Hoi An Ancient Town has a timeless charm and keeps ancient beauty in every little corner. With the change of time, Hoi An is a living testament to the bustling international trading port in the past. Coming here, visitors will captivated at first sight by the tranquility and idyllic features that exist in every cobblestone street and are reflected in old tiled roofs with yellow houses. 

With the harmonious blend of architecture from French and Asian countries, including Japan, China, and Vietnam, Hoi An Ancient Town has always been a leading tourist destination in Vietnam. It attracts tourists worldwide to find back the traditional values and old scenery of a busy port from a bygone era. Are you getting tired of the fast lines in the bustling cities? Why do not refresh your mind with a trip to Hoi An?

Step back in time to explore the beauty of cultural heritage that reflects architecture, history, and cuisine in Hoi An Ancient Town Vietnam. And now, this is your time to learn about Hoi An with our valuable tip below!

hoi an in vietnam
Hoi An in Vietnam

Wandering Through Time – Hoi An Ancient Town Adventures Await

1. Overview Hoi An AnCient Town

1.1 Hoi An Ancient Town Location

Hoi An Ancient Town down the Thu Bon River, located in Quang Nam Province, belongs to Central Vietnam. The charming town is 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) from the South of Da Nang Beach City and is easily accessible by road.

1.2 Hoi An Ancient Town Ticket

If you just want to visit Hoi An Ancient Town Vietnam, wander around the old town, and enjoy every simple moment by taking beautiful photos, you do not need to buy an entrance ticket. However, some cultural monuments require entrance tickets for tourists. With a ticket to Hoi An, tourists can choose three places in over 20 below we will mention below. Of course, you will feel free to choose your favorite destination. Please remember, tickets will be available within 24 hours to visit some of the old town’s must-see.

  • Ancient house: Phung Hung Ancient House, Duc An Ancient House, Quan Thang Ancient House
  • Assembly Halls: Phung Kien, Trieu Chau, Quang Trieu and Hai Nam
  • Cultural Construction: Temple Bridge (temporarily closed), Cam Pho Temple, Quan Cong Temple, Minh Huong Communal House
  • Church: The Church of Tran Family, the Church of Nguyen Family
  • Museum: Museum of Trade Ceramics, Museum of Folklore in Hoi An, the Sa Huynh Culture Museum, 
  • Japanese Merchant’s tomb: Gu Sokukun, Tani Yajirobei, Banjiro 
  • Some of the traditional art performances, folk games, night market
markets in hoi an vietnam
markets in hoi an vietnam

1.3 History of Hoi An Old Town

In the early origins, Hoi An’s origins are traced back to the Cham people, an ethnic group who settled in the region during the 2nd to 15th centuries. They initially named the area “Lam Ap Pho” and established a thriving trading port. In the 16th century, during the reign of the Nguyễn Lords, the town flourished as a significant trading port. Its location on the Thu Bon River and proximity to the South China Sea made it an ideal center for international trade. Japanese, Chinese, Portuguese, Dutch, and other merchants frequented Hoi An, bringing their cultures and goods.

The Japanese contributed to Hoi An’s development by building the Japanese Covered Bridge in the 16th century. This bridge was both a practical river crossing and a symbol of cultural exchange. By the 17th century, European traders had also established a presence in Hoi An, and the town became known as “Faifo” to Portuguese and French merchants. Hoi An’s importance as a trading port began to weaken in the 18th century due to the silting of the river and trade route shifts. However, this decline unknowingly contributed to the town’s preservation, as it escaped the modernization that affected other cities.

hoi an old town history
Hoi An Old Town history

In 1999 Hoi An was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recognizing its remarkable cultural and historical significance.

1.4 Hoi An Ancient Town Map

With Hoi An Ancient Town Map, you can easily find Hoi An Ancient Town and tourist attractions in the charming town. Hoi An map online and Hoi An map paper are valuable for a perfect trip. Before entering Hoi An, you can search on Google to prepare about the transportation and choose your favorite spots in Hoi An. However, remember, online maps require an internet connection to use, and they frequently update information. That is why you should combine using online maps with asking local. 

Hoi An paper map is also a popular map used when traveling to Hoi An. You should buy Hoi An Ancient Town Map with the latest version in the convenience stores or in the entrance ticket booth. With the paper version bought only in Hoi An, you can not be pre-prepared for your itinerary. However, a paper map still has a bonus point cause it is flexible, brings maps anywhere you want, and does not require an Internet connection.

2. Things to see in Hoi An Ancient Town

2.1 Wander around Hoi An ancient street

The most simple way to feel about Hoi An is simply to stroll through the ancient streets and explore every hidden corner in the charming town. Walking through Hoi An Ancient Town Vietnam, you will imagine yourself lost in the maze of yellowed houses with dozens of colorful lanterns swaying in the wind. Find your tranquility in the old space that presences in hundreds of ancient houses, temples, and assembly halls. Also, choosing Hoi An Old Town Walking Tour is an ideal way to feel authentic Hoi An by admiring the rustic daily activities of Hoi An locals. The ancient and quiet beauty in the Hoi An Ancient Town streets and alleyways will take you back to a forgotten time.

walking in hoian
Hoi An ancient street

2.2 Boat Rides on Hoai River

One of the most exciting activities in Hoi An that you must try is to take boat rides on Hoai River. Flanked by yellowed buildings, lined with vibrant lanterns, and surrounded by lush greenery, the river is like a fresh breeze, bringing new vitality to the town. The most brilliant time to fully immerse yourself in the golden scenery on the river is the sunset. You should depart a boat trip from 4 p.m to capture the breathtaking moments easily. The slow-paced boat ride takes you downstream of the Hoai River and witnesses the daily activities of the local fishermen on both river banks. It is such a fantastic experience to explore a different perspective of Hoi An!

