Destination Weddings: Hoi An / by Anh Nguyen

This article was first featured by Vietnam Tourism Board.

For over a decade, I have been based in Vietnam shooting in and around the country, as well as tackling assignments in other far reaches of the globe. I have been fortunate to travel the world with my camera, exploring stunning locales and telling stories with my images. A greater part of my visual narrative happens to focus strictly on destination weddings, namely my role in capturing the most important day of a person’s life in their dream locations. Despite the gamut of wondrous places I’ve shot, Hoi An holds a special place in my heart.

Hoi An has it all: you can lose yourself in the memories of yesterday as you stroll down the bougainvillea draped lanes of Hoi An’s historic Ancient Town. 5-star luxury beach resorts share the beachfront with smaller, but no less charming, boutique properties, offering guests unadulterated access to the tranquil waters of Vietnam’s central coastline. On top of that, the cuisine of this region goes uncontested as the country’s best culinary example. Beaches, culture, and history… what’s there not to fall in love with?

And Hoi An is diversity at its best. This is a community where all are invited, bar none. You’ll see foreigners rub shoulders with Vietnamese and other natives with ethnic ties to Japan, China, and France who have come to adopt Hoi An as their own. It’s a location full of enchantment, which is great for the romance factor, but it also offers a sense of comfort and warmth absent in other destination wedding settings. Here are a list of six reasons why Hoi An should be taken into consideration for your upcoming nuptials.

#1: YOU’LL HAVE A MULTITUDE OF BACKDROPS FOR YOUR PORTRAIT SESSIONS

Palm trees, clean sand, and rocks of varying height and shape add texture to a portrait. Photo by Christian Berg

Palm trees, clean sand, and rocks of varying height and shape add texture to a portrait. Photo by Christian Berg

Craving some intimacy? The maze-like Ancient Town has quiet corners to shelter you from prying eyes. Photo by Christian Berg

Craving some intimacy? The maze-like Ancient Town has quiet corners to shelter you from prying eyes. Photo by Christian Berg

If the canary yellow doesn’t work well with your skintone, don’t worry; there are different shades to play with. Photo by Justin Mott

If the canary yellow doesn’t work well with your skintone, don’t worry; there are different shades to play with. Photo by Justin Mott

The muted candy coated building of Ancient Town to the palm fringed shoreline are backdrops with an almost-cinema like caliber. It’s as if Hoi An was made for wedding photoshoots!

Photographer’s Tip

Get married along the beach but make sure you take some time to travel into town at sunset for your portrait session. I know it feels counterintuitive to have a beach wedding minus the beach shots, but trust me you will absolutely love having pictures that showcase you surrounded by the traditional culture, colors, and architecture that the Ancient Town has to offer.

#2: THE LIGHTING IS FAVORABLE EIGHT MONTHS OUT OF THE YEAR

Get married during magic hour, right after 3 p.m. when the sun isn’t too harsh. Photo by Justin Mott

Get married during magic hour, right after 3 p.m. when the sun isn’t too harsh. Photo by Justin Mott

Great lighting makes for great black and white shots too. Photo by Christian Berg

Great lighting makes for great black and white shots too. Photo by Christian Berg

The typical Hoi An forecast includes warm sunshine interspersed with breezy drafts. Situated in a tropical climate, Hoi An is on average 29 degrees celsius throughout the year. Avoid September to January when the rains come in and the area is prone to flooding. But come February, the sun will be shining in no time. February to May is considered peak season in Hoi An, while the heat (and humidity) skyrockets from June to August.

#3: IT’S EASY TO CARVE OUT SOME ONE-ON-ONE TIME WITH YOUR S.O.

Rent a motorbike only if you have prior experience! Don’t want to get into an accident before the big day! Photo by Justin Mott

Rent a motorbike only if you have prior experience! Don’t want to get into an accident before the big day! Photo by Justin Mott

Reality check: weddings are normally more high-stress than we’d like them to be. In Hoi An, it’s simple to break away from the demands of such a taxing affair. Take a nice motorbike escapade throughout the neighboring countryside. If you’re worried about operating a motor vehicle, cycling is a good alternative.

#4: GET YOUR DRESS TAILORMADE

A modern take on the ao dai, the Vietnamese traditional dress, with romantic lace paneling. Photo by Aaron Joel Santos

A modern take on the ao dai, the Vietnamese traditional dress, with romantic lace paneling. Photo by Aaron Joel Santos

Hoi An is synonymous with tailoring. With over 200 tailoring shops in town, you can get every dress in the bridal party custom made and with a minimum turnaround of only two days, this is perfect scenario for any last-minute guest flying in. This all works in favor for the bride if she needs some adjustments day of. Beach location without the loss of a good tailor? This should tick all the boxes on your wife-to-be’s list of non-negotiables.

#5: DEPENDABLE AND RESPECTABLE VENDORS ARE EASY TO FIND

East meets west. You can have both. Photo by Justin Mott

East meets west. You can have both. Photo by Justin Mott

Come nightfall, Hoi An is always seeped in the warm glow of lanterns hanging overhead. Photo by Justin Mott

Come nightfall, Hoi An is always seeped in the warm glow of lanterns hanging overhead. Photo by Justin Mott

In addition to being a beautiful location, the area has a lot of affordable and top-notch vendors. Hankering for a bouquet that features the indigenous array of flora? Looking to be married under a cascade of painted silk lanterns? A full resource guide to the best wedding vendors in Hoi and the neighboring Danang City can be found here.

#6: YOU CAN GET MARRIED ON THE BEACH

All faiths can be accommodated in the “Melting Pot” city of Hoi An. Photo by Justin Mott

All faiths can be accommodated in the “Melting Pot” city of Hoi An. Photo by Justin Mott

A rose petal covered walkway is a great substitute for the traditional carpet-lined path. And it’s biodegradable too! Photo by Christian Berg

A rose petal covered walkway is a great substitute for the traditional carpet-lined path. And it’s biodegradable too! Photo by Christian Berg

Splish-splash! The fun never stops when you’re on a beach. Photo by Aaron Joel Santos

Splish-splash! The fun never stops when you’re on a beach. Photo by Aaron Joel Santos

What’s a beach wedding without a little sand and surf? Stage your dream wedding on the beach without a flock of tourists ruining your big moment. You can decide to take your after party to the water if you’d like to as well!

To book us for your destination wedding, please visit our website: www.mottvisualsweddings.com