Phong Nha - Hue

Distance: 240 kms

The road we refer to as Ho Chi Minh East is such a riding experience that this mix of Ho Chi Minh West and coastal is often overlooked. Though very different it is in itself a great ride day with some very interesting stops. A great addition to one of the most rewarding loop rides out of Danang.

(A) Is primarily a pin to keep you off the A1. A bridge over the river so a good first rest break and photo for the day.

(B) Quang Tri Ancient Citadel is located in the centre of what is now a significant town. For 150 years it was historically the administrative centre during the Nguyen Dynasty. More recently in 1972, much of it was destroyed during 81 days of battle but much of it restored to preserve its history. I reckon there’d be fish in the moat but not game until I see a local at it! 🙂

(C) Is an interesting well located break stop again a pin to keep you away from the main arterial.

(D) is the highlight of this day. If you skip the rest this is certainly worth your time. Over 2 km of tunnels with 7 exit points to the beach.

Unlike the much better known and marketed Cu Chi Tunnels these are 175cm high and wide enough to be comfortably explored by foreigners.

They were not built to fight either but to hide. The villagers, thought to be helping supply the Northern army were under attack from the South and built these for refuge.

Three levels down to 30 metres were dug as the underground safe haven for sixty families between 1966 and 1972 and so successful that no reported lives were lost and 17 children were born in them during that time.

An amazing experience the first time from the darkness to find an exit to a beautiful day and beach.

Put some time aside to visit the museum also. I’m not mad about museums generally but over several visits also go away better educated from time spent here.

(E) Around the monument are a plethora of seafood restaurants. Tried a few different ones over the years and it’s hard to divide them. All good and cheap.

(F) Is a coffee stop that also has unique accommodation right on the beach. If short on time or as a preference to overnight in the city, a good option.

(G) The expanse of rice to this bridge is a photo I couldn’t find. This one after plantation is not nearly as spectacular but you get the idea.

(H) Is the boardwalk along the river and a perfect start to the morning.

(I) my preferred hotel these days of the options listed. The price, staff, rooms and location tick all the boxes for me.

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(Excluded from the above itinerary) 

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