Hai Van Pass By Motorbike
Gear up and get your adventure juices flowing with a trip through the Hai Van Pass by motorbike. Bottom line is, if you are anywhere near central Vietnam there are no excuses not to experience this amazing motorbike route, here’s a breakdown of our adventure.
At 8am in 38 degree Vietnam heat we plastered sunscreen on our bodies, picked up our helmets and straddled our bikes ready for the adventure ahead. We chose to do the route from Hoi An to Hue, but the route and map attached will give you a guide whether you are wanting to travel South to North or vice versa.
The trick is to take this journey slow, enjoy the surrounds and do everything in legs or stops so you get the right amount of breaks and of course photo opportunities 😉
STOP 1 – MARBLE MOUNTAIN
Presuming you made the logical decision to fill up with petrol before you left your destination, your first stop would be a small distance away at the lovely Marble Mountains or Ngu Hanh Son. These large marble structures are sprinkled with beautiful Pagodas, statues, small cave systems and catacombes. Although as a visitor you may only enter and explore Thuy Son (water). You will have the option to either go up the mountain by elevator to walk up the stairs and observe more of the amazing area. The walk may have a couple of stairs and a few climbs for you to attempt but it is in no way too strenuous or daunting.
STOP 2 – DA NANG BEACH
Keen for a dip? Stop at Da Nang or My Khe beach (be careful not to refer to it as China Beach as it may be offensive to some of the local community) for a quick swim and some water before you head for your longer distance drive. This beach was also a heavily attacked area during the American war here in Vietnam. So as beautiful as it is, it is also peppered with a touch of important history.
STOP 3 – ROCK LOOKOUT
Probably our favourite place to stop and have a coffee on the pass. Be careful you don’t miss it. The rock lookout is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the magical view overlooking Da Nang Bay. Purchase a drink/local coffee and climb up the large rock that sits over the mountain. This is a perfect photo opportunity, don’t be shy to ask the local staff at the cafe to take some pictures of you.
STOP 4 – MILITARY BUNKERS
At the top of the Hai Van Pass you will be able to stop and explore old military bunkers, built by the French to fend off the Viet Minh. These bunkers were situated at a crucial vantage point during the Vietnam War and were occupied by the French, Viet Minh and U.S troops at different times during the ordeal.
STOP 5 – LAN CO BEACH
Lan Co region is famous for its abundance of fishing villages. By this stage, we were famished! We decided to pull in for a very cheap but delicious lunch. The scenery is spectacular with rolling mountains, white beaches and blue waters as far as the eye can see.
STOP 6 – ELEPHANT SPRINGS
Our favourite part of this trip was stopping off at the Elephant Springs. An entrance ticket will range from around $2 where you will be given a motorbike parking permit and per head entrance ticket. Drive up to the parking lot and just a short walk through the shaded pathway you will come out to the most beautiful body of freshwater. Visiting the springs we found that the further you walk the amount of the tourists depleted. So if you’re looking for a quiet area don’t be afraid to bypass the main areas. Nestled along the water are reed huts and wooden platforms where you can leave your belongings, order a beer/drink and have a refreshing swim.
Note: We would recommend for women that they wear their swimming costume under their clothes before they arrive as there is not a great deal of privacy to get changed.
For this drive, you have two potential routes to take, both are quite simple.
Your first option is to cruise along the AH1 highway. This is a faster option if you are pressed for time. Allow yourself 6 hours driving this particular way. 6 hours will allow for you to swim, eat, take photos etc.
Option 2 is along the coast on an island called “Thuan An”.This will be a slightly longer journey, but it is far more attractive in terms of the landscape. Keep in mind that the road along this island are slightly more difficult in regards to road quality. It’s not overly treacherous though. Allow yourself closer to 8 hours on this trail.
Both options will allow you to see all of the above and can be done on your own or by pillion.
Contact us today if you would like to book the Hai Van Pass by Motorbike tour or add it to your or your clients itinerary.