About Son Tra
Halfway between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Đà Nẵng is well worth a stop-off during your Vietnam trip. While the city centre has a good collection of restaurants, bars and coffee shops, it's better known for its natural attractions. Golden palm-fringed beaches lie to the east of the Hàn River. Outside of Đà Nẵng you'll find soaring marble mountains and the dense jungle of the Sơn Trà peninsula.
Hostels in Đà Nẵng often offer free perks like breakfast, Wi-Fi and welcome drinks. You can sleep in a hostel with a pool built out of shipping containers, a stately heritage building or a traditional Champa-inspired property. Several Đà Nẵng hostels even have a fitness centre or daily yoga classes. You'll also find many with outdoor spaces: sip a sweet Vietnamese coffee on a ground floor terrace or watch the sunset from a rooftop chill-out area. Try a Đà Nẵng hostel with a homestay set-up to experience living with a local family.
The Hải Châu I district in downtown Đà Nẵng is where most of the action is, with lots of noodle shops surrounding the bustling Chợ Hàn (Hàn market). Thạch Thang is just to the north and has a port where you can hop on riverboat tours. The other side of the Hàn River is home to the city's beaches and the lively enclave of Mỹ Khê Beach, with its excellent seafood restaurants and waterfront park.
On weekend nights there's a light and fire show at the Cầu Rồng (Dragon Bridge) – the highlight is when the dragon's mouth appears to breathe fire. During the day you can walk across it to get from the beachfront to downtown. Many natural and cultural attractions are waiting to be discovered outside of Đà Nẵng. The dramatic Marble Mountains with their peaks, caves, tunnels and Buddhist temples are just 20 minutes' drive from the city centre. For excellent views of the countryside, you could hire a motorbike to ride the sweeping Hải Vân Pass: at 500m above sea level, it's the highest in Vietnam.
Đà Nẵng Bus Station is one of the busiest in Vietnam. It's just outside the city centre, and there are always taxis waiting. If you're flying in, your nearest airport will be Đà Nẵng International Airport. There's a public bus, line 12, connecting the airport to the centre, and Hoi An Express puts on shared shuttle bus transfers. The fastest option is to take a taxi, as the trip into town only takes 10 minutes.