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#73 Vietnam – Hai Van Pass

Just 21 kilometers long, the Hai Van Pass in central Vietnam has earned a reputation as one of the most spectacular roads in the world, winding over high ridges on a peninsula that juts in to the sea.

Connecting the old capital of Hue and the beach city of Da Nang, the pass is now devoid of traffic thanks to a new tunnel that most vehicles use, leaving the pass open for those who travel for pleasure rather than necessity.

Just south of Da Nang, the small town of Hoi An has become one of Vietnam’s prime destinations, thanks to its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999.

Since then, extensive reconstruction and the opening of dozens of hotels and restaurants have seen the town cleaned up and preserved, but also change from a living town, to a tourist town. Nevertheless, its charm can be felt in markets, old homes and temples that date from its heyday as a trading port starting in the 1400s.