Why Son Tra Peninsula is special
Being called “green lungs” of the Da Nang (Đà Nẵng), Son Tra Peninsula (Bán Đảo Sơn Trà) has long become one of attractive tourist destinations of Da Nang, in particular, and Viet Nam, in general.
Located 10 km from the city center to the North East and is 693 m high above sea level, Son Tra is a special gift of the god to Da Nang. Son Tra Peninsula is considered the old Eco-Jungle within a young city. Upon visiting Son Tra Peninsula, you will be amazed at the diversifying fauna and flora of Son Tra. With more than 100 species, this peninsula is famous for the primate specie of langurs, which are a rare species and almost extinct all over the world. More than 300 langurs are found here. You can discover the animals mentioned in the Red Book in the forest of Son Tra Peninsula. Furthermore, other precious animals like golden macaque, python and long-tailed macaque are also available in Son Tra peninsula.
Some endemic species of the Indochinese peninsula just found in Son Tra peninsula are Combretum quadrangulare, Dipterocarpus alatus, Medusagyne oppositifolia, etc. In addition, this place is home to a lot of fruit trees like Melaleuca, Rhodomyrtus tomentosa, Baccaurea. Son Tra peninsula now is recognized as a Special Conservation Area and protected as Son Tra Nature Reserve.
What to explore at Son Tra Peninsula
Son Tra looks like a mushroom of which cap is Son Tra Mountain and stalk is a beautiful sandy beach that affords an ideal area for bathing, playing sports, fishing and swimming.
Linh Ung Bai But Pagoda
Linh Ung Bai But Pagoda (Chùa Linh Ứng Bãi Bụt) is the first destination to visit in Son Tra Peninsula. It is an ancient pagoda with a unique combination of spirituality and modernity. The highlight of this temple is the statue of Quan Yin (Tượng Phật Bà Quan Âm), which is the highest statue of Quan Yin in Vietnam (67m with 17 floors). When standing here, you will be able to contemplate the whole area of Son Tra Peninsula.
Son Tra Banyan Tree
It is called “village elders” of the forest. This heritage Son Tra Banyan Tree is 800-year old ficus on the peninsula’s southeastern end. The road to this tree is a narrow lane established from concrete slabs. Its crown reaches about 20 meters in all directions. From the branches’ roots, there are tree trunks which connect it to the ground.
According to legend, the banyan tree is where the fairies usually choose to play whenever they go down to the earth. As a result, it has a special beauty, and its site is considered one of the most attractive places in Son Tra Peninsula. This tree is a spiritual site and offers shelter to Vietnamese soldiers during the war fighting against America.
Ban Co Peak (Đỉnh Bàn Cờ)
Following the winding road to the south, you will have to climb the high slope to reach Ban Co Peak. But do not worry, the effort you spend is worth it. Standing on the peak, you can enjoy the cool air of the sea along with the extremely majestic natural scenery. Ban Co Peak is renowned for Confucius statue. This bronze statue illustrates a great philosopher who is playing chess. This philosopher is a tribute to the humans and greatly impacted the Eastern culture.
Airport For Helicopters And Radar Station
This is the place to record remnants of war on the Son Tra Peninsula.
On the Son Tra Peninsula, there are many kinds of wild animals such as deer, deer, and monkeys. To be able to observe them, you should bring binoculars.
Tien Sa Port (Cảng Tiên Sa)
Another place that you should not ignore during exploring Son Tra Peninsula is Tien Sa port. Here, you can participate in exciting recreational activities in the Tien Sa eco-tourism area. Together with the Han River port, Tien Sa port is one of the two major seaports of Da Nang city. It plays an important role in regulating traffic and economic development of Central Vietnam in particular and the whole country in general.
Mui Nghe (Mũi Nghê)
Mui Nghe, where you can see the dawn very early, is located on the southeast of Son Tra Peninsula. Here, you can experience the exciting scuba diving service as there are more than 42 rare corals. This makes Mui Nghe one of the most attractive destinations of Son Tra Peninsula.
The beaches surrounding Son Tra like But Beach (Bãi Bụt), Xep Beach (Bãi Xép), Con Beach (Bãi Cồn), Tien Sa Beach (Bãi Tiên Sa), and Da Den Beach (Bãi Đá Đen) are generally blue, clear and safe, so you can comfortably swim in one of them. The best months to visit these beaches are from March to September (during dry season when the sea is calm).
You can also go fishing, catch sea snails, and catch shells with the people here. Interestingly, right?
Ngoc Island (Đảo Ngọc)
Ngọc island also has another name as Ngu Hai Dai (Ngự Hải Đài). It is located offshore. The name of Ngoc Island derives from a legend when the King Quang Trung (Vua Quang Trung) appreciated the beauty of blue water and white sand of this place. After that, this name had been given by him. This island is located about 235 meters above the sea level and 60,000 meters in width. Surrounded by black rocky ridges, Ngoc Island is an attractive destination worth exploring. You can join in coral tours, fishing tours and other daily tours included in Da Nang tour. Furthermore, there are also many beautiful resorts that you can choose from.
Suoi Da (Suối Đá)
It lies by the side of the foot of the mountain, fine sandy surfaces run round the peninsula, several breaks of waves are running steadily up and down and washing up on the stones heaped up around the seaside. All are attractive spots for tourists. It is so majestic and it is so romantic, it is so wide and it is really beautiful. In one day stay at Son Tra, you can enjoy living in the resplendent flow of dawn and the quietness of twilight on this fascinating landscape. And that is a time for you to realize the value of each and every moment and the true calling of the hearts. You can also swim in the cool sea and enjoy the fine view of the sandy banks run round the peninsula.
Seafood and Wild Vegetables
Coming to Son Tra Peninsula, you definitely should not ignore the seafood. You have plenty of choices for your meals with fresh seafood such as grouper, lobster, eel, prawn, octopus, and red sea snail. The seafood here is very rich and varied, but it is only seasonal to ensure the freshness of the dish.
At Son Tra Peninsula, vegetables grow wildly around the mountains. You can also try some of the dishes made with these vegetables.
Getting to Son Tra Peninsula
From Da Nang international airport: 10 km away, go by motorbike or bicycle
From Da Nang train station: 8 km away, go by motorbike or bicycle
From Hoi An ancient town: 37 km away, taxi recommended
How to get Son Tra Peninsula
Son Tra is a perfect get a way from Da Nang City exploring the narrow jungle roads by motorbike or hike through the Jungle in search for some exclusive wildlife.
- Rent a motorcycle for ease of movement and photography.
- In the evening around 18h00, you can see the entire city lighting up and take some scenic photos while standing at the view corner of Linh Ung Pagoda and Radar station.
- Joining a trekking through the forest in Son Tra Peninsula is a highly recommended experience.