The Old House of Phung Hung in Hoi An quietly stands with its ancient and distinctly East Asian charm. Despite the 200 years of historical ups and downs, the old house still proudly stands tall, preserving its original, pristine beauty.
The Old House of Phung Hung is considered a cultural heritage of Hoi An’s Old Town, renowned for its unique architectural significance. It is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Hoi An that you shouldn’t miss when visiting Hoi An’s Old Town. Let’s explore what makes this place special in the following article by VnCarRentals.com.
Where is The Old House of Phung Hung Located?
One thing can be assured, there is not a single resident of Hoi An who is unaware of The Old House of Phung Hung. This house is situated on Minh Khai Street, at No. 4, Minh An Ward. It is also near the famous Japanese Bridge. Visitors only need to cross the bridge to reach this house.
In the past, this area was known as the land of dragons and phoenixes. This was due to the bustling trade and meetings of merchants from both within and outside the country that took place here.
Directions on how to get to The Old House of Phung Hung in Hoi An
Phung Hung Ancient House is located within the precinct of the Old Town, right next to the Japanese Bridge. You can reach this destination using one of three methods:
- You can rent a motorbike or take a taxi to travel from Da Nang to Hoi An, which takes approximately 45 – 50 minutes to reach.
- Alternatively, you can choose to take the Hoi An bus, which costs around 30,000 VND per person each way, with a travel time of about 1 hour and 20 minutes.
- If you require a fast, safe, and convenient transportation service, you can immediately book a car rental service with a driver in Hoi an from VnCarRentals.com. Our car rental service from Da Nang to Hoi An will ensure you have a comfortable journey, with a team of professional drivers who can communicate in basic English, ready to pick you up at your hotel lobby, the airport, or any location in the city of Da Nang.
The history of The Old House of Phung Hung
Do you know who built Phung Hung Ancient House and where its name originated? According to recorded documents, the information about this ancient house is as follows:
The time when Phung Hung Ancient House was constructed.
Phung Hung Ancient House in Hoi An is approximately 240 years old, officially built in 1780. This period marked the peak of prosperity and development for Hoi An’s trading port. Therefore, when you visit this ancient house, you can easily imagine the vibrant scene of the old town during that time.
The owner of this ancient house was a Vietnamese merchant. Initially, his purpose in building it was to create a long-lasting business. The first products he sold were cinnamon, pepper, salt, and glassware. The homeowner’s desire was merely to achieve success in business, so he named the house “Phung Hung,” which also happened to be his business name, with the intention of prosperity.
Design of The Old House of Phung Hung
The wealthy merchant had profound knowledge and invested extensively in the house’s design. This architecture combines elements from three main styles: Vietnamese, Japanese, and Chinese.
Chinese influences are evident in the balcony systems, windows, and the main entrance of the house. The most iconic feature representing Japanese architecture is the large roof of the house. The front and rear roofs, along with the house’s columns, strongly reflect Vietnamese architectural culture. The primary construction material used for this ancient house is precious wood. Perhaps that’s why, after more than two centuries, Phung Hung Ancient House still retains its elegance, fully showcasing its value.
Eight generations have lived in The Old House of Phung Hung
The current house still has owners who live there and preserve the home’s values. They are the eighth generation descendants of the original merchant. The family has even established a hand embroidery workshop in the house to create beautiful souvenir items. Visitors can purchase these items as souvenirs.
The homeowner is very knowledgeable about the history of the ancient house. Therefore, if you want to learn more, feel free to ask for their assistance. The family members take pride in explaining the unique architectural elements and history of the house. So don’t hesitate to request their insights and knowledge about the ancient house!
National-Level Historical and Cultural Monument
In 1993, Phung Hung Ancient House was recognized as one of the national-level historical and cultural monuments. As a peaceful child of Hoi An Town, after more than 200 years, this house has witnessed many generations of people in this land.
It is etched into the memories of the Hoi An residents as a horrifying flood in 1964. At that time, the high water level flooded the entire wooden floor and the ancient house became a safe haven for over 160 people.
