The small city of Hoi An (Vietnam) is located in the central part of the country, 30 km from Da Nang.
The history of Hoi An dates back more than 2000 years; in the sixteenth century this city was known as the large port of the South China Sea and the commercial center of all Southeast Asia.
Hoian lies on the banks of the Thubon River, for which he is often called Venice. Here are just a ride on the gondolas here offer not inflated gondoliers, and colorful grandmothers, Vietnamese.
Now Hoi An is known as an old city-museum, which has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1999.
Sights of the ancient city
The old part of the city is very small, however, there is something to see – not succumbing to the destructive effects of the time, many ancient buildings have been preserved, 844 of which are considered historical values.
Every day, from 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 3:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. the streets in the Old Town are blocked, and the entry of vehicles becomes impossible. The conditions for pedestrian tourists who want to walk around the historic center are excellent.
To see the sights in the old part of Hoi An, you need to buy tickets – they are sold at the tourist information center and at the kiosks installed at the entrance to the Old Town.
On a note! There are 22 attractions that you need to pay to visit, the cost of a set of tickets for exploring any 5 is 120,000 VND ($ 6). Although it is indicated on the tickets that they are relevant 24 hours, but there is no date on them, therefore, they can be used for several days.
By the way, along with tickets, you can take a map of the Hoi An Old Town. Although it is impossible to get lost here, it will be easier to figure out where the museum is, where is the temple, where is the gallery, and where is it just a shop – the thing is that when you look at the building from the street, you can not always understand this.
Tourists visiting the historic center of Hoi An are asked to show respect for the national culture and dress decently: men are preferably in a shirt, and women in clothes with long sleeves and covering their knees.
Walking around the Old Town, one cannot help but see the Japanese covered bridge, which is almost the main local attraction. Cau Nhat Ban is recognized as a symbol of Hoi An, it is even depicted on the city emblem.
Back in 1593, the bridge was built by the Japanese living in Hoi An to connect the streets of Chang Fu and Nguyen Thi Min Hai separated by the Thubon River.
The Japanese bridge has an arch shape and reaches a length of 18 meters. Built of wood and tile, it is distinguished by its unusual architecture: a maroon roof with exquisite carved patterns, a temple located right in the middle of the bridge, and statues of dogs and monkeys standing at the opposite ends of the bridge.
To pass on the Japanese bridge, you need to give 1 ticket. To continue the walk further, you can return over the adjacent bridge, and you don’t need to pay for it anymore.
The active shrine of Kuan Kong – this is what you need to see in Hoi An! It is located on Chan Fu Street, 24.
The temple is very ancient, it was built by the Chinese in 1653, dedicating Kuan Kong to the hero of folk myths – his statue from papier-mâché, partially covered with gilding, is installed in the center of the sanctuary.
Very original gutters for rainwater drainage on the roof are made – they are made in the form of a carp, symbolizing endurance in Chinese mythology.
Note! Before entering the temple, you need to take off your shoes – a special platform has been made for this.
There are 5 Meeting Rooms in the city, but Fuk Kien is the largest and most famous of them. Even if you look at the sights of Hoi An (Vietnam) in the photo, you can understand how beautiful the Assembly Hall of the Fujian Chinese community is.
Having settled in Hoi An, the Chinese arrived had erected Assembly Halls where they could pray to their gods and communicate, where they had the opportunity to preserve the traditions of their people. This building at the end of the XVII century was built by the Chinese from Fujian.
The building has the form of a hieroglyph denoting the number “3”. On the territory of the spacious courtyard are statues of the Buddha and his disciples, there is a fountain, the decoration of which became figures of animals. Most of the building is reserved for the temple of the goddess of the sea, patronizing fishermen and all those who travel by sea. The Hall has a large number of statues and bells made of bronze.
Interesting to know! As in most churches, here you can leave a note with a cherished desire. Once a year, monks randomly select cards and pray together to make their wishes come true.
