Find Inspiration for Your Next Tattoo in Vietnam

Are you considering getting a tattoo in Vietnam and need some inspiration?

Perhaps you’re not sure what design to choose or where to go for your next ink experience.

If you’re looking for ideas for your next tattoo, look no further than the beautiful city of Hoi An in Vietnam.

Hoi An is a picturesque city in Central Vietnam known for its rich cultural heritage, stunning architecture, and breathtaking landscapes.

In this article, we will explore the top places to visit in Hoi An for tattoo inspiration and what you need to know before getting inked.

Hoi An Ancient Town
Hoi An Ancient Town: Photo by

Hoi An’s Magical Ancient Town

If you’re planning a trip to Vietnam, Hoi An’s Ancient Town should definitely be on your itinerary.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a magical destination that offers a glimpse into the country’s rich cultural history.

From preserved buildings to a diverse cultural mix, the town has plenty to offer visitors looking for inspiration for their next tattoo.

Exploring the Streets of Hoi An’s Ancient Town

One of the best ways to experience Hoi An’s ancient town and look for inspiration for your tattoo designs is to wander its narrow streets and alleys.

The town’s preserved buildings reflect a blend of Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese influences, making it a unique cultural melting pot.

The ornate architecture and ancient symbols are sure to inspire you, and the traditional Vietnamese artwork is simply breathtaking.

Hoi An Ancient Town: Photo by Pigalle
Hoi An Ancient Town: Photo by

Traditional Vietnamese Characters and Animals

One of the more fascinating aspects of Hoi An’s ancient town is its use of traditional Vietnamese characters and animals in its artwork and architecture.

Many of the buildings in the town feature images of dragons, which locals believe bring good luck and prosperity.

Other common symbols include turtles, which are associated with longevity and wisdom, and phoenixes, which represent rebirth and renewal.

These elements are all deeply rooted in the country’s cultural history and make for beautiful, unique inspirations for your tattoo designs.

Dragon painting collaboration
Collaboration painting by @trungkien.2302 and

Mythological Inspiration in Hoi An’s Ancient Town

Another fascinating aspect of Hoi An’s Ancient Town is the role that mythology plays in its culture.

Traditional Vietnamese mythology is filled with stories of powerful gods and goddesses, dragons, tigers, and other magical creatures.

One of the most famous myths is the legend of Lac Long Quan and Au Co, the parents of Vietnam.

According to legend, Lac Long Quan was a dragon prince who fell in love with Au Co, a fairy. Together, they had 100 children, who went on to populate the country.

So, whether you’re interested in art, architecture, or mythology, there is the tattoo design inspiration for everyone in this beautiful town.

Dragon from the Lý Era. (Rồng thời Lý)
Dragon from the Lý Era. (Rồng thời Lý) – Photo by Xuân Lam
Ngũ Hổ (Five Tigers) - painting by Hàng Trống
Ngũ Hổ (Five Tigers) – painting by Hàng Trống
Lac Long Quan and Au Co - Photo
Lac Long Quan and Au Co – Photo by Saigoneer

The Hoi An Night Market

The Hoi An Night Market is a vibrant and bustling place to visit in the city. You’ll find an incredible selection of street food, handicrafts, and souvenirs here.

But it’s also an excellent place to find inspiration for your next tattoo.

Take a slow walk through the market, take in the sensory overload of smells, sights, and sounds, and you might just find the perfect design for your next ink.

Lady browsing at Hoi An Night Market
Hoi An Night Market

Tattoo Studios in Hoi An: Embracing Art and Tradition

For those looking to get a tattoo in Vietnam, Hoi An is home to several high-quality tattoo studios that offer a range of services to suit your needs. 

Whether you’re after a custom design, a flash tattoo, or a cover-up, you’ll find a studio in Hoi An that can cater to your desires.

One of the top studios in Hoi An is The Hangout Tattoo Studio, which has garnered a loyal following among both locals and visitors. 

The studio prides itself on providing a unique and personalized experience to each client, ensuring that every tattoo is literally a work of art.

The Hangout Artist - David Do - Dragon
The Hangout Artist – David Do (@knifeforyourlife)

Traditional-Style Tattoo Inspiration

While modern tattooing may be relatively new to Vietnam, the tradition of tattooing in the country dates back centuries.

In traditional Vietnamese culture, tattoos were seen as a form of protection and were believed to have magical powers that could ward off evil spirits.

Many of the traditional tattoo designs in Vietnam feature images of animals and mythical creatures, such as dragons, tigers, and phoenixes. These designs often hold deep cultural significance and reflect the country’s rich mythology and folklore.

The Hangout Artist - Trình Nhật - Dragon tattoo
The Hangout Artist – Trình Nhật (@tr.ink91)

If you’re interested in embracing the art and tradition of Vietnam, there are tattoo studios in Hoi An that specialize in traditional-style tattoos.

