Why Quaint and Charming Hoi An is a Must-see Destination in Central Vietnam

Lanterns at night in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An Vietnam is a town frozen in time. Dating back to the 15th century, Hoi An exudes medieval charm. Located in the center of Vietnam, Hoi An is definitely worth a stop whether you are traveling from North to South or South to North. Hoi An's Ancient Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and you must buy a ticket to enter (120,000 Dong or about $5 USD at the time of writing). The ticket includes entrance to up to 5 of 21 attractions in Hoi An. We had a great time exploring Hoi An and found that it was an excellent respite from Vietnam's frenetic urban centers like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Here are ten reasons why I think Hoi An is a must-see destination in central Vietnam.

The Old Town Lanterns

Lanterns at night in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An simply lights up after the sun goes down and the town's colorful lanterns are its most defining feature. Even by day, the festive lanterns add to the historic atmosphere of the place.
Lanterns in Hoi An Vietnam
Blue lanterns and shutters in Hoi An Vietnam

B1G1F Cocktails and People Watching

Cocktails in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An has a decent bar and restaurant scene. Many places offer two-for-one cocktails in the early evening. Sit outside and do a bit of people watching.

Great Places to Get a Coffee with a View

Coffee in Hoi An Vietnam
Vietnam as a whole is known for excellent coffee and Hoi An is no exception. There are many fun places to get a cuppa in Hoi An. Make sure to seek out one of the places along the main shopping streets with an upstairs balcony.
Rooftop views in Hoi An Vietnam

Hoi An's Stunning Temples

Temple with a dragon motif in Hoi An Vietnam
We used 3 of our 5 attraction tickets to see some of Hoi An's stunning temples. I especially liked the ones with a colorful dragon motif.
Dragon sculpture at a temple in Hoi An Vietnam
The level of detail on the gates and inside the temple complexes was pretty amazing to behold.
Temple gate in Hoi An Vietnam
Small dragon sculpture in Hoi An Vietnam

Historic and Well-Preserved Merchant Houses

Inside of a merchant house in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An is a historic trading port and thus features a number of merchant houses. The merchant houses were sturdily built and feature opulent furniture.

The Japanese Bridge

Temple on the Japanese Bridge in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An's iconic Japanese Bridge is well-known to visitors. You'll have to use one of your attraction tickets to cross the bridge. The bridge itself features a small temple and guardian dogs at each end.
Guardian dogs on the Japanese Bridge in Hoi An Vietnam
The front of the Japanese bridge is typically overrun by visitors so I thought I'd share this quieter rear-view instead.
Rear-view of the Japanese Bridge in Hoi An Vietnam

You Can Learn How to Cook in Hoi An...

Gioan Cooking School in Hoi An Vietnam
Hoi An is known for amazing food. You can even learn to cook Vietnamese cuisine at one of many cooking schools in town. We booked ourselves a lunch-time cooking experience at Gioan Family Cookery.
Hot peppers in the market in Hoi An Vietnam
We started by cycling to the market to check out the various ingredients on offer. We didn't actually buy anything though. Our hosts at the cooking school had bought all the freshest ingredients at about 5 am that morning. You snooze, you lose in Hoi An!
Vina, our host from Gioan Cooking School in Hoi An Vietnam
Over the course of two hours, we cooked a four course meal with Vina, our quirky host. We learned to make spring rolls, papaya salad, fish in banana leaf and pho. We got started at 12:30 pm and had the place mostly to ourselves. Many guests come earlier in the morning so the food is ready at a more traditional lunch hour. We ate our amazing meal around 3 pm and there was no need for dinner later!

...Or Just Eat Cau Lau

Cau Lau in Hoi An Vietnam
Cau Lau is the signature dish of Hoi An. We sampled delectable noodles and pork with cracking on top at a small, unassuming restaurant that doubled as someone's house. The dish is simply delicious.

You Can Walk and Cycle in Hoi An

Streets of Hoi An Ancient Town (UNESCO world heritage site) in Vietnam
Crossing the street in Vietnam's major cities can quickly become an exercise in running for your life. Hoi An was a refreshing change. The streets of the ancient town were car free and the surrounding streets were less crowded as well. We had much less fear of being mown down by a car or motorbike in Hoi An than we did elsewhere in Vietnam.
A historic storefront in Hoi An Vietnam

You Can Spend the Afternoon at An Bang Beach

An Bang Beach near Hoi An Vietnam
An Bang beach is just a short taxi or Grab ride away from the center of Hoi An. Voted one of the top beaches in the world, we sipped a drink and watched visitors frolick in the water or sun themselves. An Bang beach is a relaxing spot to spend an afternoon outside of Hoi An.

For additional impressions of Hoi An, check out The Top 10 Things in Hoi An Every Traveller Should Not Miss over on Inspired by Maps. 

Have you visited Hoi An? What did you like best?

Did you enjoy this post? Sharing is caring...

