Hoi An Old Town is a tourist attraction that has been received noble rewards from foreign press. Recently, it has been considered as a 2015 Asian Townscape. No matter how famous Hoi An is, it's still a friendly budget destination for all kinds of tourists. These are some of delightful free activities you shouldn't miss when visiting Hoi An.
Do a tour in Hoi An. More importantly, do a Hoi An Free Tour when you are here.
Hoi An Free Tour is a non-profit organization led by a group of students in Da Nang and Hoi An. This organization aims to create an opportunity for students to practice English and introduce Hoi An culture to domestic and foreign friends. These knowledgeable tour guides will give you a chance to get to Kim Bong Carpentry Village - a remote village in Hoi An, which is well-known for its long lasting carpentry.
A trip with Hoi An Free Tour to the rural area is surely a beautiful treat for those looking for a cool escape. A tour starts at 8.30 a.m on every Thursday, Tuesday and Sunday in a week. Each tour includes 5 stops ranging from the local workshops, their traditional work place, local temples to the local houses. Every trip gives you a thorough understanding of how the local earn money as well as how they maintain traditional works for years.
What really sets Hoi An Free Tour apart is its interaction between locals and tourists. Joining in a tour, you are able to get nose to nose with the life of local people, observe their working process and trying to make rice noodles and sleeping mat. On your way, the friendly and active guides are always willing to answer all questions, they also give more information about the Vietnamese lives in countryside.
Hoi An Free Tour offers free tour guides. You just need to give 50,000 VND which is paid for the ferry cost (20,000 vnd) and the rest (30,000 VND) will be donated to the local people. Hoi An Free Tour is rewarded for its community purpose as the small donation from tourists can partly help to improve the lives of local people living there.
Photo by Greg Willis
Tra Que village is a renowned place for its fresh vegetables and herbs. Typically, the farmer do not use chemical fertilizer and pesticide. Instead, they use seaweed, a kind of flora in river which nearby the village. When you visit Tra Que village, you not only see how the local plant vegetables but also have chance to try some spcialize food with the freshest herbs. Also, a feeling of rural area is what you can expect for a day out of busy traffic.
Photo by jeffrey.pick
3. Walk around old town
Coming Hoi An, you seem to be lost yourself in the ancient world with flocks of old house. Besides, there are a lot of small alleys which still remain its original layout. These ancient features create the unique of Hoi An among other touristy places. Take an easy walk around the old quarter and see how lovely this little gem is.
Hoi An architecture is a combination between Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese styles. You can see a dramatic difference between these architectures. At night, Hoi An appears at its best with hundreds lanterns lightened up, creating a romantic and peaceful atmosphere. On the 14th day of every lunar month, Hoi An dates as back as its past time without electricity, vehicles and modern facility. If you are wandering where to take a relaxing wander with your beloved ones, Hoi An is all you need.
Apart from the scenic setting, Hoi An is most liked by its various activities as Bai Choi (a traditional singing game, blind breaking bowl or tasting a long list of specialty. A trip to Hoi An is much more valuable and memorable with the friendly and helpful locals.
Photo by Gregor Dodson
About 15 minutes bicycle from the old town, An Bang beach is where your dream beach trip become true. It's one of the magical beaches in the Central of Viet Nam. Miles of sparkling sand, palm trees swaying over a white beach, lush tropical plants, and endless sunshine make An Bang the most scenic beach in Hoi An.
An Bang beach is where you can lazily lie on the chair, fully enjoy the sun bath without being annoyed by others as this beach is not really busy. It's also a beach for walkers and athlete lvoers. Whether your dream beach trip consits of spending a few pampered nights in a four-star resort or swimming in the perfect-postcard blue water, An Bang will not dissapoint you.
Photo by Prashant Ram
Thanh Nam fishing village is an off the beaten track for those who want to discover the local life without getting to touristy attraction. As the name refers, Thanh Nam is a living area of the fishermen and their families.
If you try enough to get there in the early morning, you can see a real beauty of this village. Fishermen standing on boats, using their traditional method of cormorant to catch fish. Some of them return home after a long night catching fish on beach. Observing from the distance, you can truly feel how difficult their daily job is.
If you are strike lucky, you can view a local market where fishermen sell their caught fish to women traders who will bring these fishes to other makets in Hoi an and Da Nang for sale with higher price. Photographers especially love the fishing village as it reflects a true life of people living there, how they work for living. Once you are in Hoi An, remember to get Thanh Nam as soon as possible.
Photo by Jack Tran
Thanh Ha village boats a long history of a traditional job in Hoi An, pottery. Time flies, not many villagers still do this job as it hardly help the local afford their living standard. However, some people still remain this original work as a part of tradition and culture prevation.
The main factor to make pottery is clay and workers mostly use their hands to form the shape for every products. It's not simple to make a mixture of clay, sand, water become a masterpiece. The workers need to have a high skill with the determination as well as perseverance to create a high quality product.
Currently, workers in Thanh Ha village have applied many technique to make more diverse pottery goods in different shapes with better quality. This is a part of their purpose to introduce the traditional workshop in Hoi An worldwide.
If you want to know more about history and learn how to make pottery, you can take part in Thanh Ha Pottery half day tour. It's so much fun and educated.
Photo by Van Chi
Last but not least, Thuan Tinh Ecotourim is a must for all budget travellers. Thuan Tinh is most well-known for its environmental friendly surrounding where people can be deep in the relaxing moment and admire the natural beauty. Also, there are a number of activities which you can join in to spend a few hilarious hours.
Are you going to visit Hoi An? These are what you shouldn't miss: