Hoi An Old Town
Once a major port city, Hoi An’s Old Town is an exceptionally well-preserved settlement that still manages to exude old world charm and remind visitors of its flourishing trading roots.
Once a major port city, Hoi An’s Old Town is an exceptionally well-preserved settlement that still manages to exude old world charm and remind visitors of its flourishing trading roots. Comprised of some 800 or more buildings, walking through this well-maintained city is like walking through a museum that reeks of 15th, 16th, and 17th century history.
It was the quintessential blend of local Vietnamese culture with foreign influence that brought this small town its UNESCO World Heritage site status in 1999. You’ll see this in the colorful medley of colonial houses, temples, pagodas, canals, wooden shophouses, and more.
If you plan to walk around the town without entering any of the buildings, then you don’t have to shell out any money. But if you want to explore some of the buildings, museums, assembly halls, houses, and even watch a traditional music show, then getting a ticket is required. With this pass, you can visit 5 out of the 22 available areas:
- Museums: Hoi An Museum, Museum of Sa Huynh Culture, Museum of Folk Culture, Museum of Trade Ceramics
- Ancient houses: Quan Thang Old House, Duc An Old House, Phung Hung Old House, Tan Ky Old House, Nguyen Tuong Ethnic Church, Tran Family Chapel
- Assembly halls: Fujian Assembly Hall, Guang Zhao Assembly Hall, Hainan Assembly Hall, Chaozhou Assembly Hall
- Cultural attractions: Japanese Covered Bridge, Cam Pho Communal House, House of Tuy Tien Duong, Minh Huong Communal House, Quan Cong Temple
- Ancient tombs of Japanese traders: Gu Sokukun, Tani Yajirobei, Banjiro
- Church: Dang Trong
A must in your Hoi An to do list, take note that tickets cost VND 120,000 (US$5.15). You can also watch a daily traditional art performance at 5:00pm in either 66 Bach Dang or 39 Nguyen Thai Hoc for an additional VND 100,000 (US$4.30).
If you want to visit more than five sites, you can always buy more tickets in one of the many ticketing booths or stalls around town. One advantage of being a small site is that many of these places are all within walking distance of each other.
Take note that most of the old town roads do not allow cars and other motorized vehicles to pass through them, making the only transportation options walking or going by bicycles/cyclos.
Another thing to note is that Vietnam follows a very conservative lifestyle, so modest dress is highly recommended as some of the homes that you’ll visit are private ones with local families living in them. Temples and churches also require a conservative dress code, so don’t forget to cover your knees and shoulders, or bring cover-ups like a shawl or sweater to wear on top of your outfit.
How to get there
- Located on the banks of the Thu Bon river, Hoi An Town is in the center of the city. If you’re coming from outside Hoi An, a taxi, motorcycle, or bus may be the best way to get to the old town.
- If you’re coming from inside the city, the best way to get to the old town is by bicycle or on foot.
- If you’re looking for an organized walking tour, you can join a Hoi An Ancient Town & Market Walking Tour complete with a local guide and entrance fees.
Hoi An Ancient Town Tour: Japanese Covered Bridge & Old House from Hoi An– Half Day
Hoi An, Vietnam