Hoi An is a colonial town with 122,000 inhabitants, on the Thubon River, near its confluence with the South China Sea. Here once stood the largest port in Southeast Asia. From the 7th to the 10th century, the Cham people got there with their trade of spices great wealth. Then in the 16th – 17th century, many Chinese merchants settled here, which further increased prosperity. Some Indians, Japanese and Dutch followed their example.
Since 1999, Hoi An was with its beautiful architecture recognized by UNESCO. Despite the wars that have long plagued the country, the town remained largely intact.
The night bus we arrive well rested in Hoi An to 5.45. We are looking for quickly a suitable hotel, not too far from the historic town center. While we wait to release a room, we can enjoy a delicious breakfast.
In our previous locations we heard about the heavy rain here last week (November 8th 2011) has caused flooding in the houses stood up to 1.6 meters of water. There is still little sign of that … in corners and edges along the street, the mud is not completely cleaned up, the walls are still very wet to a well-defined height, floods … On to about 2 meters, is people here used during the September – December but in recent years it is getting worse. It is fitted out very quickly all furniture and household goods from the ground floor to move upwards, the cleanup has since become a routine …
It’s pleasant stroll through the narrow pedestrian streets of Hoi An, but it should be somewhat calmer. The car-free making streets does not so much here, the scooters being in the majority in this country. Along with the many cyclists they make that walkers must always be on guard.
The colorful town is characterized by, many tailors and shoe makers. The dirt-cheap size clothing at incredibly low prices offered in all possible colors and fabrics (mainly silk), attracts many tourists … the measurement is taken and the next day the suit or evening dress all ready … The shoemakers pull such stunts and are very popular. Luggage ? That’s not a problem … after all, they will send your purchases to the last hotel where you stay before you leave home.
We explore the beautiful town with its distinctive architecture, which is somewhat complex. During our tour we go three different family houses inside, where someone in the family gives some explanations and displays the details. It excites us very much to visit the old dark wooden houses and to see its construction. Here are Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese styles mixed together. In a house on the quay one shows us the outdated lines that indicate the level of significant flooding. This last week is there between.
We also visit a community center, which looks a bit like a temple, and the Japanese covered bridge with its small Buddhist pagoda, a unique structure.
During a traditional performance of skits with music and singing we once again experience the typical sounds of Vietnam. This takes place in a local handicraft workshop, where we see among other colorful lanterns manufacture.
The typical small market and the yellow houses on the waterfront make the town complete.
But at night it is really pleasant and relaxing walks. The calm in the streets has returned, mopeds and bicycles on stable … only walkers come here looking for a nice restaurant with good cuisine. Music sounds softly through the beautifully illuminated streets.
My Son (Unesco) is a Hindu temple complex, founded as Imperial (4th – 12th century) during the Champa dynasty. It consists of 79 religious buildings, complicated structures built with red bricks. Some of the buildings are only ruins, others have been beautifully restored. A striking detail is that the old stones have been preserved much better than those that were used for restoration. They have sharp edges and corners, while the recent stone already fully worn off.
This site we visit with an organization. Again we choose the easy route, despite the bad experiences we had this already. We want to be early at the site, in the hope of the masses for tourists during the day. From our hotel is at 5.00 you went by minibus to see the sunrise. So early we did not get there on your own. When we picked up a large bus, which is already full of tourists … we are disappointed, once again we have to feel that a Vietnamese is a huge ‘votary. But this is then more than made up upon arrival at the site we find that we are the first group and remains so until we leave. Our guide is great, and provides useful information about the various buildings and their history. The site is beautifully situated in its lush green surroundings.
Fellow passengers are amazed that this much older temple complex that resembles the famous and much larger Angkor Watt in Cambodia. We ourselves will only be able to compare it within a few months, when we visited there.
nachtslaapbus Nha Trang – Hoi An: 240,000 VND per person, 10 ¾ hours on the road, pretty comfortable
taxi bus terminal – hotel: 12 000 VND, 10 min road.
Thanh Van I Hotel: 20 USD for a small room with bathroom (hot water), including delicious breakfast, humid room (probably by the floods of the previous week), TV, air conditioning, fan, fridge, free WIFI, small unsociable indoor , friendly welcome, possibility to book tours and bus, tel. (84 510) 39 16 916, 78 Tran Hung Dao street, www.thanhvanhotel.com, [email protected]
Tip: Check your bill, they charged us the USD at a higher price than elsewhere, this would be just adjusted to the bank. When the man left the reception, we asked the price on his replacement, it was unchanged, the man was recalled and had to return the difference. He thought this to be swept into a personal touch …
Bezoekenpas Hoi An: 90,000 VND per person, valid for five visits of your choice, we will visit:
Houses: Tan Ky, Duc An, Tran Family’s Chapel
Phuc Kien (1757) Assembly Hall
Japanese covered bridge with Buddhist pagoda
Art Craft Manufactoring workshop, traditional theater performance
A visitor really adds value to the visit of the town.
My Son: 210,000 VND per person, breakfast included + 60,000 VND per person entrance, beautiful site, highly recommended
Tip: visit the ruins at sunrise, then you are there alone.