11 Dec 2015   |   Places

A Melting Pot of History: Hoi An Ancient Town

Most active during the 15th and 19th centuries as a small-scale trading port, Hoi An Ancient Town still echoes a unique blend of the sophisticated East and the delicate West. Its surviving architecture is sprinkled amongst traditional Vietnamese wooden houses — from the Japanese bridge, to the French colonial-style buildings, Chinese temples and assembly halls.

While traditional panel houses in the Imperial City of Hue were built amongst verdant gardens, those in Hoi An were arranged side-by-side along narrow streets serving as multi-purpose storefronts. Since most of them are still so deep in length and narrow in width, locals have incorporated courtyard gardens into their designs to welcome natural light into the centre of their homes.

When viewed from above, these rows of tiled roofs almost look like an ancient chessboard. In the picture below, Doan Quang captures panorama of the Hoi An Ancient Town on a tranquil, sunny day.