There are so many amazing things to do in Hoi An. We spent 3 days of our Vietnam holiday in Hoi An. We had the best time running between tailors and leather shoe shops while throwing down 20 cent beer, munching on the most delicious sandwiches and relaxing at the beach in the afternoon.
To find the best accommodation in Hoi An on your dates search here. If you’re heading north, don’t miss our guide to the best Hanoi hotels for every budget.
Top 10 Things to do in Hoi An
Once you have secured some fantastic accommodation in Hoi An, keep reading to plan your holiday activities in Hoi An with our Top 10 Things to Do in Hoi An Guide.
1. Get clothes tailored – Bari Tailor Hoi An
One of the best things (if not THE BEST) thing to do in Hoi An is to get some clothing tailored. Hoi An is very famous for the many tailor shops. The tailors in Hoi An are especially good at men’s suits – they have it down to a T.
We hunted the streets of Hoi An for the best and most affordable tailor in Hoi An and ended up settling with Bari Tailor shop based on the quality of the materials and their excellent tripadvisor reviews. We were not disappointed in our decision.
Bari Tailor gave us fantastic customer service and only charged us around $80 USD per suit made in cashmere wool. Ask for Vi if you decide to check out Bari tailor in Hoi An, she is fantastic and very patient.
2. Quan An 19 Restaurant – Enjoy a 20 cent draft beer
It might just be because I am a beer lover but life doesn’t get much better than 5000 Dong ($0.20 USD) local beer! Surprisingly, this local brew was cold too! What a find indeed and definitely one of the best things to do in Hoi An!
If you want to try Hoi An’s finest, be sure to make a visit to Quan An 19 Restaurant. They also serve a variety of great cheap food to enjoy with your beer.
3. Banh Mi Phuong Hoi An
Eating mouth-watering sandwiches was one of the highlights of Hoi An.
Arguably, the best sandwich in the world or at least the best sandwich in Hoi An can be found at Banh Mi Phuong Bakery.
This sandwich shop is famous in Hoi An for providing the best sandwiches in town and the line out the door really goes to prove it! For only 20,000 Dong ($0.90 USD) you receive a tasty pork & pate sandwich filled with salad at Banh Mi Phuong Bakery. Delicious!
4. Lucky Beach Restaurant
Rated the best beach in close proximity to Hoi An, An Bang beach is one of the best things to do in Hoi An. It is also great for a break between hectic shopping in Hoi An.
We visited the Lucky Beach restaurant on An Bang Beach and would highly recommend it!
The prices at the restaurant are very reasonable and you are able to lounge on their beach chairs free of charge.
An Bang beach is located about a 15 minute drive from Hoi An. You can hire a motorbike to visit the beach or the ride share app Grab is available in Hoi An and cheaper than a taxi.
5. Walk through the Ancient Town
Just walking through the quaint streets of the ancient town never ceases to disappoint. Definitely add it to the list of the best things to do in Hoi An.
Unlike the hustle and bustle of streets in Hanoi & Ho Chi Minh, no cars or motorbikes are permitted to drive through the Ancient Town of Hoi An. This means you are free to stroll up the narrow laneways filled with restaurants, tailor shops & overhanging lanterns without fear of being road-kill.
Be sure to check out the town after nightfall as the magic happens at night as the overhanging lanterns light up the streets.
If your stay lands on a full moon, you will see shop owners offering sacrifices in the form of fruit (and even cigarettes) to honour their ancestors.
If possible, avoid visiting in summer as it is extremely hot and hard to appreciate the true beauty of the city.
6. Vietnamese Cooking Class
If you enjoy cooking or fancy yourself as a great amateur chef, Hoi An is a great place to take part in a Vietnamese cooking class.
The Goda Hotel offers a ‘Taste of Vietnam’ 3 course cooking class for $25 USD per person.
We stayed at the Goda Hotel during our time and really enjoyed our stay. The accommodation at Goda Hotel is one of the best value places to stay in Hoi An.
