The Best Time to Visit Hoi An

Weather is very important when traveling because it decides how much travelers enjoy the trip generally and in particular, attractions they go to. Vietnam is a long country, stretching from north to south for thousands of kilometers and the climate is affected by the annual monsoon. So, seasons and their timings are slightly different between regions of the country.

Hoi An is in the central part of Vietnam in which the climate isn’t moderate. In a few months, it’s very sunny and the temperature may be up to nearly 40oC, higher than the rest of the country. In other months, it rains heavily and non stop, causing flooding. Its area will experience typhoons many times during the rainy season.

In this article, we reveal the best times to visit Hoi An. It aims to let travelers know when they can avoid bad weather months in the year, and how to make the best plan during the day. Because the attractions have differences, we also provide good and not good times to see them. Not only to avoid the heat or the rain, when to avoid crowds is also shared.        

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Hoi An Seasons and Monthly Weather

Hoi An has two distinct seasons in the year: the dry season and the rainy season. The dry season stretches from February to the end of August. It’s characterized by high temperatures, a long daytime and low rainfall. The hottest months are June, July and August.

The rainy season (or the wet season) is between September and January. During this period, it’s rainy and cloudy most days of the month, so the rainfall is high. The average temperature decreases, so it’s cooler. Typhoons often hit the area in October, November and December. Pouring rains cause floods in the delta of Thu Bon river, including Hoi An ancient town.

To know the weather of each month in Hoi An, please browse our article in


When is the Best Time to Visit Hoi An?

The Best Months

The best months to visit Hoi An in the year are from February to May and September. Each period has its own characteristics, pros and cons.

Between February and May, rains stop already and it’s sunny throughout the day. This weather is ideal to travel and join all activities, especially outdoors. In February, Vietnamese celebrate the new year festival (called Tet holiday), giving foreign visitors a chance to know traditional customs, beliefs and to try special foods. Atmosphere is really full of joy and everyone is happy during the largest festival of the year. Besides staying home with family, local people also travel during this national vacation, making famous attractions so packed. Hotel, food, tours, and other services are pricey.

From the New year festival to May, the temperature slowly rises and it reaches the peak in June, July and August. That’s why students have a break in these three months. Parents will take their kids somewhere with a beach. With a long stretch of fine sand, Hoi An is in the top list. However, Hoi An’s beaches are less crowded than nearby Da Nang.

September is the end of the dry season, the temperature is lower than previous months. Travelers won’t be sweaty anymore while facing the strong heat. Rains occur sometimes but not frequently like the rainy season – October to December. The busiest days are around the Independence day holiday (2nd September), and after that, it’s much more quiet. This month is ‘a shoulder season’ for travelers. Service prices are cheaper because local tourists decrease but international tourists don’t come yet.


The Best Times of the Day

In the dry season, it’s hot through the daytime. A hotel with a pool or by the beach is a good choice to stay. To avoid the midday heat, travelers should start the full-day trip early in the morning (such as visiting the Golden hands bridge or My Son sanctuary). Explorers love seeing main attractions around sunrise time, and definitely, it’s extremely fresh and not so warm. If just go to the Old town of Hoi An, late afternoon and evening is nicer. Within the same visit, travelers can enjoy the beauty of Vietnam’s loveliest town both day and night. Sunset is mesmerizing in this season.

To avoid the heat, local people are not on the beach around lunchtime. Instead, they come when it’s cooler, particularly the sunrise or sunset. Joining their sport games (volleyball, football, etc) is easy. If don’t go swimming a lot or just want to chill with a view and cold beers, go whenever you want. Remember to bring sun cream, towel, swimsuit, sun glasses, some bottles of water, and other items you like.

From October to December, it’s mostly rainy, making the average temperature become lower. Sure, travelers feel cooler and more pleasant when they’re outdoors. Instead, they will be wet if the rain comes suddenly. Please make sure that a rain poncho/jacket or umbrella is always in the bag to use.

On several days, especially when it rains heavily continuously or after a typhoon, Hoi An old town and many streets are flooded. Travelers are advised to check the weather forecast carefully to avoid. Instead, Da Nang is a good choice to stay overnight, and Hoi An can be the place for a day trip.


The Best Time to Visit Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An Old Town Walking Street Hours

Hoi An old town is a must see attraction. It’s in the heart of Hoi An city, and became a Unesco world heritage site in 1999 thanks to its exceptional preservation and interesting history. This former international trading port is well deserving to visit.

To provide safety and better experience for visitors, only pedestrians and non-motorized vehicles are allowed to enter and go around Hoi An ancient town in ‘walking street hours’. There are from 9 to 11:30 am, and from 3 to 10 pm daily. If don’t want to see motorbikes, please visit the area during these periods. In the evening, so many people come to the town, and it’s probably crowded. For that reason, it’s quite difficult to ride the bicycle. While walking on historical streets, fastly-moving cyclos potentially cause accidents if visitors don’t pay attention to rider’s warnings (the riders will use the mouth to say ‘excuse me!’).

The Busiest Hours at Hoi An Ancient Town

The peak time in Hoi An ancient town is from 5 to 9 pm. During this period, tourists from anywhere in Hoi An and from nearby Da Nang city (especially Asian group tours) go to the town. The reason is that they want to enjoy the beauty of antique quarters and colorful lanterns, and cooler temperatures. Seriously, Hoi An old town is at its best in the evening. Besides that, visitors can try local foods, go shopping, cruise the river by boat, feel the atmosphere and take pictures.

If you like to join crowds and enjoy the vibrancy, the above-mentioned time is good to go. We suggest walking because riding a bicycle is slightly difficult (too many people). The most happening area is around An Hoi bridge (location on Google maps: 15°52’34.9″N 108°19’35.1″E). For partying, venues along Nguyen Phuc Chu Rd and Night market open up to midnight.

To avoid the crowds, please come to Hoi An ancient town earlier (or in the morning, see details below). If it’s too early, personally, we recommend quickly touring the ‘hot spot’ – around Japanese bridge, An Hoi bridge, Night market and going somewhere else more peaceful. Walk towards the central market, it’s less and less crowded. Another night market is there, and the price of souvenirs may be cheaper. Street foods and restaurants to dine out are a lot in this corner too.

Hoi An Old Town in the Morning

By 9 am, visitors won’t see many tourists in Hoi An ancient town. Instead of that, they will see authentic slices of life of local people and feel a sense of tranquility. This time provides a great light condition and opportunities to take unique pictures (a photography tour is organized meanwhile). Not just photos, visitors can try local breakfast dishes like xoi – sticky rice, bun bo – the beef noodle soup, banh mi sandwich, banh beo – rice cakes. Please go to the central market, there are plenty of food selections to sample and learn about the town’s special cuisine. Near the Japanese covered bridge, citizens drink traditional street coffee and chat with friends prior to working. Come here and have a cup of coffee! Because it’s not hot and crowded yet in town, young Vietnamese people roam around and enjoy taking pictures of each other.

Early risers can go to the fish selling area in the Central market to see and photograph. After that, in and around this bustling marketplace, local products and vendors are also stunning. The sunrise is one of the best times for photography lovers. 

Additionally, the morning is the best time to ride the bicycle too. There are not many tourists on the streets to avoid, and the roads are more spacious. Shophouses don’t open and vendors don’t appear yet, so free parking is possible everywhere.   

The Full Moon Lantern Festival

Traditional lantern festival of Hoi An takes place on the full moon night each month (the 14th day of the lunar months). During it, local people hang up colorful lanterns to have luck and happiness, and release paper lanterns on the river to pray for beloved persons. Folk arts are also introduced to festivalists, such as singing, calligraphy, bai choi, games. See everything about this special event in, including dates.

Because the town is decorated by a vast number of lanterns and its incredible atmosphere, the full-moon lantern festival is thought to be the best time to visit Hoi An. Yes, it’s worth joining but crowded (more than common). Fact that today, in all nights, visitors will see the same things and experience. So, if don’t like seeing too many people, you can pick any day to go to the town and enjoy its charm.


The Best Time to Visit Hoi An’s Beaches

Hoi An has a 8-kilometers-long coastline. Two famous beaches here are An Bang beach and Cua Dai beach. Between them, there are a couple of hidden, non-touristy beaches. All have white-sandy expanses bordered by crystal-clear water and with a series of lovely islands in the front.

The dry season for sure is the nicest time to visit the beaches in Hoi An. It’s always sunny, not rainy and cloudy, so perfect to visit, relax or get tanned. Local people love going swimming during this period because the water is warm, clean and the waves are not so strong or dangerous. The sky is clear, making the scenery really glamorous. In these beautiful days, of course, water sports are available to join and have fun. There are jet skiing, sailing, surfing, standup paddle boarding, parachuting, snorkeling, diving, and more. Festivals, events and summer parties take place day to day in the season. Watching the sunrise, doing exercise and playing sports are other favourite things to do for visitors (with locals) every morning.

Good and moderate weather supports fishermen to catch fishes and seafood too. By that, travelers have living or extremely fresh seafood to savour. The price will be cheaper because fishing boats can set sail daily.

