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When we decided to base ourselves in Da Nang, Vietnam for two weeks, we envisioned spending long, relaxing days at the beach, idling away our time by watching the Vietnamese fisherman come and go in their basket boats.
What we discovered, however, is that there are many incredible and fun things to do in Da Nang besides beach life! Our days were quickly filled with city sights, natural wonders, day trips from Da Nang and, of course, the delectable Da Nang cuisine.
What To Do in Da Nang, Vietnam
The sights and attractions in Da Nang appeal to all types of travelers. From contemporary architecture and fairytale theme parks to ancient temples tucked into hidden caves, there is certainly a variety of things to do around Da Nang. When planning a trip, it is not only important to decide what to do in Da Nang, Vietnam, but how long to stay in Da Nang.
We think visitors should stay at least three days in Da Nang to really get a feel for it. However, we know many travelers to Vietnam are limited on time. Therefore, in addition to providing our top tips on must-do things in Da Nang – we also offer itinerary suggestions for how to spend 1 to 3 days in the city.
5 Best Things To Do in Da Nang, Vietnam
Our list of Da Nang, Vietnam things to do includes top attractions, city highlights and nearby Da Nang sights that we think should be on every travel itinerary! Additionally, we provide essential Da Nang travel tips – like how to get there, what to pack and where to stay in Da Nang. In short, our Da Nang Travel Blog includes everything you need to plan your trip!
Save, Pin or Bookmark this Da Nang Travel Guide to plan your trip to Vietnam!
#1 Spend the Day at a Da Nang Beach
The beaches in Da Nang are some of the best beaches in Vietnam – and spending time on the sandy shoreline is one of the top Da Nang things to do! The long stretch of coastal beach extends for 20 miles from the Son Tra Peninsula to the north, all the way south to Hoi An.
Along the Da Nang strand, high-rise hotels and resorts overlook the beach and waterfront eateries offer fresh seafood specialties. At the beach, visitors can partake in top Da Nang activities, like parasailing, windsurfing, jet-skiing, boating, swimming and, of course, sunbathing.
My Khe Beach Da Nang (China Beach)
With white sand and clean water, My Khe Beach has long been touted as one of the best beaches in Da Nang. During the Vietnam War, My Khe was a popular R&R beach for American soldiers, who gave the beach it’s better-known moniker, China Beach.
During the day, the beach is swarmed with foreign visitors – but the big beach seldom feels crowded (although the partitioned safe-swim areas do get quite congested!). Locals prefer going to the beach early in the morning – when the temperatures are coolest – to walk and exercise.
South of My Khe Beach visitors will find more Da Nang beaches – like Bac My An Beach and Non Nuoc Beach.
Unspoiled Da Nang Beaches
Travelers seeking quiet beaches away from the crowds should make their way to hidden Da Nang beaches. The Son Tra Peninsula boasts a few gems along the rustic shoreline (which is best explored by motorbike). Further north, Lang Co Beach features a lagoon of turquoise sea and nearby natural springs.
#2 Visit Ba Na Hills Park and Golden Hand Bridge
Visiting the Ba Na Hills theme park is one of the most popular things to do in Da Nang, Vietnam! Established as a mountain resort for French colonists, the holiday retreat was revitalized into a fairytale theme park in the early 2000s.
The park’s most recognizable attraction is the Golden Hand Bridge – a mountainside golden bridge held by two giant stone-carved hands. However, there are numerous things to see and do at the park – like visiting the replica French Village, strolling through manicured gardens, playing classic games in the 3-story arcade and riding the scenic cable car.
For detailed tips – including ticket options – see our complete Ba Na Hills Da Nang guide.
#3 Explore the Top Da Nang Attractions
Beaches and theme parks aside, city sightseeing is a must-do in Da Nang! The sights are spread out – from the Linh Ung Pagoda on the Son Tra Peninsula to the caves and temples on the Marble Mountains to the architectural gems in the Da Nang city center.
