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Da Nang

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Da Nang

For a city without many major attractions, Da Nang has loads of hotels. Most are targeted toward midrange business travellers and domestic tourists, but it's still one of the cheapest cities to base yourself in, with plenty of budget options -- decent, city-centre three-stars come in under $25, although there is a marked decline in quality and options for those on a lower budget. In general, hotel standards are high, and the city's hotel staff are among the friendliest in the country we've found. For location, the best places to look are river-facing Bach Dang or the parallel running Tran Phu Street from where most of the attractions, restaurants and nightlife are within a short walk.

East Bank of the Han River

The area across the Han River has been on the up since the 2013 opening of the impressive fire breathing Dragon Bridge, which provides both pedestrian and road access straight into the heart of Da Nang city. The best area to look for accommodation is river/city-facing Tran Hung Dao Street, which offers great views and a decent mix of budget to four-star hotels in a quieter neighbourhood than the late-night Bach Dang Street on the opposite side of the river. The beach is quite a trek from here (you'll need to cross highway 17, which carries all the industrial traffic), but a taxi will only cost a couple of dollars each way.

Ngu Hahn Son District - T20 beach

East side, beach side, Ngu Hanh Son district has quickly transformed into one of the coolest places to stay in Da Nang. Lying a two-dollar taxi ride into the city and just south of My Khe (with a better bit of beach), the area has long attracted the bohemain surf crowd thanks to the longstanding Billabong Bar and Tam's Surf Pub and Shop. Recent hotel additions have been high quality and verging on boutique, with the quirky Chu Hotel 1 and 2 forming a benchmark (a highly copied one by the looks of near neighbour, the Zenta). The whole area has a great vibe with lots of cafes, bars and a soft sandy beach attracting a stream of locals and travellers.

Son Tra Peninsula

A more exclusive, out of the way location, but still within striking distance of Da Nang proper.

Ba Na Mountain

This mountain, about 45 kilometres west of Da Nang, is usually visited as a daytrip, but you can also stay for the night. You won't exactly be spoiled for accommodation options as there are only two hotels, one of which was closed for renovation on our May 2014 trip. Spending the night we feel would let you absorb the incredible views away from the crowds and get more of a sense of the nature that surrounds you. It's also a great option if you're looking to escape the heat of China Beach since temperatures are often 10 degrees cooler than in Da Nang. May through July are the prime months for sunny weather and clear, panoramic views from the 1,478-metre peak. Once the rainy season starts in September the mountain is almost constantly shrouded in cloud, meaning that when you could be sunning on the sand down below, you'll be shivering in the drizzle up here. In November and December the temperature plummets and there are frequent thunderstorms, so travel is not recommended. Note that if you're staying on Ba Na mountain, you'll need to pay a $25 entrance fee at the base and you'll want to avoid weekends and Vietnamese holidays. Weeknight rates come with big discounts and it's not unsual to have the whole of Ba Na to yourself when that last cable car heads back down to base at 21:15.

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