Da Nang is already famous among travelers for its stunning beaches, often ranked among the world’s most beautiful. However, Da Nang is also renowned for the Son Tra Peninsula, home to Ban Co Peak. Ban Co Peak, the “roof” of the most livable city in Vietnam, is where you can set your spirit free under the vast sky, immerse yourself in nature, and admire the entire city of Da Nang, along with its beautiful bridges. Have you ever set foot here?
It’s truly regrettable if you’re a traveler who misses this destination, even more so if you’re a true adventurer who doesn’t give yourself the chance to experience something amazing here.
Where Is Ban Co Peak?
Ban Co Peak is located on the Son Tra Peninsula, approximately 15 kilometers west of the city center. The road to Ban Co Peak is steep, not flat. However, what you experience on the way and when you reach the top is entirely worth the time, effort, and difficulties you may encounter. When you come here, you’ll have a complete view of the beauty of Da Nang right before your eyes.
You’ll see skyscrapers piercing the sky, boats gently rocking on the sea, unique architectural bridges crossing the Han River, and much more.
Moreover, you can combine sightseeing and exploration because the road to Ban Co Peak also passes by many other famous attractions such as Linh Ung Pagoda, But Beach, Obama Rock, Rang Beach,…
Legend of Ban Co Peak at Son Tra Peninsula
When it comes to the creation of Ban Co Peak, there are several legends, but the essence remains the same. According to ancient tales, a celestial being descended to Son Tra, rested and admired the scenery on a vast rock. Amidst the picturesque landscape, he drew a chessboard on the rock where he was sitting.
Immediately, a complete chess set appeared. Emperor Thich, who was passing by, noticed the celestial being playing chess alone. He approached to seek guidance on some chess strategies. With their evenly matched skills, they played an uninterrupted game for several days, with no clear winner.
As the game continued for several days, two fairies descended from the sky and landed on a nearby beach, joyfully playing in the cool blue sea. Later, the locals named that beach with a charming name – “Tien Sa.”
During the intense chess match, the laughter of the fairies distracted Emperor Thich, causing him to make a wrong move. At that moment, the celestial being immediately sealed the game and concluded it. After his victory, the celestial being bid farewell with a smile. He left Emperor Thich sitting there pondering the winning move, which he could not find.
Based on this legend, the local people engraved a chessboard on the existing rock and sculpted a statue of an old man engrossed in a chess game, who is none other than Emperor Thich.
To corroborate this folklore of celestial beings, the locals have reconstructed a statue of Emperor Thich along with the incomplete chess game of the two celestial beings at the site where this miraculous legend took place. Since then, the mountain peak has been named Ban Co Peak.
How to Get There?
There are two routes available:
- From the Thuan Phuoc Bridge, head towards Tho Quang Beach. When you reach the intersection of Le Duc Tho and Yen Kieu, turn toward the People’s Navy Region 3 Military Camp, then follow the trail to reach the peak.
- From Hoang Sa Beach, head up towards Linh Ung Pagoda on the Son Tra Peninsula. Just follow the trail, and you’ll reach the peak.
Tip: If you want to fully enjoy the beauty of the journey, you can go up using the first route and come down using the second one.
What Is the Best Mode of Transportation?
MOTORBIKE: This is still the most popular choice, especially among young travelers. When you ride a motorbike to the Son Tra Peninsula, you can capture the beautiful scenery along the way and stop anywhere you want to take pictures or check-in.
The roads to places like Ban Co Peak, the Thousand-Year-Old Banyan Tree, are quite steep and challenging. You will need a powerful and relatively new motorbike to make it. For safety reasons, it’s better if male drivers control the bike.
If you don’t feel comfortable driving a motorbike to Ban Co Peak but still want to use a motorbike, you can book a tour to Son Tra Peninsula with Danang Motorbike Adventure. They are the leading motorbike tour service provider in Danang
CAR: For older individuals, families with small children, and international travelers, using a car is still a suitable option. With the car rental service in Da Nang from VnCarRentals.com’s, you won’t have to worry about navigating unsafe roads like on a motorbike. Our experienced professional drivers will ensure you have a safe and comfortable journey. Plus, you can visit many attractions like the Thousand-Year-Old Banyan Tree, the Tien Sa lighthouse, or Linh Ung Pagoda during your car rental trip from Da Nang to Son Tra Peninsula. Book our car rental service today for detailed itinerary advice.
