One of the more fascinating aspects of Hoi An life are the lanterns that line the streets. Especially on the 15th day of every lunar month when fluorescent lights, television and motorcycles are barred from use, creating an antiquated atmosphere that allows you to imagine a time past. The lanterns, made from wooden fishing traps are adorned in marvelously rich patterns and hang from every rooftop cornice. They complement the ancient teak paneling and typically old Chinese tiling that characterize the aged buildings.
Poised between the Cua Dai beach and Thu Bon River, the Hoi An area is also punctuated by rice paddies and rural life. To experience the scenes and appreciate the town culture, it is best to bicycle around the ancient town. Visitors will find a wet market along the river, many retro-style cafes with mouthwatering pastry selections and coffee, lantern stalls and many, many art galleries and tailors. Take the time to stroll over the Chua Cau bridge and walk along the river. Let the old port charm you.
And don’t forget the lanterns. The luminous lanterns, all shapes and sizes, lit up like rich baubles for an Emperor.
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