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Da Nang International Fireworks Festival 2023

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AsiaDa NangFestivalsFireworksShowsViet Nam
Article author: michael
michael
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Cover Image for Da Nang International Fireworks Festival 2023
Photo credit: diff.vn

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This year saw the 11th edition of the Da Nang International Fireworks Festival (DIFF), founded in 2008.

This year’s edition started on June 2nd, 2023, and ended with the finale on July 8th, 2023. The participating teams included Australia, Canada, England, Finland, France, Italy, Poland, and of course Vietnam.

You can visit the official Da Nang International Fireworks Festival website for more info, including info on all of the participating teams. You can also stay up to date on the official Da Nang International Fireworks Festival Facebook page.

The Festival

The festival, which is held annually in Da Nang, was created as a way to promote tourism in the city, and help make Da Nang “Asia’s Leading Festival-Event Destination”.

It’s organized by Sun Group, who have theme parks across Vietnam (including the Ba Na Hills theme park), in partnership with Da Nang city.

The fireworks are of course the main draw for the festival, but the city of Da Nang also puts on a number of other events and activities during the festival, including food, music, and art events.

This year’s festival is themed “World without distance” to honour the recovery of world tourism after the Covid pandemic. The stage is arranged on the Han River as in previous years, it is expected to be decorated with the image of peach bells - one of the symbolic flowers of Ba Na peak.

Each team has 20 minutes to perform thematic fireworks display each night agreed by the organizers, including Love Without Distance, Peace for the World, Equality for Humanity, Unlimited Creation, Development Sustainable Tourism.
Translated from diff.vn

While the festival started in 2008 as an annual event, the Covid pandemic caused the festival to be cancelled for several years in a row, with the last festival being held in 2019. The previous fireworks festival in 2019 drew in nearly 1 million visitors to Da Nang.

With the festival finally resuming in 2023 now that things have started to open up again after the pandemic, I’m sure the city is hoping for even greater numbers of visitors this year.

The Fireworks Competition

Qualifying Rounds

The qualifying rounds are held on Saturday evenings over a period of 4 consecutive weeks, with two teams competing each week. The teams are judged by a panel of judges, and the top two teams from the qualifying rounds move on to the finale.

We ended up missing the first two qualifying rounds, as we only arrived in Da Nang towards the later half of June. That also meant unfortunately that we missed the Canadian team, which I was really hoping to catch! We were however able to catch the last two qualifying rounds between Australia and Italy, and Poland and the UK, as well as the finale between Italy and France.

We didn’t book any tickets to watch the show though, and frankly I found the prices a bit steep, at around $40 CAD for the cheapest (furthest) seats, and $140 CAD for the close up ones. And that amount is per show, not for the entire festival! 😳

We instead watched the 2 qualifier rounds we made it for from an empty penthouse apartment in the complex where we were staying, which has a gorgeous view of Da Nang from the 21st floor. It’s about 4km from the site of the fireworks though, so it’s definitely not close.

Da Nang at Night

During the Australia vs. Italy round we saw, there was quite a lot of residual stagnant smoke from the fireworks, which drowned out a lot of the fireworks. I suspect the high heat and humidity might have had something to do with it, but I’m not sure. Hopefully it looked better from the paid seats!

Australia vs. Italy

Australia vs. Italy

The fireworks were ok, but I’m not sure I’d have wanted to pay for tickets to see them.

The following week, and last qualifying round, was between Poland and the UK. My wife and I both agreed it was a lot more exciting and interesting than the previous week and we really enjoyed watching this one. That said however, neither Poland or the UK made it in to the finals! I guess we’re not cut out to be judges! 😜

Poland vs. UK

Poland vs. UK

The Grand Finale

For the finale, which occurred on July 8th, my wife booked us dinner at the Four Points by Sheraton Da Nang, where we were able to view the fireworks closer to the site, and from the 36th floor at the Horizon Bar.

The finale was honestly … pretty damn fantastic!

I don’t know if it was because the fireworks displays put on by the finalists were just better (I’m sure they were … it was the finale after all!), or if it was just the fact that we were closer to the site and in a more lively atmosphere at the Sheraton. It was definitely a lot more exciting than the qualifying rounds, and everyone was super pumped while watching the fireworks finale.

Both teams (Italy and France) put on amazing, absolutely action packed fireworks displays during the finale.

Now while I didn’t really feel the qualifying rounds were worth the ticket price, I think the finale would definitely be worth it, although I do still feel the ticket prices are a bit out there. Hopefully the next time we’re in Da Nang we’ll be able to swing the cash to afford tickets to the finale! 😜

That said, our view from the Four Points was pretty decent, and we were able to see the fireworks pretty well. During the two fireworks displays by both teams, the restaurant turned off all the lights, and broadcast the show live on TV as well. It was a really fun experience and everyone at the restaurant seemed to be having an amazing time.

Below are the two videos I took of the finale, one for each team. My phone camera leaves a lot to be desired, but I hope you enjoy them regardless.

Team Italy

Team France


If you want to check out some much better pics than I was able to take, have a look at the vnexpress.net site which has some really stunning pics from the finale.

Until next time,
michael 😀

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