One of the best things about Vietnam is its street food, and Hoi An is no exception. Sampling street food is a great way to explore the exotic flavours of a new city so we would recommend you feast upon the smorgasbord of street food options in Hoi An.
The Central Food Market is an obvious choice where you can eat like a king for less than a dollar, but we would also recommend Bale Well, on Ba Le Well Lane, on the edge of the Old Town, where you’ll be fighting for a seat among the locals. Try their cao lầu, a thick noodle soup of pork or seafood – a Hoi An speciality; or for something sweet, their version of bánh xèo pancakes will leave your mouth watering, too.
Traditional Vietnamese Food
The Old Town is bursting with traditional Vietnamese restaurants if you want to stay authentic but dine in a more comfortable environment.
Morning Glory is one of the most popular restaurants on Nguyen Thai Hoc Street, just parallel to the river. It was so popular they had to open a second venue right across the road from it where you’ll still find lines out the door if you haven’t pre-booked. When you manage to get a table, their coconut duck is worth a taste, especially for the flaming presentation.
A must-try on any Vietnamese menu is white rose, banh bao vac, a delicious rose-shaped shrimp dumpling, and of course wontons, hoanh thanh, a Chinese classic remastered with a Hoi An take.
When it comes to home comforts, there are plenty of options in Hoi An if you fancy a menu with a Western slant.
Nu Eatery is one of our favourites, tucked away in an alley behind the Japanese Covered Bridge, on Nguyen Thi Minh Khai. Its French/Asian fusion dishes keep people coming back night after night, and they have a great variety of vegetarian options, too – we recommend the rice with grilled eggplant!
Plan Bi Café on Cua Dai Road is another favourite for Western breakfasts, offering a range of smoothies and delicious eggs Benedict with the best poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. Open from 7am, we recommend getting in there early to kick start your day.
Hoi An’s café culture is second to none and there’s a definite European feel among the traditional Vietnamese coffee shops. While away the hours sitting in the open windows of the Old Town’s quirky cafés, sipping on a sweet iced milky coffee, cà phê nâu đá, and just watch the world go by.
Cocobox offers it all, from vegan beetroot and chocolate cake, to Italian espresso, with a number of outlets in Hoi An’s Old Town, while Rosie’s Café by the Japanese Bridge is in the perfect location to recharge and rewind.
If tea is more your tipple, Reaching Out Tea House is a wonderful, hidden gem on Tran Phu Street that oozes serenity. It’s also served mainly by deaf and dumb waiting staff which makes the experience all the more special. We love their tasting platter and the ginger cookies are something else.