Danang is the largest city in central Vietnam and one of the country's most important ports. Ringed by mountains on one side and the East Sea on the other, Danang has numerous sites of natural beauty and historical interest.
The city’s origins date back to the ancient Champa Kingdom, established by Indonesian settlers in 192AD. At its peak, the Cham’s sphere of influence stretched from north of Hue to the Mekong Delta. The expansion of the Chinese, Vietnamese and Khmer led to the decline and fall of the Cham by the mid-15th century.
Although not a major stop on the tourist trail, Danang’s location between Hoi An and Hue makes a nice stop along the way. The city is one of the most dynamic of Vietnam’s modern cities with rapid industrial and economic growth. Visitors to Danang can enjoy the understated, yet fascinating Cham art and culture at Cham Museum. On the outskirts of town is China Beach, steeped in legend yet wonderfully deserted. Whether looking to spend a few days lounging on the beach at a luxurious hotel, The Furama Resort and the Fusion Maia Resort are the perfect destination for all discerning travelers.
Danang – Attractions
Established by the Ecole Francaise d’Extreme Orient in 1915, the Cham Museum houses the world's finest collection of Cham art. Many of the statues, sculptures and reliefs were discovered at the nearby former Cham capitals of Dong Duong, Khuong My and Tra Kieu as well as My Son which is now a UNESCO designated World Heritage site. Dating from the 7th to the 15th centuries, the sensual artwork depicts daily activities as well as Hindu and Buddhist religious artifacts. The museum itself is housed in a beautiful French colonial style villa with open-air courtyards, fruit trees and bougainvillea.
The Marble Mountains are rocky limestone outcrops jutting out of the beach just south of Danang. Paths lead to the top of the forested cliffs, affording spectacular views of Non Nuoc Beach and the East Sea. The caves nestled in the cliffs were originally inhabited by Cham people. Later, Vietnamese under the Nguyen Dynasty built numerous pagodas amongst the caves. Today, the Marble Mountains are home to various artisans producing sculpture and artwork at its base.
China Beach is justly famous as one of the most beautiful stretches of coast in Vietnam. Popular with US soldiers during the American war in Vietnam, today it welcomes huge numbers of sun seekers and surfers. The beach stretches southwards all the way to Hoi An and has developed rapidly in the past few years, with ultra-exclusive resorts and international standard golf courses.