Danang Dragon Bridge
Dragon Bridge is the newest bridge among six bridges crossing over the Han River in Danang, Vietnam. As its name implies, Dragon Bridge illustrates the image of a dragon flying towards the sea with the architecture inspired by Ly dynasty. This inventive design is a reflection of Vietnamese customs and beliefs, as well as highlights Da Nang’s growth and development. Due to its unique design, the bridge has become an iconic image of the city that visitor should not miss while in Danang. Let Vietnam Travel provide you with many interesting facts and stories about the Dragon Bridge below.
Table of Contents
1. Architecture and Construction.
At the end of 2005: Danang’s local government organized an architecture design competition for Dragon Bridge with the participation of 8 design consulting companies (including 4 Vietnamese companies, 2 Japanese companies, 1 German company and 1 US company). These companies proposed 17 design options for Dragon Bridge.
In October 2007: The design of a flying dragon from the US-based Ammann & Whitney Consulting Engineers with Louis Berger Group was chosen. It marked the history of new architectural art in Danang.
On December 17, 2008: People’s Committee of Danang City approved the project.
On July 19, 2009: Construction of the bridge began (the same day as the inauguration of the nearby Thuận Phước Bridge). The former Prime Minister of Vietnam Nguyen Tan Dung and many high-ranking government officials attended the groundbreaking ceremony.
Main span was completed on October 26, 2012. The bridge was officially inaugurated on March 29, 2013, on the 38th anniversary of the liberation of Danang City.
Dragon Bridge is 666m long, 37.5m wide across the Han River and equipped with a lighting system of total 15,000 LED lights. Total project costed nearly VND 1.5 trillion ($88m), offering six lanes for vehicles and two lanes for pedestrians crossing the Han River.
From city center, this modern bridge starts at the Le Dinh Duong/Bach Dang traffic circle. It forms the shortest link from the Da Nang International Airport to other main roads in the city, and also offers a more direct route to two most popular beaches of Danang – My Khe Beach and Non Nuoc Beach on the eastern edge of the city.
First and foremost, Dragon Bridge is famous for its unique design with the shape modeling a majestic dragon of the Ly Dynasty flying to the East Sea. The dragon’s tail is stylized as a blooming lotus flower, Vietnamese national flower symbolizing the idyllic Vietnamese countryside. The dragon’s undulating body and head reach to the sea, which expresses Danang’s ambition to integrate to partners from all over the world.
In terms of stability, five coating layers protect the bridge from corrosion and external factors such as weather impacts as well as create the eye-catching golden color for the bridge. The distinctive feature of the bridge is the steel beam structure system in the form of a dragon flying over the Han River, heading the sea. This is considered as the most unique design in the world about the combination of steel beams, steel arches and concrete beams.
2. Events at Dragon Bridge
Featuring 15,000 LED lights, Dragon Bridge turns into a vivid dragon with a dazzling light effect so it’s best to be visited at night time.
2.1. Fire and water performance
In addition to making tourists be impressed by the architectural design, Danang Dragon Bridge is also equipped with a function that can astonish everyone when seeing it in the first time: dragon’s fire breathing and water spraying performance. The performance takes place at 9 PM on every Saturday, Sunday and holidays. If you are planning the trip to Danang, you should arrange at least one night stay in this city on weekend to enjoy this incredible scene.
The first performance is a 2-minute fire-breathing show that comes in 2 turns with 9 times of breathing fire. The water spraying show comes right after that and lasts 3 minutes. It includes 3 turns but there is only one time of spraying water per turn. Watchers will surely be amazed by the dazzling lights combining with the fire and water that comes out from the dragon’s mouth, making it an incredible highlight in Danang City.
Best places to enjoy fire and water performance
• On the Dragon Bridge: Before the show starts, no vehicle is allowed to commute across the bridge. Therefore, you can enjoy the performance right on the bridge. However, you should stay away from the dragon’s head, or else you might get wet during the water-spraying show.
• From Tran Hung Dao Street: Tran Hung Dao street crosses the Dragon Bridge right under the dragon’s head so it is the best place to enjoy the performance. There are many sidewalk drink stalls along the street so you can simply take a plastic chair, enjoy local drinks while witnessing the spectacular performances. Love Bridge and Riverside Park located along Tran Hung Dao Street are the best spots to take good views of the show.
• From hotels and rooftop bars: A more exciting place to see the performance is from hotels and the rooftop bars near the bridge. From these positions, you can enjoy both the performance and the poetic beauty of the Han River.
Suggested hotels with good view to Dragon Bridge:
+ Vanda Hotel – 03 Nguyen Van Linh Street, Danang City.
+ Brilliant Hotel – 162 Bach Dang Street, Danang City.
+ Danang Riverside Hotel – A30 Tran Hung Dao Street, Danang City.
+ Senriver Hotel – 223 Tran Phu Street, Danang City.
+ Memory Hostel – 03 Tran Quoc Toan Street, Danang City.
• From other bridges: Other famous bridges over the Han River such as Han Bridge or Tran Thi Ly Bridge also are not-too-bad options. Dragon Bridge lies in between these two bridges and parallel with them, you can see the water and fire performance from one of two bridges.
• From night river cruises: Many river cruises anchor at the pier near the Bach Dang roadside, run along Han River, and pass by Dragon Bridge. Therefore, tourists take the cruise to watch the show in the weekend.
2.2. Danang International Firework Festival (DIFF)
Annually, Danang International Firework Festival is held in Danang and this special event attracts a lot of locals, domestic and international travelers, and firework enthusiasts. Many fireworks competitors from all around the world will gather in this inspiring coastal hub for a spectacle of world-class pyrotechnics. The firework performances will be set off over the water of the Han River, Dragon Bridge is one of the best places to enjoy the firework displays. Viewing from these areas is free, but often crowded. Thus you should arrive soon before the show begins to find a good standing spot.
3. How to get there?
Actually, it is really easy to reach the Dragon Bridge if you are in Danang, Hoi An or Hue. Just ask everyone you meet about Dragon Bridge, which is “Cầu Rồng” in Vietnamese, or simply type its name on your own phone’s Google Maps. The bridge is across Han River from Nguyen Van Linh Street (Hai Chau District) to Vo Van Kiet Street (Son Tra District). It is only about 2km from My Khe Beach, or 5km from Danang International Airport.
You can visit Dragon Bridge during day time, but night is the best time to see it because of a dazzling light effect. The nearby is cozy, vibrant Son Tra night market, where you’ll find lots of souvenirs, foods and drinks.
Did you also know that you could visit the Dragon Bridge and the Golden Bridge – the two most well-known bridges of Danang – in the same itinerary? Whether staying in Danang or Hoian, you can ask Vietnam Travel’s consultants to include them in one of our best-selling day tours: Explore Ba Na Hills.