These studios offer unique designs that are steeped in history and culture, making them a popular choice for those looking to connect with Vietnam’s past.

The Hangout Tattoo Studio - Hoi An
The Hangout Studio – Hoi An

Traditional Vietnamese Art: Exploring Hoi An’s Vibrant Creative Scene

Hoi An is a treasure trove of traditional Vietnamese art, with a vibrant creative scene that showcases the country’s rich cultural heritage.

From paintings and sculptures to textiles, ceramics, and wood carvings, there’s no shortage of tattoo inspiration for those looking to immerse themselves in Vietnam’s art scene.

An inspiring way to discover traditional Vietnamese art in Hoi An is by taking a stroll through the streets of the Old Town.

Dong Ho - Folk Woodcut Painting
Dong Ho – Folk Woodcut Painting
Dish with design of two water birds, 15th century Vietnam
Dish with design of two water birds, 15th century Vietnam

Meet an Artist and Find Inspiration

You’ll find a variety of street-side artists showcasing their work in Hoi An Old Town. From colorful watercolor paintings to intricate wood carvings. Many of these artists are happy to chat with visitors about their work and share their artistic process.

If you’re interested in exploring Hoi An’s more established art scene, be sure to visit some of the town’s famous artists, such as the late Huỳnh Phương Đông, whose work is characterized by bold colors and strong lines.

Tranh của họa sĩ - Huỳnh Phương Đông
Tranh của họa sĩ – Huỳnh Phương Đông
Vietnamese Silk Painting - Nguyen Art Gallery
Vietnamese Silk Painting – Nguyen Art Gallery

Another well-known artist is Dinh Cuong, who specializes in traditional Vietnamese silk paintings.

When it comes to incorporating traditional Vietnamese art elements into your tattoo design, the possibilities are endless.

Consider incorporating the lotus flower, which is often seen as a symbol of purity and enlightenment, or dragons, which are believed to bring good luck and fortune.

Another popular choice is to include your own interpretation of the Vietnamese flag, which features a yellow star on a red background.

This can be a great way to showcase your love for Vietnam and pay homage to the country’s rich cultural heritage.

Restored Le Dynasty Buddhist Statue - Post Tran Dynasty Gallery, National Museum of Vietnamese History, Hanoi
Restored Le Dynasty Buddhist Statue – Post Tran Dynasty Gallery, National Museum of Vietnamese History, Hanoi

Traditional Vietnamese Clothing: A Rich Source of Tattoo Inspiration

Vietnamese clothing, or Việt phục, is a fascinating blend of indigenous and foreign elements that have evolved over time.

From the flowing áo dài dress to the colorful nón lá hat, traditional Vietnamese clothing is both beautiful and intricate, with a rich history and cultural significance.

Among the most striking aspects of Vietnamese clothing are the intricate patterns and designs used in the garments. These designs are often inspired by nature and feature bold colors and intricate details.

For example, the lotus flower, which is a symbol of purity and enlightenment, is a popular motif in Vietnamese clothing, as are depictions of dragons, which are believed to bring good luck and fortune.

If you’re considering a tattoo design inspired by traditional Vietnamese clothing, there are many patterns and designs to choose from.

For example, the delicate floral patterns found in the áo dài dress could be translated into a stunning tattoo design, while the bold dragon designs found in men’s clothing could make for a striking tattoo on the back or arm.

Other popular motifs include depictions of the nón lá hat, which is often decorated with delicate floral patterns, and the áo bà ba shirt, which features bold stripes and intricate embroidery.

Vietnamese Nón Lá - Conical Hat
Vietnamese Nón Lá – Conical Hat

Vietnamese Cuisine: A Feast for the Senses and Inspiration for Tattoo Designs

The food in Vietnam is a delight for the senses, with a tantalizing mix of flavors, textures, and colors. But did you know that this delicious cuisine can also inspire your next tattoo design?

Take the humble banh mi, for example. This classic Vietnamese sandwich is a work of art in itself, with layers of flavors and textures that can inspire a tattoo design.

The crisp and chewy baguette, the creamy mayonnaise, the spicy chili sauce, the savory pork or tofu, and the fresh herbs and vegetables all come together to create a beautiful and delicious masterpiece.

Or consider phở, the rich and complex noodle soup that is a staple of Vietnamese cuisine. The delicate interplay of herbs, spices, meats, and noodles in a steaming bowl of phở can provide inspiration for a tattoo design that incorporates rich, intricate patterns and colors.

Even the way Vietnamese dishes are presented can offer ideas for a tattoo design. The colorful and artfully arranged plating of dishes such as bún chả or gỏi cuốn can inspire a tattoo design that incorporates vibrant colors and intricate details.

In the future, if you’re enjoying a delicious Vietnamese meal, take a closer look at the ingredients and presentation.

