Hoi An is an ancient town located in the downstream of the Thu Bon River, the coastal delta of Quang Nam Province, Vietnam, it is 30 km in the south from Da Nang City.
Due to a good location and favorable climate, Hoi An was a thriving international trading port, where is the the meeting place of the Japanese, Chinese, Western merchant ships during the 17th and 18th century. Before this period, it also had the marks of commercial ports or it was mentioned the land of Champa for silk product, during this time Hoi An was considered as a Silk Road on the sea to the world. In the 19th century, due to water transport here is no longer convenient, the port town in Hoi An was had regressed, that was giving way to Danang when it was being built by the French at this time. Hoi An luckily not destroyed in two Vietnam wars and avoided the process of massive urbanization in the late 20th century. Since from 1980, the value of architecture and culture of Hoi An ancient town was known by scholars and tourists attention, that driven Hoi An where is one of the attractive tourist destination of Vietnam.
Today, Hoi An Ancient town is a special town with traditional markets in Southeast Asia and need to be carefully preserved. Most of the houses here are traditional architecture with dating from the 17th century to the 19th century, the streets were located along the narrow lanes. The religious architectures of temples or pagodas are located in the alternating between the houses, these are the marking of the history for the ancient trade town – Hoi An.
Hoi An Ancient Trade Town is also a land mark to be recorded many of the mixed cultures. The assembly halls, temples bore of Chinese people, the houses were built with traditional Vietnamese-style and some house was built with French – style of architecture. Besides the cultural values through the architecture, Hoi An retains a culture of diversity. Daily life of the inhabitants of the ancient city with the customary, religious activities, folk art, cultural festivities. They are still being preserved and developed. Hoi An is seen as a living museum of architecture and urban lifestyle in Vietnam.
With outstanding value, at the 23rd session of the end of 1999 (December 4, 1999), UNESCO has recognized Hoi An a world cultural heritage, based on two criterion:
- Hoi An is an outstanding value of combination of over-time cultures in the international commercial port.
- Hoi An is a typical example of a traditional Asian port town with perfect preservation.
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