In 1999, nature once again raged with a major flood, accompanied by a massive typhoon that submerged the entire neighborhood. Thanks to a collapsible gate, the homeowner was able to mitigate damage to the goods on the ground floor. The economic life in such circumstances was thoroughly restored as a result.
Visiting The Old House of Phung Hung in Hoi An
When entering The Old House of Phung Hung, the first thing that will surely impress you is the tube-shaped structure of the house. The house’s frontage is spacious, with 2 floors, 2 wings, and as many as 4 roofs. This design was especially suitable for the business and trading needs of the past. The main construction material for the house is ironwood, along with other precious woods. Right from the main entrance, you’ll notice two imposing door panels.
According to historical records, these panels served as both decorations and guardian spirits. They were believed to guard the house, ward off evil spirits, and enhance the homeowner’s fortune.
Unique Ground Floor Architecture
The ground floor of the ancient house was originally used for displaying and trading goods. Today, it serves as a space to showcase ancient artifacts and welcome visitors.
When you visit, you can take a moment to relax at the set of benches placed in the middle of the house. The surrounding walls are adorned with unique and artistic carvings. These intricate details are crafted by the talented Kim Bong carpenters.
The structural columns of the ancient house are reinforced by 80 ironwood pillars. To minimize sagging and prevent termites, these wooden columns are placed on stone bases. This prevents direct contact between the ground and the base of the columns, minimizing potential damage.
The Second Floor of The Old House of Phung Hung
It would be a great loss to skip the opportunity to explore the second floor of this ancient house. As you ascend to the second floor, you will immediately feel a sense of sacredness and antiquity. This is where you’ll find the ancestral altar and the Goddess altar.
A table is placed in front of the altar, along with seven dice made of chalcedony. Whenever the family goes on a trip, they roll the dice to determine the auspicious time to depart.
Because the house is located near the river, the loft is designed with many square voids, which are known as collapsible doors. When floods come, the homeowners can disassemble these doors for the convenient movement of goods from the ground floor to the loft.
The roof is made of yin-yang tiles, which offers benefits:
- The house in Hoi An’s Old Town is well-ventilated during hot summer days.
- It retains warmth in the winter months.
- The tiles are carved with images of carp, symbolizing good luck.
Other Nearby Attractions to Visit near The Old House of Phung Hung
In addition to Phung Hung Ancient House, there are several other famous tourist attractions that you shouldn’t miss when visiting Hoi An. Here are some interesting places to check out:
Hoi An Night Market: Explore the vibrant and bustling night market in Hoi An, known for its wide range of local products, souvenirs, and street food.
Japanese Covered Bridge (Chua Cau): Visit the iconic Japanese Covered Bridge, an 18th-century architectural gem that symbolizes Hoi An’s history.
Phuc Kien Assembly Hall: Explore the Phuc Kien Assembly Hall, a Chinese-style temple that showcases intricate architectural details and beautiful interior decorations.
Quang Dong Assembly Hall: Discover the Quang Dong Assembly Hall, another remarkable Chinese temple in Hoi An, known for its ornate design and cultural significance.
These attractions are all within a reasonable distance from Phung Hung Ancient House and offer a diverse range of cultural and historical experiences in Hoi An.
Things to Note When Visiting The Old House of Phung Hung
Even though it’s a famous tourist attraction, The Old House of Phung Hung is also a national cultural heritage site. Therefore, you need to keep a few things in mind:
- Choose the right time for your visit, avoiding holidays and festivals when it can be crowded and less comfortable.
- When visiting the ancient house, avoid touching any cultural relics.
- Do not vandalize, litter, or play around while visiting the ancient house.
- Phung Hung Ancient House is located within Hoi An’s Old Town, so plan your itinerary accordingly for easier transportation.
Visiting The Old House of Phung Hung in Hoi An feels like immersing yourself in the bustling world of ancient traders. You’ll experience the daily life, spiritual life, and the soul of the people in this ancient town. Hopefully, you will have a wonderful experience when you get the chance to visit The Old House of Phung Hung in Hoi An.