Tuesday, Jan. 26th (Da Nang Day 1)

  • Woke up and headed to the lobby for Funtastic Beach Hostel’s complimentary breakfast.
  • Packed up our day bag and made the 10 km drive South along the coastline to The Marble Mountains.
  • Explored these giant rock formations for several hours.  
  • One mountain in particular has been adorned with temples and shrines.  A winding path, sometimes stone, sometimes dirt, and sometimes staircase, led us up the mountain from site-to-site.  Eventually we were treated to a beautiful view of the coastline and the surrounding city from the peak.
  • The mountain also houses several natural cave formations that have been transformed into underground temples, partially lit by candlelight and partially lit by sunlight filtering through holes in the roof many, many stories over head.  Giant deities have been carved into the cave walls and peer down sternly over the visitors below. 
  • One cave stands out in particular.  Once inside, a narrow spiral staircase takes you down several stories.  The lighting is a deep red and the walls are covered with carvings and statues depicting demons, torture, and sin.  By contrast, a second spiral staircase, bathed in natural white light, leads all the way to the top of the cave and is adorned with angelic scenes of hope, love, and prosperity.
  • We returned to the hostel and relaxed in front of the TV for an hour before checking out a local Banh Xeo place, Banh Xeo Ba Duong, that came highly recommended from the hostel staff.
  • The restaurant was deep down a side alley and took some help from the locals to find.
  • The food was definitely top notch but we both agreed that we preferred the Banh Xeo in Saigon and Nha Trang. 
  • We returned to the hostel and watched movies in the common room for the next few hours before calling it a night.

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