1. Visit the night market
Hoi An may be famous for its monthly lantern festival, which takes place on the night of the full moon every month, but don't be disheartened if your holiday dates don't match up! Hoi An is a wonderful place to visit at any time of the month, and after dark the town transforms into a buzzing hive of activity.
Every night in the town you'll find stalls selling street food, intricate paper pop-up cards, wooden toys, jewellery, and of course the ubiquitous paper lanterns. Meanwhile, the streets are crowded and the streetside bars and restaurants are packed with locals and tourists alike.
Hoi An may be a beautiful destination by day, but it's at night that it really comes alive!
2. Take a cookery class
Hoi An is known throughout Vietnam for the high quality of its food, and one of our favourite experiences is to take a Vietnamese cooking lesson. There are several cookery schools in the area, but our favourites include a visit to the local market (or nearby organic farm), and a cruise down the lovely Thu Bon River in a traditional basket boat. The classes themselves are held outside the town centre, in beautiful countryside surrounded by paddy fields.
3. Get something tailor-made
Tailors reportedly outnumber other businesses in Hoi An two to one, which is easy to believe if you've ever spent five minutes wandering through the streets. This is a fantastic place to pick up made-to-measure suits, dresses, jackets, coats, pyjamas - in fact, anything you like.
Bring along a photo, draw a picture, or leaf through the in-store catalogues to choose a design you like. Then pick a fabric, get measured, and your tailor will produce your perfect garment in just a day or two. Shop around to get the best prices!
4. Cycle through the Countryside
Hoi An old town is stunning and justly popular, but there's no escaping the crowds of tourists and pushy street sellers. For a break from the crowds and to explore a different, quieter side of Hoi An - rent a bicycle, hop on the local ferry, and travel across the river to Cam Kim Island. Here you'll cycle through pleasant, rural neighbourhoods where the locals still make traditional basket boats by hand and dirt tracks wind past paddy fields and forests.
5. Enjoy an evening Vespa Adventure
For a bit of excitement during your Hoi An adventure, we recommend taking an evening street food tour of the town on the back of a vintage Vespa. One of our favourite Vietnam experiences, this tour will have you zipping through the backstreets, chowing down on the local delicacies in excellent local bars, and taking a boat trip across the river to Cam Nam island for a bit of alternative Hoi An nightlife. Trust us, it's fantastic!
EXTRA: Do not forget a good travel insurance before you go
We highly recommend to get a good travel insurance as most likely your standard health insurance won’t work abroad. We at Traveldudes recommend the awarded Travel Insurance by WorldNomads which you can easily purchase online for the exact time needed.
Written by Inside Vietnam Tours