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Hoi An shopping tips - top 3 things to buy when visiting Hoi An, Vietnam

Hoi An is a small town located at the estuary of Thu Bon river in the Centre of Vietnam. This busy trading port in the 16th and 17th century has been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the year 1999 for being one of the best-preserved ancient commercial ports in the Southeast Asia.

Visiting Hoi An, you are not only dazzled by the charming temples and the harmonious mixture between Chinese and Japanese architecture style but also deeply impressed by a wealth of traditional crafts and unique souvenir available here.

1. Silk:

Hoi An is truly a shopping paradise when it comes to silk shops. Whatever you want from draw, print or patterned silk; a wide variety of materials, colours and decorations certainly can satisfy your needs. Following the history of a hustle and bustle Silk Road in the past, Hoi An today offers numerous exquisite silk-related products such as handbags, purses and home decors like wall hangings and lampshades. The fine quality, elegant design and reasonable price of silken accessories in Hoi An will not let you down.

2. Tailor-made clothes:

Some western tourists are of the perception that tailor-made clothes are only provided by expensive tailors in Beverly Hills for example with at least 500 hundred dollars. It may be not the case if you visit Hoi An. You can easily recognize numerous tailor-made boutiques here by the words ‘Made to measurement’ in front of each shop. The best idea is that you purchase dress or suite materials in the Cloth market or Central market nearby and get them stitched by a local tailor. The tailors in Hoi An by and large have a good command of English as well as a strong taste of fashion to design and make the clothes as your reference. They also have a great many photos to help stimulate your imagination in case you are at the loss of ideas. The price is very affordable from 60 to 100 USD for a night dress.

3. Handicrafts:

Apart from exclusive silk-related products, the gifted and skilful craftsmen in Hoi An provide you with unlimited handicrafts options from water or oil painting, marble statues to ceramics. Nonetheless, the most significant handicraft in Hoi An is surly enchanting lanterns. This ancient masterpiece is believed to bring happiness and prosperity for the family and it has also attracted almost all visitors thanks to the wide variety in shape and colour as well as the sparkling light at night. Hoi An lanterns can be in many shapes such as circle, garlic, diamond and hexagon. Brocade and silk are among the most-used materials since they are more glossy, impervious to water and easier to wash up. Most importantly, today lanterns are foldable and can be easily packed in any suitcase or backpack. The price ranges from 3-10 USD per item depending on the size, shape and material.

Useful tips:

- Bargaining is essential when you make a deal at Hoi An’s market. Shopping around to collect the best price is advisable.
- Regarding tailor-made clothes, many shops now offer rush service within 12 hours but it may not be a wise choice because all tailors need time to nurture creativity and create the most completed suites.
- The best time to buy lanterns in Hoi An is during the night when you can see exactly how they look like after lit up.

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