As a seaside hotelier in An Bang village near Hoi An, one of my favorite ways to travel in central Vietnam is by train. The railway connecting Da Nang up to Hue offers stunning coastal views as you journey to Vietnam’s former imperial capital. In this blog, I’ll share my tips on taking the train from Da Nang to Hue, including how to book tickets, what to expect onboard, and fun stopovers to add along the way. Whether you’re a train enthusiast, budget traveler or just want a relaxing ride, read on for everything you need to know to plan this scenic Vietnam train trip.
Why Take the Train from Da Nang to Hue
Here’s why riding the rails is a great way to travel between Da Nang and Hue:
- Gorgeous scenery – The train hugs the coastline, with views of beaches, mountains, rivers and countryside.
- A comfortable ride – Recline and watch rural Vietnam pass by your window. It’s a peaceful, low-stress journey.
- Cultural experience – Chat with locals also riding the train to get an authentic slice of Vietnam.
- Convenience – Frequent train departures make this an easy transportation option.
- Cost savings – The train is very affordable, especially compared to hiring a car.
How to Book Tickets for the Da Nang to Hue Train
Booking your tickets in advance is highly recommended, as many trains sell out quickly. Here are some tips:
- Book online via the official Vietnam Railways website – print your voucher to board.
- Ask your hotel or travel agent to book for you (for a small fee).
- Buy tickets at the station, but expect long queues.
- Confirm important details like date, time, number of passengers.
- Keep copies of all booking confirmations and e-tickets with you.
The Da Nang to Hue Train Route and Duration
The journey from Da Nang up to Hue covers just over 100 kilometers, with the following logistics:
- It takes around 3-4 hours total by train.
- There are 2-3 stops along the way at smaller stations.
- The route hugs the coastline before turning inland towards Hue.
- Some trains only go as far as Dong Ha, so check your train terminates in Hue.
What to Expect Onboard the Da Nang to Hue Train
Vietnam’s trains are basic but comfortable. Here’s what to expect during the journey:
- Assigned seating – Your ticket has a designated seat number. Cabins have padded benches facing each other.
- Storage space – There are overhead racks and under-seat areas to store bags. Keep valuables on you.
- Dining carriage – Some trains have a cafe car serving noodles, snacks and drinks. You can also bring your own food.
- Western-style toilets – Bathrooms with sit-down toilets are located at the ends of carriages. Carry a toilet roll and hand sanitizer.
- No internet – Don’t expect WiFi onboard. Enjoy being unplugged!
- Air conditioning – Some cabins have A/C for a more comfortable ride.
Great Stopovers to Add Between Da Nang and Hue
One benefit of taking the train is hopping off along the way to explore. Here are some suggested stopovers to add:
- Hoi An – Just 30 minutes from Da Nang, this charming UNESCO World Heritage site is a must-visit.
- Lang Co Beach – Break up your trip with a swim at this lovely 10 km beach.
- Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park – Detour to see magnificent caves, rivers and jungle.
- Dong Ha – Stop to see the DMZ border museum and Vinh Moc Tunnels.
- Bach Ma National Park – A scenic detour to hike through forests and waterfalls.
Tips for Riding the Train from Da Nang to Hue
To make the most of your railway trip between Da Nang and Hue, keep these tips in mind:
- Arrive early to locate your seat and get settled in.
- Keep valuables in your lap or waist pouch, not stowed luggage.
- Bring entertainment, snacks, water, toilet paper and hand sanitizer for the journey.
- Dress comfortably in layers you can add or remove.
- Keep doors and windows closed for safety. You can still take photos through the glass.
- Be respectful of other passengers by keeping noise down and giving up your seat if needed.
- Chat with friendly locals – it’s a great way to get insider Vietnam travel tips!
Why Hue is a Fascinating Destination
Ending your train ride in Hue brings you to one of Vietnam’s most historically and culturally significant cities. Here’s a taste of what makes Hue a mesmerizing place to visit:
- The sprawling Imperial City and Forbidden Purple City within a majestic Citadel.
- Elaborate tombs of Vietnam’s emperors, set amidst tranquil landscapes.
- Riverside pagodas like the iconic Thien Mu Pagoda with its towering red pavilion.
- The bustling Dong Ba Market to sample Hue’s famous cuisine.
- Day trips to abandoned 19th century French hill station resorts like Bach Ma.
- Vietnamese traditional arts like court music, opera, poetry and cuisine.
I hope this guide provides all the details you need to plan your Da Nang to Hue train trip. The coastal views and imperial attractions make it a fabulous journey. Let me know if you need any other Vietnam train travel tips! I’m happy to share more local knowledge and insight.