Make the most of your time in Central Vietnam with our carefully planned 4 days 3 nights trip itinerary. If you will be traveling there for the first time, visiting Da Nang, Hue, and Hoi An is the best suggestion. This article will guide you on how to plan your trip in Central Vietnam.
Choose the Main Tourist Destinations in Central Vietnam
In Central Vietnam, you can find a wide variety of tourist attractions, from beaches and mountains to bustling cities and ancient towns. Basically, the main tourist destinations in this region can be divided into these main areas:
1. Da Nang City Center: Dragon Bridge, Cham Museum, Da Nang Cathedral, My Khe Beach, Pham Van Dong Beach, 3D Painting Museum, markets, Asian Park
2. Ba Na Hills: French Village, Ba Na Cable Car, Fantasy Park, Linh Ung Pagoda, Cellar Debay, Wax Museum, Golden Bridge
3. Son Tra Peninsula: Linh Ung Pagoda, Tien Sa Beach, Indochinese Eyes, Black Stone Beach, InterContinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort
4. Hoi An: Hoi An Ancient Town, Japanese Covered Bridge, Central Market, An Bang Beach, Old Houses, Cantonese Assembly Hall, Hoi An Night Market, Thanh Ha Pottery Village
5. Hue: Imperial City of Hue (The Citadel), Thien Mu Pagoda, Hue Tombs, Tam Giang Lagoon
6. Hai Van Pass and Lang Co Beach
7. Marble Mountains: Thuy Son Cave, Am Phu Cave, Da Chong Tunnel, Ba Tho Cave, Hades Cave, Huyen Khong Cave, Linh Ung Pagoda, Vong Giang Dai Tower
8. Cham Islands (Cu Lao Cham)
9. My Son Sanctuary: Known as a historical holy land and hidden treasure of the Champa Kingdom, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is located in the mountainous area of Central Vietnam.
In general, if you have plenty of time, you should spend at least 1 day to explore each of the above-listed areas. However, if your time is very limited and you are planning to spend only 4 days in Central Vietnam, you should choose just the most important places to visit. We will help you to fit them in just 4 days 3 nights trip itinerary.
Choose the Hotel
There are many hotels in Central Vietnam for various tastes and budgets. Most travelers choose to base at the hotel in Da Nang City and for the short trip it’s the best idea. This city is offering a strategic location in the central part of Vietnam, so you can easily move to other cities from here.
Depending on your budget, we would recommend choosing one of the following hotels as they are really well rated and conveniently located.
Seahorse Hostel & Bar by HAVI: The hostel near Han River with a shared lounge and a terrace. Dorms feature shared bathrooms, and bunk beds with privacy curtains. Private studios and suites come with en suite facilities, TV and kitchenettes.
Havin Boutique Danang: Hotel is at My Khe Beach. Hotel's rooms have a view over the sea and city. Hotel provides continental breakfast daily. The hotel also offers an outdoor swimming pool and gym.
Pullman Danang Beach Resort: The 5-star resort with a luxury outdoor pool, private spa, gym, restaurants, bar and beach lounge, along with tennis, badminton and kayaking. Some rooms offer balconies. Suites have living areas, and whirlpool tubs or kitchenettes. Cottages come with outdoor showers and private gardens.
Da Nang is a coastal city so there are many luxury hotels and resorts to choose from and the best ones you can find here: 19 Best Luxury Hotels in Da Nang.
Even if you will base in Da Nang, spending a night at one of hotels in Hoi An Ancient Town might be worth it as Hoi An is famous for its ancient houses and colorful lanterns and it’s especially beautiful at night.
Suggested 4 Days 3 Nights Trip in Central Vietnam Itinerary
Day 1: Da Nang
Morning: Arrival in Da Nang
Choose an early flight to Da Nang International Airport (DAD) and take the private transfer to your hotel in Da Nang City.
You can choose one of hotels near My Khe Beach (some of them offer amazing views) or in Da Nang City center to make it convenient to travel to other destinations around Da Nang.
If you want to stay connected with your friends or family and avoid big roaming fees, don’t forget to book online your Vietnamese SIM card and pick it up at the airport.
Make a check-in and leave your luggage at the hotel, then start exploring Da Nang.
Afternoon: Da Nang City
You can go to My Khe Beach for some swimming and breathing fresh sea air.
After that, visit Asia Park - Sun World Da Nang Wonders, which is the fantastic amusement park in Da Nang. You can enjoy a panoramic view of the whole city from one of the tallest Ferris wheels in the world with an impressive height of 115 meters.
Evening: Da Nang City
Take a taxi to the city center for dinner and see the unique bridges of the city. If it will be weekend, you can watch the Dragon Bridge spraying water and spitting fire at 21:00. You can walk to the Bridge of Love nearby and immerse in the nightlife of Da Nang people which is as bustling as in other big cities.
Alternatively, hop on a boat at Bach Dang Wharf for a scenic 45-minute cruise along the Han River.
DAY 2: Marble Mountains - Hoi An
Morning: Marble Mountains
After your breakfast, depart to Hoi An and visit Marble Mountains on the way.
Marble Mountains consist of 5 limestone and marble mountains: Thuy Son (water) which is the highest, Moc Son (wood), Kim Son (metal), Tho Son (soil), and Hoa Son (fire). These mountains were used as hiding places and important bases for Vietnamese revolutionaries. You can take the elevator to visit the temples and caves. On the top of the mountain, you can catch panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. You can easily spend 3-4 hours exploring the mountains.
