Saturday, March 31, 2018

Hoi An, Vietnam

This was our first visit to Vietnam and what an introduction. We felt the kindness of the people immediately. When driving through the countryside, there were not many foreigners but every single local person we rode past had a big welcoming smile on their face. And oh the lanterns, love love love!!

Fast Five Favourites:

  • Wandering the streets of the Ancient Town. There are so many cute shops and cafes to discover. It was very interesting to see how the Japanese, Chinese, and French influenced the architecture of this ancient port city. 
  • Sunset boat ride on the river. The iconic Japanese covered bridge and Buddha's wishes being released on the water make for a stunning ride. 
  • Scooter ride out to the countryside. Luckily we stayed right next to it so we could safely ride out with Lilah where there is almost no traffic at all. Just across the river, there are a few islands that are completely rural with rice terraces everywhere. 
  • The lanterns! We never want to forget the magical sight of lanterns all around us in Hoi An. The night markets had a great atmosphere and lots of street food to try.
  • Cooking class-one of the best experiences we have had and we suspect the start of a tradition in new countries. We went with Gioan Cookery and could not fault them. We especially appreciated how they accommodated a private room for us with Lilah. The food was some of the best we had on our trip and we have already recreated one of the dishes at home with success. Visiting the local markets was also an interesting experience!


  • We stayed at Cosy Villas, a boutique cottage style home just out of the hustle of the Ancient Town. It was nice to escape the business and it also had a good pool for Lilah in the heat. The service was phenomenal. Easy to walk along the river to the Ancient Town. 
  • March was a good time to visit, the temperatures were perfect and not in the rainy season. 
  • For the cooking class, we were able to choose 4 dishes that we wanted to cook. You can pre-choose these online. We would recommend this as everything looks so delicious it is hard to pick on the spot! Definitely arrive hungry as there is a lot of food!
  • Tuong Tailor has thousands of excellent recommendations on TripAdvisor. We can add to these. Riki had a suit and shirts made and the workmanship is impeccable! They were able to make overnight and then we went back for another fitting with minor adjustments needed. They dropped them off at our hotel the next day. There are different options price wise depending on the material you want to choose. We are so happy that we went here! Beware that there is a shop that is across the road who has tried to copy the name and the signage to attract customers to their one.
  • Food: Some excellent places to eat recommended by a local were White Rose (dumplings), Ba Buoi (chicken and rice), Cao Lau Thanh (a Local pork dish), Morning Glory (Vietnamese fusion), Madam Khan (amazing baguette that cost next to nothing).
  • Parenting hack-take the iPad or something equally exciting to one of the little massage spots and have a foot massage together. How have we not thought of this before? Maybe because Lilah would never sit down for longer than five mins. She has some games she really loves and it was nice to be able to do this together as previously we have always taken turns. The quieter ones where you are the only ones in there are obviously better. We wouldn't want to ruin anyone else's experience with Peppa Pig chatting away.
  • An Bang beach is about 15 minutes by taxi. It was easy to get here and nice to spend a morning at the beach. The beach is okay but nothing special. 

Baby on Board:

  • We had to search around for a helmet small enough for Lilah. Helmets are not commonly worn on the bikes and scooters so it might be an idea to ask your hotel to source one ahead of arrival. 
  • We were able to use our stroller comfortably in and around the Ancient area. It was handy to have as Lilah could nap in it and it was also really hot holding her.
  • Lilah is currently at an age (two years) where she is able to last longer in the evening. It was in Hoi An that we realized she has hardly been out at night and in the darkness. She was a little scared at first, it is going to take some getting used to for her. We have always tried to be home by her bedtime so that we could all get a good night rest. It was nice to have this flexibility as we would definitely not want to miss the lanterns at night!
  • We decided on visiting Central Vietnam as it was relatively easy to get to different places with reasonable drive times. We also did not want to go to the major cities with Lilah so little because of how hectic they can be. 


No comments

Post a Comment

Blog Design Created by pipdig