Last Updated on 3 years by Tam Le Van
UNESCO decribes Hoi An Ancient Town’s universal value as ‘exceptionally well-preserved example of a traditional Asian trading port’. In 1999, the international organization registered it in World Heritage Site List as same state as English Stonehenge, Australian Sydney Opera House or French Paris’s Seine Banks. Following this turning point, Hoi An has became a well-known destination nationwide and Hoi An ancient town stands as a must-see of it.
Every tourist is required to purchase an entrance ticket when access Hoi An Ancient Town, for contributing to preserve the heritage. There are over twenty sightseeing places ticket holders can select to visit besides unlimited-in-time entry benefit. In this article, HOIAN LIFE outlines Hoi An Ancient Town ticket and its included sites to make your information finding process easier.
Which area is designated as ‘Hoi An Ancient Town’?
Almost 300 hectare protected area of Hoi An Ancient Town covers entire old houses, bridge, religious-spirtitual buildings (temples, pagodas, family-cult chapels), communal houses, assembly halls, markets and tombs what tightly relate to lengthy history of Hoi An as a major trading center of South-east Asia from 16th to 18th centuries.
Its core zone is bounderied by Hoang Dieu, Phan Chu Trinh, Cao Hong Lanh streets and Hoai river to the South (street-front houses on Phan Boi Chau street, Nguyen Duy Hieu and rest of Le Loi street are still included). According to city regulations, all tourists are required to buy entrance ticket if want to come in this central area.
All important historic sites’re within the boundary of Hoi An Ancient Town @Chua Ba Mu Temple Gate The core of the Ancient Town seen from An Hoi island
Hoi An Ancient Town ticket price and validity
For Vietnamese identification card holders, Hoi An Ancient Town ticket price is 80.000 VND-3.5 USD (including 3 sites), for foreign tourists is 120.000 VND-5.2 USD (5 sites encompassed) and free of charge for kids/childrens under sixteen years old. This entrance ticket is official valid for one day (24 hours) but Hoi An Center for Cultural Heritage Management and Preservation still accepts for next days to who accommodates in Hoi An. On side of particular sites, make sure you keep ‘sightseeing place’ part to the right side of your ticket. If all cut already, there is impossible to come in any.
Entrance ticket for non-Vietnamese ID card holders
Where to buy Hoi An Ancient Town ticket?
Ticket booths are arranged at the crossroad of every street towards Hoi An Ancient Town’s designated area. They are on Tran Phu-Hoang Dieu intersection (near the Cloth market), Nguyen Hue-Phan Chu Trinh intersection (near the Central market), Ba Mu Temple Gates (near Hoi An Roastery-Temple), Japanese covered bridge alley, Nguyen Thi Minh Khai-Cao Hong Lanh intersection, Cong Nu Ngoc Hoa street (near Song Hoai square) and An Hoi bridge (Nguyen Phuc Chu street head).
In addition to, you are able to get ticket booths inside the heart of Hoi An Ancient Town at the Le Loi-Tran Phu intersection (near Hoi An Roastery-Roastery 3), Bach Dang-Hoang Van Thu intersection (Hoi An Museum of Folklore) and Japanese covered bridge (Tran Phu street entrance) if any outer booths close.
Note: Map of sightseeing places and hightlights in Hoi An Ancient Town is always available at all ticket booths. Basically it is an offline guide and also used as the evidence showing you got ticket when needed.
Significance of the ticket to Hoi An Ancient Town’s residents
Over 80% of total amount of money collected from entrance tickets will be used for maintenance, preservation and reconstructon works in Hoi An Ancient Town. Depending on the value of old monuments, the city classifies and decides how much should give local residents when needed. In other words, Type I site like Old House of Tan Ky or Fukian Assembly Hall, every costs are covered by this fund if carry out the protection activities. The rest (about 20%) is for operation of the Management board.
When tourists visit an attraction within 21 sites included, its owners also get money from pieces with words ‘sightseeing place’ cut from your ticket. Plan to see all inclusions if possible. When can not make it, you may think of giving back to locals.
A local women rowing her boat in the flood day
@Japanese Covered Bridge
Local sellers having chat together in the Central Market
Sites included in Hoi An Ancient Town ticket
Japanese covered bridge
Opening time: All-day (its temple part opens from 6 a.m and close at around 10 p.m)
Other names: Chua Cau (“temple bridge”), Cau Nhat Ban (“Japanese bridge”), Lai Vien Kieu (“Bridge that receives friends from afar”)
Japanese established this wooden covered bridge in 17th century to connect with China town on opposite bank of the canal (Tran Phu street nowadays). About spiritual aspect, they believed that could take control of a huge monster what causes earthquakes in their homeland as well as river flooding in their second homeland-Hoi An yearly. According to 4 sacred animals (two monkeys and two dogs) standing at its heads, people guess that the building duration of it lasted two years, from the Year of Monkey to the Year of Dog on lunar calendar. Over many ups and downs, the bridge is one of last remnants of Japanese left in town.
In later period, Chinese added a temple dedicated to Taoism Xuandi god (‘black god’) who brings happiness, wealth and peacefulness to people. He has the ability to suppress annual flooding. Since then, not only Japanese bridge, Hoianian called it as ‘temple bridge’ too. As same as old houses, the tempe owns a couple of eyes (unique to Hoi An architecture) on its main door. Within inner space, you have the chance to see photos taken from past decades.
Japanese covered bridge-the iconic monument of Hoi An proudly appears on a Vietnamese national banknote (valueing 20.000 VND), along with well-known Ha Long Bay or Hanoi’s Temple of Literature.
Japanese Covered Bridge in the daytime
@Cong Nu Ngoc Hoa wooden bridge
Interior of the bridge, the temple gate to the right hand side Japanese Covered Bridge’s favourite place of wedding photographers and couples
Temples and Vietnamese pagodas
Quan Cong temple and Boddhisattva pagoda (Chua Quan Am)
Opening time: 8 a.m to 6 p.m daily
Other names: Chua Ong, Mieu Quan De (all means “Temple for Guan Cong”)
Chua Ong (Guan Cong temple) was built in 17th century by Chinese settling in Hoi An and Vietnamese to worship Guan Cong (a talented military general in 2nd century who is famous for his courageouness and decisiveness). Either past centuries or today, this sacred site is popular for merchants to pray for getting luck and smoothness in their business. For Instagrammers, its colorful doors are ideal backgrounds for impressive pictures with an Asian spirit. Yellow wall of Guan Cong temple (Nguyen Hue street side) is another well-liked photogenic spot for global netizens into the bargain.
Sited on the same location, Chua Quan Am (Boddhisattva/Lady Budda pagoda) connects with Guan Cong temple by an open-air yard. Its interior religious furnitures are quite simple in decoration and style. Differentiate to lots of Buddhist temples across Vietnam, it’s close to a market (monks usually practice Buddha teachings in remote areas like mountains or somewhere non-bustle). There is one good-to-see painting gallery next to the main hall as well.
The well-decorated facade of Hoi An Quan Cong temple The tablet of three Chinese meanings “Temple for Quan Cong” Many Banh trang nuong (a kind of grilled rice paper with toppings) stand surround the temple
Tuy Tien Duong Minh Huong (Chinese ancestor’s temple)
Location: 14 Tran Phu street (near Hoi An central market)
Opening time: 7 a.m to 5 p.m daily
Tuy Tien Duong Minh Huong’s original location is on Phan Chu Trinh street (closy by Com ga Ba Buoi). This Chinese ancestor worship temple was moved to current place in 17th century and faced to the South direction which enables to help the building avoid the cold air in winter as well as hot air in summer. At that time, all works were carried out by skillful craftmans from famed Kim Bong carpentry village. Nowadays, their next generations still have the partcipation in protecting and maintenancing it like the past.
Tran Family Chapel (Nha tho toc Tran)
Location: 21 Le Loi street (the intersection of Le Loi and Phan Chu Trinh streets)
Opening time: 7 a.m to 9 p.m daily
Tran is among the most populated family in Vietnam. First Tran’s persons migrated to Hoi An in 16th century. Three centuries later, Mr.Tran Tu Nhac (an officier of Nguyen dynasty) built a chapel to worship his ancestors over generations and used as meeting place between members in ceremonies. According to his descendants, Gia Long king strongly trusted in him. Within the chapel, Nhac’s swords and seals are still kept carefully.
Back garden of Tran family chapel serves as the burial place for newborn’s placenta after birth. This tradition represents to the link between the baby and her/his root. It stopped today.
Interior furnitures of Tran Family Chapel
Nguyen Tuong Family Chapel (Nha tho toc Nguyen Tuong)
Location: 8/2 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street
Opening time: 8 a.m to 5 p.m daily
This head temple of Nguyen Tuong family boasts its traditional architecture and decorative styles typical to Vietnamese culture in the South. It was built in 1806 by Mr.Nguyen Tuong Van-a brave and successful military leader of Nguyen dynasty. According to the history, word ‘Tuong’ in his family name was bestowed by the king and then allowed to hand over to next generations. The chapel’s location is in a walkable distance to Old house of Phung Hung and Japanese covered bridge.
Tan Ky old house: The most visited old house in Hoi An Ancient Town
Location: 101 Nguyen Thai Hoc street
Opening time: 8:30 a.m to 6 p.m daily
This 200 years-old house was built by Mr.Tan Ky-a Vietnamese merchant living at when Hoi An got very bustling by internation trading activities. Its wide space, qualitied-costy materials used, intricate decorative motifs and valueable furnitures show us the richness of his family at that time. Over seven generations, the house is still under a good state of preservation, intactly (only some small repairs conducted in recent years).
About the structure, the house encompasses separate zones including a front hall (living room&ancestor altar), well&mini garden and a back hall (bed room, kitchen, restroom&storage area) on ground floor. More bed rooms are arranged on upper storey where Tan Ky’s family members stay (not allowed for visiting). During flood days, also used as the space to contain everything moved from first floor. Commercially its layout gets extremely effective for loading&off-loading goods when the entrance designed on Tran Phu street and back entrance facing the river.
At back hall of Tan Ky old house, you will see flooding marks accompanied with ocurring years correspondingly. Among them, take note of 1964, first floor was fully under the river water. Some memorable photos also are on display nearby.
Guided tour in Tan Ky old house
After take a seat on mother-of-pearl inlay chairs and enjoy hot tea, all guests of Tan Ky Old House will be introduced about history, architecture, decorative motif&meaning together with interesting stories (lucky coins at the well, flood marks&daily life) by its owner’s family members. They speak English in understandable manner and hospitate when share everything.
None of twenty-one sightseeing places included in Hoi An Ancient Town ticket offers guiding for the visitors like Tan Ky old house. Take advantage of this chance to open your horizon about Hoianese house&life.
Duc An old house: A multi-valued site
Location: 129 Tran Phu street (in front of Mot Hoi An Herbal Tea)
Opening time: 8 a.m to 9 p.m daily
Name of Duc An old house means ‘keeping good moralities to live in peace’. Alongside with incredibly elegant architecture, this 19th centuried house is also special for its different functions through history. It had ever been a bookstore dealing in Chinese documents, a medicine store and a publish house where well-educated persons as well as revolutionists met up to popularize ‘new ideas’. Mr.Cao Hong Lanh (owner of Duc An old house) also was among these. He established the first group of Vietnam Youth Revolution Association in Hoi An.
Phung Hung old house
Location: 4 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street (near Japanese covered bridge)
Opening time: 8 a.m to 6 p.m daily
Used with various functions from its birth in 19th century, Phung Hung old house’s architectural heritage is priceless. This two-storied belongs to a merchant family trading in spices, silk plus glasswares formerly and managed by 8th generation. The name of house tell us their wish for the long-lasting prosperity. Like Old house of Tan Ky, you are able to see cultural elements of Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese communities. Beside that, a picture of Japanese bridge and its connecting street from avove also is no difficult to capture when stand on the balcony of Phung Hung old house’s upper storey.
Quan Thang old house
Location: 77 Tran Phu street
Opening hours: 9:30 a.m to 6 p.m
Not large in scale and also not a popular attraction, 17th century Quan Thang old house is proud of its glorious architecture that considered as one of the most intact and oldest Hoi An’s monuments. Name of the house, Quan Thang, is owner and a rich Chinese merchant.
