Residents of Hoi An, the ancient town and tourism hotspot, have taken prolonged heavy rains and flooded streets in their stride, wading to cafés alongside the iconic Hoai River in spate.
Torrential downpours over the past days have submerged many streets of Hoi An. With water levels receding somewhat, coffee shops along the Hoai River have opened their doors to serve customers and their youthful customers have responded in good numbers, not bothered about sipping their beverages with feet submerged in the floodwaters.
The annual flood seasoning in Hoi An occurs from late October to January. Over the years, residents of the ancient town have learned to live with the floods and even considered it an opportunity to develop new tourism products like boat tours. Authorities in Hoi An have allowed restaurants and coffee shops to reopen from early September and serve guests on the premises. A distance of at least two meters has to be maintained between tables, with each having no more than four customers.
From the cafés, people can watch the flooded An Hoi Bridge, famous as a vantage point for the floating lantern festival on the full moon days. People gather in large numbers on the bridge to release colorful lanterns onto the Hoai River. The mainly pedestrian bridge, which connects Hoi An and Nguyen Phuc Chu Street, boasts ancient architectural decorations with old carp patterns dating back to the 16th century.
Nguyen Hong Hanh said that as a resident of Hoi An for many years, she was used to the scene of flooded streets during the flooding season. Wading through flooded streets to drink coffee has become a pleasure for locals, but only when the water level remains low, she said.
Hoi An is best visited from February to July every year when the weather is pleasant, but the flooding season from October to January offers a chance to enjoy unusual experiences rarely found elsewhere.
The Bach Dang Street on Sunday. Central provinces have been experiencing heavy rains over the past several days. The resultant flooding has disrupted traffic and daily lives. Heavy rains are expected to continue for the next few days.