Over 120 American tourists visit Hoi An as inbound travel reopens

 One hundred and twenty-six American tourists arrived in Hoi An on Tuesday, the largest group of foreign visitors to the town after inbound tourism resumption.

A group of American tourists take a photo at Pagoda Bridge, a symbol of Hoi An, at 2 p.m. on Tuesday.

Pagoda Bridge was built by Japanese traders in the 17th century and serves as a national relic that appears on VND20,000 bills.

A representative of Hoi An greeted the tourists with bundles of flowers.

Vietnam reopened its borders to foreign tourists from March 15 and resumed its visa policies in force before the pandemic.

After visiting Pagoda Bridge, the tourists strolld around town amid mild, sunny weather. During their three-day itinerary in Hoi An, they are scheduled to visit ancient houses, Thanh Ha pottery village, Thu Bon River, Duy Hai fishing village, Tra Nhieu tourism village, nipa palm forest in Cam Thanh Commune and Kim Bong carpentry village.

The tourists walk along Tran Phu Street, home to ancient pagodas and temples with Chinese architectural features.

A tour guide of Da Nang-based Asia Cham Travel, which organizes the tour, said the group of Americans had booked tours to Vietnam before the pandemic but due to travel restrictions their trip was delayed.

After Vietnam reopened to international tourism, the tour operator quickly brought the tourists back to the country.

The tourists visited Phuc Kien Assembly Hall built in 1690 to function as a place for ethnic Chinese from Fukien to worship.

Tourists visit Tan Ky ancient house on Tran Phu Street.

Allison Crull, 35, said her group arrived in Vietnam on March 31 and would stay in Vietnam for 10 days.

Previously, they visited Hanoi and UNESCO heritage site Ha Long Bay and flew to Da Nang on Monday.

"In Hoi An, I feel the ancient beauty, the pedestrian streets are very beautiful. Hoi An people have welcomed us warmly," she said.

"This is the first time I had visited Vietnam and everything is great.”

She said her group would arrive in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday and return to the U.S. on Saturday.

A female tourist drops by a fashion store on Nguyen Thai Hoc Street.

Trinh Diem Quynh (L), owner of Gia Ly fashion store, said that the Covid pandemic had caused her shop to shut down for a long time.

"I felt happy as foreign tourists returned to Hoi An after nearly two years," Quynh said.

Before the pandemic, more than 20 groups of foreign tourists came to her store every day.

She hopes that many foreigners would return to Hoi An in the near future.

A staff member takes the body measurements of a male tourist.

The Center for Culture - Sports and Radio - Television in Hoi An said that there would be a group of 50 German tourists visiting the ancient town on Thursday.

"The recent arrival of foreign tourists has stirred hopes for the revival of the tourism industry in Hoi An and local authorities continue to build the image of Hoi An as a safe and friendly destination," said Truong Thi Ngoc Cam, director of the center.

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