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Local markets in central VN, a magnet for foodies

 VietNamNet Bridge – It’s often said Con Market in the central city of Da Nang is a foodie heaven.

VietNamNet Bridge – It’s often said Con Market in the central city of Da Nang is a foodie heaven.


Tasty: Markets are not only a place fo buying and selling but a also heaven for foodies.

Located in the centre of Da Nang City, the three storey market faces Quang Trung and Ong Ich Khiem streets and is easy to find. It’s open from 6am till around 7.30pm.

Like other traditional market, this is where you find a variety of fare – fresh fruit, dried seafood and clothes to name but a few.

It is not merely a place for buyers and sellers but also a favourite spot of visitors who want to try a local dish and learn about lives of the locals.

Life here is always bustling.

The late writer Thanh Tinh once said: “When one travels to a new place, they should look for the local market. It is the place that shows you not only the economy but also a cultural slice of the local residents.”

While Hanoi is well-known for its Dong Xuan Market, HCM City with Ben Thanh, Da Nang is all about Con.

Those old enough to remember will regale you with tales of how before the market came into existence, the area was an abandoned sand dune with wild cactus and beefwood trees.

In the wartime, it was the place where the French colonialists punished Vietnamese soldiers to warn other locals. Later, the area became a place to buy and sell. In 1950s and 1960s, the market was surrounded by fancy shops selling jewelry, coffee as well as groceries.

With a petroleum station and two major bus stations nearby, Con Market soon became a busy trading place for both locals and residents of other provinces.

Van Hoa (Culture) Book Store, Xướng café house, Ông Tý’s bánh mì shop, Quansh Hưng Sweet Shop or Thái Ngư’s phở shop were all the familiar and nostalgic names for Da Nang people.

Nowadays, it’s the place where one can try almost all delicacies of Da Nang and other regions at affordable prices – bún thịt nướng (noodle with grilled pork), bún mắm (fresh rice noodle served in broth with shrimps and herbs), mỳ quảng (Quang Nam-based rice noodle), snails, bánh xèo (sizzling crepe with shrimp and pork filling), bánh căn (little round pancake made of rice flour, eggs and shrimp and served with dipping sauce and herbs), gỏi khô bò (salad with dried beef). Each dish ranges from VND15,000 to 50,000.

The symbol of Hue

Like Con Market, Dong Ba is a symbolic market of the neighbouring Hue, the land of royal citadels.


Pop in: Con Market is one of the must visits in Da Nang City. — VNS Photos Hong Van


Something fishy: Dried fish, crab, squid are specialties of Da Nang City that one can find in Con Market.


Street life: Street food dining is a culture in Da Nang and Con Market is a heaven for foodie.

It first opened 120 years ago, stretching from the iconic Trang Tien to Gia Hoi Bridge covering more than 47,000 square metres.

The market was maintained and upgraded in 1987 and that same look is how visitors will see it today. With more than 2,500 booths and nine blocks of houses surrounding it, the market is the biggest in the Thua Thien-Hue Province.

This place seems to offer something for everyone. There’s an area for vegans with affordable dishes and a place for those with a sweet tooths. Local women also come here for some of the best spices around.

If one comes to visit the market on the first day or the fifteenth day of lunar month, they would be in awe by the flower corners and aromas of incense for worshipping.

Visitors can also find local specialties to bring back home as souvenirs, including dried lotus seed and sweets.

Dong Ba also has some of best food of Hue including cơm hến (rice with mussel), bánh bột lọc (steamed dumplings made of manioc flour with shrimp and pork filling), bún bò Huế (noodle soup of Huế style), bánh ram ít (glutinous rice pancake) or the so-called chè (a dessert with various toppings of banana, lotus seed, green bean, or ginger).

Visitors can get some conical hats from the craft village Phu Cam, steel and iron farming tools from Hien Luong blacksmith village, items of Ke Mon blacksmith village, pottery products from Phuong Tich or mats made of bamboo from Bau La Village.

The booths selling fermented shrimp and shredded pork are also worth a visit.

The most colourful corner of this market is where locals sell vegetables – different types of fresh herbs, bamboo shoot, gourds and figs.

Hue is synonymous with conical hats and áo dài (traditional long dress) and Dong Ba is the best place to buy them.

Put on your áo dài, wearing a conical hat and get out your mobile phone as there are selfie spots aplenty in Hue.

Visitors are recommended to go to the market from 3pm as that’s when many of the food booths come alive.  


Feeling fruity: Various types of fresh fruits are available in Con Market.


Hat’s the way to do it: Visiting the hundred-year old Dong Ba Market to have a glimpse of locals’ life is one of the highlights of the trip to Hue. — Photo


Super soup: Bun bo Hue is one of the must try things when one visits Dong Ba Market. — VNS Photo Thuy Hang

by Hong Van 

Source: VNS

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