Hoi An is the best place in Vietnam for your cycling adventure. And cycling is the best way to get yourself out of the touristy Ancient Town. But even if you don’t have enough time to do many rides in Hoi An, we recommend you to do a brief bike ride around the Central Rice Paddies of Hoi An at the sunset time.
Hoi An Central Rice Paddy
It’s the vast area of rice paddies between the Ancient Town and the An Bang Beach.
For the last couple of years, the government has been building a network of concrete paths connecting all the small rice paddies together to create a safe and convenient cycling path for tourists to explore the countryside within the Hoi An city. It’s one of the latest initiatives Hoi An is working on to promote Hoi An as a cycling destination.
All rice paddies belong to the government, and the farmers can only use the land but don’t have the right to sell their farmland. It’s the way to protect these huge rice paddies. Imagine that anyone could sell their lands to build rice paddy-view hotels. It would totally destroy the charm of Hoi An.
If you find it hard to wake up so early in the morning as we do, sunset would be a more appropriate time to explore the rice paddies, additionally, it gets boiling in Hoi An mid-morning especially in the summer when the temperature could reach over 30 degrees at 7:00.
But if you don’t mind the heat, an early morning bike ride would be another option.
Hoi An is very flat and increasingly high elevations towards West with the highest elevations along the border to Laos, which is 80-100km from Hoi An. The vast central rice paddy is one of the best places for sunset watching as you can see the sun sinking behind the peaks of the mountains to the west.
Depending on the season of the year, the sunset time varies from 17:00 in winter (Oct-Mar) to 18:00 in summer (Apr-Sep). It would be best to start your bike ride at least one hour before the sun sets.
The twilight could last long during summer months and you still have beautiful light until 19:00.
The Recommended Route
You can find here our suggested route for a short 10-km bike ride around the Central rice paddies.
Actually, we recommend to just let it be, don’t look at the map, find a place you like, you can find in the route our favorite cafe named Roving Chill-house which is in the middles of the rice paddy, it’s the most beautiful place to grab a cocktail and enjoy the beautiful sunset.
Stop 1: Tra Que Organic Herb Village
Stop 2: Probably best spot to take sunset photos
Stop 3: Roving Chillhouse – beautiful paddy-view cafe for sunset with a cocktail.
Stop 4: Scenic palm tree path.
Just get lost and enjoy the peace of Hoi An that few tourists experience.
Believe us, after this sunset bike ride, you will definitely reconsider your plan to spend more time exploring deeper into this charming rural city.