Hoi An is about half an hour from Da Nang by taxi. It was an important port which controlled the spice trade. Hoi An is a confluence of different cultures like the Cham, the Chinese, the Vietnamese, and the French. The Old Town of Hoi An, filled with small lanes and Chinese-styled shophouses, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999.
Some see Hoi An as a Western tourist trap, but we thoroughly enjoyed walking around the small Old Town and sitting outside one of the numerous bars and cafes for a beer and watching the world go by. Hoi An is best visited in the late afternoon and can be done in less than 2 hours. Tourists are supposed to purchase a ticket that allows you to enter the old town as well as visit five attractions. The main attractions are the Japanese Covered Bridge, Quan Cong Temple, Museum of Trade Ceramics, Chinese Meeting Hall Tan Ky House, etc. After sunset, the town lights up with lanterns everywhere. There is also a night market by the river Thu Bon. We had dinner at Morning Glory Restaurant which is one of the more popular spots in town. There is not much of a nightlife here, things begin to close around 10:30pm.