What is more interesting Hoi An
Here you can walk not only around the Old Town – in Hoi An (Vietnam) there are many attractions. There is always something to see, not only in the city itself, but also not far from it.
The island of Thuan Thien is located on the east side of the center of Hoi An, which can be reached by bike or bicycle.
Thuan Thien is famous for its culinary tour, during which tourists are taught to cook traditional Vietnamese dishes.
You can also take a bike ride on the island, discovering a lot of unusual things: nice fishing villages with stilt houses, fishing from traditional round boats, unusual thickets of coconut palms on the water, spacious rice fields. In general, wandering around the island, you can watch the natural, non-tourist life of the Vietnamese.
In the evenings, many colorful lanterns are lit in the city streets, bridges and statues are highlighted. But the most interesting thing that can be observed at this time is the night market on Nguyen Hoang Street.
It opens around 5:00 p.m. and runs until 11:00 p.m. until a flickering dusk descends on the Khoy River.
The main thing that distinguishes this market from all other Asian markets is the huge assortment of silk and paper flower lanterns that sellers make here. These products cost no more than $ 1, you can buy them in memory of the trip, or you can light a candle in them and start up the river for good luck.
The night market is a great chance to buy colorful souvenirs, interesting handicrafts, high quality textiles and silk. As in any Asian market, you must bargain, because sellers immediately call a double price!
In addition, Vietnamese macaques work here, offering you to taste the famous local dishes. Food can be bought at these prices (VND):
- Cao Lau noodles – 25,000;
- Vietnamese soup with Beef Fo Bo beef – 30,000;
- 10 small skewers of pork meat – 50,000;
- fried rice with chicken – 40,000;
- fried spring rolls – 30,000.
Tourists often come here not only for shopping, but just then, for a walk, to enjoy the view of the river, to see products in souvenir shops.
Tourists come to the Marble Mountains from Hoi An in whole groups, since this attraction, located 7 km from Da Nang, is the most popular in the district.
Marble mountains (Marble mountains) – this is a few hills in the middle of the field, covered with thickets of trees, shrubs and cacti. And they are marble because they used to extract marble here, but now they only sell souvenirs from it.
On the biggest mountain, everything is thought out for conducting excursions: signs, fenced paths, staircases carved in stone, benches for relaxation, a spacious elevator for climbing to the top. There are many caves in this mountain – in the largest of them, where the floors are tiled and there is lighting – Buddhist temples with Buddha statues are located.
Impressive cave Am Phu, which is a symbol of hell and paradise. Immediately upon entering the cave, descent to “hell” begins, and the images there are so realistic that it is better not to take children for inspection. A steep staircase leads from Hell to Paradise, where you can admire the surroundings from the equipped observation deck.
On this mountain, a large number of pagodas, the most famous, Tammay, was built in 1825.
- The Marble Mountains complex is open to visitors from 7:00 to 17:30.
- The cost of entering the territory is $ 2.
- Tickets to the Am Phu cave and caves on Thủy Sơn mountain cost 20,000 dong each ($ 0.75), and a one-way elevator ride will cost 15,000.
You can see the Marble Mountains by buying an excursion at a travel agency for $ 20-30, but it is better to take an independent trip. You can independently get from Hoi An to the Marmara Mountains by the Hoi An – Danang bus, which departs from the Hoi An North Bus Station. You need to go to the stop Marble Mountains, from it 5 minutes to go towards the sea.
You can get to the sights on a rented bike. Traffic on the road is relatively calm, the journey from Hoi An to the mountains takes only 15-20 minutes. There is no parking for bikes, but you can leave it at any cafe or shop for free.
Beaches of Hoi An
Tourists come to Hoi An, not only because of the sights of the Old Town, but also for relaxing on the sea. There are few people on the beaches here, quiet and calm, only on holidays and weekends do the Vietnamese gather on the coast.
