A little north of the city of Danang central Vietnam is the Hải Vân Pass. It is about 21 km long and stretches through the mountains on the 1A national route. It is part of the larger mountain range known as "Annamite Range" and stretches along border the near Bạch Mã National Park. It is quite a beautiful place with epic views of the ocean and of the city.
I've been living in the city of Danang now for about a year and have only 1 other time traveled up to the Hải Vân Pass, but a few friends I decide to make that journey the other morning before sunrise. This is the story of that adventure.
here is the route we took.
The alarm sounded at 4 AM. Had to wake up and walk the puppy dog, then jump on the bike to meet my friends.
- This is me waiting on a Dark Street, we are supposed to meet at 4:30 AM, It wasn't until 4:50 am anyone showed up. Here is the first person arriving. I'm saying "why are you late". Lol
We sorted out the ordeal of them arriving late then we all jumped on our bikes took off on the one-hour ride to the top of the pass. The ride itself was bitterly cold being that was so early, but as soon we reached the base of the pass the temperature changed and became warm... much to our surprise.
The first place we stopped was at the top the mountain on a sharp bend, this is where we watched the sunrise. When we arrived the sky was still dark, such as this photo was taken at 5:36 AM.
It was lovely to experience the sunrise with my friends on top of this mountain was also this really cool ceremonial urn up on top as well.
- This was about 6:02 am.
And yes I did a course to a gratuitous photo looking like I was on top of the world.
we also all fooled around with taking a lot of selfie photos....
and of course taking photos with the Urn... It was pretty wicked cool..
my friend also took his larger full format camera and was taking large-format photos... excited to see what they look like!
After the sun came up we decide to move a little further up the road to get some coffee, little did we know that one of the people we are with, their uncle owned a coffee shop on the top of the hill. A VERY NICE COFFEE SHOP.
This was the coffee shop we ended up going to
- it is known as In The Clouds Cafeteria...
- here is the Google link : https://goo.gl/maps/5SckEYjYm4smQpbb9
And it was a remarkably beautiful place. Why they did not tell us about it before to watch the sunrise there, and not standing on a street corner somewhere... I will never know but here are some photos from that place.
It's literally on the hillside overlooking everything beautiful...
You walk down the small winding paths on the side of the cliff to find seats.
They also have a lot of really authentic and natural looking decorations that fit the area wonderfully such as this ceramic vessel. Just look at the blue it amazing!
And I mean the views there are just spectacular, like OMG why did they not tell us to come here to watch the sunrise.
- you see that little bend in the road, that's where were standing to watch a sunrise.. why.. IDK.. this was much better. lol
We also sat and had a lovely cup of tea and coffee, as we talked about the morning's ride and about life. It is those moments that make friends and bond people together I believe.
This place was also pretty unique as they brew their own coffee using wood so you get to taste that smoky flavor.
Here's their teakettle outside cooking away.
Captured this nice low rainbow reflection in my lens as well. And yes I think that is a coconut next to the fire...
There was also a bunch of little trails that stretched around this area some of them leading to more secluded sitting locations.
- I have added to my list come back here and explore these trails a bit more!
The whole area felt quite magical, perhaps because we were some of the only people there, or just the moment of the day with the sun rising the water bubbling...
but it felt fun to walk around and explore and see the beautiful light in the trees.
I then explored with some micro photography of the plant life. the moss growing on the side of the walls, was almost screaming to be photographed... And it takes a lot for Moss to scream.
I perhaps started go a bit crazy because, even this bathroom wall with toilet scrubber seemed magical.
- Textures are fun to photograph.
The owner came out and said some poetry to us in Vietnamese of which I did not understand but my friends did, then they told me he was saying that I should find a nice girl from Hanoi and marry them to be happy.
With the time ticking on we decided to leave and head back the city. I did capture one more photo of an ancient ruin on the way out the door.
It was a lovel hour ride back home along the coastline, the weather was much better and not so cold. We ended up getting back and had brunch/lunch at my friends restaurant and called it a day.
I hope you enjoy these photos and the story of travel. I encourage you to get out there travel far, and travel often when you can as the world is a beautiful place.
Much love my friends and see you on the next adventure!
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