Hoi An’s riverside is where the action is, day and night, and it’s where you should be staying when you visit.
By day, its colourful – like a box of crayons exploded all over the walls and the streets and the people and the food. It’s the sounds of laughing and the smells of fresh food cooking. It’s multi-coloured flowers, old, sinewy, strong women carting baskets of fruit and little kids waving as you walk past. It’s a small down with the biggest heart you could imagine.
By night, Hoi An’s riverside really comes into its own. Everything is lit up – its like the colours are kicked up a notch with the bright market style stalls and shops, and the lanterns (ohh the lanterns…) are like beacons in the night. Every night is a street market; great bargains on everything from local handicrafts to leather goods (I snagged a huge, almost Country Road-style leather travel carry-on bag for only AUD$75.00!), and the food stalls are phenomenal, too – who could possible say no to a fresh donut filled with freshly shaved coconut for 50 cents?!
Hoi An’s riverside takes on such different personalities by day and night, it’s hard to stop wandering the surrounding streets. And it never feels unsafe, even at night. It’s one of the most beautiful areas in any city I’ve ever visited to just walk through, to just BE in.