Hoi An: Ancient City of Lanterns and Moonbeams

Hoi An, Vietnam, is a city known for its beautiful lanterns and at night the shops and streets glow with a multitude of colors.

Lantern Frames

The village, designated as a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1999, is a superb example of a Southeast Asian trading port of the 15th to 19th centuries.   The port was important to many foreign lands.  This structure known as the “Japanese Bridge” was built in the 16th-17th century.

Forty years after the bridge’s completion the Japanese merchants were ordered home and Japan isolated itself for centuries from the rest of the world.  They left a beautiful bridge containing interesting statues at either end which represent the structure being started in the year of the dog and completed in the year of the monkey.

Hoi An is also famous for its tailors.  I loved the colorful shops.

There were also wonderfully preserved temples and museums

The market was fantastic.  I have been to many in different countries but for some reason I found this one more fascinating than most.  It seemed so alive and like a place from a different time.

The produce was extremely diverse.  Here Aidan poses with a durian, also known as the “king of fruits.” It has a distinct aroma described by some as similar to rotting flesh.  Apparently it is an acquired taste.  I love how Aidan tries his best to smile.

It started to rain while we were in the market.  The vendors attempted to cover their wares.

We chose to seek shelter at one of Hoi An’s amazing  restaurants  Mango Mango which has views of the Japanese bridge.  The owner trained in Texas so it is known as Vietnamese food with a Tex/Mex slant.

Aidan was so exhausted he fell asleep in Sydney’s stroller.  This left his sister free to eat all the food she wanted including her choice of desert – Mango and Chocolate ice cream.  She still asks for that flavor when posed with an ice cream choice.

This is what an ice cream "Happy Dance" looks like.

Hoi An was a magical place to spend the evening. The full moon capped off the night perfectly and added a little more magic.