We have headed up to Da Nang, a very relaxed and friendly destination. For the first time since our Surin visit in November, we are hiring motor-bike again, and are enjoying ourselves cruising around. A sunny saturday we were headed towards the big statue on the Son Tra Peninsula. Many locals were going in the same direction, and we just followed them. Fantastic views, so we had to stop for some photo events. The statue was reached – and fast passed by – as none of the locals in front of us stopped. So we just continue as well. The view is just getting nicer and nicer, with plenty of empty beaches to the left. Would have been a perfect stop for a picnic or just relaxing on the beach, if we had brought any swimming suits with us. So we kept going on. Finally, the roads turned into a T-cross, and we had to choose direction.
We turned left, and started our new adventure. Small, small winding road going upwards, in the beginning so steep that closing my eyes was appropriate (I was not our driver). Then getting used to the road quality, rather good actually, betong all the way, and stunning views. In each cross, we kept to the left (so it should be easy to remember how we get there when turning back). Met a few bikers on their way down, but mostly we’re on our own. And then we reached the first top, amazed that we could travel here, as we thought the area belong to the military. At the first top, some of the area was restricted with no trespassing, but we could continue moving forward and going even higher. On the next top, we noticed tourists up on a viewpoint, so we headed there, parked our bike, and started climbing. Up there we had time for a game of chess (?) before planning where to go next.
Then we heard a very familiar and welcoming pling-pling sound. It was the icecream seller, on motorbike, coming the same way as we.
Everyone bought the cold and refreshing icecream cone for 20.000 vnd. We didn’t plan going so far and had not brought any cold drinks, so as this was a sunny day, his ice-cream offer was more than welcoming.
The road continued, and the ice-cream man confirmed that if we continued straight we would reach Danang. So we kept going, up, up and up – until we reached the next viewpoint – new positive surprise as a young couple has started a small drink & coffee stand here – and very reasonable priced. Refreshing ourselves, listening to the sounds from the jungle, was there maybe monkeys???? The Son Tra Peninsula is also called Monkey Mountain named after the monkeys living there. The way down to Danang from here was easy, since it now was a normal two-lane asphalt road.
The weather changes quickly, ad since this first Saturday it has been cloudy and rather cold. One late afternoon we went up to the top once more, but this time by the two-lane asphalt road. Just arrived to the top, then the fog came, and we could not see anything. But as quickly as it arrived, the fog disappeared again and we had a fantastic sunset view, but difficult to imagine that a few days earlier we were welcoming cold refreshments while we this day only wanted something hot ……
“same, same but different” – it is the same place but on two different occasions
We have also managed to make the drive through the Hai Van Mountain Pass. The history of this route is better described by another blogger, so read his story here. We enjoyed our ride, and when we watch the train going in and out of tunnels along the pass it felt that we had shrunk and became models in a huge Merchline Railway. Now we are waiting for a sunny day to arrive so we can repeat the trip once more.
At the end of the pass, is the small village of Lang Co, it looked so beautiful from a distance, but really difficult to travel through, specially since we arrived when the school closed for lunch and we found ourselves in the middle of all the bikes.
Below you can enjoy part our ride through the Hai Van Mountain Pass.