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Located on the banks of the poetic Thu Bon River, in central Quang Nam province, 30 kilometers south of Da Nang, Hoi An ancient town is an Eastern oriental classic captivation. With the strategic location on the banks of the great river, with one seaside border (East), it used to be one of the major trading centers in Southeast Asia during the 16th century due to the early western trader occupying period.
Hoi An has been through a few centuries of history, but still remains as in the very first days of its being born. Its two main historical landmarks are the occupying of the Japanese & Chinese, and the Western (Dutch and Spanish) during the 16th and 17th centuries. During the period of the China trade, the town was called Hai Pho (Sea Town) in Vietnamese. Originally Hai Pho was a divided town, because across the “Japanese Bridge”, it used to be the Japanese settlement (16th-17th century). Then it was known to the French and Spanish as Faifo, a major international port city. Thanks to these days, the foreign comprehensively possitive and special pastimes and culture had made deep influences on the today’s Hoi An.
Since Hoi An was built in 16th century, it has become a thriving port town over centuries. Till now, the town still remains the complex of architecture as its origin, including houses, temples, assembly hall, pagodas, shrine, well, bridges, etc. They combine with traditional customs and lifestyle of the locals, making it more attractive and become a unique museum of Vietnam’s ancient architecture and life.
Visiting Hoi An, you will have chance to admire high cultural values, traditional customs, lifestyle, folk games and ancient gastronomy of Hoi An people. It is like you return a truly 16th century town with a slow and peaceful and simple rhythm of daily life. You will see yourself stop and live with this rhythm and experience a “new life”.
We cannot miss amazing architectures in this ancient town. The highlight among them is more than 20 assembly halls and lineage halls, such as Chua Cau, Trieu Chau Hall, Ong Pagoda, Phuc Kien Hall, Quang Dong Hall, Quan Thang House, Tran Lineage Hall, etc. these are wonderful architectures with beautiful carved patterns, sophisticating sculptures and precious old antiques from Japan, China, India, Western and Vietnam.
Ancient houses in Hoi An is also an featured attraction. Moss-grow ancient houses with beautiful architecture are covered by colorful climbing flowers and sparkling light of lantern. You will feel a romantic scene and air when the night fall down because it is time local people hang poetic lanterns in front of their houses, on the street and local children drift floating lanterns on Thu Bon River. The whole town is shine by a fanciful and mysterious light of lanterns, creating a charming beauty for Hoi An – a beauty come from the simplicity, ancientness, peacefulness and the purity.