Hoi An receives int’l tourists after two years

 Around 50 international tourists visited ancient Hoi An in Quang Nam on Saturday morning, with businesses and shops eager to welcome them.

At 7 a.m., before the first tourists hit Hoi An, around 30 percent of businesses, shops and cafes stood ready to receive customers.

A shop owner said he was glad to see tourists again, following months of closure due to Covid-19.

At 8:30 a.m., around 50 international tourists participate in a welcoming ceremony at Chua Cau Temple Bridge. They then split into two groups to explore Hoi An.

Several locals are present to welcome tourists. One local said it's been a long time since Hoi An has seen such a festive mood, and hoped more tourists would come in future.

A family, Mr. Gundlach and Mrs. Luong Thi Nam and their son visited Quang Nam on Friday morning. Nam said since the pandemic broke two years ago, she had not been able to travel like she used to. When Vietnam decided to open its doors, her family signed up to pay a visit.

"We've been to Hoi An before. It's a wonderful destination with ancient relics and hospitable people," she said, adding the family would spend eight days in Hoi An before moving on to Hanoi to see their relatives.

A total 25 tourists hopped on rickshaws on Chau Thuong Van and Bach Dang streets en route to a performance on Bach Dang, before visiting other museums and attractions.

A man captures street scenes while being ridden around in a rickshaw.

Before entering the performance venue, tourists have to submit medical declarations and wear masks.

The performance in a house on Bach Dang Street showcases traditional arts via singing, dancing and traditional instruments.

Another group of tourists visit Chua Cau Temple Bridge and other attractions before going to see the performance. They are accompanied by guides and don't stray from their itineraries.

Tourists learn about the art of making lanterns, an iconic symbol of Hoi An.

The tourists were among 159 visiting Quang Nam via a trial campaign to apply vaccine passports, the first international tourists to visit Vietnam after the country closed its borders in March last year due to Covid-19.They include South Koreans, Americans, British and many more.

Quang Nam is expected to receive 200 more tourists from South Korea on Nov. 25. They would stay there for eight days.

Hoi An has been open to domestic tourists since Nov. 15.

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