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HomeRetirementLet's Go Exploring! Da Nang, Vietnam: The Subsequent Digital Nomad Paradise?

Let’s Go Exploring! Da Nang, Vietnam: The Subsequent Digital Nomad Paradise?

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The final time we had been in Vietnam was 2016. Issues had been easier again then. Nobody knew what a pandemic was, ChatGPT wasn’t threatening to interchange jobs, our mother and father had been all wholesome, and the one factor we nervous about was how badly we had been going to get scammed. We’d learn an article from seasoned funds traveler Nomadic Matt referred to as “Why I’ll By no means Return to Vietnam,” and had been fairly nervous about going there. In spite of everything, we’d simply been spoiled by Thailand, “the land of a thousand smiles,” which had a customer return price of fifty% whereas Vietnam solely had a 2% return price. So pointless to remain, we had low expectations.

Vietnam, because it turned out, far exceeded these expectations (which wasn’t precisely exhausting, because it was just about within the gutter). We did get scammed far more than in Thailand, however having visited Ho Chi Minh, Hanoi, Hoi An, Na Trang, and Kat Ba, I found that Vietnam has rather a lot to supply in the event you simply give it an opportunity. But it surely’s not going to be as handy, snug, and laid again as travelling in Thailand so simply set your expectations accordingly.

And now, 7 years later, we had been going again to see if there are any huge adjustments. Particularly on condition that Da Nang has been touted by many digital nomads as the following up and coming hub now that Chiang Mai is getting saturated and overpriced.

Seems, 7 years makes a giant distinction as a result of Da Nang stunned me in some ways.

After spending top-of-the-line months of my life with a bunch of thirty FIRE pals and digital nomads in Chiang Mai and paying solely $440 USD/month for a 1-bedroom condominium with a pool, I didn’t suppose lodging might probably get any cheaper and higher.

Seems, I used to be mistaken. In Da Nang, the Lagom house fashion lodge with roof-top pool ended up costing us solely $13 USD/day or $390 USD/month. That’s lower than how a lot most individuals spend on lunch in North America! Plus, it got here with day by day cleansing, laundry, and was solely 5 minutes stroll from the seaside. After staying at over 100+ lodging everywhere in the world, I’ve discovered that house fashion motels are my favorite. You get the most effective of each worlds: a lounge, kitchen, and laundry that makes it really feel like house moderately than lodge, plus lodge facilities like a pool, day by day cleansing, and contemporary towels each day.

I’d say, of all of the locations we stayed in on the planet, this one, fingers down, was the most effective worth based mostly on worth for high quality. We obtained fortunate because it was simply in-built 2022, and so they’re charging a ridiculously low worth attempting to entice vacationers after the pandemic. Even when the price doubled, for the situation, the extent of high quality and repair, it’s nonetheless price it.

I’ve at all times needed to decrease my expectations for service in Vietnam in comparison with Thailand, as a result of they merely don’t have as a lot expertise as their neighbours by way of welcoming travellers. Plus, due to colonization and the struggle (they don’t name it the “Vietnam Battle,” they name it the “American struggle”), they’re naturally much less trusting and relaxed than the Thais, however this time I used to be pleasantly stunned. Aside from the grouchy ticket counter and safety employees on the “Marble Mountain” vacationer attraction and the touts in that space, service has been nice. I additionally obtained an incredible haircut for less than $8 (one of many most cost-effective and finest I’ve ever gotten) at Ly’s Salon. Usually, I didn’t really feel that Da Nang was a touristy place, regardless that we stayed within the touristy Khe Seaside space, which is likely one of the cleanest seashores in Vietnam since they rent folks to choose up trash each day. It felt like a chill place I might dwell in for the long run.

Hoi An, which is round a 45min drive from Da Nang, is one other story. For the reason that final time we had been there, the place appears to have exploded in recognition—particularly with Korean vacationers. Curiously, previous to the pandemic, the largest cohort of vacationers in Southeast Asia had been Chinese language. Now, Korean eating places and indicators are in all places, changing Chinese language ones and the tour buses stuffed with Chinese language vacationers have all been changed by Koreans.

The primary cause I like Southeast Asia is the meals. The range, value, and availability of night time markets simply can’t be beat. I merely have by no means discovered something prefer it wherever else on the planet.

Weirdly sufficient, Da Nang didn’t have a wide array of night time markets (which could be very unusual for Southeast Asia), nevertheless it wasn’t a giant deal as a result of there have been tons of fine eating places to select from.

The one time I turned on the range in my house lodge in Da Nang was to boil some eggs for breakfast. All different occasions, we ate out and devoured Vietnamese specialties like:

Pho (beef noodle soup)

Our favorite mom-and-pop Pho store Pho Vu. Solely 25,000 dong or $1 USD. Weirdly solely opens till midday.