Hoi An Lantern Festival River
Hoi An Lantern Festival River

2.3 Japanese Covered Bridge

Nestled within the old streets of Hoi An, the Japanese Covered Bridge stands as a symbol of architectural beauty and multicultural heritage. Built in the 16th century by Japanese merchants in Hoi An, the bridge has become the soul of this charming town. The Bridge is related to the legend of the monster named Namazu. Therefore, the Japanese merchants built the bridge like a sword crashing down the back of Namazu, bringing peace to the town. 

Looking from the outside, the bridge is like other ancient bridges, but when you go deeply inside, a small temple will appear in the bridge’s center. When worshiping Bac De Tran Vu, the temple has spiritual importance – God protects the town.  Nowadays, the bridge is on the border between Tran Phu Street and Nguyen Thi Minh Khai Street. You can easily recognize the Japanese Covered Bridge on the 20,000 VND of Vietnam banknotes. So, when you visit Hoi An Ancient Town, do not forget to check in the bridge with the polymer paper Vietnam!

Japanese Covered Bridge
Japanese Covered Bridge

2.4 Assembly Halls

When Hoi An was still a bustling international trading port, many Chinese Merchants came to Hoi An for trade and exchange of goods. Gradually, Hoi An is the living and doing business of the Chinese Community. They build Assembly Halls like community houses for meetings and interactive activities and maintain their cultural traditions while living in Hoi An. Each Assembly Hall is a harmony of Chinese and Vietnamese architectural styles. 

With the change of time, the Assembly Halls in Hoi An still retain the ancient architecture and adorn the quiet and ancient beauty of Hoi An Old Town. You can easily find construction works in the ancient center. Especially remember to visit the top 05 Assembly Halls in Hoi An, including Fujian Assembly Hall, Quang Dong Assembly Hall, Duong Thuong Assembly Hall, Hai Nam Assembly Hall, and Trieu Chau Assembly Hall.

Quang Cong temple
Assembly Halls

We inform you that all Assembly Halls in Hoi An are opening for visitors at 7:00 a.m. and closed at 05:00 p.m. all days of the week. Duong Thien and Hai Nam Assembly Halls are free to visit, and another requires an entrance ticket.

2.5 Quan Cong Temple

Quan Cong Temple is dedicated to General Quan Cong, a legendary figure from the Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history. The temple was established in 1653 by the Chinese Community living in Hoi An. The temple’s architecture is a fine example of a combination of Chinese and Vietnamese design, characterized by intricate wooden carvings and vibrant red and yellow colors that symbolize prosperity and good fortune. Visitors can explore the temple’s altar, adorned with offerings and incense, and the statues of General Quan Cong and his loyal guards.

You can easily find Quan Cong Temple at 24 Tran Phu Street in Hoi An Town. The temple is open from 8.00 a.m. to 05:00 a.m., and free entrance ticket.

Quan Cong Temple
Quan Cong Temple

2.6 Old Houses of Hoi An

The old houses in Hoi An reflect the harmonious architectural styles of China, Japan, and a little bit of French. Beyond their architectural beauty, these old houses have witnessed generations of families’ flow of history. Some have been turned into museums, offering a reality experience for tourists who want to learn about Hoi An’s lifestyle. 

Generally, the layout of the old houses of Hoi An is divided into three spaces, including living space, trading space, and worship space. Visit Hoi An Ancient Town Vietnam, and you should not miss a chance to visit the top 05 old houses in Hoi An, including Tan Ky Old House, Phung Hung Old House, Duc An Old House, Quan Thang Old House, and Diep Dong Nguyen Old House.

Old Houses of Hoi An
Old Houses of Hoi An

2.7 Lantern Festival

One of the top things to do in Hoi An that you can not miss is join in the Lantern Festival. The Lantern Festival is held on the 14th day of every lunar month. On this festive day, from 05 p.m to 10 p.m., all the restaurants, coffee stores, bars, and households in the old town turn off the electric lights to give space for the sparkling glow of the vibrant lanterns. The whole ancient town is drowning in the party of lights and colors that reflect the diverse culture of the region. 

The most simple way to enjoy the romantic and cozy Hoi An Ancient Town at night is by wandering through the ancient small alleys. Another must-try activity at the festival is taking a boat and dropping lantern lights on the Hoai River. To know about the detailed days that the Lantern Festival happens for your trip to Hoi An and things to do in Hoi An at night, do not miss out on the Lantern Festival comprehensive guide!

lantern market
Hoi An Lantern Festival 2024

2.8 Tailor-Made Souvenirs

Please take a little walk around Hoi An Ancient Town, and it is easy to recognize many tailor-made souvenir stores. Hoi An Silk Village has been famous for hundreds of years with skilled tailors. Scroll around at TikTok or Instagram, and you can see many videos about tailor-made in Hoi An with many beautiful styles and fabrics.

