Welcome to a lovely ancient town and a World Heritage Site, "HOI AN".
Hoi An Ancient Town is located in Quang Nam Province near the mouth of Tu Bon River.
It is an exceptionally well-preserved example of a Southeast Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century.
Its buildings and street plan reflect the influences, both indigenous and foreign, that have combined to produce this unique heritage site.
Phuc Kien Assembly Hall was founded in 1690 and served the largest Chinese ethnic group in Hoi An or the Fujian.
You must visit this assembly hall to discover an excellent work of architecture.
Behind is 'Japanese Covered Bridge'.
When we say 'covered bridge', that means the bridge is covered with the roof.
This bridge is the highlight of Hoi An Ancient Town, and it was built by the Japanese back in the early 17th century.
Hoi An has been flooded from time to time, in the past.
And, this shows the level of the flood for some years in the past. It went as high as above 3 meters in 1964.
Just one hour drive from Hoi An and we have arrived here at a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This place was listed in 1999. Here we are at My Son Sanctuary.
This place is the complex of Hindu temples and towers and is the symbol of Champa Art that was continuously developed during the 4th to the 13th century 'My Son' means beautiful mountain, and it is regarded by locals as 'Meru Mountain'.
So, the water that flows from the mountain becomes a holy stream here that flows into the river.
The ancient Champa people were raised to be the master of art in building bricks.
So far, the technique in building the ancient temples and towers of Champa people remains controversial.
The bricks were smooth and laid closely and securely without mortar.
My Son's value is also reflected in the art of lively and fine sculpture and carving on bricks, stones from the images of deities, priests, dancers, plants, animals, and sacrifices.
Welcome to Vinahouse House Museum.
So, I'm very happy to show you some information about the ancient house of Vietnam in the past.
The houses in the museum are over 150-200 years old. And people keep in touch there.
Vinahouse 'Vina' stands for 'Vietnam' and these houses are ancient houses of Vietnam, in the past.
In the past, most Vietnamese people live in this kind of house.
So, this is the first kind of house, 'Bamboo House' you have many types.
The bamboo houses often belonged to poor people or farmers in the past.
Because they didn't have enough money to build a house with other materials, so they often live in this kind of house.
Now, we continue to visit another house in the museum.
This house is 'Mandarin House'.
And the owner of this house played an important role for the king.
He and his father supported the king in the national protection. And, this house has 3 compartments.
In the past, the king set out the rule that nobody could be in the house in more than these 3 compartments.
Only the king has the right to be the house , in 5 compartments.
So, if you come in the house and see the number of compartments, you will identify the position of the owner.
And in Vietnam, the middle room is very important because people often use to worship family members. Ah....the past (late) family members.
Here I am at Thanh Ha Pottery Village. This is a traditional village of more than 50 houses.
And, it dates back to as long as the end of the 15th century, just before Hoi An port was developed.
And, this place is located about 3 kilometers west of Hoi An Ancient Town.
The products locally made here are very important because it plays an important role in the development of Hoi An Ancient Town.
The products include jars, pots, bowls, tiles, and bricks.
Although they have experienced various challenges over time - economic difficulties and foreign competition, the local people are always trying to preserve a traditional profession inherited from their ancestors.
The techniques that they use are unique and very different from those prevalent in other provinces.
Therefore, the village is more of a live museum and it holds precious documentation resources for scientists who study about traditional pottery in Vietnam and in Southeast Asia.
A lot of people told me about this Silk Village and, actually, I don't know what to do here.
In Silk Village, you can see people make silk in a traditional way.
And then, you see how people weave fabrics, both Vietnamese people weaving and Champa people weaving.
Champa people, one of the minority group in Vietnam.
In the history development, Vietnamese and Champa people had a good relationship in marriage, customs, living style, especially in traditional occupation of now Mulberry growing, silkworm raising, and silk weaving.
And what are they doing now? The ladies here are getting silk from cocoon...by putting in hot water.
So, the worms will die. And then, they'll get this thread.
You know that one cocoon is made from one continuous thread, about 600 metres to 1 kilometre. Wow!
And for one 'Ao Dai' (traditional costume) silk, they need about 5,000 cocoons.
Hoi An also has a lot of beautiful beaches.
This morning, we woke up a little early to see the sunrise here at a local beach, An Bang Beach.
It is worth coming in the morning to see the life of local people here. They love exercising here in the morning.
They love swimming in the sea water.
Although it is a little cold this morning but, it's like a routine for the local people here.
And, this beach, An Bang Beach, also has been voted as one of the most beautiful beaches in Asia.
As you know, we are in the Tra Que vegetable village, but the interesting thing about the village is that it just uses organic fertilizers.
Some places in Vietnam, they use chemicals and patricides.
But in this village, they just used organic fertilisers.
But the organic fertilizer here is the riverweed, taken from the river.
And, they have been doing that for 300 years!!!
So, they produce vegetables for Hoi An town. You know, Hoi An is a tourist city, so they need to keep the tourists safe.
If they got poisoned, they won't come here again. That's why they need to keep on growing like that.
They're growing about 20 kinds of vegetable here. Then, they supply to all restaurants in the city.
Today, there are about 130 families working in the plantation here.
Like you see, here, this is lettuce. Over there, spring onion.
If you notice, just the the middle-aged people and the old people are working here. That is a sad thing about the place.
Now, young people, they think that from working here, they cannot earn much money. And they moved to bog cities.
But some of them are moving back because they try to combine tourism business with farm works.
For example, they let the tourists come here and do the farm groups, learn the farmers experience with the local people here.
Hope you enjoy this trip. Ancient temples, royal ruins and peaceful villages are just the start story of HOI AN, there're still more next.