Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An is a skillful and harmonious combination of three architectural styles: Japanese, Chinese, and Vietnamese. It preserves numerous valuable antiques that carry significant philosophical meanings, reminding future generations of precious lessons about being a good person and upholding values of benevolence, propriety, and righteousness. Due to these reasons, the ancient house has become an appealing tourist destination for both domestic and international visitors, including government officials who come to admire and explore its beauty.

An Overview of Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An

  • Address: 101 Nguyen Thai Hoc, Minh An Ward, Hoi An, Quang Nam, Vietnam.

Tan Ky Ancient House is located within the Hoi An Ancient Town area. The front of the house faces the bustling Nguyen Thai Hoc street, while the serene Thu Bon River flows behind it. It is easy to find and visit this ancient house.

+ Opening hours: 8:30 AM – 5:45 PM

+ Entrance fee: 35,000 vnđ per person, per visit. The ticket is valid for one day only. Guided tour fees are waived for groups of 8 or more members.

+ Duration of visit: approximately 20 minutes.

Tan Ky Ancient House
The Facade of Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An

How to Get to Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An

Tan Ky Ancient House

Distance from Da Nang to Hoi An is approximately 35km to the south, and the travel time by car is around 60 minutes. There are several ways to reach Hoi An Ancient Town:

You can ride a motorbike from Da Nang city, following National Highway 1A towards the south for about 27km until you reach Vinh Dien Road, then head to the center of Hoi An.

From the central bus station in Da Nang, you can take a bus to Hoi An at a very affordable fare of 30,000 Vietnamese Dong per person, per trip. The journey takes approximately 80 minutes by bus.

If you prefer a faster option, you can take a taxi, which will cost around 450,000 – 500,000 Vietnamese Dong per trip. The travel time by taxi is only about 55-60 minutes.

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Explore a 200-Year-Old Ancient House

The Story of Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An

Tan Ky Ancient House

Tan Ky Ancient House, built in 1741, is a privately-owned ancient house. Over the course of 200 years, it has witnessed numerous historical events. Currently, the owner still resides on the upper floor of the house, while the ground floor is open for visitors. Despite being inhabited by seven generations, Tan Ky Ancient House has been remarkably well-preserved.

Mr. Le Cong, a Chinese-origin businessman, became wealthy through trading agricultural products during that time. He used boats to navigate the Thu Bon River, bringing back agricultural goods to Hoi An for trading, which contributed to his prosperity. In the following generation, the house was named Tan Ky, signifying success in business.

The front of the house faces Nguyen Thai Hoc street, a bustling commercial hub, while the serene Thu Bon River flows behind it, providing convenient access for importing goods.

In the 20th century, the sedimentation of the Thu Bon River caused the river mouth to narrow, making it difficult for large trading vessels to enter Hoi An. As a result, the once-famous trading port gradually declined, affecting the business of the Le family, and leading to its eventual decline.

Tan Ky Ancient House has witnessed many historical floods. The peak was in 1964 when floodwaters reached the roof of the house’s ground floor. However, the house remained unscathed, as if challenging the erosive power of time.

Architectural Features of Tan Ky Ancient House

Tan Ky Ancient House is a two-story structure with three sections, showcasing a unique blend of architectural styles from three cultural backgrounds: Japan, China, and Vietnam.

+ Japanese architectural style: The living room is designed according to Feng Shui principles, incorporating the five elements of metal, wood, water, fire, and earth. The tiled roof is arranged in a harmonious yin-yang pattern, providing a cool and airy atmosphere in the summer and a warm and cozy environment in the winter.

+ Chinese architectural style: Following the characteristic tube-shaped design of Hoi An’s ancient town, the interior is divided into multiple separate rooms. Despite the absence of windows, the space is not stuffy or oppressive. The front of the house features an open storefront for business activities, while the rear side faces the tranquil Thu Bon River, facilitating the import and trade of goods. A central courtyard maximizes natural light and airflow within the house.

+ Vietnamese architectural style: The house is designed as a three-section structure in accordance with traditional Vietnamese architecture, with a tiled roof. Notable features include elaborately carved wooden columns, beams, and trinhs (vertical wooden bars connecting the columns), depicting iconic symbols such as “dragon head and fish tail architecture,” “red pumpkin fruit,” “pomegranate,” or intricately carved motifs representing longevity, happiness, and abundance.

Tan Ky Ancient House
Skylight Design Helps Make the House More Airy

Wood is the predominant construction material used in Tan Ky Ancient House. The beams and rafters are made from Lim wood, a precious timber, while the doors are crafted from durable Mít wood. The floor tiles and exterior decorative stones are sourced from Bat Trang, Thanh Hoa, and Non Nuoc, reflecting the passage of time.

Tan Ky Ancient House

One interesting aspect of this ancient house is that it doesn’t use a single nail. The columns and beams are ingeniously connected using interlocking joinery techniques, ensuring stability and strength. This unique feature has attracted the attention of numerous television stations for filming and documentaries.

Valuable Antiques with Enduring Value

Tan Ky Ancient House
Valuable Antiques with Centuries-old Age

Alongside its unique and ancient architecture, the display of long-standing antiques within the house creates a peculiar attraction for visitors when they hear the stories behind them.

Tan Ky Ancient House
A Porcelain Cup from the Time of Confucius

A Porcelain Cup from the Time of Confucius, in Vietnam, there is only one incredibly unique piece. According to recorded history, when determining its age, the porcelain cup “Confucius” dates back 550-600 years.

This cup has been in the Lê family for 200 years. It has a peculiar shape, appearing very simple on the inside, but it holds a profound meaning: when filled with water, it can only hold 8 portions, any more and the water automatically flows out.

The purpose that our ancestors aimed for was to restrain their behavior and keep their minds pure. According to the Lê family’s account, this priceless ancient porcelain cup was purchased by our ancestors from wealthy merchants in China and brought here for trade.

Tan Ky Ancient House
The Yin-Yang Eyes Symbolize the Aura and Prosperity Desires of the Owner of the Ancient House Tan Ky in Hoi An.
Tan Ky Ancient House
In addition to the ancient architecture within the house, the management board has set up two small, lovely corners to display badges and unique souvenirs for tourists to purchase as gifts for their loved ones and friends.

Despite the passage of time and the erosion of history, the 200-year-old Tan Ky Ancient House still stands tall, bearing witness to the ups and downs of history.

People often liken Tan Ky Ancient House in Hoi An to a “Living Museum,” as visiting the ancient house allows one to step back into the lives of the town’s residents in the past. If you have the opportunity to visit Hoi An’s ancient town, be sure to explore the 200-year-old Tan Ky Ancient House, which has witnessed the lives of seven generations. Take the chance to delve into the history of this first nationally recognized historical relic.