There are 2 beaches in Hoi An: An Bang Beach (An Bang) and Cua Da Beach (Kya Da), but there is no clear border between them. The beach is quite crowded in the center and completely empty on the outskirts, but it is equally comfortable everywhere. In the central part, a very gentle entry into the water – to the depth where you can swim, you need a long walk. That is why it is good to relax with children here. In this part there are restaurants with varied food and shops, and parking is equipped.
On the beaches there is an opportunity to rent sunbeds and umbrellas for the whole day for 40 000 VND ($ 2), but if you buy something in a nearby cafe or restaurant, you can get a sunbed for free. There is parking, payment for leaving a bike or bike is 20,000 VND ($ 1). If there is no desire to pay for parking and sun loungers with umbrellas are not needed, you can go to the unequipped sections of the beach.
From standard entertainment, tourists are available (prices in Vietnamese dongs):
- riding a water bike (15 minutes – 500,000, 30 minutes – 800,000);
- parachuting (1 person – 600,000, 2 people – 800,000);
- riding a “banana” (5 people – 1.000.000).
The beaches are located at a distance of 4-5 km from the Old Town, and you can get to them:
- on foot – this is convenient only if the accommodation is located near the beach, otherwise the road takes a lot of time;
- by taxi – according to the counter for travel from the center you get about $ 3;
- by bicycle – the road from the center will take up to 20 minutes;
- on a bike is the best option.
To take a walk around the Old Town, tourists sometimes choose a rickshaw. For 10 minutes, you will have to pay 50,000 Vietnamese money ($ 2.5).
For moving over longer distances, it’s suitable:
- Bike. In Hoi An, almost all locals use this transport. In tourist offices, bicycles can be rented for $ 1-3 per day, and some hotels provide their guests with bicycles for free. Car traffic in Hoi An is minimal, there are almost no traffic lights – this is an ideal terrain for this type of transport.
- Bike You can rent a bike for 100,000 – 120,000 VND ($ 5-6) per day, and in most cases a deposit is not needed. It is convenient to move around the city on a motobike, and for country trips it often becomes indispensable.
- Taxi. In Vietnam, a taxi is inexpensive, but the driver immediately needs to say that you will go by the meter.
- Rented car. This idea is not the best. To rent a car, you need temporary Vietnamese rights (they can be issued on the spot), since international ones are not valid here. Prices for car rental are quite high – from 600,000 VND ($ 25) per day, and if you rent a car with a driver, they will be much higher. You can rent a car at a travel agency or in a hotel; you can arrange a rental in advance on the aggregator website.
Hoi An Restaurants
Vietnam is a true paradise for lovers of tasty and wholesome meals. Food in Hoi An, as in Vietnam in general, is very healthy: fresh fruits and vegetables are plentiful, and seafood is plentiful. Almost all establishments have a selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes.
There are many establishments in Hoi An where you can have a tasty and satisfying meal, and the pricing policy is quite diverse. A large number of restaurants are located along the beach strip, the food is delicious there, although the prices for Vietnam are quite high (in dongs):
- fried beef with sauce or pork dishes – 150,000;
- French fries – 60,000;
- vegetables (stewed, fried) – 70,000;
- seafood (crabs, mussels, squid, shrimp, fish) – 200,000;
- salads – 100,000;
- soup – 75,000;
- juice – 40,000;
- beer – from 20,000.
In restaurants of the Old Town, prices are mostly modest:
- soups – 50,000;
- squids with sauces – from 70,000 to 85,000;
- shrimp – from 90,000 to 120,000;
- Cao Lau noodles – 50,000;
- fried rice with vegetables and beef – 60-80.000;
- draft beer – from 12.000;
- bottled beer – from 15,000.
Of the more expensive establishments of Hoi An, the following can be noted.
The Restaurant at The Nam Hai Hoi An
Refers to The Nam Hai Hotel, located at Hamlet 1, Dien Duong Village. It serves Asian and Vietnamese cuisine – from fresh seafood to meat – moreover, prepared by the chef himself. Impeccable style and service.
