If you’re planning a trip to Vietnam, Hoi An is a must-visit destination. This charming town in central Vietnam is famous for its well-preserved historic architecture, rich cultural heritage, and picturesque scenery. With so much to see and do, it can be challenging to plan the perfect itinerary for your three-day stay in Hoi An.
In this article, we will share our expert recommendations on what to see, do, and eat during your three days in Hoi An. We’ll cover everything from exploring the ancient town’s landmarks and temples to trying out local street food and pampering yourself with a spa treatment. So, let’s dive into our ultimate guide to the perfect Hoi An itinerary.
Day 1: Discovering the Ancient Town
On your first day in Hoi An, it’s best to start by exploring the ancient town, a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1999. The town is famous for its stunning architecture, narrow streets, and colorful lanterns that light up at night. Here are some places to visit during your first day in Hoi An:
Hoi An Ancient Town
The ancient town of Hoi An is the heart of the city and home to numerous historical and cultural landmarks. You can spend hours strolling around the narrow streets, admiring the yellow buildings adorned with wooden shutters and Chinese characters. Make sure to visit the Japanese Covered Bridge, one of Hoi An’s most iconic landmarks, and the Quan Cong Temple, dedicated to a Chinese general who represents loyalty, justice, and intelligence.
Hoi An Market
The Hoi An Market is an excellent place to experience the local way of life and try out some delicious Vietnamese street food. The market is open from early morning until late at night, and you can find everything from fresh seafood and spices to clothing and souvenirs. Don’t miss out on trying some Banh Mi, a Vietnamese sandwich with crispy baguette, pickled veggies, and meat or tofu.
Hoi An is famous for its tailor shops where you can have custom-made clothes and shoes made at a fraction of the price you would pay in Western countries. There are numerous tailor shops in the ancient town, so take your time to find one that suits your style and budget. It’s best to bring pictures or sketches of what you want, and make sure to negotiate the price before placing an order.
Day 2: Beach Day and Vietnamese Cooking Class
On your second day in Hoi An, it’s time to relax and pamper yourself with a beach day and a Vietnamese cooking class. Here are some activities to consider:
An Bang Beach
An Bang Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in Vietnam, located just a few kilometers from Hoi An. The beach offers soft golden sand, clear turquoise water, and plenty of beach bars and restaurants. You can rent a sunbed and enjoy the sea breeze or try out some water sports like surfing or paddleboarding.
Vietnamese Cooking Class
Vietnamese cuisine is renowned worldwide for its fresh ingredients, fragrant herbs, and unique flavors. Taking a cooking class in Hoi An is an excellent way to learn more about the local cuisine and bring back some culinary skills to impress your friends and family. There are several cooking schools in Hoi An that offer half-day or full-day classes, where you can learn how to make traditional dishes like Pho, spring rolls, and Banh Xeo.
Day 3: Exploring the Countryside and Spa Treatment
On your third and final day in Hoi An, it’s time to explore the countryside and indulge in some self-care at a spa. Here are some activities to consider:
Tra Que Village
Tra Que Village is a small farming community just a few kilometers from Hoi An, famous for its organic herbs and vegetables. The village offers a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle, where you can cycle around the rice fields, learn about traditional farming techniques, and even try your hand at planting and harvesting crops. Don’t forget to try some Tra Que salad, made with fresh herbs and veggies grown in the village.
After a long day of cycling and exploring, it’s time to unwind and pamper yourself with a spa treatment. Hoi An is home to many luxurious spas that offer a wide range of massages, facials, and beauty treatments. We recommend trying out a traditional Vietnamese massage, using acupressure and stretching techniques to release tension and promote relaxation.
Another 3-day itinerary
If you have three days in Hoi An, here is a suggested itinerary to make the most of your time:
Start your day by exploring the Ancient Town of Hoi An. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is famous for its well-preserved architecture and canals. Take a walk around the colorful streets, visit the Japanese Covered Bridge, and explore the local shops and markets.
After lunch, head to the Hoi An Central Market to experience the vibrant local atmosphere. You can find a wide variety of fresh produce, spices, and handicrafts here.
In the afternoon, take a boat ride along the Thu Bon River to see the picturesque scenery and enjoy the tranquility. You can also visit the nearby Cam Kim Island, known for its traditional handicrafts and scenic countryside.
Finish your day by enjoying a delicious dinner at one of Hoi An’s famous restaurants, specializing in local delicacies such as Cao Lau and White Rose Dumplings.
Start your day early by visiting My Son Sanctuary, located about an hour’s drive from Hoi An. This archaeological site showcases the ancient Cham civilization and is renowned for its beautiful Hindu temples.
Return to Hoi An and spend the rest of the day exploring the countryside. You can either rent a bicycle or join a guided tour to visit local villages, rice paddies, and meet friendly locals. This is a great way to experience the rural charm of the region.
In the evening, book a lantern-making class to learn the traditional art of lantern making. This is a popular activity in Hoi An, and you can create your own lantern to take home as a souvenir.
