Since my business trip to Da Nang, Vietnam finished 3 days earlier than schedule, I decided to visit Hoi An ancient town with my colleague. He was very familiar with this city thanks to 6 months tour operator internship for Eviva Tour Viet Nam, a famous tour company in Vietnam.
About 30km far away from Danang with only thirty minutes by motorbike, the town established in 16th century still preserves almost its architecture landscape and decoration that made me very impressed. Especially, Bridge pagoda – Japanese bridge or Lai Vien Kieu is the only wooden bridge bearing in itself the hallmark of cultural exchange of 3 people: Japanese, Vietnamese, Chinese and was the evidence of Vietnam – Japan hundreds of years old relation. This makes Hoi An become a prioritized destination by most of tourists from Japan and Europe (like me) when they want to learn about Vietnamese cultural in the Central Region.
In Hoi An, apart from a leisure of enjoying the ancient town, I could approach many unique activities of local residents. Hoianians are always special in their behaviors, friendly and open to everyone.
I can find and see local specialties such as: banh bao, banh vac, and rice chicken along Hoi An street. Cao Lau could only be found in this city and only when cooked by Hoianian, the dish has its actual taste.
I love shopping in Hoi An since I did not have to bargain as in other countries, especially with lanterns and Ao Dai. I have had an Ao Dai made within just 1 hour! It was very nice and fitted me well. Unbelievable!
And there is some bonus information that my college told me:
– “Night of Hoi An ancient town” takes place in the afternoon till late night every 14th day in lunar month. Native people light their lanterns in front of their house to welcome the noon. I was there on that day, the street was very beautiful with many lanterns.
– Every Wednesday and Saturday, “Streets without engine sound” is a program to habituate people to keep their motor-engine vehicles outside the town.
– Hoi An can be reached by bus, taxi or motorbike.
by Matthew Thomas