompanies the pho for an authentic flavor experience.
Immerse yourself in the bustling atmosphere of Han Market as you enjoy a fulfilling Vietnamese breakfast. This is a wonderful opportunity to not only explore the diverse culinary offerings but also to experience the local food culture firsthand. Relish the combination of flavors and take delight in the affordable prices, making it an excellent way to begin your day in Da Nang.
So, when you visit Han Market, make sure to seize the chance to have a delicious Vietnamese breakfast that will leave you energized and ready to explore all that Da Nang has to offer.
Visit Da Nang Pink Cathedral
Da Nang Cathedral, a renowned Catholic church in Vietnam, captivates visitors with its stunning architectural features. Built by the French in 1923, it continues to serve the local Catholic community to this day. The cathedral’s distinct pink facade, vibrant stained-glass windows, and majestic bell tower adorned with a rooster weathercock make it a must-visit attraction.
You can visit Da Nang Cathedral regardless of your religious beliefs, as entrance is free of charge. It is highly recommended to include a visit to this church during your trip, even if you don’t attend Mass.
The cathedral’s opening hours are from 11:30 to 14:00. While you can explore the premises during this time, it is particularly special to attend Mass if you have the opportunity. Mass is held on Mondays to Saturdays at 5:30 and 17:30, and on Sundays at 5:30, 6:30, 7:30, 15:30, and 17:30.
Marvel at the architectural beauty of Da Nang Cathedral and embrace the peaceful ambiance within its walls. Whether you appreciate its religious significance or simply admire its captivating design, a visit to this iconic landmark is an enriching experience.
Rent A Motorbike To Son Tra Peninsula
Discover the awe-inspiring beauty of Son Tra Peninsula, also known as Monkey Mountain, located in the northeastern part of Da Nang. Just 13 km from the city center, this national park offers a tranquil escape from the bustling urban life. Rising 693 meters above sea level, the mountain is easily accessible with a 35-minute drive from the city center.
Son Tra Peninsula boasts lush green hills and is surrounded by pristine beaches like Bai Bac, Bai Nam, Bai But, and Tien Sa Beach. The winding road leading to the mountain’s peak is a popular route for hiking, cycling, and immersing yourself in the natural beauty of the surroundings. As you explore, keep an eye out for the rare red-faced monkeys that inhabit the verdant jungles of the area.
A visit to Son Tra Peninsula is a perfect morning or afternoon excursion. If you have a scooter or plan on renting one during your stay in Da Nang, don’t miss the opportunity to ride around Son Tra Mountain. The breathtaking views of the hills and the Pacific Ocean are simply spectacular. The leisurely drive offers a sense of tranquility and is an essential experience when visiting Da Nang.
Travel Tip for Da Nang: You can reach the mountain’s peak by car, motorbike, or even bicycle if you’re up for the challenge. If you feel apprehensive about the traffic in Vietnam, consider hiring a taxi or joining a private tour that will take you to all the key attractions and viewpoints.
Embark on a journey to Son Tra Peninsula and immerse yourself in its natural splendor. Whether you choose to drive, cycle, or take a guided tour, this remarkable destination promises unforgettable vistas and a peaceful respite from the city’s hustle and bustle.
Visit Linh Ung Pagoda
A visit to Linh Ung Pagoda is a must on your Da Nang travel guide, especially when exploring the Son Tra Peninsula. Located atop a hill, this pagoda offers a breathtaking panoramic view of Da Nang.
As you enter through the gate, the enchanting courtyard welcomes you with meticulously maintained gardens adorned with various bonsai trees, a serene pond, and 18 statues showcasing different expressions. Inside the temple, you’ll find a 1.1-meter-high seated Buddha statue, as well as brass statues of the Goddess of Mercy (Avalokitesvara) and Dai The Chi Bodhisattva.
Despite the lively ambiance of downtown Da Nang, Linh Ung Pagoda provides a peaceful atmosphere. Witness the locals engaging in morning prayers and observe the daily lives of the resident monks. Admission to the pagoda is free of charge, but be aware that it can get crowded with pilgrims during special occasions. It’s advisable to avoid visiting on the first and fifteenth of each month, as these days attract many worshippers.
Immerse yourself in the tranquility of Linh Ung Pagoda, soak in the panoramic view of Da Nang, and experience the spiritual ambiance created by the devoted locals and resident monks.
Admire Tallest Lady Buddha in Vietnam
A visit to Linh Ung Temple on the Son Tra Peninsula offers a remarkable sight—the tallest Lady Buddha statue in Vietnam. As you ascend the temple steps, this iconic landmark captivates your attention and dominates the skyline of Da Nang. With a towering height of 67 meters and a base diameter of 35 meters, the statue is truly awe-inspiring. Standing at the base of the statue, you’ll be filled with a sense of wonder and admiration for this magnificent depiction of Lady Buddha. Don’t miss the chance to witness this breathtaking sight during your visit to the Son Tra Peninsula.
Watch Performance at Dragon Bridge
Da Nang, known as the “City of Bridges,” is home to several stunning bridges, and the Dragon Bridge stands out among them. This bridge, designed in the shape of a magnificent golden dragon, holds great significance for the locals, symbolizing power, nobility, and good fortune.
Stretching an impressive 666 meters in length, the Dragon Bridge is the longest bridge in Vietnam. With its six lanes, it gracefully spans the Han River, connecting key areas in Da Nang.