Why Quaint and Charming Hoi An is a Must-see Destination in Central Vietnam



#DrJSabbatical Adriatics Africa Aix-en-Provence Algarve Americas Ann Arbor Argentina Asia Asia Pacific AUNZ AUNZ_Archive Australia Austria Baltics Barcelona Bath Belfast Belgium Berlin Best of Beyond Dublin Big Island Bologna Boston Brazil Brighton Bruges Brussels Bucharest Budapest Buffalo California Cambodia Canada Canary Islands Canterbury Cape Town Carcassonne Cardiff Central Europe Chile China Chinatown Christmas Market Civic Center Cologne Commute Chronicles Copenhagen Cork Costa Brava Cow Hollow Croatia Cyprus Czech Republic Delhi Denmark Derry Donegal Dresden Dublin Dublin_Archive Dubrovnik Eastern Europe Edinburgh El Calafate England Eruption Essen Estonia Europe Europe_Archive Evora Fado Faro Faversham Financial District Finland Fisherman's Wharf Flanders Florida Flugtag Food France Frankfurt French Riviera Fringe Fringe Festival Galway Gandhi Gdansk Gdynia Georgian Dublin Germany GhostBus Gig Girona Glasgow Google Plus Granada Greece Greece and Cyprus Guest Posts Guiness Storehouse Gurgaon Half Moon Bay Hamburg Hangzhou Hanoi Hawaii HCMC Helsinki Hermanus Hilo Ho Chi Minh City Hobart Hoi An Honolulu Hungary Hurling Hyderabad Ice Cream Sandwich Iceland ICS India Inner Richmond Ireland Ireland_Archive Istanbul Italy Itinerary Izmir Jackson Square Jaipur Japan Johannesburg Kaunas Kenmare Kilauea Kilkenny Kilkenny Cats Killarney Kiluaea Kona Krakow Kuala Lumpur Kyoto Lake Como Languedoc Lanzarote Las Fallas Las Vegas Latvia Laurel Heights Leeds Leinster Leipzig Lemesos Let's French 2011 Liechtenstein Lima Limerick Lincoln's Inn Lisbon Lithuania Liverpool Lloret de Mar London Los Angeles Louisiana Lübeck Lucerne Machu Picchu Mackintosh Madeira Madrid Mainz Malaga Malaysia Mallorca Malta Manchester Marina Marrakech Marrakesh Marseille Massachusetts Mdina Med Melbourne Mendoza Menton Miami Milan Mission Dolores Modena Monaco Monte Carlo Montenegro Montpellier Morocco Muenster Munich Munster Music NA_Archive Naples Netherlands New Orleans New Year 2011 New Year Festival New Years Eve 2010 New York New Zealand Nice Nicosia Nob Hill Noe Valley Nordics Normandy Norrkoping North America North Beach Northern Ireland Nuremberg Oahu Oakland Oktoberfest Oliwa Ollantaytambo Olympics On The Road Osaka Outer Sunset Oxford Pacific Heights Padua Palafrugell Palma Panorama Paphos Paris Parma Patagonia Pearl Harbor Pennsylvania Perth Peru Philadelphia Pingyao Pittsburgh Poland Porto Portugal Potrero Hill Prague Presidio Heights Pride Provence Puerto Natales Punta Arenas Queensland Rabat RAF2010 Ranelagh Ranelagh Arts Festival Recent Red Bull Regensburg Reims Restaurant Review Reykjavik Riga Ring of Kerry Rio de Janeiro Rochester Roman Ruins Romania Rome Rotterdam Rugby Russia Russian Hill Salt Lake City San Francisco San Sebastian Santiago Scandinavia Science Gallery Science Museum Scotland Seattle Segovia Seoul Seville SF - Further Afield SF_Archive Sicily Siem Reap Singapore Sintra Sligo Snow SOMA Sopot South Africa South America South Beach South Korea Soweto Spain SPWC St. Petersburg Stellenbosch Stockholm Strasbourg Street Performance Stuttgart Sultanahmet Sweden Switzerland Sydney Tallinn Tasmania Tavira TBEX Telegraph Hill Temple Bar Tenerife Texas Thailand Thames Festival The Kruger The Mission Theatre ThisIsAthens Tipperary Tokyo Toledo Toronto Torres del Paine Toulouse Trad Trad Sessions Transylvania Trinity College Turkey UBTD10 Uganda UK Ulster Bank Theater Festival Union Square United States Uruguay Vacation Rental Valencia Valletta Valparaiso Venice Vienna Vietnam Vilnius Volcano Volcanoes National Park Waikiki Wales Walking Walking Tour Warsaw Washington Waterford Western Australia Westerplatte Westfield Where's Wally? Whitsundays Wicklow World Record World War II Wroclaw WWI WWII Xi'an York Ypsilanti Zurich
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog: Why Quaint and Charming Hoi An is a Must-see Destination in Central Vietnam
Why Quaint and Charming Hoi An is a Must-see Destination in Central Vietnam
Learn about reasons to visit Hoi An, Vietnam. A photo-rich post by travel blogger, Jennifer (aka Dr. J) from Sidewalk Safari.
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog
Not found any posts VIEW ALL Read more Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS CONTENT IS PREMIUM Please share to unlock Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy