Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hoi An Ancient Town

I'm a little behind on blogging about my last few days in Vietnam due to my massive bout of homesickness and follow up remedy. I will try to catch up now.

The day after my motorbike tour of the countryside, I decided to explore the town of Hoi An, itself a UNESCO site. Hoi An's historical background is as an international port trading town for Vietnam. The ancient part of the town has been carefully preserved as a kind of living museum. Nearly all the businesses in town are custom tailors or traditional craftsmen. This makes Hoi An a kind of shopping paradise, and I must confess that I went a little overboard. I bought lots of custom-made dresses, pants, shoes, and even a winter coat. I also got some presents for friends and family at the local craft shops.

A potter hard at work in the local handicrafts workshop.


You can purchase a walking tour of Hoi An ticket that allows you to see several of the main sites. The weather on the particular Sunday I did this was absolutely spectacular.

The Japanese Covered Bridge is a kind of symbol of the city, being a gift from Japanese traders.


An elaborate fountain sculpture in the courtyard of the Cantonese Assembly Hall.


The best part of Hoi An, though, was the laid-back vibe in the town. Although obviously economically supported by tourism, the vendors here were much less aggressive than in Hanoi and everybody was a lot friendlier. Heck, even the lizards lived in comfortable peace with the locals.

One of many geckos that roamed free in restaurants around the old town.


Finally, I ended up relaxing in the afternoon on Cua Dai beach, where I met some awesome folks and had my cool encounter with Moon Magic.

Stunning.


You should absolutely check out all of the photos I took around this picturesque, internationally influenced town.

Hoi An Ancient Town

2 comments:

  1. I have never thought that Vietnam would be a beautiful place to visit, but you have completely changed my mind!

    You're very brave, though, I can't go places where I don't speak the predominant language. :)

    (I found you through William, btw, and am enjoying reading through all your posts!)

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  2. Vietnam is gorgeous. I didn't even get south the middle part of the country where some of the most popular beaches and temples are, or to one of the more famous nature parks.

    And I saw some comments you made on Amanda's blog, so I've been reading your blog, too. Some lovely work. I look forward to seeing more.

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