Hoi An, affectionately known as the ‘Lantern City’, is arguably the most photogenic location in Vietnam. The Ancient Town, with buildings that span the 15th to 19th centuries, is a UNESCO Heritage site.
Hoi An's Ancient Town seen from across the Thu Bon River.
Lantern boats float down the Thu Bon River each night.
Hoi An is known as "lantern city" for a good reason. These multi-coloured lanterns are everywhere, especially during Mid Autumn Festival.
Cyclos are also hard to miss. The three-wheel bicycle taxis first appeared in Vietnam during the French colonial period after a failed attempt to introduce rickshaws.
A cyclo ride around Hoi An's Ancient Town is the perfect way to beat the heat. But negotiate your price before setting out. Cyclo drivers here can sometimes charge as much as 300,000 Dong (US$15) for a 45 minute ride. Generally, 22,000 dong (US$95c) per kilometre is the going rate.
The Japanese Covered Bridge, built in the 1590s to link Hoi An’s Japanese community with the Chinese community across the stream, is one of the most iconic and photographed locations in Hoi An's Ancient Town.
The Cam Nam Bridge over Thu Bon River connects Hoi An's Ancient Town with Cam Nam Island, where you'll find bars, restaurants and the night markets.
Sweet banana pancakes are sold at carts everywhere in Hoi An. It's best to buy them fresh off the griddle and never pay more than 10,000 Dong (about US50c).
Few other pieces of headwear are as strongly linked to the image of a country as the palm-leaf hat worn in Vietnam. The conical shaped hats are officially called nón lá.
Chicken skewers on the grill at the Hoi An Night Market.
Local Vietnamese women sell their produce on the streets.
A well-earned cocktail on the upstairs terrace at Mango Mango is the perfect way to cool off. Check out the great Happy Hour deal that runs until 7pm, when it's two for one. It's located to the right of the bridge on Can Nam Island.
When the sun goes down, the restaurants and bars in Hoi An's Ancient Town are a magnet for tourists.
Colourful floating candles are released into the Thu Bon River each night as part of the full moon celebrations.
The two-storey Morning Glory (which takes its name from the Vietnamese herb)is hands down the best place to eat. Owned and run by Hoi An local Ms Vy, it serves fresh and tasty Vietnamese food in a comfortable setting and is hugely popular with western tourists.
© 2019 Bernard O’Riordan (Travel Instinct). All Rights Reserved
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