So, you can buy silk or tailor-made clothes with detailed measurements or even order online for your loved ones. From custom-designed clothing and accessories, skilled artisans work hard to ensure that each piece reflects the beauty and culture of Hoi An. Enjoy the culture of this ancient town and take home a part of its timeless elegance.

Tailor Made Clothes
Tailor Made Clothes

2.9 Street Food Galore

A trip will not fulfilled without enjoying the region’s taste. Visit Hoi An Ancient Town, do not miss a chance to walk around the ancient street and savor the street food in the eateries vendors. It is not only an ideal way to taste Hoi An authentic flavors, including chicken rice, Quang noodles, or sweet soup, but also the simplest way to get close to Hoi An’s culture since you can chat friendly with locals and listen to the stories behind it, or even they will reveal about must-visit places in Hoi An for you. It’s the perfect opportunity to people-watch, reflect, and enjoy the moment.

You will enjoy a taste of Hoi An under the porch filled with blooming paper flowers, next to the yellowed ancient houses filled with charm lanterns. It is such an amazing experience both of individual and taste. Another way to explore Hoi An street food is to visit the top 06 popular Markets in Hoi An. The market is a heaven for food lovers, with hundreds of delicious dishes and cheap prices. Also, you can observe the daily activities of locals in the bustling markets.

vietnam famous food
Vietnam famous foods

2.10 Sip a cup of Coffee

There’s no better way to start your day than by finding a cozy café and sipping a cup of coffee. As you settle into one of the coffee stores in town, the tantalizing aroma of freshly brewed Vietnamese coffee wafts through the air. Order a traditional Vietnamese drip coffee or try an iced coffee with condensed milk for a sweet tasty. For a more new experience, why not go for a salt coffee or coconut coffee? Sip your coffee slowly and watch as life in Hoi An glides around you. The hustle and bustle of the morning market, the friendly smiles of locals, and the gentle flow of the Thu Bon River all add to the peace of Hoi An Ancient Town.

coffee hoian
Sip a cup of Coffee

3. Hoi An Ancient Town at night

If Hoi An in the morning is calm and tranquil with the relatively quiet streets and the gentle sound of waves from the nearby Thu Bon River, Hoi An Ancient Town at night is transformed into a different world. The town becomes sparkling with lanterns illuminating the streets and riverbanks. The bustling evening market comes to life with many stalls selling handicrafts, souvenirs, and delicious street food. The flower lanterns lit up the canal, floating on the river, creating a romantic and dreamy ambiance.

Hoi An at night is also a time for celebration and festivity. The streets, quiet in the morning, are now filled with activity. Live music from bars and restaurants adds to the lively atmosphere. To enjoy the most charming Hoi An at night, having dinner in riverfront restaurants offers the best view of the poetic river Hoi An. Also, the night market is the ideal place for finding unique souvenirs and experiencing the town’s vibrant energy.

lantern festival in hoian
Hoi An Ancient Town at night

4. How to Explore Hoi An Ancient Town

If you are traveling around Da Nang City, a Hoi An Day Trip from Da Nang – Private tour is an ideal choice to explore the timeless beauty of Hoi An Ancient Town with your own itinerary and privacy. If you prefer a friendly budget and a chance to connect with new friends, Hoi An Day Trip from Da Nang – Deluxe Group Tour is considered a perfect choice.

Cycling countryside in hoian
Hoi An Group Tour

The two options above are to bring high-quality transportation and door-to-door service to a conveniently arranged itinerary within one day, your time in the charming old town will be worthwhile every moment.

There are many exciting ways to explore Hoi An Ancient Town. The simplest way is to choose a Hoi An Old Town Walking Tour. Stroll through the charming streets and enjoy the fresh air and calm waves of sounds from the Thu Bon River. Cycling around the town is no less interesting. You can rent a bike reasonably priced and slowly cycle through the winding streets. It is such a wonderful experience to explore Hoi An at your own pace. If you want an authentic Vietnam experience, rent a Cyclo with a friendly local driver to have fun and memorable in Hoi An Old Town.

If you are getting bored with experiences on land, choose a boat tour on Thu Bon River to discover the beauty of the old town from a different perspective. Sitting on the boat glide through the riverbanks, you can enjoy the poetic scenery and ancient beauty from the yellow walls filled with green moss. It is a great opportunity to observe the daily activities of locals and fishermen on both river banks. Also, do not forget to fill your stomach with delicious specialties in Hoi An for a full experience.

visit hoian
Explore Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An Ancient Town is always a fascinating destination in Central Vietnam and Vietnam as a whole. As a World Heritage Site, Hoi An still keeps its quiet and old beauty over hundreds of years. Choose Hoi An Ancient Town to return to a forgotten time and find all the magic of the bustling trading port in the long-lasting history of Vietnam.