Declared as the UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999, Hoi An Old Town has long been in the bucket list of many individuals, and for first-time travelers, a quick Hoi An Travel Guide might urge them to go. If you’re unsure about where to go, what to do, and food to eat, then this guide is written for you.
Where to Go in Hoi An
For history buffs, let’s make notes of the historical attractions of the Japanese Covered Bridge (Chua Cau), Phuc Kien Assembly Hall, and Tan Ky Old House. The architectural details of these age-old sites will give you the look and feel of the old-time when Hoi An was the dynamic trading port of Southeast Asia. These are the top three favorite check-in addresses of most tourists. In particular, Phuc Kien Assembly Hall was inscribed as the National Historical Vestige in 1990 while Tan Ky Old House even got this title in 1985.
The Hoi An Old Town is also filled with many ancient houses which turn to be the classic coffee shops, restaurants, and homestay addresses. And, don’t miss the traditional tailor shops scattered throughout the corners, and the top brands are Bao Khanh Silk, B’lan Silk, A Dong Silk, Tony the tailor, etc. Other top sites include Tra Que Vegetable Village, An Bang Beach, Kim Bong Carpentry Village, Thu Bon River, and My Son Sanctuary.
What to Do in Hoi An
While people traveling to Hoi An while on a package tour or only a day tour, most of them will come to check-in the historical bridge and old houses, as well as listening to their stories. The architecture, furniture, and design of the houses remain original with sophisticated carvings, Kim Bong carpenters’ chambers, Bat Trang layering brick, etc. Photography inside the houses is free-of-charge, and you can buy souvenirs at the little booth if interested. The visit to the old houses lets you feel the life of the ancient merchants, and this experience is exciting. Next, treat yourself and the loved one nicely by getting silk clothes at the traditional tailor shops in Hoi An. There are around 40 tailor shops across the town, so it is super-easy to buy good silks.
For some workouts, think of the bicycle trips to Tra Que Vegetable Village, taking 15 minutes from the Old Town. Tra Que Bike Tour is one of the best things to do in Hoi An, to enjoy nature photography, farming experience, and access to organic vegetables and herbs. Besides, don’t miss the herbal foot massage with the local herbs in this address, which is unique and healthy. Or, you can take a boat trip on Thu Bon River toward the 15th-century Kim Bong Carpentry Village to meet generations of the carpenters who contributed the architecture of the old houses in the town. There is even Hoi An Day Tour to My Son Sanctuary, the Hindu temple which is 40km from the town. This back-in-time tour is ideal for archaeologic visitors.
Food to Eat in Hoi An
There is no Hoi An Travel Guide that will skip the most important topic such as food.. There is so much to say about it but allow us to summarize just some of it here.
Not only does Hoi An offers a wide range of street food, but it also runs the local cooking classes for hands-on experiences. Get to know the top food to eat in Hoi An including Cao Lau (pork rice noodle), Vietnamese sandwich, Quang noodle, chicken rice, steamed rice cake (Banh Beo), little pancake with egg (Banh Can Trung), and black sesame sweet pudding (Xi Ma), and mini pancakes with quail eggs. Besides the Old Town, Hoi An market nestled on the riverside of the romantic Hoai River is the ideal address to eat local food. Walking around the market, you will be surprised at many dishes under USD$1. The top recommendations help you get the most out of any tours to Hoi An – one of the top 15 cities in the world ranked by Travel and Leisure magazine.