Bún chả  (vermicelli noodles and veggies dipped in grilled pork and fish sauce)

30,000 dong or $1.28 USD. Additionally from Pho Vu

Bánh xèo (crispy stuffed rice pancake)

Hanh & Ken – Genuine Vietnamese Delicacies, 36 An Thượng 5, Bắc Mỹ An, Ngũ Hành Sơn, Đà Nẵng 55000, Vietnam

Bun Bo Hue (Hue fashion beef noodle soup)

Com Pho Bun Hanoi Type, 49 Trần Bạch Đằng, Phước Mỹ, Ngũ Hành Sơn, Đà Nẵng 550000, Vietnam

Mì Quảng Noodles (Da Nang specialty)

Mì quảng Phương, 1 Phan Tứ, Bắc Mỹ An, Ngũ Hành Sơn, Đà Nẵng 550000, Vietnam

Cao lầu (Hoi An specialty of chewy rice noodles soaked in native water with lye)

Quán Cao lầu Bá Lễ, 49/3 Trần Hưng Đạo, Phường Minh An, Hội An, Quảng Nam 56000, Vietnam

Bahn Mi (Vietnamese baguette full of chilly cuts and pate)

BBQ grilled Lobster

Dragon Bridge night time market, 366J+HRW, An Hải Bắc, An Hải Trung, Sơn Trà, Đà Nẵng 550000, Vietnam

Recent Grouper

Nhà Hàng Hải Sản Biển Việt, 64 An Thượng 26, Bắc Mỹ Phú, Ngũ Hành Sơn, Đà Nẵng 550000, Vietnam

Egg Espresso

RawCoco espresso, 83 Phan Chu Trinh, Outdated City, Hội An, Quảng Nam, Vietnam

French Bakery

Paris Levain Bakery & Cafe, 112 Trần Bạch Đằng, Bắc Mỹ Phú, Ngũ Hành Sơn, Đà Nẵng 550000, Vietnam

I’ve additionally observed much more worldwide cuisines and vegan cafes pop up since 2016…

My favourites had been: Pizza 4P’s Hoang Van Thu, Pokeman, and Khong Vegan Kitchen

Am I obsessive about meals? Who is aware of? However the factor about Vietnam is *inaudible as a result of mouth being stuffed*


I by no means get bored or lonely in Southeast Asia as a result of there’s at all times a lot to do! From bustling night time markets, avenue festivals, to animal sanctuaries, to scuba diving, to karaoke, to massages, to all-day saunas, the listing is limitless! And also you by no means really feel lonely since you’re at all times surrounded by folks.

I knew that coming to Vietnam, I’d have to surrender the massages I’d gotten to like a lot in Thailand. They’ve massages in Vietnam, however not almost pretty much as good or low cost as Thailand, however what I didn’t know was that there was an entire new factor to find!

Vietnamese hair washing! I actually thought this was a Taiwanese factor as a result of that’s the one different time I’ve ever seen it, however these providers have been popping up throughout Da Nang.

For 250,000 dong (or $10.65 USD), you get a “one hour hair wash bundle”, during which they wash your hair, therapeutic massage your face for half-hour, adopted by 25 minutes of head massaging whereas rinsing your hair. Then they blow dry and elegance your hair. It’s so enjoyable! We went to the “Khan Spa” in Da Nang each different day and it was heavenly.

Hair wash station at our favorite Khan Spa

Along with enjoyable hair washes, we additionally visited the enormous White Buddha, the Marble Mountains, the Reminiscences Present in Hoi An, and the Dragon Bridge which spits fireplace and water each weekend at 9 PM. Once more, not possible to be bored.

Hoi An “Reminiscences Present.” E book from Klook to get a reduction.

My Khe seaside was additionally enjoyable to take a stroll on, although I discovered the water too wavy for swimming. It’s nice if you wish to learn to surf although.

Usually, I’m fairly glad solely spending per week or two in Vietnam, however after spending an entire month in Da Nang, I felt like I might’ve stayed longer. The method of getting a visa to go to Vietnam has additionally gotten simpler now which you could apply on-line for a 30-day e-visa. Nonetheless, as of proper now, there isn’t a straightforward strategy to keep longer, in contrast to Thailand, the place you will get a 60 day visa earlier than coming into the nation after which extending it for 30 days. Simply remember that you could be have to have the bank card identify match the identify of the Vietnamese e-Visa while you apply. One in all our pals bumped into this drawback when she tried to make use of her husband’s bank card to pay for each.

So, after a calming time in Da Nang, I flew to Hanoi, staying one night time earlier than we flew out to Australia. However instantly, proper after we checked out of the Airport Hanoi lodge, the employees tried to rip-off us by charging us further for breakfast, which was already included within the worth, early check-in, and transportation to the airport, which was listed as free on their web site!

Now there’s the Vietnam I keep in mind!

Right here’s how a lot we spent day by day for the month in Da Nang:

Class Value in USD/couple per day Value in CAD/couple per day Notes
Lodging $13 $17.58 The Lagom house fashion lodge was one in every of my favorite motels in Southeast Asia with the highest quality for worth.
Meals $24.47 $33.03 ($27.69 consuming out, $5.34 groceries) We hardly cooked in any respect and largely ate out at eating places. I like how in Asia I can eat out on a regular basis and never acquire any weight. The truth that portion sizes are in all probability 2/3 to 1/2 the dimensions of that in North America and can also be low carb in all probability helps.
Transportation $7.77 $10.50 Grabs (the Uber of Asia) had been tremendous low cost and solely value round $2-$5 to get wherever in Da Nang and we had been inside strolling distance to most sights and the seaside, so a lot of the transportation value is the $100/individual flight from Bangkok direct to Da Nang, amortized over the month.
Leisure $13.82 $18.66 We had hair washes almost each different day and the opposite sights just like the Reminiscences present (round $24 per individual) wasn’t costly so leisure was fairly low cost for the entire time there.
Whole $59.06 $79.77 Even if costs have inflated considerably and we’ve included extra massages into our way of life and dearer meals, Da Nang Vietnam remains to be remarkably inexpensive at solely $21,556 USD/ couple per 12 months or $29,116 CAD/couple per 12 months.

What do you suppose? Have you ever ever been to Da Nang? Would you ever dwell there?

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