Welcome to Hoi An
You’re Going to Love Hoi An and want to stay longer
Hoi An is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for a good reason, with its rustic old world charm of an ancient town, amazing food, and rich cultural imagery within a short distance of idyllic rice paddies, serene river banks, and gorgeous beaches. Hoi An Ancient Town is probably the most alluring attraction, a romantic little quarter filled with vibrant colors, sounds, textures, and fragrant smells. Here you can wander the old streets and explore various historical sites, the most iconic being the Japanese Covered Bridge built in the 1590’s and remains one of the most photographed bridges in Asia.
What to do in Hoi An
Cua Dai Beach: Escape to the Seaside
Dip your feet into the sand at Cua Dai Beach. The still waters are a great place for beachgoers with small children or who are looking to relax and swim. You can also rent bicycles to get around easily in Cua Dai Beach. During sunset, enjoy fresh seafood from roasted salted crab, steamed red snapper, baked clams with lemon salt, grilled tiger prawns and steamed mullet
Take a boat ride at sunset and float a lantern
Take your loved ones on a romantic boat ride down the Hoi An river at sunset. Soak in the vibrant atmosphere while being slightly escaping the crowds. Along the riverside you’ll see other boats offering rides, so finding one should be easy. If you wait to go later into the night you’ll find yourself surrounded by lanterns floating down the river.
Haggle at the Central Market
The Central Market in the Old Town on the water’s edge is a fascinating place to visit even if you’re not shopping for food. The market stretches from the water’s edge into the town, where food stalls line the market’s narrow streets to Minh An neighborhood in front of the Thu Bon River. Prices will vary between stores, so shopping with a local will be a wise choice. You can also have a go at bargaining as you bounce between stalls, sampling everything from home-style cooked delicacies to exotic fruits and vegetables.
Mỹ Sơn: Get a Glimpse of Ancient Vietnamese Heritage
This ancient temple complex was built between the 4th century and the 14th century. Serving as a place of worship for the Champa people, My Son was dedicated to the Hindu god of Shiva. For many centuries Religious ceremonies for kings and royalty were carried out within the complex, making it one of the oldest inhabited archaeological sites in the region. Much of it was destroyed by the Vietnam War, leaving just a handful of partially ruined Hindu Temples. The area has been more or less abandoned ever since, offering visitors a glimpse into past Indochina culture and history.
Chùa Cầu: Cross the River, Japanese Style
The Japanese Covered Bridge or Cau Chua Pagoda is easily the most iconic attraction in Hoi An. The Vietnamese name of this bridge is “Lai Vien Kieu”. Built in the 1590s, the Japanese Covered Bridge is admired for its elaborate carvings and close access to other Hoi An attractions. Legend has it, the bridge was built to appease an evil monster who plagued India, Japan, and Vietnam from causing earthquakes and other natural disasters in the region.
Hoi An’s shopping scene boasts plentiful of shophouses and makeshift stalls selling handicrafts, jewelry, traditional apparel, and shoes while its central marketplace is filled with locals bargaining for fresh produce and foodstuffs. You can easily get yourself custom-made dresses, suits, shirts, and shoes at a fraction of the price you’d pay for them back home. There are also plenty of goods on sale in Hoi An and its pedestrian-friendly streets, with charming local shopkeepers making an afternoon of shopping a delight. What’s great is you can find fair-trade shops and non-profit charity organizations in Hoi An, where all proceeds go toward helping impoverished families and disabled youths in Vietnam.
A day trip to the Cham Islands takes you to wonderful beaches, tropical nature, and colorful marine life. It’s no wonder snorkeling, diving, trekking, and fishing are the most popular activities to indulge in. It’s also an ideal day trip for families and travelers who are looking for tranquility and relaxation. You can reach the island by ferry boat, and it takes about 90 minutes.
Cycling around Hoi An
Hoi An is a great place to jump on a bicycle and pedal your way around Hoi An. The quaint old quarter is very cycle-friendly. A short ride out of Hoi An’s Old Town will soon have you cycling through rice paddies and traditional villages, the rural side of Hoi An. The majority of hostels and hotels will have bikes that can be rented either free or for a very small fee—usually less than 1 USD day.
Basket Boat Tour to Coconut Village
Escape Hoi An and get on a basket boat to experience the rural countryside. Catch a glimpse of everyday rural life and interact with fishermen. Visit a local market, cruise down the Thu Bon River and take part in a hands-on cooking class.