Da Nang is large and lively with a city centre population of around 1.3 million permanent residents. The city has a mix of very new and very modern buildings along with areas with much older architecture with a range of Vietnamese, Chinese and European architectural influences. The city’s culture is not, however, what brings most of the 3 million holiday makers to Da Dang. Da Dang’s major attraction is it’s coastal location with long sandy beaches and rugged coastline. The majority of the visitors to the city are Asian travellers on short breaks and this is reflected in the hotels and restaurants which cater, in the greater part, to the preferences of those Asian visitors. European visitors need to work a bit harder to find the accommodation, bars and food they prefer than they might need to in other top Vietnamese tourist destinations such as Hue or Hoi An.
Fishermen in Da Nang
There are a lot of things to see and do in Da Nang, the most popular of which are:
Beaches: Da Nang has three main city centre beaches to choose from, of which My Kye Beach (also known as China Beach) is the most popular.
Bridges: There are three large bridges in Da Nang city centre (Dragon Bridge, Rran Thi Ly Bridge and Thuan Phuoc Bridge) which are impressive enough to merit a walk along to river to go and see them. Dragon Bridge is illuminated every weekend at 21:00 and the head of the dragon ejects water and flames.
Son Tra Peninsular: Large protected forest area on a hill located only 12 km to the north of Da Nang Railway Station. There is a 40 km track around the peninsula which you can travel around on a motorbike. As well as wildlife and yet more beaches, the peninsula’s main temple, the Son Tra Linh Ung Pagoda complex, has a 69 metre tall statue of the Goddess of Mercy.
Ba Na Hill Station: Located 40 km to the west of Da Nang, Ba Na Hill Station is hill top tourist town established by the French colonialists in the 1920s and still popular today as a leisure retreat which benefits from a cooler climate.
My Son Sanctuary: Ancient temple ruins built by the people of the Cham Ethnic group between the 4th and 13th Centuries and more recently awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status. My Son Sanctuary is located about 50 km by road to the south of Da Nang city centre.