It’s fitting that the name Hoi An translates to peaceful meeting place. There’s a spiritual essence to this city, a feeling of timelessness that’s reflected in the rustic, tile-roofed buildings and narrow streets of the Ancient Town. Resting on the coast of the South China Sea and recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its magnificently preserved seaport village, this city’s history dates back to the 1st century when its harbor was the largest in Southeast Asia.
A city of great wealth, starting with the spice trade in the 7th century, Hoi An has long been the place to be. The Chinese, Japanese, Dutch and Indians settled here in the 16th and 17th centuries and their influence is clear. Hoi An’s classic Chinese lanterns glow on the quiet streets and waterways, the short city blocks dotted with the shops of custom tailors. By 10pm everything is closed, the streets empty, only the hanging lanterns to illuminate your bike ride home.
The best use of time here is an afternoon wandering the backstreets, stopping in the shade of a quiet alleyway to escape the intense heat and feel the cool stone wall on your back. A sense of solitude and peace that’s unimaginable in the madness of modern day Vietnam, as our friend Nhi would say, Hoi An is truly a ‘special place.’
A travel design agency.
Follow us on Instagram @CohicaTravel