Start your final day in Hoi An by taking a cooking class to learn about Vietnamese cuisine. Visit the local market to purchase fresh ingredients, then learn how to prepare traditional dishes under the guidance of a local chef.
After lunch, visit one of the nearby beaches, such as An Bang Beach or Cua Dai Beach, to relax and soak up the sun. Enjoy a swim in the crystal-clear waters or simply lounge on the sandy shores.
In the evening, don’t miss the Hoi An Night Market, which takes place every night along Nguyen Hoang Street. You can find a wide range of goods, including clothing, handicrafts, and street food. Take a leisurely stroll, enjoy the bustling atmosphere, and pick up some souvenirs before departing Hoi An.
Remember to check the opening hours and availability of attractions and activities in advance, as they may vary. Enjoy your three days in Hoi An!
How to Use Three Days in Hoi An
This article provides an expert itinerary for spending three days in Hoi An. You can use this guide to plan your trip, or adjust it based on your interests and preferences. Make sure to book your accommodation and activities in advance, especially during peak tourist season.
Examples Here are some examples of how to make the most of your three days in Hoi An:
- Example 1: On day one, start by exploring the Hoi An Ancient Town, taking in the beautiful architecture and visiting iconic landmarks like the Japanese Covered Bridge. Enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant and spend the afternoon browsing through the shops and markets for unique souvenirs.
- Example 2: Start day two with a relaxing morning at An Bang Beach, where you can soak up the sun and enjoy the crystal-clear waters. In the afternoon, take a Vietnamese cooking class to learn the secrets of traditional Vietnamese cuisine and enjoy a flavorful dinner prepared by your own hands.
- Example 3: Begin day three with a cycling tour to Tra Que Village, where you can immerse yourself in the peaceful countryside and learn about organic farming practices. Afterward, treat yourself to a rejuvenating spa treatment to unwind and recharge before heading back home.
When it comes to comparing different aspects of your three days in Hoi An, consider the following points:
- Accommodation: Hoi An offers a wide range of accommodation options, from budget-friendly hostels to luxury resorts. Consider your preferences for location, amenities, and budget when choosing where to stay.
- Transportation: Hoi An is a walkable town, but you may want to rent a bicycle or motorbike to explore the surrounding areas. Alternatively, hiring a private car or joining a guided tour can be convenient if you prefer not to navigate on your own.
- Food: Hoi An is a food lover’s paradise, offering a myriad of dining options. From street food stalls to upscale restaurants, there’s something for everyone. Explore different flavors and try local specialties like Cao Lau and White Rose dumplings.
Here are some essential tips and advice for your three days in Hoi An:
- Plan Ahead: Research the attractions and activities you want to experience in advance, especially if you have limited time. This will help you make the most of your trip and avoid missing out on must-see places.
- Pack Accordingly: Hoi An has a tropical climate, so pack lightweight and breathable clothing. Don’t forget essentials like sunscreen, a hat, and comfortable shoes for walking.
- Respect the Local Culture: Hoi An is a culturally rich destination, so it’s important to respect local customs and traditions. Dress modestly when visiting temples and be mindful of local customs and etiquette.
- Stay Hydrated: Vietnam can get hot and humid, so remember to drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.
- Be Adventurous: Embrace the spirit of adventure during your three days in Hoi An. Try new foods, interact with locals, and step out of your comfort zone to create unforgettable memories.
1. Can I visit Hoi An as a day trip from Da Nang?
Yes, it is possible to visit Hoi An as a day trip from Da Nang. The distance between the two cities is approximately 30 kilometers, and there are several transportation options available, including taxis, buses, and private transfers.
2. Are there any entrance fees for visiting the Hoi An Ancient Town?
Yes, there is an entrance fee for visiting the Hoi An Ancient Town. The ticket allows you to enter five different historical sites within the town and costs approximately 120,000 VND (subject to change).
3. Is it safe to rent a motorbike in Hoi An?
Renting a motorbike in Hoi An can be a convenient way to explore the area, but it’s essential to exercise caution. Make sure you have a valid international driver’s license, wear a helmet at all times, and familiarize yourself with local traffic rules before hitting the road.
4. Can I tailor clothes in Hoi An within three days?
Yes, you can get tailored clothes in Hoi An within three days. However, keep in mind that complex designs or multiple alterations may require additional time. It’s best to consult with the tailor and discuss your timeline and requirements.
5. Are credit cards widely accepted in Hoi An?
While some establishments in Hoi An accept credit cards, it’s always a good idea to carry cash, especially when visiting smaller shops, markets, or street food vendors. Ensure you have enough Vietnamese Dong for your daily expenses.
With its timeless beauty and cultural richness, Hoi An is a destination that will captivate your heart. From exploring the ancient town’s historic sites to enjoying the sun-kissed beaches and indulging in local cuisine, three days in Hoi An will leave you with unforgettable memories. By following this perfect Hoi An itinerary, you’ll be able to make the most of your visit and experience the best that this enchanting town has to offer. So pack your bags, embrace the charm of Hoi An, and get ready for an incredible adventure.