Get in Central
By plane. Airport at Central: Da Nang Airport (IATA: DAD) and Hue Airport (IATA: HUI).
By train. Da Nang Station, Hue Station
By ship. International gateway to Central: Chan May International Port
By bus. There are many sleeping and sitting buses connecting Central with other popular tourist destinations such as Nha Trang, Mui Ne, Saigon, Vinh, Hanoi...
Get around Central
Taxi. Taxis can be found in the middle of Le Loi Str., over the river on An Hoi or called by phone. When busy, taxis may refuse your fare back to your hotel from town if it is too close, opting for larger fares. Arranging a shuttle from your hotel may be a better option although prices can be higher. A local 15 minute taxi fare is around VND 60,000.
Grab. Grab is available in Hoi An, Da Nang, Hue, and generally undercuts the established taxi services.
Cyclo. A ride on a cyclo through Hoi An or Hue is a great way to see the city the way the locals do. Warning: Be careful with cameras, purses and watches while cyclo riding as these items are easily stolen by motorbike riders.
Motorbike. Motorbike taxis (xe ôm, literally hug-vehicle) are plentiful, however, always check prices before using, as most motorbikes will tell you a very high price. Make sure a driver supplies you with a helmet.
Rental car. DTW Travel can offer a good rate for car rental.
Eat in Central
In addition to our suggestions below, Central Vietnam has a huge selection of restaurants scattered around town. Your Local Guide will be happy to make some further suggestions to cater for your specific tastes. Here are some of our favorites:
• Jaspas Beach Club: International dishes in a beachfront environment. The last Saturday of every month they have a fund raiser to help with the establishment of the An Bang surf lifesaving club.
• Alfrescos: Offers comfort food: Aussie steaks, pasta, pizza, Mexican, and ribs. 83 tran Hung Dao Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 392 9707.
• Dingo Deli: This delicatessen offers an extensive selection of gourmet foods through the restaurant and European grocery store. A wooden constructed adventure play ground is open for children to play on and over looks views of paddocks, buffalo and the Thu Bon river. ☎ 0906 552 824. Open 7.30am-7.30pm.
• Hoi An Cruise Restaurant: Romantic sunset dinner, relaxing dinner cruise and cooking cruise. 124 Tran Phu Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 362 3777.
• Morning Glory: Choose from a variety of local dishes, and be sure to experiment, because everything is truly excellent. 106 Nguyen Thai Hoc Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 224 1555.
• La Maison 1988: The first and the only restaurant of renowned three-star Michelin chef; Michel Roux in Asia. This restaurant serves a very fine French cuisine in the style of an antique French mansion. InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort. ☎ (511) 393 8888. Open 6.30pm-10.30pm.
• Hue Waterland Bar-Restaurant: They serve Vietnam cuisine and Western food. Such as Bun Bo Hue, Banh Loc, Banh Beo, Banh Nam, Nem Lui, burgers, sandwiches, pizza, spaghetti, spring rolls, fish, shrimp, pork, noodle, rice. In tourist center, just few minutes to Perfume River. Garden view with bamboo tree and candle. 35 Chu Van An Str., Hue. ☎ (54) 384 4844.
• Japanese Restaurant Ta-ke: This Japanese restaurant serves SE-asia-level sushi for a relatively good price. 34 Tran Cao Van Str., Hue. ☎ (54) 383 4457.
Drink in Central
• White Marble Wine Bar and Restaurant: It has Hoi An’s best wine selection as well as spirits, beers and cocktails at good prices. The cozy, airy building over two floors is a gem. 98 Le Loi Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 391 1862. Open daily 11am-11pm.
• Q Bar: A stylish lounge in one of the oldest Chinese houses, Q Bar is a full service bar with unique cocktails and friendly staff. 94 Nguyen Thai Hoc Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 391 1964. Open daily 11am-midnight.
• Mango Mango: Ideally located across from the Japanese bridge, enjoy masterful cocktail mixes at Mango Mango whilst enjoying the best view of old town. 45 Nguyen Phuc Chu Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 391 1863. Open daily 8am-11pm.
• Before and Now: Owned by three brothers and frequented by travelers, Before N Now has a wide Western menu and a free flow of drinks all night. 51 Le Loi Str., Hoi An. ☎ (510) 391 0599. Open daily 8am-2pm.
• Zero Sea Mile Beach Club: The party capital of Cua Dai, hit the beach and visit Zeroseamile for beachfront gatherings that stretch long into the night. Cua Dai Beach, Hoi An. ☎ (510) 391 1911. Open daily 12pm-4am.