The Best Time to Visit Ban Co Peak
The best time to visit Ban Co Peak is probably early in the morning when the mist still blankets the mountains. You can enjoy the surprising tranquility and the exceptionally fresh air that is rarely found in urban areas.
You’ll witness dewdrops glistening on leaves, and the first morning rays of pink and red gradually shining through the foliage, creating the purest beauty. The sunrise slowly emerges.
With the sea on one side, glittering in the sunlight, and lush vegetation on the other, this is a breathtaking scenery that you can hardly find anywhere else.
If you miss the dawn here, you can still admire the sunset on Ban Co Peak. There’s nothing more enchanting than sitting high up, breathing in the fresh air, and gazing at the picturesque, dreamlike scenery. The reflection of the pinkish sunset on the water’s surface, the vast sea, and the fishing boats gently swaying in the waves below.
During these magical moments, don’t forget to check in with your fellow travelers to capture outstanding photos and make lasting memories!
What Can You Find at Ban Co Peak?
When you arrive at Ban Co Peak, you’ll be treated to a breathtaking panoramic view of Da Nang. At an altitude of over 700 meters, you can see the entire city. The towering skyscrapers, boats sailing in the sea, and the picturesque Han River bridges are all within your sight.
Looking down from here, Da Nang’s coastline appears more tranquil, with gentle waves gently hugging the shore, meandering alongside the mountain’s greenery and wispy white clouds, creating the most romantic scenery.
Early in the morning, when the sun is preparing to rise and the city is still calm, this is the most beautiful time to visit. Nature in the peninsula becomes more romantic as the sun gently rises over the mountains. Ban Co Peak is known as the “place of inspiration” for nature lovers, as it offers not only stunning views but also the opportunity to sit down and play chess with the celestial being. You can immerse yourself in moments of serenity, contemplation, and even play a game of chess to inscribe your name into the legend as a chess master or simply capture memories by taking a photo with the celestial being. If you miss the sunrise, you can also witness a beautiful sunset at Ban Co Peak, where the sun turns the sky a brilliant shade of red.
Moreover, as you ascend, the air becomes cooler and more pleasant, accompanied by a gentle breeze and a touch of sunlight. Therefore, when hiking to Ban Co Peak, you will feel a sense of peace, relaxation, and tranquility. There’s a small cafe on the peak, as well as some grill shops offering dishes like rabbit, duck, and goose at budget-friendly prices. You can enjoy the stunning views while savoring a delightful meal.
How to Enjoy Food on Ban Co Peak
The Son Tra Peninsula offers delicious and affordable dining options where you can enjoy renowned dishes such as grilled seafood, crispy stir-fries, and flavorful salt-roasted seafood. You’ll have the opportunity to savor fresh and delightful dishes prepared from a variety of seafood like grouper, barramundi, snapper, lobster, mantis shrimp, squat lobster, soft-shell crab, sea urchin, octopus, sea cucumber, or crabs like the stone crab. Additionally, the local cuisine is known for its seasonal delicacies.
On the Son Tra Peninsula, wild vegetables grow abundantly around the mountains. You can find various edible plants, including forest vegetables like Sesbania, Alocasia odora, peperomia, Clidemia hirta, Areca catechu, Eleutherine bulbosa, Smilax bracteata, and wild cashews. These forest vegetables are often used as essential ingredients in dishes such as steamed or sour soups. You can also experience the local specialty, coconut wine, which is made and served on the peninsula.
Other tourist attractions near Ban Co Peak.
For the convenience of traveling while saving time, you should refer to the map and the travel itinerary on Son Tra Peninsula below:
If you’re going on a backpacking trip around Son Tra Peninsula, here’s the suggested itinerary: Start by taking Yết Kiêu Street, then visit Son Tra Peninsula. Continue to climb to Ban Co Peak, then visit the Scenic Outlook to admire the picturesque scenery of Son Tra and Hai Van Pass. Afterward, travel along the road to see the thousand-year-old banyan tree, Hai Dang Point, Linh Ung Pagoda, and the Dong Dinh Museum. Finally, don’t miss the beautiful beaches on Son Tra Peninsula, such as Bai But, Bai Rang, and Bai Da, for some relaxation, swimming, and a distant view of Da Nang.
Linh Ung Pagoda at Bai But:
This is the first stop if you take the coastal route via Hoang Sa Street. It’s perhaps one of the largest and most famous pagodas in Central Vietnam. Linh Ung Pagoda is located at Bai But on Son Tra Peninsula and is renowned for its 67-meter-tall statue of Quan Am (the Goddess of Mercy), which is equivalent to a 30-story building. Situated on the hillside, Linh Ung Pagoda is extremely beautiful and attracts thousands of tourists daily who come to visit and seek blessings. When you’re at Linh Ung Pagoda, you can also enjoy panoramic views of My Khe Beach and the city of Da Nang. It’s a great place to visit, and catching the afternoon sun here for photos can be a wonderful experience.