Hoi An Museum (Bao tang Hoi An)
Location: 10B Tran Hung Dao street
Opening time: 7:30 a.m to 5 p.m daily
Exhibitions within Hoi An Museum are in four rooms: history&culture (introductions about the city and its residents from prehistoric times, Champa kingdom to Vietnamese states), revolutionary tradition (local contributions during Indochina war and Vietnam war), Hoi An going up from difficulties (focus on life of people during the period after Vietnam war until Doi Moi economic reform in 1986) and paintings about Hoi An. This large-scale place suits for who wants to have a comprehensive picture about Hoi An according to the timeline.
Taxi drivers usually stand at the outside of Hoi An Museum making it ideal to start or end your exploration into Hoi An Ancient Town.
Hoi An Museum of Folklore (Bao tang Van hoa dan gian)
Location: 33 Nguyen Thai Hoc street
Opening time: 7 a.m to 9:30 p.m daily (closed on the 20th day each month)
Opened since 2005, Hoi An Museum of Folklore and its almost 500 artifacts introduce you local cultural traditions basing on four major themes: folk arts of shaping (carving, sculpturing, mask making, mother-of-pearl inlaying, etc), folk performing arts (Thien Cau dance, Ba Trao singing&Bai Choi-UNESO Intangible Cultural Heritage), craft villages (pottery making at Thanh Ha village, Kim Bong carpentry village, traditional medicine, farming, trading, fishing) and folk activities (costumes, wedding customs).
Outside of Hoi An Museum of Folklore is a ‘terminal’ for cyclos (three-wheeled bicycle with a front seat). A fifteen minute ride often costs around 200.000 VND (8.7 USD) for two people.
Hoi An Museum of Trade Ceramics (Bao tang Gom su mau dich)
Location: 80 Tran Phu street
Opening time: 8 a.m to 5 p.m daily
Formerly was the private house and then bought, reconstructed and transformed into a museum by local authority. Hoi An Museum of Trading Ceramics showcases valueable historic artifacts about trading activities of past Hoi An on its two stories. The centered collection belongs to the exported ceramics discoveried from submerged ships around Cham islands. From the balcony, you will get stunning views overlooking peaceful streets as well as moss-covered house roofs.
Sa Huynh Culture Museum (Bao tang Van hoa Sa Huynh)
Location: 149 Tran Phu street (near Cantonese Assembly Hall and Japanese Covered Bridge)
Opening time: 8 a.m to 5 p.m daily (closed on the 10th day each month)
Sa Huynh culture flourished from 1000 Before Chris to 2nd century in modern-day Vietnam’s central coastal areas, including Hoi An. Museum of Sa Huynh Culture contains the largest collection (nearly 1000 artifacts on its two stories) about this period nationwide. According to historians, Sa Huynh inhabitants may be first people settled down in ‘city of colorful lanterns’.
Hoi An Museum of Traditional Medicine (Bao tang Nghe y truyen thong)
Location: 46 Nguyen Thai Hoc street
Opening time: 7 a.m to 9 p.m daily
Museum of Traditional Medicine is newly established (from 2019) and brings us general to detailed scenes of the field through its 200 artifacts. On first floor, you will be informed of Chinese kinds of medicine and examination-treatment processes. Full information about Hoi An’s medicine over time is shown clearly on its second floor. If interested in this tradition, you should come to Duc An old house to deepend your understanding.
Cam Pho communal house (Dinh Cam Pho)
Location: 52 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street
Opening time: 7 a.m to 5 p.m daily
This oldest communal house in Hoi An was built in 1817 at present location. It functions as ‘administrative and cultural center’ of whole village where important meetings, annual festivals and ceremonies to honor gods&ancestors held. Like any other communal houses (Dinh lang) in Vietnam, Than Hoang Lang (a kind of god) is the foremost figure worshiped. He/she is real person in history and had great contribution to establishment&development of the village. On 16th day of first month together with of 8th month on lunar calendar, Cam Pho’s residents organises solemn rituals to wish for good harvest and weather.