Bong Hoi An Restaurant And Bar at 244 Cua Dai Street
This is a pub with a brewery where tourists can enjoy Asian and Vietnamese dishes. Here is a family business: there is only 1 chef and therefore the restaurant is usually crowded, but the food is worth the wait! In this institution you can even take part in master classes that teach you how to cook traditional Vietnamese food. The leader of the master class takes the participants from the hotel, together with them goes to the local market for the necessary products, and then comes with them to the restaurant. During the master class, one can not only learn the secrets of culinary skills, but also hear a lot of interesting things about life in Vietnam.
Located 1 km from the city center, at 49A Ly Thai To, Cam Chau Ward is a great option for those who don’t like or are tired of Vietnamese delicacies. French food is delicious here, although there is Asian cuisine. The service is very good, parking is available in front of the restaurant. There is free Wi-Fi.
In Hoi An, you can dine in more modest establishments, and no less tasty and satisfying.
The kebab shack
British cuisine, fastwood is served by The Kebab Shack, located at 38B Thai Phien, Cam Pho. There is a large selection of dishes and low prices, for example, a delicious and hearty kebab with pork and potatoes costs 50,000 dong. There is free Wi-Fi.
French Bakery and Restaurant
The establishment can be found at Nguyen Phan Vinh An Bang Village, offering French and Vietnamese food to its visitors. After the main order, during the calculation, the hostess of this institution always makes compliments in the form of ginger tea or fruit. There are special chairs for feeding children, there is free Wi-Fi.
There is no nightlife in the city, restaurants close early. However, there are a couple of attractive places to have a drink and a bite to eat with good music.
- Guitar Hawaii Hoi An Live Music Bar is open from 20:00 to 23:00. Location: 3 Phan Chau Trinh. Beer and juices cost $ 2-3, a cocktail – $ 4.
- 3 Dragons Sports Bar is open at 51 Phan Boi Chau Street from 08:00 to 00:00. Foreign sports fans usually come here. Beer here can be bought for $ 2, cocktails for $ 4, a bottle of wine for $ 20-25.
How to get to Hoi An from Nha Trang
The best option, how to get from Nha Trang to Hoi An is to use the bus. Travel time is 12 hours, and since buses in Vietnam are good, the trip is quite comfortable. Tickets cost around 200,000 VND, but during long holidays the price rises by 20-50%. It is better to buy tickets in advance, especially if the trip is planned for weekends or holidays.
Transportation is carried out by Futabus (futabus.vn), The Sinh Tourist (www.thesinhtourist.vn). The current movement schedule and ticket price can be viewed on these sites.
You can take a taxi, ordering a car in one of the tourist offices (Russian or English). Prices in all offices are different, you must ask and choose the most suitable option. You can order a taxi on the Internet. If there will be a lot of people going, it makes sense to order a minibus, it will turn out more profitably.
You can fly to Hoi An from Nha Trang by plane. There is a direct flight with Vietnam Airlines, a ticket in this case will cost about $ 60, the flight lasts 1 hour. There are VietJet or Jetstar flights, in this case you need to make a transfer in Ho Chi Minh City – in time it will take 4-6 hours, and in terms of money it will cost about $ 150. Airplanes land in Da Nang, from there you can take a taxi or take the Danag – Hoi An bus, which departs from the city bus station.
Prices on the page are for April 2018.
When to visit Hoi An
In Vietnam, and Hoi An is no exception, it is customary to distinguish between the dry season and the rainy season.
The rainy season lasts from September to early January. The greatest amount of precipitation falls in October-November – at this time heavy rains pour, there may be typhoons, floods often occur.
The dry season begins in January and ends in August. This period is considered optimal for a trip to Hoi An (Vietnam). For an excursion tour, the time from January to April is better, when the temperature is still quite comfortable, and walks will be easy and pleasant. It is better to come to a beach vacation from June to August, when the sea is already warming up well, and you can swim.
Well conveys the atmosphere of Hoian this video. And there is a lot of useful information for those interested in visiting the city.