This well-preserved former port city is a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the bigger cities. The people and architecture are a great representation of the melting pot of history that is soaked into the town’s soil. As you walk through town, you will recognize the influences from China, Japan, France, Spain and Portugal. The locals are very friendly, relaxed and excited to meet new visitors from around the globe.
Bale Well: Off the main street, this outdoor restaurant claimed to have the famous patron, Gerard Butler, enjoy a meal here during his visit in 2014. There is no menu but the food comes out within minutes of you sitting down — featuring local specialties: banh xeo, spring rolls and pork skewers. The staff teaches you how to prepare the tasty wrap and be warned, it gets a little messy! Order the mango smoothie to drink and if you’re lucky you’ll get a back rub from the owner afterwards 😉
Markets: There are many markets spread throughout the downtown area — a mix of fresh produce, livestock, fish, clothing, household items. Though Hoi An has become a very popular tourist destination, the city has done a great job of holding strong to the local charm of this town.
Morning Glory Restaurant: This spot was highly recommended by friends/family who have recently visited the town. The restaurant provides a large menu of options and you cannot go wrong with a single one!
Custom Clothing/Shoes: When anyone mentions Hoi An, the first thing that comes to mind is custom clothing. Highly suggest making this your first stop when arriving to town since you’ll need to try-on everything and have time for alterations. We left with one suit, six button-up shirts, two maxi dresses, one maxi shirt, two tank/shorts combos, four pairs of shoes and a belt for less than $800. If you’re looking for a place to go — we went to Blue Lantern Clothing. Ask for Lancat and say American Buddha Co. sent you! Check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Cloth-shop-Blue-Lantern-1718115918407613/
Cooking Class: Unfortunately, we didn’t have time for a class during this visit, but this is something you should definitely fit in if time permits. Ms. Vy (same owner as Morning Glory Restaurant) offers an array of class options. Check out: http://msvy-tastevietnam.com/cooking-classes/
If you're interested in a slower pace, tasty food and in need of a new wardrobe — Hoi An is the perfect place for you. Our only regret is not staying here longer. Definitely American Buddha Co. approved!