• Pier 36: Pier 36 in Novotel Danang Premier Han River offers an opulent setting for that special “vis–a–vis” with friends or simply digesting the daily newspaper. It is the perfect venue for leisurely afternoons, a quick glass of wine along with a selection of delicious light snacks, gourmet sandwiches and tapas. 36 Bach Dang Str., Da Nang. ☎ (511) 392 9999.
• Luna Pub: The newest restaurant in the Luna chain, this restaurant/pub/club takes it to a new level. A new concept for Luna, features such as the truck cab cum DJ booth, flavored shooters and a soon to be opened art gallery makes Luna Pub the new hub for the hip in Danang. 9A Tran Phu Str., Da Nang.
• Brown Eyes: The only club in town, Brown Eyes is stocked full of expats, travelers and a smattering of locals. Home to dance parties, all night outbursts and free gaming, they stay true to their slogan: open from 5pm until the last one passes out. 56 Chu Van An Str., Hue. ☎ (54) 382 7494. Open daily from 5pm till late.
• DMZ Bar & Restaurant: Food is provided by their partners, Little Italy, and the in house travel agency can take care of arranging tours as well as general assistance with any problems encountered by travelers. With rotating drink specials, live events and great tunes, this is the center of Hue nightlife. 60 Le Loi Str., Hue. ☎ (54) 382 3414. Open daily from 7am-2:30am.
• The King's Panorama Bar: For a sweeping vista of Hue’s constantly expanding skyline and the famed Perfume River, head to King’s Panorama Bar at the Imperial Hotel. 8 Hung Vuong Str., Hue. ☎ (54) 388 2222.
See in Central
• Hoi An culture town: A ticket allow access to five of the 21 attractions including: Three communal houses, four museums, five old houses, three assembly halls, the handicraft workshop and traditional music concert, Japanese Bridge, Quan Cong Temple.
• Full Moon Lantern Festival: If you happen to be in Hoi An on the 14th day of any lunar month, you'll be treated to central Vietnam's version of a full moon party.
• My Son: 40km south of Hoi An lies Vietnam’s most important Cham complex, Unesco World Heritage site.
• Cua Dai Beach: Just 4km from the historic quarter, the relatively under developed Cua Dai Beach makes a pleasant distraction.
• Cham island: For cruising, sightseeing, swimming, snorkeling and enjoying seafood. 30 minutes by speed boat away from Cua Dai beach.
• Marble Mountain: Is a cluster of five marble and limestone hills located in Ngu Hanh Son ward, south of Da Nang city in Vietnam. The five 'mountains' are named after the five elements; Kim (metal), Thuy (water), Moc (wood), Hoa (fire) and Tho (earth). Admission VND 15,000. ☎ (511) 396 1114.
• Ba Na Hill Station: 45 minute drive from Danang or around 40 km (25 miles) west of Danang, Ba Na is located 1,487 meters above sea level in the Truong Son mountain range. Cable car available at VND 450,000 for adults.
• Linh Ung Buddhist Temple: Bai But, Son Tra Peninsula - features a stunning view of the sea, the sky and a 67-meter tall statue of "Quan The Am" facing the ocean. The pagoda is built in 2010.
• Citadel: On the northern side of the Perfume River, Hue’s Citadel (Kinh Thanh) covers some 520 hectares (1,285 acres) and is enclosed by a wall made of stone, brick and earth and measuring 8 meters (26ft) high and 20 meters (65ft) thick.
• The Imperial Tombs: Scattered across the countryside to the south and west of the city, the Tombs of the Nguyen Emperors are, together with the Citadel, Hue’s greatest attraction. Popular tombs including Duc Duc, Gia Long, Khai Dinh, Minh Mang, Tu Duc.
• Temple of Literature: Temple of Literature was established by the Nguyen emperor, Gia Long. It comprises a rectangular area with an austere gateway marking the entrance and 32 stone steles held within, bearing the names of academics. 1km west of the Thien Mu Pagoda. Open daily.
• Perfume River: Any visit to Hue should certainly include a boat trip on the beautiful Perfume River. Boats are readily available for hire, either for a relaxing trip in the vicinity of Hue, or for a longer journey upstream to the tombs of Minh Mang and Gia Long.
• Demilitarized Zone (DMZ): The strip that once officially separated North and South Vietnam was anything but de-militarized. During the American War, the South side of the DMZ was the locale of some of the country’s bloodiest battles. Still haunted by mines and ordinance, the area is home to the Vinh Moc tunnels and famed Khe Sanh town which may hit a nostalgic note among tourists.
• Incense and Conical Hat Village: Near the tomb of Tu Duc, make sure you stop by this roadside village and observe how locals make sandalwood and cinnamon incense as well as traditional Hue conical hats. Colorful stalks of incense are bunched together, and sample pieces are lit so that there is a pleasant aroma in the air. Thuy Xuan Hat, 7km south of city center on the way to Tu Duc tomb.