Chinese communitity’s assembly halls
Fukian Assembly Hall (Hoi quan Phuc Kien)
Location: 46 Tran Phu street
Opening time: 7 a.m to 5 p.m daily
Among all of its kind within Hoi An Ancient Town, Fukian Assembly Hall is the largest one in scale. It functions as meeting place between members of the community, worship ancestors, gods and stage for annually festivals. Before was constructed in 1697, a Vietnamese Buddhist temple had ever existed previously named as Kim Son right on land of current hall. According to locals, a Buddha statue drifted by this location and surprisingly lots of golds found inside it. Peope used them to establish the monastery to bear honor to Great Buddha then.
The ancient building consists of numerous richly-decorated structures including the entrance gate (with 4 Chinese words meaning Fukian Assembly Hall), inner three-arch gates, a main hall worshipping Goddess Thien Hau-patron deity of fishermans&seafarers and back hall dedicated to God of Wealth, the Twelve Midwives (teaching newborns different skills necessary for the first year of life) and Six loyal generals of Chinese Ming dynasty. On 23rd day of 3rd month on lunar calendar, a grand festival is held to honor Thien Hau (Mazu in Chinese).
In fact, although Fukian assembly hall’s venerated figures are Chinese gods, Vietnamese still get here for praying basing on a great respect to them. If someone would like to wish for something, he/she will buy a circle incense with a note of every hopes, hang it up and burn then. When completely burned, the note is blazed as well. Following this, all wishes become true in local point of view.
Fukian Assembly Hall is a popular place where Hoianese comes to donate for helping peole in difficult circumstances. If think want to do this action, tell someone in the worship zone. More than that, before New year, rice packs are also collected to give back.
Cantonese Assembly Hall (Hoi quan Quang Dong)
Location: 176 Tran Phu street (near Japanese covered bridge and Hoi An Museum of Sa Huynh Culture)
Opening time: 7 a.m to 5:30 p.m daily
Cantonese Assembly Hall is among the most visited sightseeing places within Hoi An Ancient Town. Vietnamese call it as Temple of Quang Trieu that its name originiates from combination by first word in two hometown names of the owning community (Quang Dong/Guangdong and Trieu Khanh/Zhaoqing). Because of the convenient location, you are likely to reach other highlights easily after or before your trip exploring this historic building. In the evening, sourvenir shops and food stalls owned by Cantonese descendants are also arranged around the main entrance.
Historically, it was built in 1885 by Chinese merchants to venerate to Goddess Thien Hau (boatman patron god on sea), God of Wealth and Confucius but after changed to Quan Cong and ancestors in 1911. Speacially, on 24th day of 6th month on lunar calendar, the community organizes a vibrant ceremony to pay homemage to Quan Cong (a renowned Chinese military leader) whose outstanding characteristics are proper to persons wanting to gain the success in business. For that reason, it gets busy all year round by visits paid from local traders. Additionally, the ancestor ceremony on 16th day of first lunar month also draw plenty of attendees including Vietnamese Chinese in the South.
From the outside in, Hoi An’s Cantonese assembly hall composes of three-arch gates, front hall with ornate gold-plated wood carvings, open-air yard with a ‘fishes transforming into dragons’ structure in the middle, main hall&its two East-West buildings and back garden with an icon of Five goats representing to Guangdong.
Chaozhou Assembly Hall (Hoi quan Trieu Chau)
Location: 157 Nguyen Duy Hieu street (near Hoi An Cloth Market)
Opening time: 7 a.m to 5 p.m (not daily)
Chinese Chaozhou community constructed this assembly hall in 1845 to worship their ancestors with sea patron deities who helped them during a long journey from China to Hoi An formerly and trading activities after settling down. Nowadays, people come here to pray for good health, getting luck in daily work, love&marriage and safety in the life. About the architecture, it gets well-known for its sophisticated and rich-in-theme decorative motifs. Because locate far away from the core of Hoi An Ancient Town, the hall brings us quiter vibes than any others of its kind.
