Danang Holidays

With a thriving culinary scene, superb sandy beaches on the doorstep and three world-class cultural sites within easy reach, Danang is sure to please.

Come to Danang if you like stretching-to-the-horizon sandy beaches with a generous dose of urban pleasures. With 18 miles of pristine coastline, this vibrant modern city offers the best of several worlds. Relax on white-sand beaches where fishermen still land their catches in the early morning, hit the water in a kayak or something more adrenaline-pumping, and check out the seafront culinary scene where glossy restaurants are interspersed by simple but inviting food carts.

From here, across an eye-catching dragon-shaped bridge, it’s just a stroll into buzzing shopping streets lined with everything from gleaming skyscrapers to elegant colonial buildings. Duck into inviting museums such as the one devoted to fabulous sculptures of the ancient Cham kingdom, which held sway here until the 15th century. Follow your nose to colourful markets such as Han or Cho to feast on local street-food specialities, from crunchy jackfruit salad to richly flavoured crab noodle soup. Then hit the road for a change of mood, with a trio of World Heritage Sites – Hoi An, Hué and the temples of My Son – an easy drive away. Two of Vietnam’s quirkier sights are even closer: the five pagoda-topped Marble Mountains that punctuate the horizon just to the south of Danang and the eclectic, photogenic delights of the Ba Na Hills, built as a hill station a century ago.

Speak to our experts today about adding a stop in Danang to your dream Vietnam holiday.

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Vietnamese Cooking Class in Hoi An (from Hoi An or Danang)

It’s hard to think of a more enduring souvenir of a visit to Vietnam than being able to make some of its best-loved dishes back home. On this half-day culinary exploration, you’ll start at Hoi An’s lively market, with its heady sights, sounds and smells, where you’ll meet some of the stallholders and learn about the ingredients you’ll be using later. From here, it’s a scenic 25-minute boat ride along the river to the Red Bridge Cooking School - be sure to have your camera to hand. Following a tour of the school’s herb garden, you’ll hear the story behind some famous national and local dishes before the cooking begins in earnest. After a demonstration from the resident chefs, you’ll prepare dishes such as cao lau, made with yellow noodles, pork and pickled hot peppers, and mi quang, another favourite local noodle speciality, before sitting down to eat what you’ve cooked for a memorable lunch.

• Daily departures
• Operates year round
• Group experience

Good to know
The class is suitable for families with children aged 6 and above.

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Vietnamese Lantern Making Workshop (from Hoi An or Danang)

There are colourful hanging lanterns everywhere you look in Hoi An’s atmospheric Old Town, a picturesque legacy of the days when this once-important port attracted merchants from China and Japan. On this engaging hands-on workshop, you’ll learn about how the craft took hold here and evolved in its own unique way, gaining an insight into the region’s history and culture along the way. Then it’s time to make your own example, from choosing the shape and picking the silk to learning how to glue it all together and smooth out any creases. At the end of the class, you’ll head off on a short walk around Hoi An - carrying your precious new creation - where you’ll be able to truly appreciate the skill that has gone into making the many lanterns that dot the city. And if you’re wondering how you’re going to get your handiwork home in one piece, you’ll be pleased to know that it’s conveniently foldable.

• Daily departures
• Operates year round
• Private experience

Good to know
This workshop is suitable for families with children aged 6 and above.

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Hoi An’s Highlights

Hoi An is a wonderland of international influences, particularly in its delightful – and UNESCO-listed – Old Town which was once a bustling centre of trade. This guided walking tour is a great way to get your bearings and find out more about its layers of time. Highlights include a visit to a traditional house and the Hoi An Museum, a trove of local treasures collected through the ages. You’ll also visit Cau Temple, which is commonly referred to as the Japanese Covered Bridge and finish your exploratory morning with a boat trip along the Thu Bon River for a different view of the city.

• Daily departures from Hoi An or Danang
• Operates year-round
• Private experience

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Local Life Cycling Adventure

A glimpse of rural life provides an unbeatable insight into a country and its culture. And it gives a chance to take a break from the buzz of the city. From Hoi An or Danang, you’ll head into the countryside and cycle through the countryside to the fascinating Tra Que vegetable village, a settlement where the focus is on growing some of the highest quality produce in the region. As well as meeting farmers and hearing about their methods you’ll have the opportunity to get hands on and join in with raking, sowing, watering and tending the vegies. Following your work in the garden, you’ll be treated to a therapeutic foot bath and then help prepare lunch alongside a local family. Learn how to make a Tam Huu spring roll and Bang Xeo pancake and try a host of other Vietnamese delicacies.

