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...two travellers in search of the world's wildlife

15 December 2018

Wet Hoi An

Hoi An in the rain

Hoi An in the rain

10 December 2018

It stopped raining at 8:45 this morning. Then as we left Da Nang at 9:00 it started again and it hasn’t stopped since, just varied between gentle and torrential. The smart attire in Hoi An is flip-flop and shorts. In places the streets are ankle-deep in water, so any shoes are just a disaster, and the gutters pouring streams of water onto the pavement are going to splash you knee-high whether you have an umbrella or not.

Sloshing through the town under an umbrella in the pouring rain was surprisingly good fun (at least for a morning). Reaching the riverbank road and discovering that the road and the river had become indistinguishable. Careful where you tread! I think that the historic houses and temples were also quieter than usual too, and atmospheric with rain pouring from the gutters and turning their inner courtyards into ponds.

River comes to town

River comes to town

We’ve embarked upon one of the key activities for visitors to Hoi An: getting clothes made! I’m getting a blazer, some chinos and two shirts made up, Maureen perhaps a couple of contrasting jackets. It feels a bit bonkers; if the quality is good, this’ll be about £150 for clothes we could easily spend £500 on back home! And if it’s all a bit rubbish? Well… it’s still a holiday experience. You can easily drop £150 on holiday on all kinds of day tours and activities, and this is an event in itself: choosing fabric, style, getting measured up, going back next day for a first fit, adjustments, then a final fit (fingers crossed) and you’re done inside 48 hours!

Mr Xe, our chosen tailor, is a very laconic old fella who sits there and generally lets all the bossy-but-friendly ladies that work for him look after the customers. He just steps in occasionally with a quiet comment, maybe to accept a lower price offer (we were haggling, poorly as usual!), maybe to agree or disagree with a fabric choice.

At 20:00 the rain astonished us by stopping. Hoi An at night is lit up with hundreds of colourful lanterns and looks very pretty indeed.

Hoi An at night

Hoi An at night


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