Saturday, June 15, 2013

Ancient Hoi An

We are in Hoi An! It is an ancient port town near the coast and has quite a Chinese influence.

The old town of Hoi An is a Unesco World Heritage site! Cool... Most of the day the streets are shut to motorcycles and cars - can you see the sign? "Walking Street and Primitive Vehicle"!! Hah!

The buildings here are beary old and different looking. Although... sometimes the whole place gets flooded, which is not good.

Most of the buildings have an upstairs - which is good in case the flood waters get too high.

There's even a Japanese covered bridge here - cute!

It has a temple in it - but it cost money to go into the temple so... we didn't go. One end of the bridge was guarded by two dog statues and the other end was guarded by two monkey statues. I really think a couple of bear statues would look better!

This is the entrance on one side (the dog side I think). Hoi An is a great town for biking and since the hotel was handing out free bikes to use... I got to ride around in the basket quite a bit!

Oh yes... and many of the houses are covered with bougainvillea - beary pretty.

You can really see the Chinese influence in some of the buildings... this one in particular.

It's quite elaborate and the lettering says... something - not sure what. Apparently when the Chinese came here, they built assembly houses where people from different Chinese provinces/territories would gather. I guess they liked to hang out with the same folks.

There was a cute little scene of deer scampering across the hillsides... they keep looking behind them... maybe cause a bear is chasing them?

Oh yeah - this is all Chinese!!

Another interesting thing in Hoi An is that all of the doorposts of the houses have little holders for incense sticks. And lots of times they are burning a little bit and releasing some incense into the air. Sometimes they are stuck in the cracks of the stairs up to the house as well.

You can see the French influence as well - the sign below this window says Savonerie... which I think means Soap Factory!

Oh and lanterns... they really do lanterns here!! Aren't they beautiful - so colorful and cute.
Hoi An is a beautiful town! If you come here on the 14th day of the Lunar mnth (June 22/23 this year), there is a big floating lantern festival. We are going to miss it!

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