Hoi An, a charming ancient town in Vietnam, offers a myriad of unforgettable experiences. Here are five must-try activities for any visitor.
1. Cycling the Countryside
Immerse yourself in the local culture by cycling through the lush countryside. Explore the vegetable gardens of Tra Que, the rice paddies in Cam Chau, and the serene lanes of Cam Thanh.
Snag a bicycle from your hotel or any rental shop on the street (VND30,000/day) and pedal your way from the Ancient Town toward the open roads of Cam Thanh and Cam Chau. Here you’ll get a firsthand look at Vietnamese life in the countryside, plus countless leafy vegetable gardens, adorable duck ponds and greasy repair shops.
2. Boating on the Thu Bon River
Experience the tranquility of Hoi An from the water. A sunset cruise on the Thu Bon River offers breathtaking views and a unique perspective of the town.
‘Water, water everywhere’ might just be Hoi An’s unofficial slogan. Don’t leave without taking a sunset cruise on the Thu Bon River. A few seconds of negotiation at the ferry quay should get you a breezy, half-hour trip for about VND150,000 – VND200,000. Leave just before sunset for the best views.
Hoi An, a cultural heritage site in Vietnam, is a paradise for coffee lovers. The town is filled with unique coffee shops, each offering a distinct twist on Vietnamese coffee. Top spots include Hoi An Roastery, Reaching Out Tea House, and Rosie’s Cafe.
The coffee culture here is more than just a beverage; it’s an experience. As you hop from one café to another, you’ll not only taste the best brews but also soak up the atmosphere of this charming old town. So, if you’re a coffee enthusiast, Hoi An is a must-visit destination.
4. Beach Day at An Bang
Just 7km from the Ancient Town, An Bang Beach is a slice of paradise. Spend a leisurely day on the sand, savoring seafood at beachfront restaurants.
Once a remote fishing village, An Bang has become popular with travelers, thanks to its listing by CNN as one of the “top 100 beaches in the world” in 2017. A day at An Bang Beach can be spent relaxing on the beach, swimming in the crystal-like water, or participating in water sports. The beach is lined with seafood restaurants and bars, and there are also coffee shops and live music venues. In the peaceful laneways of the village, there are accommodations for tourists. An Bang Beach is not only a daytime destination but also a happening place at night, making it a perfect place to dine out, get drinks, listen to trendy music, and enjoy the sound of waves.
5. Visit “Củi Lũ Village”
“Lang Cui Lu” or Driftwood Village in Hoi An is a unique place where you can experience the traditional Vietnamese art of woodworking. Here’s what you can do and see:
- Browse the village and exhibitions: There are more than 10 themed exhibitions demonstrating the history and culture of the local Vietnamese people, the Co Tu.
- Admire the Artwork: Each work is hand-crafted by artisans with decades of experience, handed down through the generations.
- Woodworking Workshops: You can participate in daily woodworking workshops with talented craftsmen. Under their guidance, you can sculpt a personal masterpiece to take home as a souvenir.
- Interact with Artisans: You can listen, connect, and interact with the artisans and artists.
- Art Fairs: They host guest exhibitions each month and the Hoi An Interactive Art Fair twice per month.
This place is open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day. Enjoy your visit!
6. Lantern Festival
The Lantern Festival in Hoi An, Vietnam, is a magical event that takes place every month on the 14th day of the lunar calendar. Here are some activities you can enjoy during the festival:
- Capture Beautiful Moments: The ancient town of Hoi An lights up with lanterns, providing a perfect backdrop for photos.
- Release Floating Lanterns into the Hoai River: You can make a wish and release a lantern into the river.
- Enjoy Art Performances: There are unique art performances to enjoy.
- Taste Local Food: The festival is a great opportunity to try delicious local food.
- Play Traditional Games: You can participate in traditional games like “Bai Choi” (a musical version of Bingo) and “Dap Nieu” (clay pot smashing).
- Visit Famous Landmarks and Pagodas: Hoi An’s landmarks and pagodas are beautifully lit during the festival.
- Buy Handmade Lanterns: You can buy locally made lanterns as souvenirs.
Remember to respect local customs and traditions while enjoying the festival.
7. Tattoo at 1984 Studio