Located in the central region of Vietnam with easy access to other parts of the country, long beaches and surrounded by mountains, Da Nang is a perfect combination of nature, culture, people and food. Food in Da Nang is very dynamic yet incredibly delicious with the influence of both northern and southern cuisine, with a touch of the sea. Here are five places you need to eat to truly feel this.
The city center isn’t so far away
Getting from Da Nang International Airport to the city center is easy. You can choose to book an airport taxi, a Grab car, or pre-arrange your transport beforehand. Booking an airport taxi is easy, however you will end up paying a premium and scams aren’t unheard of. Calling a Grab car will require that you have a functioning smartphone with internet connection. You may have difficulties locating your driver if you both do not speak the same language. But with a private car you can avoid potential hassle and price negotiation. Once you walk out of customs, you’ll find your driver waiting for you and the rest is easy as A, B, C.
Hai San Be Man B
Choosing to forgo eating seafood while in Da Nang is a big mistake. Plus, it’s an extremely difficult task – just take a short walk along any road in Da Nang and you’ll find it hard to control your body from automatically following the scent of grilled seafood. So you really do have to get on that “see food diet” – you see food and you eat.
To enjoy the best of the best, head over to Hai San Be Man B. Spacious, fast, and perfect for large groups looking to chow down on some shellfish, this restaurant serves virtually any seafood item you can think of. Which is why it’s one of the most popular in Da Nang. Take a moment to examine the walls as you will find the menu printed on them with large images. Point your way through what you want, and enjoy a messy but delicious meal. Don’t be afraid to use your hands.
Do bear in mind, this is not a fancy space – your chairs are plastic and the tables are steel, plates are plastic and bowls are chipped. But the food is fresh, the menu is large, and the flavors are exciting. Make sure you order the grilled scallops with scallion and the chip chip – a special type of clam that Da Nang is known for.
Pro tip: We’re not sure why, but there is a Hai San Be Man on the opposite side of the street. Don’t go in there. Look for B. Do also try to avoid peak hours from 6:30 – 7:30 PM if you’re looking for a quick meal.
Address: 14, Hoang Sa, Son Tra Dist., Da Nang
Opening hours: 9 am – 12 am
Price range: 120,000 – 350,000 VND ($5.17 – $15.07)
My Quang Ba Mua
My Quang (Quang noodles) is a Quang Nam province delicacy. It is made of rice noodles, a type of meat or fish, a handful of herbs and served with a small amount of broth which is generally infused with turmeric. A definite must-have while in Da Nang.
My Quang Ba Mua is probably one of the best restaurants to serve this heavenly bowl. Thanks to its secret recipe, the restaurant attracted a very local (and hungry) following, and expanded soon after to become a chain. The restaurant is very simple, nothing fancy, and makes for a great stop over after exploring the city.
You can choose from various my quang flavors – try the chicken, frog, or pork. Remember to sprinkle in the additional condiments you get on the side such as chilli pieces and garlic, and sprinkle in some lemon. A bowl is very cheap – won’t cost you more than $3 USD to feel full here.
Address: Multiple locations
Opening hours: 7 am – 10 pm
Price range: 25,000 – 60,000 VND ($1.08 – $2.58)
Facing the Han River, Nom Bistro is a high-end restaurant serving top-notch Vietnamese food in a very nice space. This is not a restaurant you go on an ordinary day. Go here if you want to treat yourself or someone else, or if there is something you would like to celebrate.
Nom Bistro looks very interesting from the outside. The building is designed to look like a “nom” – a straw-weaved basket used to catch fish and other small underwater creatures, paying homage to how many Vietnamese in Da Nang made a living back in the day. Just like the outstanding structure, the food doesn’t disappoint. All dishes are made from the freshest of ingredients, and the menu spreads its pages from traditional favorites to those with a unique, even foreign twist. Try the soft shell crab and jackfruit salad. You should also check out the bamboo chicken and Nom’s special crispy chili beef.
Address: Lot 01-A4 Zone of the Villas of Green Island, Hai Chau Dist., Da Nang
Opening hours: 7 am – 11 pm
Price range: 80,000 – 400,000 VND ($3.45 – $17.23)
Bep Hen Restaurant
Owned by a local family, Bep Hen is the perfect spot to find authentic home-cooked Vietnamese food. Dishes are not over the top, sticks to original recipes and are simply presented. The retro furniture and decor, plus the potted plants, makes you feel as if you are in an old home. Dining here will help you take a step back from the fast paced city.
When ordering, do it family-style. A typical Vietnamese meal includes rice, a savoury dish (stewed or stir-fried meat), a bowl of soup, and a plate of vegetables. This is a bit too much if you’re alone, so it’s better to share with someone else over a good chat. You can get away with a meal for two around $10 USD.
Address: 47 Le Hong Phong, Hai Chau Dist., Da Nang
Opening hours: 10 am – 2:30 pm | 5 pm – 9:30 pm
Price range: 70,000 – 200,000 VND ($3.01 – $8.61)
Am Thuc Xeo
Banh xeo, the savoury and sizzling Vietnamese pancake is commonly mentioned on top 10 must-try dishes in Vietnam. A favorite among south and central Vietnamese, this dish can be found virtually anywhere in the country. However, ingredients and methods of preparation often vary as you move from region to region.
At Am Thuc Xeo, you will find the typical central Vietnam version of banh xeo, with a delicious array of toppings such as chicken, beef, seafood, squid, and lobster. Banh xeo in Da Nang is smaller and thicker than the banh xeo you find in the south, and it is often served with a basket of mustard leaves. Break off chunks of your pancake, place it in a mustard leaf, add in some raw papaya strips, roll it up, dip it in the fish sauce and take a hearty bite. At Am Thuc Xeo you can also try some other dishes such as spring rolls, noodle soups and popular salads. But they’re definitely known for their quality banh xeo.
Address: 75 Hoang Van Thu, Hai Chau Dist., Da Nang
Opening hours: 9 am – 10 pm
Price range: 80,000 – 200,000 VND ($3.45 – $8.61)