Son Tra Peninsula: Linh Ung Pagoda
From the coastline, visitors can see the white Lady Buddha standing on the hillside of the Son Tra Mountain. The 220-foot-tall statue is part of the Bai But Linh Ung Pagoda, an expansive and lavish Buddhist temple complex built in 2010 – and visiting it is one of the best free things to do in Da Nang!
Marble Mountain: Caves and Temples
Of the five hills that constitute the Marble Mountains, the Water Mountain is most popular with visitors. Featuring vast caves, interesting temples and phenomenal viewpoints, Marble Mountain is a top tourist attraction in Da Nang.
Da Nang City Center Sights
The Da Nang city center is a blend of old and new. Historic structures, like the Da Nang Cathedral, stand in contrast to modern marvels, like the Dragon Bridge. Visiting these sights is an intriguing education about Da Nang and its current rapid development.
Because these Da Nang, Vietnam things to do are scattered around the city, it is recommended that visitors join one of the tours in Da Nang – like this one! On a DaNang local tour, participants get an introduction to the top sights and learn about the history from a guide. However, travelers who like to explore on their own can create their own self-guided tour using our Attractions Guide.
Read our comprehensive Da Nang trip blog – Tour Da Nang Attractions – for the best sightseeing tips and top Da Nang tours.
#4 Go On The Best Day Trips from Da Nang, Vietnam
Looking for things to do around Da Nang? The city is well-connected to numerous nearby destinations – and Da Nang day trips are the perfect way to discover more of the region. Visitors can join highly-rated Da Nang day tours – or, in some cases, plan a self-guided DaNang day tour.
Whether you go with a guide or on your own, day trips are one of the top things to do in Da Nang. The best places to visit near Da Nang are the ancient town of Hoi An, the Old Imperial City of Hue, the Cham Islands and My Son Sanctuary.
Hoi An Day Tours from Da Nang
One of the top day trips from Da Nang, visiting Hoi An – a UNESCO World Heritage city – is an absolute must! The picturesque Hoi An Old Town is a jumble of appealing lanes decorated with colorful lanterns and nested alongside a lazy river.
Travelers on a Hoi An day trip from DaNang have plenty of time to see the Old Town sights – like the Japanese Covered Bridge, Phuc Kein Fujian Assembly Hall, Cam Pho Communal House and the Central Market. After sightseeing, visitors can go shopping for Hoi An specialties – like paper lanterns and tailored clothing – and can complete the day trip by feasting on local Vietamese cuisine and Fresh Beer!
Read our Things To Do in Hoi An post for more detailed sightseeing information.
How To Get from Da Nang to Hoi An
Visitors can easily book a tour to Hoi An – every Da Nang tour operator offers the day trip. We recommend choosing a highly-rated tour – like this one – that gives guests the freedom to choose what they want to see with the local guide.
However, tourists can almost as easily plan their own travel from Da Nang to Hoi An. The two cities are just 30km (20 miles) apart. A Taxi between Da Nang and Hoi An is the easiest way to travel, but also the most expensive at about $30 USD per ride. Private transport can be booked in advance online for less. However, using the Grab App for a taxi might be even cheaper. The least expensive way to travel to Hoi An from Da Nang is via the local bus – Bus #1 – which costs about $1.50 USD.
Hue and Hai Van Pass Tours from Da Nang
The Imperial City of Hue is located 90km (55 miles) north of Da Nang – and is a perfect day tour from Da Nang! The ancient sights – collectively known as the Complex of Hue Monuments – have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Hue served as the capital of Vietnam and home of the reigning Nguyen Dynasty from 1802 until 1945. Although the area suffered a lot of destruction during the Vietnam War, many of the most significant structures still stand.
Top sights in Hue include the Citadel and Emperor’s Palace, the historic Thien Mu Pagoda and Emperor Khai Dinh’s tomb (all of which you will visit on a Day Trip From Da Nang!).
