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dong hoi

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Dong Hoi

Dong Hoi, the capital city of Quang Binh Province, offers a charming blend of serene beaches, historical sites, and a gateway to the spectacular UNESCO Nha-Ke Bang 

National Park and Awe-inspiring cave system. With its laid-back atmosphere, this coastal city serves as a perfect base for exploring Central Vietnam’s natural and historical treasures. From its beautiful Nhat Le Beach to the remnants of its war-torn past, Dong Hoi is a destination that promises relaxation and intriguing exploration.

“Quaint Seaside City and Gateway to Central Vietnam’s Natural Wonders”

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Experience
Dong Hoi

Attractions

Dong Hoi is known for its beautiful coastline and historical landmarks like Tam Toa Church ruins. It’s also a gateway to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park which has amazing caves. Other attractions include Quang Binh Gate and Bao Ninh Beach.

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Rest

Dong Hoi offers a range of accommodations to suit all preferences, from beachfront resorts to cozy homestays. Based on community reviews and local insights, we’ve curated a selection of stays that promise comfort and a genuine experience of the city’s hospitality.

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Taste

The culinary scene in Dong Hoi is a delightful mix of fresh seafood and local Vietnamese cuisine. The city’s eateries range from casual beachside shacks serving grilled fish to more upscale restaurants offering a fusion of local and international dishes. Our list ensures you experience the best of Dong Hoi’s gastronomy.

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Travel Inspiration & Local Legends

Dong Hoi Handbook: Essential Travel Tips

When is the Best Time to Visit Dong Hoi?

The ideal time to visit is from April to August when the weather is warm and sunny, perfect for beach activities and exploring the nearby caves.

Transportation Tips

A. Getting to Vietnam

Vietnam has several international airports, with the main ones being Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi (North Vietnam), Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City (South Vietnam), and Da Nang International Airport in Da Nang (Central Vietnam). Your choice should depend on your itinerary and final destination within Vietnam.

B. How to get to Dong Hoi

Dong Hoi is well-connected to other major cities in Vietnam by rail, highway, and domestic flights. Check out this section of our guide on Getting to Dong Hoi.

C. How to get around in Dong Hoi

  1. Walking Along the Promenade: Dong Hoi has a beautiful promenade that is perfect for leisurely walks. It’s a great way to explore the city, especially the scenery along the Nhat Le River.
  2. Golf Carts for City Tours: Some eco-friendly tours offer golf cart rides around the city. This can be a fun and environmentally friendly way to see the sights.
  3. Hire Taxis: Taxis are readily available and can be a convenient option for covering longer distances within the city or for those who prefer to avoid driving themselves.
  4. Rent a Motorbike or Bicycle: Renting a motorbike or bicycle is popular for many tourists. It offers flexibility and the opportunity to explore at your own pace. Just follow local traffic regulations and always wear a helmet when riding a motorbike.

Before You Go: Visa, Currency, Timezone, Voltage, ATMs, Credit Cards, Internet, SIM Cards, Tips

  • Visa: Check visa requirements based on your nationality. Find out more about getting a Vietnam Visa before you visit Dong Hoi. 
  • Timezone: Vietnam is in the Indochina Time Zone (ICT), UTC+7.
  • Voltage: The standard voltage is 220V, and the outlets usually accept three different plugs: A, C, and F. If you are from Europe, Japan, or the Americas, your plugs will work fine. Otherwise, you’ll need an adapter. Note that many Vietnamese outlets do not have a third hole for grounding, and so can only accept two-pronged plugs.
  • Internet: Most hotels, cafes, and even restaurants in Dong Hoi offer free Wi-Fi; Wi-Fi plans are so cheap in Vietnam that almost all businesses have one. But it’s easy, inexpensive, and well worth buying a local SIM card with a data package at the airport upon arrival.
  • SIM Cards: You can easily purchase SIM cards for data and calls at the airport or local stores. Note that you’ll need to provide your passport to get a SIM. Viettel, Mobifone, and VinaPhone are the best mobile networks for Dong Hoi and most parts of Vietnam.
  • Currency: Vietnam uses the Vietnamese Dong (VND). VND only comes in bills (no coins), and 1 USD equals about 24,000 VND (commonly abbreviated as 24k). Some shops catering to tourists may accept USD, but most only take VND.
  • Credit Cards: Visa and MasterCard are commonly accepted at large businesses like hotels, indoor restaurants, or upscale shopping venues, but smaller enterprises usually only take cash.
  • ATMs: The center of Dong Hoi has many ATMs, most of which accept foreign cards. Make sure to notify your bank before you travel to Vietnam to avoid blocked ATM transactions.
  • Tipping: Vietnam is not a tipping culture, so a tip is not expected. A tip is a good way to bring a smile to someone’s face, though. Note that cab drivers and tour guides often rely on some tipping, so it’s a good idea to tip them.

Understanding Culture & Customs In Dong Hoi

Fewer locals speak English than in other popular tourist destinations, so be prepared, patient, friendly, and have Google Translate ready. Like anywhere in Vietnam, you should familiarize yourself with general Vietnamese etiquette before traveling.

Common Questions about

Dong Hoi

Dong Hoi has a range of luxury and budget options. However, we recommend staying on the beach to utilize the highlight of this sleepy seaside town. You can browse more Dong Hoi hotel options in our guide.

Try Ngoc Toan Restaurant, Chanh Restaurant, or Chang Chang Seafood Restaurant for local cuisine. Head to 7th Heaven or Buffalo Home and Chill bar for Western food. For more choices, look over our guide on restaurants in Dong Hoi.

Dong Hoi is known for its scenic beaches like Nhat Le Beach, historical sites including the Tam Toa Church ruins, and its proximity to the famous Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. It is a popular base for exploring the region’s natural caves and landscapes.

Dong Hoi has beautiful beaches to lounge on and a beautiful river, the Nhat Le River, to stroll along and even fish in. Besides its aquatic landmarks, Dong Hoi is near many historical and cultural locations like Tam Toa Church and many local markets. The area’s big attraction is Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. It’s a good idea to take a Dong Hoi City Tour after arriving to find more things you’d like to do there.

It’s about a 40-minute drive by taxi or car.

During the dry season, the best time to visit Dong Hoi is from February to August. This period offers sunny and pleasant weather, with temperatures ranging from 22°C to 34°C, ideal for beach activities and exploring the nearby caves of Phong Nha. June to July is particularly good for beach visits, with warm, clear conditions and minimal rain.

1 or 2 days is sufficient time in Dong Hoi before heading to Phong Nha, or A day or two will allow you to see the city’s beaches and river and explore the local culture. After your time in Dong Hoi, head to Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park for a few days.