Hoi An

For our train to Hoi An we decided to get a sleeper carriage just to try it out, even though only a daytime trip. There’s 4 beds to a room so we were sharing with an American guy who kept Matt amused pretty much the whole 5 hours with stories of his travel through Asia.

image

Locals don’t go far without their bikes, we saw these ones wrapped up ready for the train trip.

image

It was a lot different being back in a (very) touristy town after our quiet time in Qui Nhon. Lots of restaurants to choose from, souvenir shops galore and around 400 tailors. Known as the city of lanterns it was pretty at night especially along the river front.

image

image

image

We didn’t have great weather, it was overcast with rain on and off every day so unfortunately didn’t get to spend any time at the beach. We generally spent our time wandering around the different shops and watching some Australian Open tennis. Matt got a massage one day and when he came back I thought he must have had an Indian masseuse because he had a red splotch in between his eyebrows. But no, apparently the mark was the wind /evil coming out of him. Must have been a lot of wind because it’s still visible 5 days later.

The city has some beautiful old buildings but some of them could do with a paint job.

image

image
image

Coming up to the festival TET it seems common to burn coloured pieces of paper on the street.

image
image

This meant the streets got quite smoky.
image

We had some great meals, both streetside and in restaurants.

image

Happy hour specials were offered pretty much everywhere, some though were too good to be true. No one likes a cocktail where it tastes like they used the petrol dregs from their motorbike.

image

image

None of these were drunk apart from the beer.

The old town has a curfew on motorbikes where they close off the central streets to pedestrians only from 2pm. We knew this happened but had 4pm in our minds so when we returned to our parking spot at 3.30pm one day we found an empty spot. After some frantic searching and asking around we found that it wasn’t stolen but shifted out of the central area. We found it and were expecting to have to pay to get it released but it wasn’t a problem at all, no money exchaged, we just drove it away.

Rach enjoyed Hoi An whereas Matt wasn’t too fussed and felt the whole town was like a giant tourist market. We didn’t get any tailoring done, the process just seemed a bit much for the savings that could be made.

The weather didn’t help the impression, which may have been different as apparently the beaches are lovely. Next stop and final in Vietnam the capital Hanoi.