Hoi An: A walk through the beauty & peace of its Old Town

Hoi An (Hội An) is a city in Vietnam’s Quảng Nam Province and noted since 1999 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Old Town Hội An, the city’s historic district, is recognized as an exceptionally well-preserved example of a South-East Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century.

A walk through its well-preserved streets and riverside offers an overview of beauty, peace and tourism, with plenty of restaurants, bars, shops, cafes, markets and tourist spots.

Besides all this, Vietnam is well-known for its cuisine and coffee, where Cao Lầu & Mi Quang dishes cannot be missed in Hoi An. If you are a food lover, you will really enjoy Hoi An. Local coffee, Cao Lầu, Mi Quang and Banh Mi are easy to spot, but there are several restaurants where these dishes are top!

There are also many other different things to do in Hoi An besides to visit the Old Town, such as cycling by its rice fields, Cua Dai beach, visit Da Nang by bus or cycling, Marble mountains, Spa, massages, etc.

HOW TO GET THERE

In order to get to Hoi An, only can be done by taxi, bus or shuttle bus service from Da Nang airport. Hoi An doesn’t have its own airport, so there are few options to get there.

The option I have chosen was the shuttle bus service; cheap, fast and reliable.

The race is about 6$ per pax and they will pick you up at the airport in time and drop you to your hotel. The shuttle bus has its own wifi, aircon and clean. Easy to book online in advance in this link.

The taxi is about 20$ and private car from 25$ to 40$.

The local bus is about 1$ but will drop you to Da Nang in Dien Bien Phu street. Then you gotta take another local bus to Hoi An and drop in Pham Hong Thai street. Later on you should take a taxi or walk to your hotel.

EXPLORING AROUND

Hoi An Old Town is located along the riverside, easy to find and get, since is the heart of this district

1

The fish market starts near the bridge, following by souvenir shops

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The walk along the riverside is really beautiful despite its crowds. During the sunset the views are stunning. Also along the riverside you may get a boat trip throughout the river

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At night, the Old Town riverside will be completely transformed by a colored town, with plenty of lights, lanterns, boat trips, bars, music, party…

I visited Hoi An during Lunar New Year, so the Town was full of lights, colors and flowers, giving to this ancient town a different atmosphere than perhaps during the rest of the year is not visible.

A walk throughout the streets in Old Town was also really beautiful and colorful at night. Worth to have a walk for all streets to breath this awesome environment

During day time, the atmosphere is completely different than night time, with less crowds and more relaxed for a walk or shopping. There are few temples to visit around the Old Town.

And obviously, can’t miss the most popular tourist spot: the Japanese bridge Chùa Cầu

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EATING AROUND

For food lovers, I was carefully checking where to go and eat before my trip to Hoi An and tried most of them, yet asking locals where is recommended. I followed many online reviews which are the top places and personally I was disappointed with many of them, perhaps due to menu changes, chef changes or corrupted by tourism and popularity.

Near the bridge and fish market, I found 3 places to eat safely, cheap and with really delicious food

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Banh Mi Phurong is a little shop selling plenty of Banh Mi (Vietnamese sandwiches), very popular and really delicious. Prices range from 20.000 to 40.000VND. It’s very easy to spot as always has long queue outside!

Mr. Hai noodles is a restaurant located in a narrow street. The food quality is pretty good at affordable prices. Its looking is very local but worth to have a try, especially for what is popular: Mi Quang

Mia Coffee was one of the last spots discovered during my exploration. Its coffee is pretty good and it’s popular for cakes. Unfortunately there were no cakes during my visit, so I just enjoy a coffee in the second floor!

4

The next turn was for Rice Drum restaurant. The food was really awesome there with nice views of the riverside. We ordered Vietnamese rolls & fish. As per other reviews say, the fish here is really delicious no matter which!

The Cargo Club restaurant was one of those disappointing restaurants. Good reviews everywhere but..why? The service is not the best, stinky terrace and poor food quality. We ordered staffed squid and beef on lemongrass (was not very bad), rice paper rolls (disappointed) and cakes. I really love cakes and mango..so I have the chance to try Mango Cheesecake and I only could finish a 30% of it. Impossible to digest. The other cake was White chocolate Kahlua which was pretty normal.

Unfortunately I had not enough time to try Morning Glory, as its reviews seem really good too!

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And the winner with much difference was Nu Eatery. The best food ever tried in Hoi An and cheap! The cakes here are really delicious. Tried: Cheesecake and Green tea cake and was simply perfect! Steamed Buns amazing. It’s a must! This restaurant is a slightly hidden through narrow streets after crossing the Japanese Bridge Chùa Cầu

Also Mai Fish has nice reviews but not enough time to check! Next time!

For sure that Vietnam will never disappoint you for its food and beauty! Simply gotta find the correct places 🙂

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