Vietnam lends itself well to epics. Snaking down from the Chinese border to the Gulf of Thailand, its towering peaks, emerald-green paddies, and endless white-sand beaches offer enough natural beauty to inspire even the most jaded traveler. One of the highlights is the central coast. Da Nang, the country’s fifth-largest city, is the area's chief hub. While the city is fast developing as a destination in its own right, neighbour Hoi An is long established as one of Vietnam’s premier tourist towns. Together, the two cities act as a launch pad for visitors to explore world-class heritage attractions and leisure options that range from golf courses and casinos to cooking classes and bicycle rides around bucolic countryside—plus, of course, some of Vietnam’s best stretches of sand.