Cycling in Hoi An is a must for any traveller who wants to see the beautiful countryside and get off the beaten path in Vietnam.
Hiring a bicycle and going on a self guided bicycle tour to explore the stunning beaches of An Bang, and the lush green rice fields of Duy Phước and Cẩm Kim brings incredible freedom to your trip and is exactly what I did in 2022. Don’t forget to ride past some amazing vegan friendly eateries and the precious heritage art gallery museum too! (And if you are working out a plan, here is a beautiful 2 week Vietnam Itinerary that may help you)
I hope the following information helps you and please reach out if you have any questions.
HIRING A BICYCLE
Bike rental in Hoi An is really easy. Your accomodation probably has connections so you can ask them. Nearly every corner in the old town has one but please don’t hire one near the main bridge in Hoi An Ancient Town, they rent out by the hour and are so expensive!
I hired a bicycle from a man on the corner of Hai Ba Trung and Phan Chu Trinh. He has a variety of bicycles and motorbikes you can hire.
You tell him how long you want the bicycle for, and he will ask for one of your local ID’s to hold on to. I gave him my Australian proof of age card and when I dropped the bicycle back, I paid him and he gave my ID back. There was no problem at all with hiring the bike. There was no helmet, so if you want one, I suggest going elsewhere to find one. There were also no gears ahaha
CYCLING TO THE SOUTH OF HOI AN
This was my first ride and my favourite. If you can only do one ride when you’re in Hoi An, I recommend heading south into the small villages and rice fields.
As I was riding, with a big smile on my face, every single person i peddled passed yelled out “hello!” And I said “hello” or “xin chao” back to them. It was so incredible. Everyone was so friendly! I didn’t meet one awful person on my 2 week trip to Vietnam. Every human had a heart of gold.
If you follow the map below (using google maps, which was one of the main apps I used in Vietnam), I’ve given a rough idea of where I cycled. I’m not sure about every path as I kept on riding through small villages and wasn’t exactly sure where I was but this will give you a basic plan of where to go. I recommend cycling straight to the old kiln in the field first. You can park your bike and get a drink and relax for a bit before your next trip.
CYCLING TO THE NORTH AND EAST OF HOI AN
After my amazing ride to the south of Hoi An, the next day I cycled to the north and east where there are some more rice fields and the beautiful An Bang beach.
I actually didn’t like this way as much as the south. There was a lot of traffic, people everywhere, and it was quite busy. Even through the rice fields it was busy. I think I was comparing it to the south ride too much.
But you do get to see water buffalo close to the paths and that’s always lovely. And when you cross busy roads, please step off your bicycle and wheel it across.
But An Bang beach is really beautiful and there is an amazing Vegan restaurant there called The Fisherman which is right on the beach.
Important tip: ring your bicycle bell all the time! If you’re passing someone, turning a corner or coming up behind someone, ringing your bell will help them know you’re there and this is done constantly in Vietnam (that’s why you hear motorbikes and cars honking a lot because it’s to let others know they are there)
What side of the road should I ride on? In Vietnam, you must ride on the right side of the road.
Do I legally need to wear a helmet in Vietnam? No you don’t
How much does it cost to rent a bicycle in Hoi An? Around 50,000 VND a day, give or take, depending how good your bargaining skills are.
MAP OF SELF GUIDED CYCLING ROUTES (South and North of Hoi An)
Both these routes are over 15km (9 miles)
Check out Cycling in Phong Nha if you’re also travelling there!