Hoi An is a beautiful scenic city in Vietnam. Travelers from all over the world have taken notice of this historic city for its many ancient artifacts and landmarks that have been preserved, surprisingly quite well, through the years. Old crumbling houses are amazing to see, yet they are still fully functioning residences. The city is a living museum, and eco touring in Hoi An is the best way to get around this historic city.
Eco touring is short for ecologically friendly touring, which means no gasoline is used and no harmful chemicals released into the atmosphere. There are five varieties of eco touring: Basket Boat, Fisherman, From Farmer to Fisherman, Sunrise Tour and Sunset Tour. These will give travelers a glimpse into the daily lives of Hoi An locals
The Basket Boat Tour takes visitors to the Coconut Water Palm Paradise for a hands-on experience of how the Viet Cong hid cleverly behind the coconut water palms during the Vietnam-American War. They traveled along this canal on tiny basket boats. Tourists will try their hand rowing through the canal on round basket boats called Thung Chai. This is an actual boat used by local fishermen today. Included in this eco tour are hotel pick up, boat transfers, basket boat racing, snacks with cold beer or soda, insurance and plenty of time to relax.
Next is the Fisherman Tour, a unique tour package that allows tourists to become a local fisherman for a moment. A tourist gets to experience firsthand lifting the day’s catch from the river onto the boat, riding on the basket boat, spread the fishing net to catch fish, and so on. Local fishermen get all the fun, despite the hard work. Every night they get to see the lovely Hoi An full moon and the glittering lanterns that look like stars at sea.
Another tour, the From Farmer to Fisherman package, takes a tourist to the most beautiful countryside sceneries. The tour includes a bicycle ride through a pool of water buffalos, rice paddies, vegetable plantations, and a farming village. Tourists are given a chance to talk and interact with the local people. From there, they move to the river to experience how it is being a fisherman. Fishing and farming are the two most important activities of Hoi An locals; hence, this eco tour is the best way for a foreigner to really understand the local Vietnamese way of life.
Next is the Sunrise Tour. Local fishermen spend the entire night fishing at sea and heads back home just before the sun shows up. This is a fisherman’s favorite time of the day, as he comes home to his wife bringing along fishes, crabs, shrimps and other sea animals. The wives then take their catch to sell at the Hoi An central market. The Sunrise Tour allows tourists to go through this experience for real.
Finally, the Sunset Tour takes tourists to the Coconut Water Palm Paradise on a basket boat to watch the magnificent sunset while enjoying a cold beer or soda. This eco tour is very relaxing, memorable and romantic. The Coconut Water Palm Paradise, 5 km from Hoi An, promises peace and quiet, a fitting end to eco touring in Hoi An.