17 photos that show why Hoi An, Vietnam is the world’s best city in 2019

hoi an Hoa Lu Tam Coc, Ancient Town   By Thampitakkull Jakkree

Hoi An in Vietnam has been named the best city in the world for 2019 in this year’s Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards.

The awards are the result of their 24th annual readers’ survey.

Hoi An has taken the crown from San Miguel de Allende in Mexico, which has held the top spot for the past two years, but has now been bumped down to second place.

The Vietnamese city has jumped up from 8th place in the 2018 ranking.

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“Brands and properties from all over the world — from Peru to Japan, India to Italy, and right here at home in the United States — are recognized by our audience because they deliver exceptional experiences, rooted in a sense of place. I congratulate all of this year’s winners, who have worked so hard to be among the world’s best,” said Travel + Leisure’s Editor in Chief Jacqui Gifford.

Here are 17 photos which prove why Hoi An is worthy of the Best City in the World title. 

The colourful old town has been largely preserved in time.

It’s incredibly pedestrian-friendly, and is considered one of the safest cities in Asia.

“It’s great that the inner part of the city is restricted and cars aren’t allowed, so one can walk down the center of the street to the shops and markets,” said one person.

The shopping is fantastic.

“You can have anything made to order,” said one voter in the awards, from a dress to a three-piece suit, and it’ll be remarkably cheap.

You can pick up all sorts of exotic fresh produce from local markets.

And of course, the food is incredible.

“The best in Vietnam, with amazing vegetarian and vegan options,” said one person.

The lantern-lit night street markets are magical.

Being situated right on the river lends a calming vibe to Hoi An, and the lifestyle is slow and relaxed.

“The city has a nice atmosphere, being right on a river,” said one person.

You can take a basket boat tour through a mangrove palm forest in Cam Thanh village.

The local fishermen will be out on the river with their nets.

The traditional fishing method is incredibly visual, and visitors can learn some of the techniques.

You can make like the Hoi An locals and travel by boat to market at sunrise.

Or wait till sunset for the striking views.

At certain times of the year, the water is covered in vibrant water lilies.

You can hire a bike for about $1-2 a day, and everything in the city is pretty cheap.

The beaches are unrivaled.

Wannabe mermaids and mermen shouldn’t miss the opportunity to spend some time exploring the marine life around the Cham Islands, just off the coast.

There are three UNESCO World Heritage Sites worth visiting: Hue Imperial citadel, My Son Ruin Temples, and Phong Nha Cave.