Hainan Assembly Hall (Hoi quan Hai Nam)
Location: 10 Tran Phu street (near Hoi An central market)
Opening hours: 8 a.m to 5 p.m everyday
Hoi An’s Hainan assembly hall is built in 1875 and largely restored in 1931, to worship 108 Hainan boatmans and merchants who were killed because suspected of being pirates. Its architecture is richly decorated that still follows Chinese traditional styles and principles but new materials used. In every second day of first lunar month, all members of the community come together here to carry out ancestor ceremonies. The largest festivity during the year is held on 15th day of 6th lunar month.
Hoi An Traditional Art Performance Theatre
Location: 66 Bach Dang street
Opening time: 10:30 am to 10 p.m
Vietnamese traditional art show will be on stage at 10:15 a.m, 3:15 p.m and 4:15 p.m daily at this theatre. Each acting lasts around twenty minutes in total and encompasses several performances like Hat Tuong (‘Vietnamese opera’), folk songs or drum hitting. You should come at least 15 minutes prior to rescheduled time to get your own seats for admiring and taking photos because of the large number of tourists.
Xu Dang Trong Art Center
Location: 9 Nguyen Thai Hoc street
Opening time: 9 a.m to 8 p.m daily
At Xu Dang Trong, you have the chance to see and shop numerous handicrafted things such as colorful masks, fabric lanterns, lovely gifts or paintings. Around its back hall, craftmans are still at work to make different items that you are possible to join if like to do. The place had ever served as the performing center for traditional arts (replaced by the house at 66 Bach Dang street today).
A craftman at work with red fabric covered lanterns
Japanese merchant tombs and other historic sites
Tomb of Banjiro
Location: Hai Ba Trung street (near Tra Que vegetable growing village)
Tomb of Banjiro (a Japanese merchant lived in 17th century) is one of last remnants of the community rooting from ‘The Land of Rising Sun’ and coming to Hoi An for trading. If without these traces, nobody knows Japanese had ever been here before.
Tomb of Tani Yajirobei
Surrounded by rice paddies near main road Hai Ba Trung, 17th century Tomb of Tani Yajirobei is another Japanese merchant burial place and absolutely easy to access by all vehicles. Besides iconic Japanese covered bridge, it also showcase the presence of Nipponese and their community in Hoi An.
Mieu Ngu Hanh Thuong (Five Element Temple)
Location: 124 Nguyen Thai Hoc street (near Bai Choi performing stage)
Opening hours: 6 a.m to 8 p.m daily, closed in some special days
This small but beautifully-decorated temple is constructed to worship for Ngu Hanh Tien Nuong (Five element gods). Local people call it as “upper temple” because there is another same one to the end of its street, namely Mieu Hy Hoa. Also, one of favourite places to Instagrammers in Hoi An ancient town.
Mieu Hy Hoa Temple
Location: 6 Nguyen Thai Hoc street (near Hoi An central market)
Opening hours: 7 a.m to 8 p.m daily but closed in some special days
The exact day of establishment of Mieu Hy Hoa Temple is still a secret. Its name comes from the street it locates that today changed to Nguyen Thai Hoc. Many locals call this small building as Mieu Ong Sao temple due to Ong Sao and his family lived here from 1968 but now not anymore. Gods of Ngu Hanh Five element are worshipped in its main hall.
Ba Le Well (Gieng co Ba Le)
Location: Alley of 51 Tran Hung Dao street
Opening hours: All day but should visit in daytime
According to historical documents, Ba Le well is built by Cham people between 8th and 9th centuries. After taken over by Vietnamese few hundred years ago, it’s reused but original factors are still kept, especially the stone base. Someone may ask you to exchange a piece of “sightseeing place” from your Hoi An Ancient Town’s ticket to try tasty local Che me den (black sesame soup).
Local makers believe that the water taken from Ba Le well creates the best Cao lau noodles.
On-site guide in Hoi An Ancient Town
If travel with a group of minimum 8 people, Hoi An Ancient Town management board will offer its licensed on-site guide to show you sightseeing places and introduce them detailedly. Keep in mind that this service is free of charge and hanging on performance of the guide, people decide how much should give him/her for tipping later. If like, let the ticket cashier know at ticket booths.