And so, after 2 nights on a bus we finally reached Hoi An.
A very small quaint town, it is historically an ancient trading port that was prominent in the Orient in its day. Today it’s streets are still lined with gorgeous buildings and temples and the main trade is tailored clothes. In fact 80% of the shops are clothes with ladies out the front shouting “Hello! buy something!” every time you pass. So of course clothes were fitted and bought.
Our first nights spent in luxury due to a hotels promotion lead to our relaxation on their “private beach’ la de da. absolutely beautiful, no rubbish in site with lovely white sand and an ocean with, wait for it, WAVES! We tossed around in the surf enjoying the rollicking waters in the sunshine when the booming of thunder brought our attention to the dark storm clouds approaching. Leaving to catch the bus back we were not quick enough to miss the torrential rains as ladies with baskets harassed us to “Hello, Buy something!”
Gliding around on hired bicycles we managed to see a fair bit of the town and couldn’t hear the “Buy Something!” following each “Hello” as we cycled past. Beautiful old sites along the river, a Japanese style covered bridge, temples and crafts. We ate beautiful Vietnamese food in an upmarket restaurant. Delicious wraps, succulent duck and delicious salads. Lights came out to paint the evening in color and we enjoyed the evening with cocktails, beer and conversation with a young english teacher from Bangkok.
Travels through the markets made us stoop almost double to fit under the tarps and awnings. Beautiful carvings, incense and Agar wood. Swimming in the pool at our hotel and cable TV movies. Although pretty, the manufactured nature of the town and the constant “Hello, Buy Something!!” started to bring on travellers fatigue and we become well over the monotonous heckling. Although we managed to get a lot out of Hoi An we were tired and eager to leave. Although recommended by all the travelers which we met we failed to find the jewel of Hoi An amongst the tourists and hawkers.