It provides clean and very comfortable accommodation at bargain basement prices. We only paid $20 USD a night for amazing accommodation with breakfast included! They also include a complimentary dinner if you stay three nights or longer.
We love it when a hotel serves good food. We experienced this time and again in Vietnam (we looked very carefully into reviews before booking). Another winner was the Aira Boutique Hotel & Spa in Sapa.
As this wasn’t our first trip to Vietnam, we knew better than to book a tour to Sapa. Instead, we went trekking Sapa without a tour and stayed in the Aira which was far better accommodation than we were provided on our last Sapa tour.
7. Go shopping! Get some shoes or handbags hand made
If you are a shopper or a bargain hunter, you will simply love Hoi An. This is one of the best things to do in Hoi An and your best opportunity in Vietnam to buy good quality goods at low prices. Don’t wait to do your shopping elsewhere in Vietnam as quite frankly you won’t find better quality than you will find in Hoi An!
Hoi An boasts fantastic quality leather and leather shops in the city are dime a dozen. If you don’t know real leather from fake leather or what good quality leather should look like you can be taken for a ride. Shop owners will often tell you that all the items in the shop are ‘the best quality leather’ when quite frankly they are not. Ask for buffalo leather for the highest quality leather. The average time it takes for a leather shop in Hoi An to create a hand crafted bag or shoe is one day.
You can also buy some fantastic silk ties, cheap t-shirts among other interesting items – the list of goodies is endless!
If you’re on the hunt for pearls, you’re better off waiting until heading further north to Hanoi and Ha Long Bay. On our La Vela Cruise we shopped direct from pearl farmers (in an over-water village on stilts)!
8. Take a walk along the waterfront
One of the best things about Hoi An is that the city is set on the river. The waterfront is really nice for a leisurely stroll as it is lined with trees filled with colourful lanterns.
The nightlife in the city also occurs in the bars along the river. If you are not a night owl, during the day you can sit in one of the many restaurants along the water and just watch the world pass by.
9. Japanese Covered Bridge
The Japanese Covered Bridge is one of Hoi An’s most iconic attractions and is rated by many tourists who visit the city as one of the best things to do.
It is called the Japanese Bridge as it was created by the Japanese living in Hoi An in the 18th century as a way to reach the Chinese quarter across the water.
It is great for a quick iconic photograph. Other than that, it really isn’t all that special.
10. Visit the Hoi An Market
If you want some chaos and an insight into traditional Vietnamese life, visit the Market.
We felt that it was one of the best things to do in Hoi An as it gave us some insight into the life of a Vietnamese person.
The market sells anything from fruits and vegetables to t-shirts, fake handbags and souvenirs.
Where to stay in Hoi An? The best accommodation in Hoi An
There are a lot of good places to chose to stay in Hoi An. To find the best accommodation in Hoi An on your dates click here.
We stayed at the Goda Hotel during our time in Hoi An and really enjoyed our stay. The accommodation at Goda Hotel is one of the best value places to stay in Hoi An.
Goda Hotel provides clean and very comfortable accomodation in Hoi An at bargain basement prices. We only paid $20 USD a night for amazing accommodation with breakfast included! Goda Hotel in Hoi An also include a complimentary dinner if you stay three nights or longer.
We hope this helped you plan the best things to do in Hoi An. We would love to hear from you so please leave a comment below!
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Sunday 7th of January 2018
I love your post and I couldn't agree more than with most items on your list. They are a must do when in Hoi An (except for the beer, but that's since I don't like beer). Another thing I did in this beautiful city was visit the temple of My Son. It was a great day trip amd those ruins are absolutely stunning!
Wednesday 8th of November 2017
Interesting post and beautiful photos. For me, Hoi An is the most beautiful place in Vietnam. Everyone should spend at least three days in it to get to know the different faces of this amazing town :)
Thao Le Thanh
Friday 20th of October 2017
Thanks for your good suggestions! <3
Nadia & Mike
Monday 23rd of October 2017
No problem, Thao, glad they are helpful!