Hai Van Pass
One of the perks of taking a day trip from Da Nang to Hue is that some tours (like the one we took!) make the trip via the Hai Van Pass. The twisting road – which is both the most beautiful and the most dangerous in the country – climbs through the Annamite Mountain Range and provides stunning views in all directions.
Another must-see sight on a Da Nang to Hue Tour is the Lang Co fishing village. Popular for it’s long, sandy beaches and fresh fish markets, the nearby Lang Co Springs attracts visitors for swims in it’s clear, cool and natural waters.
Read our complete Hue City Tour review for more information on how to plan a Hue Tour from DaNang.
How To Get from Da Nang to Hue
There are three routes between Da Nang and Hue: Via the picturesque Hai Van Pass (this route is used by most tour operators in at least one direction), through the Hai Van Tunnel (public bus or hired driver) or by rail (which is not particularly practical for Hue day trips).
Cham Islands Boat Tours from Da Nang
The Cham Islands are a chain of eight islands just nine miles off the coast of Hoi An in the East Vietnam Sea. Designated a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the islands are a perfect escape from the busy mainland.
Tours from Hoi An and Da Nang visit Hon Lao Island – the biggest and only inhabited island in the archipelago. Sights on the island include the traditional fishing village, temples and beaches. The best Cham Island tours – like this one from Da Nang – include a snorkeling stop and a locally prepared beach lunch, too.
Learn more about the Cham Island Tour Itinerary in our Cham Island Tour review.
How To Get to Cham Islands from Da Nang
Most Da Nang Boat Tours depart from the Cua Dai Wharf in Hoi An (mini-van pick up in Da Nang is included in the price of the tour). There are both speed boats (fastest) and traditional wooden boats (slower) that are used by Cham Island tour operators. DIY day trippers who want to organize their own Da Nang boat trip can catch a ride to the Cua Dai Port and hop on the slow ferry for an inexpensive ride to the Cham Islands.
My Son Sanctuary Trips from Da Nang
Located inland from Hoi An, My Son Sanctuary is an ancient Hindu temple complex of the Champa Kingdom. Once featuring more than 70 temples, much of the valley complex was destroyed during the Vietnam War. Although many of the temples are in ruins (like some of the temples in Angkor Wat complex in Cambodia), the site gained UNESCO World Heritage status in 1999.
On a guided My Son tour from Da Nang, participants will learn about the history of the Champa Kingdom and the temples they built. Find out more about this half-day tour!
#5 Eat the Best Da Nang Food
Don’t miss one of the absolute best things to do in Da Nang: Eat the fabulous food! The local cuisine is a mix of iconic Vietnam food, Central Vietnamese specialties and international cuisine.
During our trip, we made it our mission to seek out the best food in Da Nang. Not only did we find the top Da Nang places to eat local specialties – like Mi Quang, Banh Xeo, Avocado Ice Cream and some Central Vietnamese Home Cooking – but we also indulged in global fare – like Indian food, Mexican tacos (with a twist) and American-style burgers.
Use our Da Nang Food Guide for our top tips on what and where to eat!
More Things To Do in Da Nang, Vietnam
Our above list features our favorite Da Nang activities – but there are a few more things to do in Da Nang, Vietnam that might appeal to fellow travelers.
Shopping in Da Nang
From traditional markets to modern malls, there are plenty of places to go shopping in Da Nang! Travelers looking for a local shopping experience should go to the Con Market, which is packed with vendor stalls selling just about everything under the sun. Tourists looking for inexpensive souvenirs and packaged goods should check out the Han Market.
Vincom Plaza is a modern mall with brand name stores intermingled with local shops. For everyday shopping, the LOTTE Mart and always-crowded Big C Supermarket are good choices.
Da Nang Museums
We didn’t visit any museums during our trip to Da Nang – we were too enthralled by the city and people! That said, there are a few museums that come highly-rated by other travelers.
