Hoi An For Kids – Top Ten Things To Do


Hoi An for Kids ?  Definitely !!

Hội An has to be one of the most beautiful towns we have ever visited in the world. 

So far we have visited 67 countries, so we are considered to be world travel experts, so this is a big statement for us to say!

Hội An is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a historical French town.  Once a major meeting port, now a tourist destination, and where we spent five glorious nights.

We were warned we would want to stay longer – they were right!

Here is our list of the Top Ten Things To Do In Hoi An for both big kids (adults) and smaller kids too, and is in no particular order.

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1. Cycle Through Rice Fields to Organic Farm With Massage

Cycling is nearly always fun, and when we found out that our Legend Travel Group tour had an optional day tour that included cycling to the organic vegetable farm through the rice paddies, we were keen to go.

Once we are out of town, the track is even and quite wide (about 1 metre) for a lot of the way, and bicycles are supplied and waiting at our hotel along with our guide.

There is a rear seat for children with fold-out footrests should you have little ones to bring along with you.

We arrive and are seated in the shade and offered a welcome drink.  We sip it and the taste is somewhat unfamiliar. We look in and our host explains it is a multi-vitamin drink packed with traditional Vietnamese goodness, including FROGS EGGS.

Explorason jumps up and spits his on the garden.  He was ‘pranked’, however, as it was only Dragonfruit.  This started our session here well with a lady named Helen to lead us.

We are then given jackets and lead to the organic garden where we learn the traditional techniques of Vietnamese farming and gardening.  We learn to use the hoe and fertilize with reeds from the river. We even spy a prawn caught in the hairy manure which we are distributing by hand.

Next, we plant and water using the traditional bamboo rod across our shoulders.  We have a walk around the farm, learning about the local herbs and vegetables they grow and how to identify them.

Legend Travel Group Tour

It is hot in the sun, and after our work is done, our dirty feet are pampered with a lovely herbal soak in warm water.

Then the ladies massage our feet, and legs.  It is blissful !

These skillful hands move on to back, neck, and shoulders – and finished with a head and face massage.

We all really enjoyed this break, and this was all included as part of our day cycling and cooking tour with Legend Travel Group.

Next is the cooking lesson, and kids are most welcome of all ages.

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2. Authentic Cooking Class Including Lunch

Feeling refreshed and relaxed, it is time to get to work again.  We learn how to grind the rice grains to make rice flour – the good old fashioned way.

Then we move to the traditional clay oven where we each have a turn making our own rice paper.  This really is an art, and it took a couple of turns to master the technique.

It was time to now chef caps and aprons and to wash up and prepare for the real Vietnamese Cooking School.   Our host, Helen was a load of fun the whole time, and made this day fabulous!


Our first lesson was to cook paperless spring rolls.

We fried up both prawns and pork and there was also a vegetarian option, and then our lesson was to make our own gourmet platter – it looked so pretty!

We couldn’t wait to try them.

The spring rolls were delicious!  Definitely something for the next party we host.

Then it was time to learn to make the local Hoi An specialty pancakes (Banh Xeo I think the name is and is pronounced like Buon Pan? Correct me if I am wrong!)

We were next taught the art of flipping these pancakes.

This was hilarious, and Explorason was so pleased when one went high in the sky and did a double flip and landed back in the pan.  I pulled all sorts of faces that were caught on camera.  It is good to laugh !

I pulled all sorts of faces that were caught on camera.  It is good to laugh !

We then added bean shoots to the centre of our crispy pancakes and folded them over and these foods formed part of our lunch.

Little did we know quite a few other dishes – including fish wrapped in leaves came out, and we finished off with fresh fruit.

This was a really great day.  Loads of fun and highly educational and where kids feel really special.  I noticed too that they eat what they cook, so great to entice fussy eaters.

Loads of fun and highly educational and where kids feel really special.  I noticed too that they eat what they cook, so great to entice fussy eaters.

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3. Ride Through The Old HoiAn Village

We really liked the hotel we stayed in called the Lantern Hotel.  It is pretty as a picture with all the lanterns, and the lovely staff organised bike hire for a few dollars a day. Cheapest bike hire we have ever done in the world!

Bikes are supplied with locks and baskets, and we used them on three occasions.

There is a quiet cycle track along the river, or it is pretty as a picture to cycle through the historic town.  Most times of the day the streets are closed to cars, scooters, and motorbikes, and are bicycle and pedestrians are permitted only, so this is fabulous.

And many of the shops and restaurants will make sure your bikes are safe and offer a service where the will park and lock them for you.

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4. Walking Tour of Hoi An Including Lunch

I’d suggest booking an optional half day walking tour of Hoi An on your first day.  You get to understand the history and why it is a fusion and melting pot of culture here in this region.

Visiting the Chinese and Japanese Temples allowed us to learn about the sailors and fisherman of the past.

