Da Nang, Saigon among world’s 25 trending destinations

By Nguyen Quy   March 3, 2020 | 05:00 pm PT
Central coast city Da Nang ranked seventh while Ho Chi Minh City secured 12th spot in TripAdvisor’s global list of 25 trending destinations this year.

Released Monday by TripAdvisor, the world's most popular travel guide and review website, the ranking recognizes destinations that saw the biggest increase in positive reviews, booking interest and searches over the past year.

"Da Nang is laid-back and friendly, maybe because everyone you meet has just finished an amazing meal. Culinary tours are a hugely popular way to experience literal local flavor," TripAdvisor said.

The U.S. news site also recommended bold noodle soups and savory street foods, easily walked off by exploring the limestone caves and Buddhist grottos of Marble Mountain.

TripAdvisor described Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s southern metropolis, as providing the cultural and economic pace of the country.

"The former Saigon boasts charming French colonial architecture and wide boulevards, usually thronged and choked with traffic. Taxis are an option for seeing the sprawling city," it said.

"War Remnants Museum offers a glimpse of the Vietnam War through local eyes." 

Foreign tourists visit the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by Shutterstock/Jimmy Tran.

Foreign tourists visit the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by Shutterstock/Jimmy Tran.

Founded in 1975, the museum on Vo Van Tan Street in District 3 is a must-see for anyone who wants to learn more about Vietnam’s history.

It holds over 20,000 artifacts, images and documentaries that relive the atrocities and war crimes perpetrated by colonial and imperial forces, which millions of Vietnamese suffer from to this day.

Don't miss the impressive Jade Emperor Pagoda, the site stated.

Nestled on the small, nondescript Mai Thi Luu Street in District 1 is Phuoc Hai Tu, known as Jade Emperor Pagoda. Built between 1892 and 1900 in honor of the supreme Tao God in Chinese style with colorful decorative motifs, the pagoda has been talking it up since then U.S. President Barack Obama visited it in 2016.

A tour to iconic Ben Thanh Market, where clothes, bags, shoes, handicrafts and so on are sold, is a must, according to TripAdvisor.

Da Nang, home to beautiful My Khe Beach and neighbor to popular ancient town Hoi An, is well regarded for its long, sandy beaches. The central city, which has won global attention for its annual international fireworks competitions in June-July and its spectacular Golden Bridge, has improved on transport, healthcare, commercial, and service infrastructure to cope with the surge of tourists.

An arial view of Da Nang City. Photo by Shutterstock/Jimmy Tran.

An arial view of Da Nang City. Photo by Shutterstock/Jimmy Tran.

Beating Asian metropolises like Tokyo, Seoul and Bangkok, Da Nang in central Vietnam is the most popular 2020 travel destination, Google data shows.

Last year, Da Nang received 3.5 million foreign tourists, up 22.5 percent against 2018, according to the local tourism department. Arrivals from South Korea, mainland China, Japan and Hong Kong show the highest growth rates.

Saigon, teeming with skyscrapers, French colonial buildings and war relics, received over 8.6 million foreign visitors in 2019, up 13 percent year-on-year, its tourism department reported.

Kochi in India topped the TripAdvisor list of trending destinations for 2020, followed by Luzon in the Philippines and Porto in Portugal.

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