Featuring Cham sculptures that date to the 5th century, the Cham Museum houses the largest collection of Cham artifacts in the world.
Zone 5 Military Museum
Visitors can learn about Vietnam’s version of military history at the Zone 5 Military Museum. A highlight of the museum is the military equipment that is on display, as well as a dedicated section to Ho Chi Minh.
Art in Paradise 3D Museum
An entertaining and interactive space, the Art in Paradise Museum displays interactive 3D wall murals that make for fun photo ops!
Da Nang Museum
The modern Da Nang Museum presents visitors with a history of the city, the people and the culture.
Da Nang Itinerary: Planning Your Da Nang Vacation
Now that you know all of the best things to do, it’s time to plan your Da Nang, Vietnam Itinerary! To help other travelers see the best of the city, we have created a sample 3-Day Itinerary for Da Nang. We designed this Da Nang Travel Itinerary to build on each day – so it is perfect for visitors who have just one day in Da Nang or three days in the city!
DAY 1 DA NANG
On Day 1, see the top city sights during the day, go to the beach in the afternoon and indulge in the fabulous fare at night. Use our Guide to Tour Da Nang Attractions to plan what to see – or book a convenient Da Nang One Day Tour – like this highly-rated tour. For tips on what to eat, use our Da Nang Food Guide.
DA NANG DAY 2 TRIP
On the second day, venture outside the city on a day tour from Da Nang. Take a trip to Hoi An or join a tour to Hue. Alternatively, visitors who want to stay in Da Nang can spend the day relaxing at the beach.
DAY 3 DA NANG VISIT
With 3 Days in Da Nang, visitors can spend their last day at the Ba Na Hills theme park. Travel on your own or join a tour for a full day of adventure at the fairytale park. Either way, check out our Ba Na Hills Guide to plan your day!
How To Get To Da Nang, Vietnam
Getting to Da Nang is fairly easy as it can be reached by plane, train, boat, bus, car or scooter! We prefer to fly in Vietnam – and the Da Nang Airport (DAD) is conveniently located near the city center.
Da Nang Airport
The airport in Da Nang has flights from all major cities in Vietnam, as well as several international destinations, like Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo. Find the best prices on flights to Da Nang on SkyScanner.
Airport Transfer Da Nang
The Da Nang Airport is just 2km from the city center – and the ride takes only 5-10 minutes. Taxis are available at the airport and some hotels provide transportation. Visitors can also book their own airport transfers in advance (at a set price) online.
Bus Station Da Nang
The main Da Nang bus station is located west of the city center (which is actually less convenient than the airport). The busy station services both northbound and southbound domestic routes.
Bus Hoi An to Da Nang
The Route #1 Da Nang Yellow Bus transports passengers from Hoi An to the Da Nang bus station. The ride takes longer than an hour, but only costs about $1 USD. Buses operate frequently from 5:30am until about 6:00pm.
Bus Hue to Da Nang
The bus from Hue to Da Nang takes 2-3 hours, depending on which carrier is used, and costs less than $10 USD. Trains make the journey between the two cities in about 2 hours and 45 minutes – and cost the same as the bus.
Bus from Ho Chi Minh to Da Nang
Traveling by bus – Ho Chi Minh to Da Nang – is not advised. The ride takes more than 20 hours. Travel by train is only slightly better, with some journeys taking less than 16 hours. On the other hand, the flight takes just a little over an hour.
Bus from Hanoi to Da Nang
Buses from Hanoi to Da Nang take about 15 hours. The train between the two cities takes just as long, but is, perhaps, a more comfortable ride. When we traveled from Hanoi to Da Nang, we opted for an inexpensive and easy hour-long flight.
Getting Around Da Nang, Vietnam
The city of Da Nang is much bigger than we anticipated and not conducive to walking. That said, it is easy to get around using inexpensive Grab Taxis. The Grab App makes it simple to request a car to a specific destination and most rides within the city cost less than $5 USD.
