Hoian Cycling Day Tour
Hoian Cycling country Side day trip ex from Hoian
Kim Bong Village Bicycle Trail
Famed throughout Vietnam for the consummate skills of its wood workers, the village of Kim Bong in Cam Kim Commune is reached by a scenic fifteen minute boat ride across the Thu Bon River from Hoi An. Generations of artisans have for centuries produced wooden ships, boats, furniture, sculptures and carvings here, and also contributed to the restoration of historic Hoi An and former Imperial capital, Hue. Other traditional crafts that still flourish in the village bamboo work and making colorful reed mats, handbags and silk lanterns. Tradition has it that Kim Bong was first settled in the 15th century by four soldiers of King Le Loi’s army returning from the North. They saw its potential and fell in love with the area, bringing their wood working skills and founding Kim Bong’s four most notable craft families, Huynh, Nguyen, Phan and Truong, whose descendants are still working in the village workshops today. The village Craft Centre and workshops showcases craft items and the painstaking process by which they are produced, using specialist tools and techniques passed down since the 15th century when Hoi An flourished as a major sea port. The workshops today make hand crafted furniture and sculptures as well as a range of tempting souvenirs, some of which are exported a field as Europe and North America . Kim Bong craftsmen made a vital contribution to the recent restoration of historic buildings after Hoi An was declared a World Heritage Site in 1999. Moreover, they have been encouraged and rewarded by UNESCO for their preservation efforts. Today the village workshops provide employment for about 50 carpenters - still far fewer than the 500 who once worked here. The adjacent ship building yards employ 150 craftsmen and supply about 20 hand-built fishing vessels every year for the fishermen of Central Vietnam .
Route with reference
· Allow between two to three and a half hours to do the bicycle trail, depending on how long you like to linger.
· Taking a local guide is highly recommended both to add interest to your visit and to encourage the local community.
· Village activities vary according to the season, so treat the description below as flexible.
· Don’t forget your camera, comfortable shoes and put on sunscreen or wear a hat (the sun can be quite strong).
· Please do not encourage begging by giving to individuals.
· If you have any recommendation or ideas for the trail please tell your guide or inform us at the office.
Stop 1 DO FAMILY WORSHIPING HOUSE (seeing outside).
On the left, under the An Phu sign which means “endless wealth” is the Do family worshiping house. Each family actively worships their ancestors in their family house. Many old houses in Kim Bong were destroyed in the war, and have only recently been rebuilt after relative prosperity returned to the village
Carry on and after the next crossroads you will find the house of the old coracle boat maker on your right.
Stop 2 CORACLE BOATS (for visit & interaction with local people)
A striking sight all over Central Vietnam , these ancient circular boats are made of bamboo and used as dinghies, tenders for fishing vessels and to get around the village during annual floods. Made of woven bamboo, the coracle is sealed with a paste made from wet buffalo dung, then treated with oil from a particular mountain tree called Dau Rai. This is the only family still making them in the village.
Go straight, turn left at the end, and then take a right on the main road which brings you to a dead end.
Stop 3 OLD BAMBOO BRIDGE (for visit & interaction with local people)
At this stop, you can cross the bridge to another part of the village or rest and enjoy the view.
Go back taking the same road and ride along the mats weaving area.
Stop 4 MATS WEAVING (for visit & interaction with local people)
Visit one of the many houses in this street where the distinctive reed mats are woven on looms. The reed grows in Kim Bong and there are about 50 women in the village who dye and weave the mats. Made throughout Vietnam , these mats are usually each made by two women and are in great demand in markets. If you are accompanied by a local guide, you can help the local women weave the mats and if interested you can purchase a mat to take home as a souvenir.
Continue straight on and enjoy the view to the right across the fields and river to historic Hoi An. At the end, follow the lane that turns left, head straight across the cafe crossroads this time, and ride under the concrete arch indicating Duy Vinh village. Turn right just after the arch.
