Here’s Why You Should Visit Vietnam’s Hoi An

Whether it’s the handicraft shops of Hoi An or the local seafood, there is a lot to explore in this Oriental city
A woman selling lanterns in Hoi An central Market
A woman selling lanterns in Hoi An central MarketDepositphotos

Nestled on the central coast of Vietnam, the charming town of Hoi An has captured the hearts of travellers from around the world with its timeless beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. This UNESCO World Heritage-listed gem offers a unique blend of ancient architecture, delectable cuisine, and a relaxed atmosphere, making it a must-visit destination for anyone exploring Southeast Asia.

Places To Visit

The Japanese covered bridge
The Japanese covered bridgeDepositphotos
  1. Hoi An Ancient Town: Explore the well-preserved historic district of Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Wander through its narrow streets, lined with colourful buildings, ancient temples, and atmospheric alleyways. Don't miss the iconic Japanese Covered Bridge.

  2. Cua Dai Beach: Relax on the beautiful sandy shores of Cua Dai Beach, just a short bike ride or taxi trip from Hoi An. You can enjoy swimming and water sports or simply soak up the sun.

  3. An Bang Beach: Another lovely beach option, An Bang Beach is known for its laid-back atmosphere, beachfront restaurants, and water sports activities.

  4. My Son Sanctuary: Take a day trip to My Son, a cluster of Hindu temples dating back to the Champa Kingdom (4th to 13th century). These ancient ruins are set in a lush valley and provide insight into Vietnam's history.

  5. Hoi An Central Market: Visit the bustling central market to experience the local culture and sample Vietnamese street food. It's an excellent place to shop for souvenirs, clothing, and fresh produce.

  6. Hoi An Silk Village: Learn about the silk-making process and have the opportunity to buy high-quality silk products. You can also try your hand at traditional silk weaving.

  7. Hoi An Lantern Market: If you're in town during the full moon, don't miss the Hoi An Lantern Market, where the streets are beautifully lit with colourful lanterns. 

Where To Stay

For the optimal experience during your stay, choosing accommodations closer to the Ancient Town is recommended, as that's where you'll be spending most of your time. If you're seeking a luxurious stay, look no further than Little Riverside Hoi An. This five-star hotel is situated on the banks of the Thu Bon River within the Ancient Town. It offers elegant and spacious suites, a rooftop pool, and a delightful complimentary breakfast.

La An Central Boutique Villa is an excellent choice for those who want both comfort and affordability. Located on An Hoi Island, this villa provides spacious rooms at a reasonable price, a delicious breakfast, and access to an outdoor swimming pool. If you're on a budget, Hoi An offers numerous budget and backpacker accommodations options. Some of the top choices include Tribee Bana Hostel, Mad Monkey Hoi An, Under The Coconut Tree, and HY Local Budget Hotel by Hoianese.

What To Eat

A local restaurant in Hai An
A local restaurant in Hai AnDepositphotos

Thanks to the fresh ingredients sourced daily from nearby farms and seas, your culinary experience in Hoi An is bound to be a highlight of your trip. Indulge in authentic local delicacies such as Cao Lầu, White Rose, Hoành Thánh, and Mì Quảng at eateries like Morning Glory Restaurant, Miss Ly, or Mai Fish.

For a delightful fusion dining experience, visit Nu Eatery, where Hoi An's best fusion cuisine awaits. The banh mi at Madame Khanh is a must-try when satisfying your snack cravings. And for those seeking a seafood extravaganza with a picturesque river view, Tien Restaurant offers an exceptional à la carte experience.

Where To Shop

Woman selling vegetables Hoi An central Market
Woman selling vegetables Hoi An central MarketDepositphotos

A visit to the Hoi An Central Market is a must for an authentic glimpse into Vietnamese life. Here, you can immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere and have the opportunity to bargain for or purchase a wide array of fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, handicrafts, and delectable street snacks.

If you're searching for luxury Vietnamese textiles, exquisite handmade lanterns, or high-end suits and dresses, 'Silk Village' offers superior quality products at slightly higher prices.

For a unique blend of Vietnamese traditions, landscapes, and modern fashion trends, 'Metiseko' presents one-of-a-kind designs suitable for any time of day.

'Aobaba Cloth Shop' is a family-owned business that takes great pride in its sustainable manufacturing practices, with all products being lovingly handmade using locally sourced raw materials.

Getting There

The easiest way to reach the city is by plane. You can fly to Da Nang airport and then travel to Hoi An by taxi or bus. There are a few cheaper alternatives to reach the city, which include taking a train from Hanoi or Hue to Da Nang and then travelling to Hoi An by taxi or bus. This allows you to get an authentic travel experience through its public transport. A private car is a better option from Hanoi or Hue to Hoi An if you visit with your family. If you are more of a solo traveller, renting a motorbike to travel from Hanoi to Hoi An is the ideal option.

The best time to visit Hoi An is during the dry season, which stretches from February to August.

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