Discover Hoi An Central Market - Hoi An
When it comes to getting to know the locals, nothing is as exciting as visiting a city’s famous market. Here, observers will be able to get a glimpse of how a local’s daily life is acted out. Inexperienced visitors might be surprised with the back and forth shouting matches between patrons and stall owners, or the heat that is resonating from the crowd. But for those who have been doing this for a long time, they know that this is simply how the locals say hello. In Vietnam, markets with this type of scenarios do exist. Each of its cities has at least one vicinity to offer travelers, and if you find yourself in the city of Hoi An, do not forget to stop by the city’s central market.
From the various motorcycles parked outside its main entrance to the smell of the numerous fresh catches of the day, Hoi An’s Central Market is definitely not the place for people who want to sit back and relax. With the many goods to see, smell, and feel here, it will almost be impossible to stop and decide what to do next, but this is all part of the central market’s charm. Right up front, sellers will greet their customers with a full-fledged smile as they do their best to entice you to buy their goods. If you believe that you can match up to their bargaining skills, then take the challenge and haggle with the locals. Walk deeper towards the back and you’ll find more stalls – with a friendlier price – and various other eateries. Fill up on Hoi An’s favorite dishes such as banh xeo pancakes, or head back to the action; the choice is yours when you are in Hoi An Central Market.
Trip Guru would like to advise travelers, who are planning to only browse the market and not purchase anything, to simply smile and move on. Expect owners to drive their wares hard, so do not be surprised or mistake this gesture as something negative.
Hoi An Central Market is open daily from 6:30AM. The early signs of life can be found in the dock during the early hours, because this is when the fish arrive and are divided amongst the stalls. The market is located near the Nguyen Hue and Tran Phu road on the Thu Bon River, which can be easily reached by foot or by bike.
What our experts tell about this experience.
First thing first. When you first arrive you’ll be thinking they want to give you war. They don’t stay calm and just put a smile on your face even if you feel weird. The markets here are like no other. It’s sort of rush hour all the time. Locals will bargain for their meats and veggies and practically everything. You want to cook? Here is where you can get all the ingredients. As for prices you must bargain hard. That’s what I did I spent a good 10 minutes on every little store that when I went back they remember me! It gets friendly afterwards, don’t be a scardy cat and go along with the crowd.
The smell here wasn’t pleasant.. But it’s a fresh market.. It’s supposed to smell like this every where right? Anyways, apart from the stink I really liked how I was able to see the locals purchasing their goods so early in the morning. It’s super loud here too! I thought a grenade was going to come my way any moment now but no. It’s how they say hi, bye, lower the price etc. I don’t know how people get use to this.. Anyways I was laughing at myself by the end of the hour. I then got bargaining for a few things that I wanted to take back to my hotel and cook up in the kitchen. That was lots of fun! All I had to do was ‘Man Up’ ! Great experience.