Other alternatives for getting around are the public bus, the Da Nang Hop On Hop Off tourist bus and regular (but more expensive) taxis.
Where To Stay in Da Nang, Vietnam
We spent a lot of time carefully considering the best area to stay in Da Nang. We wanted to be close to the beach, but in a local neighborhood. Also, because we were staying in Da Nang for two weeks, we wanted a small kitchen so that we could prepare a few meals at home.
That said, every travelers’ version of the best place to stay in Da Nang will be different…and the city offers a wide range of accommodations to fit every style and budget.
Airbnb Da Nang
During our Da Nang visit, we stayed in a serviced unit in Kua Casa Apartments that we found on Airbnb. Located just a short walk from the main Da Nang beach, the boutique Kua Casa accommodations are stylishly decorated, clean and comfortable. In addition to the kitchen, we also had a small balcony where we could enjoy morning coffee and there is also a shared rooftop deck. For travelers basing themselves in Da Nang for a few days, we think Kua Casa Apartments is a great place to stay.
Best Hotels in Da Nang
There are hundreds – probably thousands – of hotels in Da Nang. With options ranging from posh resorts on the beach to cheap hotels in Da Nang city center, visitors have ample choices.
Start your search for the perfect place to stay in Da Nang on Booking.com!
Pro Tip: You can also use Booking.com to find the best hostels in Da Nang – or a Da Nang homestay for a truly local experience. Just adjust the filters to find exactly what you are looking for!
Da Nang Weather
The weather in Da Nang, Vietnam is seasonal; summers are hot and winters are slightly less hot. The hottest month is June, when the Da Nang temperature rises above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. In the wintertime, the high temperature in Da Nang is usually in the high 70s. It is rainiest in the autumn.
We visited Da Nang in August and had mostly sunny, hot days with a few rain showers. Many visitors say the best time to visit Da Nang, Vietnam is from December until March, when the Da Nang weather forecast calls for cooler temps and little rain.
What To Pack For Your Da Nang Trip
As you get ready for your trip to Da Nang, Vietnam, make sure to check out all our packing hacks!
Appropriate Attire for Vietnam
Packing the right clothes for your trip to Da Nang is important! Visitors traveling in the warmer months will want to pack loose-fitting, modest clothing that can be worn in temples. But, don’t forget your swimsuit, too!
Pro Tip: Pack a multi-functional wrap that can be used as a beach towel and to cover shoulders when visiting religious sites.
Vietnam Weather Gear
Weather in Vietnam can be unpredictable, so it’s always best to be prepared! Back lightweight weather gear – like a packable raincoat and a travel umbrella – that don’t take up too much space in your suitcase. Remember to also pack sun protection – like sunscreen and a wide-brimmed travel hat. And, don’t forget the insect repellent to keep the mosquitos away!
Da Nang Tourist Map
We highly recommend that visitors purchase a Da Nang Map – like this one –before their trip. It is so much easier to navigate the city when you have an understanding of the layout and where the sights are located.
WiFi in Vietnam
We think WiFi is a MUST when traveling through Vietnam. An internet connection is needed to order Grab Taxis and we often used it confirm the address when seeking out the best restaurants in Da Nang. We always travel with a GlocalMe mobile WiFi hotspot – which is perfect for families or groups traveling together as well as frequent travelers, too.
With the GlocalMe hotspot, we can connect up to ten devices at one time and it doubles as a power bank. The best feature, however, is that we can either buy a local SIM card and insert it into the device or we can purchase an eSIM online – so we can top up as needed. Buy a GlocalMe Hotspot for your next trip!
Vietnam Travel Insurance
Travel Planner for Vietnam
As you begin to make your vacation plans for Vietnam, it’s essential to stay organized! We find using a Travel Planning Printable helps keep all our bookings, tours and other pertinent travel information at our fingertips!
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