• Daily departures from Hoi An and Danang
• Operates year-round
• Private experience

Good to know
The cycling distance is approximately six miles and there will be no back-up vehicle, so you need to be physically fit and mobile.

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Hue’s Highlights in a Day

Vietnam’s former capital, which is set on the banks of the Perfume River, is a surprising city that doesn’t seem to get the same attention as Hoi An, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. This full-day exploration, available from Hoi An, Danang or Hue itself, gives you the perfect chance to uncover its charms. The tour starts off at the Minh Mang Tomb, the tranquil final resting place of a 19th-Century Nguyen Dynasty leader. Next up is the towering Thien Mu Pagoda which has seven ever-decreasing storeys, followed by a trip back along the river on a traditional dragon boat. The highlight of the day is the visit to the sprawling walled Citadel and the Imperial City, the former capital of Vietnam. The last stop of the tour is the buzzing Dong Ba market, Hue’s centre of trade.

• Daily departures from Hoi, Danang or Hue
• Operates year-round
• Private experience

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Get to know Danang and those important practicalities when planning your perfect holiday.

Capital
TIME DIFFERENCE

GMT +7 hours

CURRENCY

Vietnamese Dong

FLYING TIME TO DESTINATION

16 hours (excluding stopover time)

RELIGION

Vietnam is a multi-religion state with Buddhism as the leading religion.

LANGUAGE

Vietnamese

Where is Danang?
Wrapped around the mouth of the Han River, and hemmed in by mountains to the north and west, Danang is central Vietnam’s largest city. One of the country’s main ports, it’s a major transport hub, with flights to major domestic destinations and several international ones. Hanoi, 475 miles to the north, can be reached in around 75 minutes by air, while the flying time to Ho Chi Minh 599 miles to the south is around one and a half hours.

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Beaches
Danang’s beaches are a huge part of its appeal: squeaky clean strips of white or golden sand from where you can venture into the sheltered waters of this part of the South China Sea to swim, snorkel or fish. Find the most popular ones, such as My Khe and Non Nuoc, on the stretch of coastline that runs from the Son Tra Peninsula south to Hoi An, with resorts of all styles and sizes along almost the whole length. For a more away-from-it-all experience, check out the tucked-away coves of the peninsula itself or the undeveloped beaches to the north.

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Marble Mountains
Dominating the horizon to the south of Danang, barely five miles from the centre, the Marble Mountains offer a fascinating taste of Vietnam’s extraordinary landscapes. Among these five greenery-draped limestone outcrops, named after the five elements, you’ll find impressive caves and tunnels, ancient pagodas and tiny atmospheric shrines. Climb the stairs to the top of Thuy Son, the Water Mountain, for spectacular 360-degree views, or pay the fee for the lift if you prefer. Our tip: visit in the cool of the early morning for the best experience.

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Ba Na Hills
Built by the French in 1919 as a place to escape the heat of the plains below, Ba Na Hills is a one-of-a-kind resort and recreational park to the west of Danang. Arrive in style by cable car, from where you can drink in the views of beaches, sea and wooded hills. At the top, the newest attraction is the impressive winding Golden Bridge, held up by a giant pair of hands. Pause here for that perfect shot for Instagram before heading into the equally noteworthy French Village, a replica of a medieval settlement complete with atmospheric church, houses and inns.

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Food & drink
Danang has a rich and varied food scene that reflects its history as a colonial port and its status as one of Vietnam’s most vibrant and prosperous cities. Upmarket eateries line the beachfront, where you can dine on the freshest of seafood, while the street-food offering features everything from dishes from the mountains of central Vietnam to French-influenced snacks with a local flourish. On a hot day, cool down with a glass of kem bo, a refreshing mix of ice cream, avocado and coconut.

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Getting around
If you don’t feel like walking, you can make use of the abundant taxis for trips within the city, though always make sure the meter is working and switched on before you set off. Otherwise, by far the most relaxing option is to hire a private car with a driver to whisk you between far-flung sights in style, whether you’re heading to historic Hoi An or into the mountains.

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