5 Festivals in Hoi An to Add to your Travel Plans

Author: Crystal
Author: Crystal

“The most beautiful in the world is, of course, the world itself.” - Wallace Stevens

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Plan Your Visit: Hoi An's Top 5 Festivals and When to Go

If you’re a wanting to experience the Vietnamese festival culture and you’re looking for an unforgettable travel experience, Hoi An should undoubtedly be on your radar. This charming Vietnamese town is a treasure trove of culture, and one of the best ways to immerse yourself in its rich heritage is by participating in its vibrant festivals.

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Hoi An Festival List

Are you ready for a journey into the heart of Vietnamese culture? Hoi An, beckons with its rich heritage and vibrant festivals…

1. Lantern Festival

Experience the Magic

The Lantern Festival is Hoi An’s signature event, and it’s a visual spectacle you won’t want to miss.

What to expect?

Lantern-lit streets. floating lanterns, traditional music and dance performances, lantern-making workshops, wishing rituals and a family friendly atmosphere.


The Lantern Festival is  in the heart of Hoi An’s Ancient Town. You can enjoy the festival’s ambiance as you wander through the lantern-lit streets, especially around the Japanese Covered Bridge area.

When is the festival?

The Lantern Festival, takes place on the 14th day of each lunar month

Lantern Festival - Hoi An

2. Tet Nguyen Dan (Lunar New Year)

Embrace the Traditions

Tet Nguyen Dan, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, is a grand celebration observed throughout Vietnam. This festival represents the spirit of renewal, fresh beginnings, and the welcoming of spring

What to expect?

Dragon and lion dances are a common sight,  fireworks displays, traditional customs for the locals, traditional clothing and more. 

Note: Most businesses, schools, and government offices in Vietnam close to allow people to spend time with their families. The holiday period can last several days to a week.


Tet Nguyen Dan, commonly referred to as Tet, is the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, and it is celebrated throughout Vietnam. It is the most important and widely observed festival in Vietnam.

When is the festival?

Tet Nguyen Dan typically falls in late January or early February. Plan your trip accordingly to witness this grand celebration.

Tet Nguyen Dan - Traditional Feast
Tet Nguyen Dan - Traditional Feast

3. Boat Racing Festival

Celebrate Hoi An's Riverine Heritage

While the Boat Racing Festival may not be as well-known as some of the other events, it’s a hidden gem that offers a glimpse into Hoi An’s riverine history.


The Hoi An Boat Racing Festival, also known as the “Hội An Cau Bong Festival” in Vietnamese, typically takes place in Hoi An, Vietnam, along the Thu Bon River. Hoi An is a historic town located in Quang Nam Province in central Vietnam.

Pro Tip:

Keep an eye on the local calendar for boat racing events, which are usually held during the mid-autumn season.

4. Hoi An Ancient Town Festival

Step Back in Time

The Hoi An Ancient Town Festival is a vibrant celebration of the rich cultural heritage and history of Hoi An, Vietnam. 

What to expect?

Latern lit streets, traditional music, dance performances, cultural exhibitions, colorful parades, traditional Vietnamese dishes and more!


The festival takes place within the heart of Hoi An’s Ancient Town. This historic setting lends an authentic backdrop to the festival’s cultural events.

When is the festival?

The Hoi An Ancient Town Festival is typically held every two years and typically spans several days. The specific dates and duration can vary, so it’s essential to check the festival schedule when planning your visit to Hoi An.

Hoi An Ancient Town Festival
Floating Lanterns

5. Hoi An International Food Festival

Savor the Flavors

For foodies and culinary explorers, the Hoi An International Food Festival is a dream come true!

What to expect?

The festival features a wide range of food stalls, cooking demonstrations, and cultural exchanges. Visitors can savor delectable dishes and participate in cooking classes.


The festival typically takes place in the Ancient Town area of Hoi An.

When is the festival?

The Hoi An International Food Festival does not have fixed dates each year. It’s an event that is typically scheduled annually, but the specific dates can vary from year to year.

Hoi An International Food Festival website

Example of Vietnamese Foods
Example of Vietnamese Foods

Tips for a Smooth Festival Experience

  • Check Festival Dates

    Confirm the dates of the festival you plan to attend as they can vary from year to year. This ensures you don't miss out.

  • Plan Transportation

    Be prepared for traffic disruptions and road closures during festivals. Consider using alternative transportation like walking or bicycles.

  • Budget Wisely

    Plan your expenses ahead of time, especially if you intend to shop for souvenirs or enjoy festival food. ATMs may be crowded during events.

  • Arrive Early

    To secure a good spot for events like parades or performances, arrive early to avoid the crowds.

  • Dress Appropriately

    Dress modestly and in accordance with the cultural expectations for each festival. Comfortable footwear is essential for walking through crowded streets.


In Hoi An, these festivals are not just events; they’re gateways to unforgettable experiences and cherished memories. Whether you’re exploring the lantern-lit streets, participating in Lunar New Year traditions, or indulging in culinary delights, each festival offers a unique perspective on the culture, history, and warmth of the people of Hoi An. So, go ahead and add these festivals to your travel plans; Hoi An is waiting to weave its magic into your journey through Asian culture.

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