Hoi An has a reputation for being one of the prettiest cities in all of Vietnam. The Old Town is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to its 800 historic buildings. There is a definitely an “old town” feeling here which is like stepping back into ancient Vietnam. This city is also particularly special as it was never bombed during the Vietnam War. If you ever have a chance to visit the lovely city of Hoi An, try to make the most out of your trip!
1. Explore the Old Town
Of course, the first thing you should put on your list coming to a new town is to get to know the area. Agreed? Hoi An is something of a rarity in Vietnam as it managed to escape most of the bombing that razed many other cities to the ground during the Vietnam War. This means that the beautiful buildings were spared, and so you will still find some gorgeous architecture in the Old Town, making it the perfect place to go for a walk and take in all the sights. The Old Town is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, estimated to date back to some 2,000 years.
2. Pay a Visit to Tam Thanh Mural Village
For those who love art, Tam Thanh Mural Village will be somewhat of an art heaven to you! This small fishing village was just like any other until summer 2016. However, that changed when the Korean Community Art Exchange Program got together with local Vietnamese artists. They decided to turn the village into a living art gallery! The project, which took over two weeks with the help of seven Vietnamese artists and five Korean artists, was intended to bring art closer to the people. Volunteers from the village also helped out to create over 100 murals in the village transforming this once quaint village into a place of extraordinary beauty! Today, visitors can wander the streets taking photographs of the graffiti and works of art that portray real life as well as imaginary scenes. If you visit Hoi An, a day trip to Tam Thanh Mural Village is a must!
3. Explore the Local Countryside
Are you a nature lover? If so, we assure you that you have found yourself in the right place. Hoi An is famous for its surrounding lush emerald green countryside. As such, if you are staying in the city then make sure that you don’t forget to make a stopover here. You’ll be able to take in the sights and view of rice paddies, hills, and dainty villages firsthand. Why not sign up for one of many tours such as a cycling or trekking tour and you will get to discover secluded beaches, mountain passes and much more!
Discover the Hoi An Countryside on these tours:
4. Take a Trip to My Son Sanctuary
If you want to take a day trip out of Hoi An, then head for the My Son Sanctuary. This attraction consists of a collection of Hindu temples that were built between the 4th to the 13th century. The temples are located to the west of Hoi An and it’s possible to go on a day trip from the city. My Son Sanctuary is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site which has been preserved and restored after the temples were abandoned for centuries. The site sprawls over 140 hectares and you can learn all about how Hinduism played a key role in Vietnamese culture back in the days.
Visit the My Son Sanctuary on these tours:
5. Explore Cham Islands
If the atmosphere of cities has tired you out, how about a day at the beach? Cham Islands (Cu Lao Cham) consists of eight small islands off the coast of Hoi An, one of which is a recognized UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. Cu Lao Cham Marine Park attracts travelers looking to enjoy a day of scuba diving and snorkeling, while on Hon Lao Island you can find fishing villages and pristine beaches that are great for sunbathing and water sports. Don’t miss out on the chance to have a full-day trip that includes snorkeling, a short hike, lunch and some beach time to relax on this wonderful island!
6. Have Some Fun at Ba Na Hills
Located approximately 23km away from downtown Da Nang, Ba Na Hills is one of the best amusement parks in Vietnam. This is not only because of its wide variety of activities, but also the cool all-year-round climate and spectacular surrounding landscapes. There are also lots of festivals featuring special performances with incredibly talented singers and dancers. We promise the European-styled architecture of the houses, beautiful gardens, amazing view over the city from the hill will not disappoint you! However, since this is one of the most popular amusement parks in Vietnam, it is going to be quite busy That’s why you should plan your trip ahead of time. Buy tickets or book a tour in advance to make the most of your visit to Ba Na Hills!
7. Try the Local Barbecue
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One of the things Hoi An is famous for is its delicious barbecue. The best place to try this dish, is along the north bank of the Thu Bon River. If you go there after dark you will find dozens of small charcoal grills set up, selling tasty barbecued skewers. You can choose from different options including pork, prawn or chicken. You can enjoy your choice of meat with herbs and some rice paper. The barbecue also comes with a delicious spicy peanut sauce mixed with tomatoes and sesame seeds.
However, Hoi An is not only famous for its barbecue. There are many more dishes you will be able to find only here such as Cao Lau (Hoi An special noodle with a little touch of Chinese cuisine), Com Ga (Hoi An chicken rice), Banh Mi Hoi An (Hoi An’s sandwich) and Che (Vietnamese sweet fruit dessert with coconut milk). If you’re worried you won’t be able to try all these tasty treats, a 1-day street food walking tour will be the perfect solution for you!
So, are you ready for a journey to this ancient town? One small tip to add, the “winter” months are the best season to visit this wonderful part of Vietnam. The cool weather will keep you chill all day long. So, hesitate no more! Grab your bag and follow us right now!
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