The Thousand-Year-Old Banyan Tree
Known as the “ancient village” of the forested area, this tree is legendary. According to folklore, this Thousand-Year-Old Banyan Tree is a place where fairies often come to play when they descend to the earthly realm. This makes the banyan tree extraordinarily beautiful and enchanting. It’s one of the most attractive spots on Son Tra Peninsula. To get here, drive about 5 kilometers further from Linh Ung Pagoda. No one really knows the true age of the tree, but its trunk is as wide as ten people holding hands, and its roots alone would require several people to embrace. The uphill path to the Thousand-Year-Old Banyan Tree can be somewhat steep and challenging to navigate. When you arrive, you’ll have the opportunity to rest and marvel at the tree’s grandeur. This destination is truly worth experiencing, so don’t miss it.
Tien Sa Lighthouse
Tien Sa Lighthouse is located at a lower elevation than Ban Co Peak, and the road to reach it is straightforward. It is sometimes referred to as the “Eye of Vietnam” in Da Nang. In reality, this is Radio Ra Đa 29, which serves to observe the sea and aircraft in the territorial waters of Vietnam. From this vantage point, you can take various selfies and also enjoy another beautiful view of Da Nang. Please note that you must seek permission to enter Ra Đa instead of trying to access it without permission, as you might incur penalties.
Bai Da Obama (Obama Rock Beach)
Why did Bai Da Den (Black Rock Beach) change to Bai Da Obama? This is because former President Barack Obama once visited this location, and the name Bai Da Obama was adopted in his honor. Now it has become a hot tourist destination due to its new name. Bai Da Obama features numerous black rocks clustered together, creating a beautiful rock formation. When you visit here, you can enjoy swimming, organize beachside parties, and go camping.
Bai But Beach
Bai But Beach is a beach located on the way to Linh Ung Pagoda. It resembles a crescent-shaped beach, and it’s exceptionally beautiful. Bai But Beach has gained popularity among both Vietnamese and international tourists when visiting Da Nang. You can rent beach huts here and enjoy singing by the clear sea. In addition, you can partake in various sea tourism activities, such as water sports, natural coral snorkeling, windsurfing, and parasailing.
Bai Rang (Bai Rang Beach)
When you set foot on Bai Rang(Bai Rang Beach) on Son Tra Peninsula, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. There are very few places in Da Nang where the beach’s waters are so clear and refreshing. When you arrive at Bai Rang, you’ll feel healthier and incredibly relaxed. Bai Rang also offers snorkeling services, but the coral reefs here are not as beautiful as those in Cu Lao Cham. On weekends or holidays, local residents often come to Bai Rang to enjoy the scenery, have a meal, organize beachside parties with family and friends, and engage in various beach activities.
Some notes when visiting places with panoramic views of Da Nang:
- Ensure you wear tidy, comfortable clothing to facilitate safe and unobstructed movement without getting caught in roadside vegetation. Don’t forget to bring a lightweight windbreaker since Ban Co Peak is at a relatively high altitude, and it can get a bit chilly, especially in the early morning or late evening.
- Travel at a moderate speed, maintain a stable mindset, and choose a reliable co-pilot if you’re traveling by motorcycle. If you’re on a motorbike, opt for one with gears instead of a scooter, as the road to Ban Co Peak is rather steep.
- There are no houses or eateries on Ban Co Peak, so you can bring your own food and drinks to enjoy while taking in the view. Additionally, a unique and exciting experience is to camp overnight to witness both the sunrise and sunset in this place, where you can truly appreciate the beauty of Ban Co Peak.
- Depart from Ban Co Peak before it gets dark to ensure safety.
- Only visit Ban Co Peak on clear, non-rainy days, as the road can become slippery during wet weather.
- Always have your phone with you, as it can be handy in unexpected situations.
Ban Co Peak is indeed one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in Da Nang, well worth experiencing. Hopefully, through this article, you’ve gained some useful information and insights to plan your visit to this famous location. Amid the hustle and bustle of daily life, leave behind the chaos and worries and come to Ban Co Peak in Da Nang to “get some fresh air,” to reconnect with the natural world, and to soothe your soul, making it lighter and more tranquil!