In addition, Hoi An provides a huge collection of accommodation options to stay close to the beach. Resorts are seen in the Cua Dai beach area, and homestays, villas with pools are more popular in An Bang beach. Venues by Tan Thanh beach own a more peaceful, nearly-private stretch of sand.

On the other hand, the wet season is not ideal for going to beaches. Although the temperature is cooler, the water becomes cold and the sand is wet. If just seeing the scenery, it’s not bad. When typhoons come, probably all seaside venues will be closed.


The Best Time to Visit Cham Islands

The Cham islands (Cu lao Cham) is a group of 8 islands near the coastline of Hoi An and Da Nang. It’s famous for a wealth of marine life and small heaven-like beaches. In 2009, it’s designated to be a Unesco world biosphere reserve.

The best time to visit Cham islands in the year is the dry season, from February to August. Throughout this season, it’s always sunny and the sea is very calm, with gentle waves. Visitors can go to them everyday, with safety. Seafood is also abundant and very fresh (one of the island’s specialties is the squid sun dried in only a day). For those who stay overnight in Cham island to escape the hustle and bustle, it really works.   

On the other hand, the wet season is dangerous to go to Cham islands. Local inhabitants can’t reach their home from the mainland and vice versa in some days due to bad weather. For sure, when typhoons come, transfers and day trips are stopped. When you come to Hoi An, it’s still beautiful, don’t forget to check with local tour operators to know if it’s possible to go or not.

For diving, snorkeling and sea trekking too, safety is the first notice. A snorkeling experience to see marine life is included in the day tour from Hoi An to Cham islands. If seeking less-touristy dive sites where the ecosystem stays intact, please directly contact companies specialized in diving. They have their own private one day and multi-day trips.


The Best Time to Visit My Son Sanctuary

My Son sanctuary is one of the most popular sightseeing places for day trippers from Hoi An. It’s a group of Hindu temples dating back from 4th century. In 1999, Unesco added it to the world heritage site list. Travelers need 45 mins to get to My Son from Hoi An. Browse to find out your best transport.

In the dry months, the best time to visit My Son is early morning or late afternoon. The reason is that in the midday, it’s very hot and humid. Here, the temples are built inside a valley tightly surrounded by a ring of hills, so the heat is kept and can not ‘escape’ (the temperature may be higher than Hoi An). Although in the forests, these buildings aren’t in the shade of the trees. There is no surprise that kids or those who can’t stand long in the sun will feel ‘boiling’. To see everything, cooler times (early morning, late afternoon) are good to beat the heat. Opening hours of My Son are 6 am to 5 pm, so make sure that you arrive by 3:30 pm. In the morning, big group tours flock to this heritage site (9 to 11:30 am), an earlier or later visit helps to avoid them too.

In the wet season, heavy rains cause flooding at My Son because it’s a basin. For safety, occasionally it’s closed, especially when the typhoons come. When it doesn’t rain much, the temperature is nice to sightsee around but walking trails are quite slippery.


The Best Time to Visit the Golden Bridge from Hoi An

Ba Na hills is a world-famous tourist attraction, a former French hill station. It’s famous for cool weather, beautiful sceneries, one of the longest cable cars in the world, castles in the cloud, exciting entertainment all day long, and the Golden bridge. Now, the bridge is a must see.

In the dry season, it’s sunny throughout the day, so to visit the Golden bridge/Ba Na hills, travelers can come anytime. The best times to take good photos are early morning or late afternoon when the sun rays aren’t intense. Additionally, from June to August, students in Vietnam have a summer holiday. Parents will go somewhere with them, and Ba Na hills is a favourite attraction for local families, so it’s crowded. To avoid the crowds and long queues, please start the trip early if want to experience everything. From Hoi An, travelers need a 1,5-hours-long drive to get there. We recommend leaving Hoi An at 6:30 am if Ba Na hills open at 8 am.

If just want to see and photograph the Golden bridge, late afternoon/sunset is a nicer time to go than the early morning. We advise checking the sunset time and just depart 2,5 hours earlier than that. Ba Na hills cable cars open until 10 pm from April to August (it’s different yearly, check the latest updated information).

Buffet restaurants are usually packed from 11:30 pm to 1:30 pm. Have lunch earlier or later if don’t expect to see too many people, and at that time, tables and food courts are also kept the cleanest. After lunch, the indoor amusement park and self-driven roller coasters are busy.

From September to January, the weather in the Golden bridge/Ba Na hills is worse. It’s cloudy, rainy and windy from morning to afternoon, so please check the weather forecast before booking the tickets. They’re just refunded when the cable cars are shut down with an announcement in advance.  


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