We also visited the covered wooden Japanese bridge and found out about the monster that is ‘legend’ to have its head trapped underneath it.

We went to a silk worm display and had a quick explanation of the process before we moved onto two family historical homes and museums to see the crafts they make and sell, and learn the family and area history.

Floods from years gone by marked the wooden homes, and trapdoors were used to raise furniture to upper levels where we sat and drank tea as we listened to their stories.

Next (and all included in the same tour) was a river cruise in a colourful fishing boat complete with eyes to keep the bad fish away.

We motored over to a small island where they carve wood, and also where lacquer and wood inlay was made by hand.  Fishing boats are also made and repaired here on this quiet island.

Heading back on the river via a longer route, Explorason was delighted to be called to the rear steering wheel and given a lesson in boating.  He stayed here happily fulfilling the task with the boat owner closely sitting beside him for safety.

Lunch was also included in the optional day tour and was at a really lovely restaurant called Tam Tam.  It was a huge banquet feast with ‘course after course’, and we were able to try a few more Vietnamese dishes and learnt how they should be eaten.

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5. Vietnamese Lantern Making

Guests and visitors can enjoy learning to make Vietnamese cloth lanterns. Included in the price is a drink, and the funds go to help the needy (with medical, school aids, clothing etc.)  We were pleased about this and had a great time.

These lanterns take a little patience to make, but the ladies were lovely and helpful and it was a great ‘arts and crafts lesson’ for Explorason.

The price is really low too. Bookings are essential, and this is a service offered at the hotel our Legend Travel Group tour stayed with called Lantern Hotel.

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6. Relax And Play In The Pool

I love the fact that our tour gave us adequate time to relax.  We met another Australian family down at the hotel pool and the kids played nicely. I chatted with the parents for a while, then kept an eye on Explorason from our Lantern Hotel room balcony whilst I worked on my computer.

7. Day Trip With My Son To ‘My Son’ Sanctuary

I wanted to take ‘my son’ to ‘My Son’ UNESCO World Heritage Site and Sanctuary (except please note it is pronounced differently than the English ‘my son’).

We did a half day tour here that was included by Legend Travel Group in our overall tour package.

Explorason enjoyed time taking photographs and making a YouTube video alone, and we learnt about the history of the area.

It was interesting to see where the site was bombed in one of the wars, and why the communists use this as a base in the Vietnam north vs South War of the 60’s and 70’s.

There is a lot to take in here, and more suited to older kids.  An electric vehicle takes you from the main gate and back which is an added bonus.

You can watch the YouTube of My Son here

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8. Wooden Boat Ride With Lotus Candle Wish Making

One of the most special nights in all of our world travels was when we discovered the sunset time on the river.

Old and young ladies, and even children carry trays of candles in cut-out paper containers that represent the lotus flower.

If you are walking, they will offer you a stick with a net on the bottom and you purchase the candle and holder for 10,000 Dong each. You then lower them carefully onto the water and watch them float away as you ‘make a wish, or say a prayer’.

We decided to use the services of an older lady to row us in her wooden boat, and complete with her Vietnamese hat and her cheerful personality, she was perfect.

It was an evening we will never forget.  Words cannot describe the moment we shared here in Hoi An.

I hope one day my son can bring his children here and repeat this special activity with them too.

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9. Learn To Paint


Many of the artists in the streets are more than happy for you to pay them and they will give your children a painting or drawing lesson.

We were going to do this, and ran out of time!

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10. Sleep Overnight On The Train

Train travel is popular in Vietnam and is an older style train, and we caught the overnight train from Hanoi to near Hoi An.

Explorason though this was great, and was too excited to sleep and sat up half the night before sleep finally won.

An overnight train can also be caught to Ho Chi Minh city. Definitely a novelty for most kids.

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Hoi An is also the town to stay in for style and class.

If you want tailored clothes or hand-made leather shoes and bags these can be made in 24 hours.

And after all that shopping, if you stay at the Lantern Hotel, they have a current offer where guests get a FREE half hour massage!

All included in you Legend Travel Group booking at the beautiful and friendly Lantern Hotel.

 If you’d love to visit Hanoi, please contact Legend Travel Group

More Hanoi information, tours, and booking: Please visit here

Facebook: Legend Travel Group

Email, inquiries and bookings: sales@indochinalegend.com

Note: our personal religious faith is not in alliance with some places we visit in the world, but we believe it is educational to learn about other religions and cultures and what their faith is, and why they hold to that faith.  
We do request that religious, racial, and political debates do not form part of comments on our articles.
We have tried to be as factual as possible in this article, but all opinions are our own, and not that of any company mentioned herewith.  Any error is unintentional and currency is approximate as at the time of 2016 publication. All photographs are ©Copyright Exploramum and Explorason.

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