Before leaving, visit Non Nuoc Stone Carving Village that is located at the foot of Marble Mountains. This is a traditional village with stone carving products. You will get an opportunity to see how locals make their stonework, which has been honed for generations.
Afternoon: Hoi An
Arrive at Hoi An, which is one of the most beautifully preserved world heritage sites in Vietnam. Hoi An is also known for its great food, fun shopping, skilled tailors, friendly people and cozy atmosphere. You can just take a stroll to discover the heritage attractions in Hoi An Ancient Town such as the 400-year old tiled-roof Japanese Bridge, Chinese assembly halls, Hoi An Market, wooden shop-houses, French colonial houses, and old canals.
If you want to explore Hoi An’s countryside, you can rent a bicycle or take the traditional bamboo-woven basket boat tour at Coconut Forest. Basket boat is locally named the “Thung Chai” and is one of the funniest and most exciting experiences you can try in Hoi An. You will have an opportunity to enjoy the shaking basket boat performance and traditional fishing techniques by local people while riding in a bamboo basket boat.
Evening: Hoi An
If possible, try to stay in Hoi An till the sunset as the town is at its best when it gets darker because all lights and lanterns are lighted up. You can easily buy flower lantern from street vendors along the banks of the river for only 20,000 VND and drop it on the river. The town is more vibrant and lovely to walk around at night.
Don't forget to stop at the bustling Hoi An Night Market where you can enjoy local street food and do some souvenir shopping before heading back to the hotel in Da Nang.
DAY 3: Hue
Take a day tour from Da Nang to visit the historical sites in Hue City. When your time is limited, visiting Hue on a tour is the best option. You can conveniently book the tour here: Hue City Tour from Da Nang.
Morning: Hai Van Pass, Lang Co Beach
Depart from your hotel in Da Nang (tours normally include pick up service) and transfer for a dream tour to Hue City. The imperial city of Hue is located about 100 km north of Da Nang.
On the way from Da Nang to Hue, you will stop for sightseeing at several beautiful attractions such as Hai Van Pass and Lang Co Beach.
Hai Van Pass is one of the most beautiful mountain passes in in the world. This approximately 21 km long mountain pass is the natural border between Thua Thien-Hue Province and Da Nang City.
Lang Co Beach, with its white sand beach and blue sea water, is a good place for relaxing, swimming and taking photos.
Afternoon: Hue City
After having lunch at a local restaurant in Hue, you will start exploring main tourist attractions in Hue.
Khai Dinh Tomb: King Khai Dinh was the 12th king of the Nguyen Dynasty. His tomb is a combination of Eastern and Western styles. This is probably the most detailed among all the royal tombs of Nguyen Emperors and it took around 10 years to finish the construction. When walking around the tomb, you will find many interesting delicate details to be discovered.
The Citadel: Hue Citadel was built on an area of over 500 ha that is occupied by the Citadel and the Forbidden City, collectively known as the Citadel. The complex was built in 1805 and became home of Vietnam’s last royal dynasty – the Nguyen Dynasty. Located on the northern bank of the Perfume River, the Citadel has a unique example of ancient architecture. During the tour you will visit The Noon Gate, Yin & Yang Palace, Duyet Thi Duong Old Theater, Grand Ancient Temple, Longevity Palace, Nine Dynastic Urns and Hien Lam Pavilion.
Thien Mu Pagoda: It is one of the most beautiful and famous pagodas in Hue. The pagoda, located on the bank of charming Perfume River, is more than 400 years old.
Evening: Leaving from Hue to Da Nang
Finishing the tour in Hue and then coming back to your hotel in Da Nang City.
DAY 4: Ba Na Hills
On the last day, you should spend a day in Ba Na Hills. Make sure to buy Ba Na Hills Tickets in advance so you wouldn’t need to waste time waiting in a queue.
Morning: Ba Na Hills
Have breakfast at the hotel and then depart to Ba Na Hills. You can book a shuttle bus or private transfer between Da Nang and Ba Na Hills. Various transportation options are detailed here: How to get from Da Nang to Ba Na Hills. The best time to depart from Da Nang is about 7:30-8:00 to avoid crowds. The journey from Da Nang to Ba Na Hill can take about 1 hour. If you booked your tickets in advance as recommended, you can start the tour to Ba Na.
Upon arrival at Ba Na, you need to take a cable car up to Ba Na Hills. Ba Na cable car is recognized as the longest cable car in the world. Sitting on the cable car cabin, you can get a bird’s-eye view and admire the scenery of the mountains, forests and waterfall below.
Ba Na Hills is an extremely diverse entertainment complex. You can start from visiting the Golden Bridge, Debay Wine Cellar that used to distil alcohol, Le Jardin D’Amour Flower Garden which is a huge flower garden with many kinds of flowers and a 100-year-old grapefruit tree. Ride the first funicular in Vietnam and visit the 27 meters high Buddha image at Linh Ung Pagoda.
Afternoon: Ba Na Hills
After lunch at the restaurant at French Village, continue exploring Ba Na Hills. You can join various interesting games in Fantasy Park which is the third biggest indoor games zone in Vietnam with series of interesting games such as Freefall Tower, 4 – 5D Films, Skiver, the Death Race, Dinosaur Park.
Around 15:00, get back to the cable car to down the mountain and return to your accommodation or the airport.
If you have more time, transfer to Con Market or Han Market and make some shopping for gifts for family and friends before heading home. These markets sell Da Nang specialties such as dried food, fresh fruits and local snacks at reasonable prices. Markets normally close around 18:00-19:00.
If you still got some time left, choose some of the other Top Tourist Attractions in Da Nang.