Bamboo Bicycle Tour, Hoi An: A unique experience
If Hoi An is on your list of places to visit while you’re in Vietnam (which it should be), you will probably be told by several people or read many reviews that you must hire a bicycle and explore the countryside. I couldn’t agree more!
What better way to do this than on a bicycle built from bamboo! Yep, that’s right, this incredibly unique tour will guide you through the countryside of Hoi An. We booked the half day tour with Bamboo Bicycle Tours Vietnam.
These unique bikes are like nothing we had ever seen before. Not only do they look cool, they are really sturdy and comfortable to ride as well. They are of Dutch design, and to be honest you want the Dutch to design the bikes given how much they ride bikes themselves! They are handmade from bamboo sourced in Vietnam. Did you know that the strength of bamboo is actually higher than that of steel?
The seats are pretty comfortable as far as bicycles go, nice leather seats and there is even a basket on the front to store your water or bag.
Why pick this tour?
We opted for the half day tour (there are also full day tours) and chose the 1 pm departure. You can also depart at 8 am.
It is the perfect way to explore the countryside of Hoi An and really get to experience the locals in their day to day rituals. It is a perfect pace and not at all rushed which makes for a lovely afternoon.
I must admit, we got a little-lost finding the meeting point but got there in the end only a few minutes late. It was time for a quick introduction to the bikes before we set off on the tour.
What you see on the tour
We saw some incredible things on our afternoon bicycle tour and this varies from day to day depending on what the locals are out there doing. Our first stop was a gorgeous colourful temple where we had time to explore the grounds and take some pictures.
We then continued on our journey and stopped by a local family doing some farming. I managed to try my luck in the rice paddy using a traditional piece of equipment used for separating the rice grains.
Have you ever thought about how rice papers are made?
I hadn’t thought about it until we arrived at this little house, where a local woman was making the rice papers. It involved getting the liquid mixture, placing it on a griddle, similar to what you would use to make crepes and then carefully placing it on the hanger to dry out for several hours. It was really quite incredible, however, it is so hot in there, it is like standing in a sauna!!!
We were able to walk through the rice paddy, which by the way is quite scratchy and make you a bit sore! But, it was pretty cool regardless.
We stopped for a cold drink, which is much needed after cycling around in the heat before it was time to head back towards Hoi An.
And pretty exciting, we got to see a water buffalo!!
The journey back can get a little tricky at parts given the traffic, but you just need to be careful of your surroundings and listen out for scooters, cars and trucks.
Take a look at our highlights video of what you can expect on this tour.
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For a photo essay from our bicycle tour, see more pictures below!
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“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.” – Mark Twain