Stop 5 AGRICULTURE (for introduction)
While everybody enjoys the wide vistas across the fields, and the guide will explain about the agricultural and farming life of Kim Bong. Two-thirds of the total village area is cultivated land and about 1000 of its residents, the majority of them women, are farmers. Rice and maize, vegetables, potatoes and chilli are also cultivated.
Go on straight to the next family worshiping house on your right.
Stop 6 LU WORSHIPING HOUSE (seeing outside).
Located in another part of the village before the war. In 2003, the family rebuilt it at this present location. Stop for a quick look to admire the colors and the architecture of this worshiping house. The guide will explain the difference symbols and design you can admire.
Continue straight on, take the next right through a leafy lane and at its end turn left on to the main road. You will notice two temples (Pham and Tran) that are set one next to each other on your left, scenically positioned looking out across the race terraces. Continue along the main road and you will find one of the primary schools on you left.
Stop 7 VILLAGE SCHOOL
At this stop you will see the children studying, singing or playing games. Don’t be surprised if they all say “HELLO” - they enjoy seeing visitors. Whilst taking care school and at the end of the lane you will see the secondary school with its football field in front of it. Even in this remote village, there five schools and 100% education for the community. After the secondary school turn right and ride to next ancestral family temple, on you right.
Stop 8 HUYNH FAMILY’S TEMPLE (for visit)
The Huynh family’s ancestral worship house, bearing the sign Huynh Dai Toc, was rebuilt in 1997. This is the private temple of one of the four founding families of Kim Bong. This family is renowned nationally for its skills in wood carving and in the restoration of old house. They also created the village carpentry workshop.
If you look across the fields, you will see the Nguyen family temple, looking like an island in the middle of the rice fields.
Keep going right the colorful green and blue house and wooden house until bringing you back to the kindergarten. Passing the primary school again, take the next left and head out over the concrete causeway (bridge). You are now leaving inner Kim Bong.
Pause on the causeway to notice the fishing traps and nets and learn about the importance of fishing to the community. About 200 of Kim Bong’s inhabitants earn their living from fishing.
Take the first left immediately after the causeway ends.
Stop 9 TIEN HIEN TEMPLE (for visit)
At the end of the lane on the left is the famous Tien Hien temple, one of Kim Bong’s oldest and most interesting buildings. Enter by the small path to the left. Over 200 years old this temple was built by the four founding families, Huynh, Nguyen, Phan and Truong. Now looked after by the Phan family, it is the site of an important village festival on the 6th of the fist lunar month of the year.
Stop 10 KIM BUU PAGODA (for visit)
Returning to the main pathway, you will see the historic Kim Buu Pagoda straight ahead. This is a famous site where the local Communist Party used to hold regular meetings. Only the central part of the building is old; the rest has been restored. Nowadays, on the 1st and 15th of every lunar month, offerings are made at this temple by the Buddhists of Kim Bong.
Return to the main pathway and head right (leaving the Tien Hien temple on your left). Follow the concrete trail and at the end turn left (you don’t have much choice).Keep going at the end- back on the main road - turn right and bicycle for about 20 meters and turn right again before the blue arch past. Continue along the small lane.
Stop 11 PHAN HOMESTEAD (for visit)
Ride down the lane to the Ong shrine. The lane to the left opposite leads to the delightful Pham family home the Pham Tu Duong. The old part of the family home is on the left. The architecture of this house shows a striking French influence.
If accompanied by a guide, he will take you to the Huynh family home to enjoy local lifestyle. If not linger back to the boat dock or take more time to enjoy the landscapes of Kim Bong.
Stop 12 Mr. HUYNH RY’S HOME (for visit)
Mr. Huynh Ry’s fascinating family home is also part of the nation’s heritage. Enjoy traditional village hospitality with the family before Returning straight down the main trail to the causeway bridge and back to the Craft Centre area where the boat will take you back to Hoi An Town.
Hue tour day trip with private A. C car, English speaking guide
boat cruise on Perfume river, entrance fees and lunch
Trip cost: in USD and per person
US$67 per person