During the day, the Dragon Bridge bustles with motorbikes and cars crossing its expanse. However, it truly comes alive at night when the dragon is adorned with captivating colorful lights. The bridge’s illumination reflects on the river, creating a captivating and enchanting scene.
Every weekend, starting from 9:00 PM, the Dragon Bridge treats visitors to a mesmerizing fire and water performance. Witness the dragon spitting water and breathing fire, adding an extra element of excitement to the spectacle. While it may not be the sole reason to visit Da Nang, missing this captivating experience would be a regrettable oversight once you’re in the city.
Romantic Stroll at Love Bridge
Located just a stone’s throw away from the Dragon Bridge, Da Nang’s Love Bridge on the Han River is a charming attraction inspired by the renowned love lock bridges found across the globe. This bridge features an arc shape adorned with numerous personalized locks, each symbolizing the love and commitment of couples who visit. It has become a popular spot for young lovers to add their own lock to the pier, wishing for a strong and lasting relationship.
As the evening sets in, the love-shaped lights along the waterfront illuminate, casting a romantic ambiance for those taking a leisurely stroll along the bridge. Additionally, the surrounding area offers a variety of restaurants, pubs, and bars, catering to tourists at any time of the day. This provides an opportunity to relax, enjoy a delicious meal or drink, and soak in the breathtaking views of the surroundings. The Love Bridge in Da Nang is the perfect place to embrace the enchanting atmosphere and create beautiful memories.
Eat Da Nang Quang Noodles
Don’t Miss Out on one of Da Nang’s Iconic Dish: Mì Quảng (Quang Noodles)
While Cao lầu may steal the spotlight in Hoi An, when you visit Da Nang, make sure to indulge in the local specialty: mì quảng (Quang Noodles).
Da Nang’s culinary scene is heavily influenced by neighboring regions like Hue and Quang Nam, resulting in a rich variety of Vietnamese cuisine. Among them, mì quảng stands out as a beloved dish, hailing from Quảng Nam Province and gaining popularity throughout Central Vietnam, particularly in Da Nang.
This delectable dish features turmeric-infused rice noodles, meticulously cut into flat fibers. It is typically served with a medley of meats, vegetables, aromatic herbs, and a savory broth. You’ll find numerous restaurants and street food stalls in Da Nang where you can savor this regional delight, immersing yourself in the authentic flavors of Central Vietnam.
Don’t pass up the opportunity to taste mì quảng during your visit to Da Nang, as it encapsulates the unique culinary heritage of the region and offers a truly delightful dining experience.
Enjoy the Cool Weather at Ba Na Hill
Situated 40 km west of Da Nang, Ba Na Hills has become a must-visit destination for travelers exploring the area. Nestled in the Truong Son Mountains, this all-encompassing entertainment complex offers pleasant temperatures year-round. To reach Ba Na Hills, you’ll embark on an unforgettable journey aboard the world record-holding single-cable car, spanning a remarkable 5,801 meters from the mountain’s base to its summit. Once you arrive at the top, a world of exploration awaits at the hilltop resort.
The resort boasts a charming French village reminiscent of a medieval castle, an amusement park with thrilling rides, a wax museum, and various other attractions. However, the crown jewel of Ba Na Hills is the Golden Bridge, an awe-inspiring structure perched at an elevation of 1,400 meters. This extraordinary bridge features two colossal hands cradling it, creating a surreal sensation of being held by the divine. Standing in the middle of the bridge, you’ll be enveloped by a sense of wonder and a feeling of being connected to something greater. A visit to Ba Na Hills promises an unforgettable experience filled with captivating sights and remarkable attractions.
Explore Hoi An Ancient Town
If you have extra time in Da Nang, we highly recommend visiting the enchanting town of Hoi An. Located approximately 30 km from downtown Da Nang, Hoi An is a perfect choice for a day trip or even an extended stay.
Hoi An is a meticulously preserved ancient town boasting a rich historical heritage. Once a bustling trading port from the 15th to the 19th century, it has been shaped by diverse cultural influences. Chinese, Japanese, and French colonial architecture gracefully merge within this Vietnamese town.
As day turns into night, Hoi An transforms into a captivating dreamland. The streets adorned with vibrant lanterns illuminate the town in a mesmerizing glow. Immerse yourself in the ancient traditions, witness the local way of life, and be captivated by the timeless beauty of this historic gem.
Whether you choose to explore Hoi An for a day or extend your visit to days or even a weekend, this town will undoubtedly leave you enchanted with its timeless charm and unique cultural atmosphere.
Take a Day Trip To My Son Sanctuary
Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, My Son Sanctuary is a captivating collection of ancient ruins constructed by the Champ Kingdom over 1,300 years ago. These historic remnants hold immense significance, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of the region.
Embarking on a journey to My Son, you’ll encounter approximately 70 surviving temples that withstood the test of time, even through the Vietnam War. Marvel at the intricate carvings, awe-inspiring stone pillars, and architectural marvels that resemble a miniature version of Cambodia’s Angkor Wat.
While the site may not offer an extensive range of attractions, it provides a remarkable glimpse into Vietnam’s past. A day trip to My Son is ideal for immersing yourself in the fascinating history of the central region. Consider opting for a guided tour to gain deeper insights into the historical significance and stories surrounding My Son Sanctuary.