This one is from the Vietnam Diaries a town that is made of all things happy and is set in time. Located just south of Da Nang. Hoi Ann is where you forget the perils of traffic and the city rush to immerse in the magic of this delightful town. This UNESCO recognised town is known for the friendliest people and makes a great budget destination for backpackers and one of the safest places for solo travellers.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
Since Vietnam sees a lot of rains the ideal time to visit Hoi An would be during the dry season ( February – Apil ) I, however, visited Hoi Ann end of December and we saw some light showers in the day, but it cleared out soon.
HOW TO GET AROUND
The best part about this beautiful town is that it can be covered on foot, wear your sneakers and strut around the town and if you get tired you can get one these quirky hand pulled rickshas too.
- Explore the Ancient town – You can purchase tickets to visit architectural gems like the Japanese Merchant houses, Tea warehouses and Chinese temples.
- Shop around in the old town – The ancient town has some interesting shopping, I picked up some boho bags, silk robes and of course paper lanterns.
- Get an outfit tailored – Hoi Ann is known to have some of the finest tailors who can stitch can kind of outfits in less than a day! You can bring in designs from magazines or browse them yourself on the store and customise everything.
- Stroll around the old town at Night – Well this is a must do if you’re here, Hoi Ann turns into a magical paradise with the colourful paper lanterns strung across, quite romantic too with street musicians in every corner.
- Take an imperial day trip to Hue – This imperial city is just 3 hours away from Hoi Ann and is a great place to understand a bit of the intriguing Vietnamese history.
- Visit the ruins of My son Temple– This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers a glimpse into the Champa dynasty, and the enchanting Hindu ruins are worth a visit. You can explore the whole area in a few hours.
- Soak up the sun at Cham Islands – Again off the coast of Hoi Ann these eight little islands are great to sunbathe or indulge in some water sports.
WHERE TO STAY
Hoi Ann has varying accommodation choices depending upon your budget. There are great hostels, Airbnb and hotel, I would, however, advise staying in da nang as it serves as an excellent base to explore not just Hoi Ann bt several other beautiful like the Marble mountains, My son Sanctuary, Cham islands and many more.
We stayed in Intercontinental Danang Resort drove to Hoi Ann to spend a day here. Danang has many hotels and resorts to suit your budget.
WHAT TO EAT/DRINK
Lip smacking Vietnamese food and cheap beer is another good reason to hang around in Hoi Ann. There is option aplenty to eat here, the street food is fantastic and so are the cafes and restaurants.
- Hoi Ann Roastery – The aroma of freshly ground beans would probably;y lure you here, there are some great options, I highly recommend trying the Egg coffee here ( it tastes like custard) its creamy indulgent and quite the rarity.
- Morning Glory or Cargo – They booth have an extensive menu and excellent views. There are quite a few healthy options in here too.
- Cocobox – If you’re looking for some European breakfast options along with a fresh smoothie or juice this place is perfect. furthermore, you could pick up some healthy treats like pollen grains and organic chocolate
- Hai Cafe – Its quite a hit with bloggers and travellers alike, You can sit at the garden area or the porch, the coffee and tea selection is excellent, and if you have some time at hand you could attend one of their cooking classes too.
- Hoi Ann is best explored on foot, so comfortable walking shoes are a must
- As it is an ancient town, it is advisable to dress slightly conservatively when entering temples etc.
- Make sure you stay past the sunset for all the lanterns to come to life.
- Carry, an umbrella or a rain jacket to prepare yourself for the notorious rains.
- All the street shops hike up prices so bargain hard.
- Carry enough change and pay only in local currency, while many shops will accept USD, you may end up paying much higher in USD.
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