Who knows? You may just find inspiration for your next tattoo design.

The Hangout Artist: Micky NG
The Hangout Artist:

Temples and Pagodas: A Treasure Trove of Tattoo Inspiration in Hoi An

Hoi An is not only known for its ancient town but also for its stunning temples and pagodas. These sacred places are not only a testament to the region’s religious and cultural heritage but also a treasure trove of inspiration for tattoo designs.

The intricate carvings, statues, and decorations found in these temples and pagodas are a true wonder to behold. From the majestic dragons and lions to the serene Buddha statues, the animal and mythological figures depicted in these sacred spaces can inspire a tattoo design that exudes power, wisdom, and grace.

You will find traditional Vietnamese characters and calligraphy on the walls and ceilings of these holy sites. The graceful strokes and intricate details of these characters can inspire your tattoo design, adding a touch of elegance and cultural significance.

The temples and pagodas in Hoi An also offer a glimpse into Vietnamese mythology and folklore. The tales of heroes and gods, such as the story of the turtle and the golden sword, can provide inspiration for a tattoo design that tells a story or conveys a message.

So the next time you visit a temple or pagoda in Hoi An, take a moment to appreciate the artistry and symbolism of the carvings and decorations. You may just find inspiration for your next tattoo design.

Quan Cong Temple (Quan Thanh Mieu)
Quan Cong Temple (Quan Thanh Mieu) – Photo: @picturesbyindy

Natural Beauty: Finding Tattoo Inspiration in Hoi An’s Surroundings

Hoi An is surrounded by some of Vietnam’s most breathtaking natural landscapes, offering endless inspiration for tattoo designs.

Whether it’s the dramatic mountain ranges of the Ha Giang Loop, the mysterious caves, the winding rivers, or the terraced rice paddies of Sapa, there is no shortage of beauty to admire.

One of the most stunning features of Hoi An is its pristine beaches, where you can witness the sun rising or setting in a blaze of vibrant colors.

The intricate patterns in the sand, the gentle curves of the waves, or the playful fish that swim in the waters can inspire a tattoo design that captures the essence of nature’s beauty.

The lush forests and lush fields around Hoi An are home to an array of wildlife and plants.

From the majestic water buffaloes to the delicate lotus flowers and cherry blossoms, the flora and fauna of Hoi An can provide a wealth of inspiration for your tattoo design.

Sông Thu Bồn - Thu Bồn River - Hoi An
Sông Thu Bồn – Thu Bồn River – Hoi An

If you’re feeling adventurous, take a trip to the Ha Giang Loop in Northern Vietnam, where the towering mountains and winding roads offer a breathtaking view of the surrounding countryside.

Or explore the many caves and rivers around Vietnam, where the natural formations and play of light and shadows can spark your imagination.

In short, the natural beauty of Hoi An is a boundless source of inspiration for tattoo designs. The key is to keep your eyes open and your mind receptive to the wonders of the world around you.

Who knows what kind of design you’ll come up with?

Scarecrows and Lotus Flowers
Scarecrows and Lotus Flowers

What You Need to Know Before Getting Inked

When it comes to getting a tattoo in Vietnam, finding a tattoo artist you trust is crucial. You should have faith in their judgment and expertise to help you create the perfect design for you.

Additionally, it’s essential to do your research before getting a tattoo. Look for a reputable artist with a strong portfolio and positive reviews. Ask for recommendations from friends, other travelers, or locals who have had work done in the area.

Once you’ve found the right artist, take the time to carefully consider the design and placement of your tattoo. Make sure it’s something that you’ll be happy with for years to come and that it complements your body’s natural contours.

After getting your tattoo, it’s essential to take good care of it to ensure it heals properly and looks great over time. Follow your artist’s aftercare instructions carefully, including keeping your tattoo clean and moisturized.

With the right artist and proper care, your tattoo can be a beautiful and meaningful addition to your body art collection.


In conclusion, Hoi An is an ideal destination to find inspiration for your next tattoo. Its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty offer endless possibilities for unique and meaningful designs.

However, before getting a tattoo, it’s essential to do your research and find a reputable tattoo artist. Take your time to consider the design and placement of your tattoo carefully, and follow your artist’s aftercare instructions to ensure it stays looking its best.

Getting a tattoo in Hoi An is a one-of-a-kind experience that combines art, culture, and travel.

You’ll have the opportunity to take home a permanent souvenir that reflects your journey and memories in Vietnam.

So, why not make your trip to Hoi An even more unforgettable with a meaningful and beautifully designed tattoo?

Hoi An Ancient Town Tattoo by The Hangout
Hoi An Ancient Town Tattoo by The Hangout


Is it safe to get a tattoo in Hoi An?

Certainly! It’s important to note that Vietnamese tattoo artists are known for their cleanliness and use of high-quality imported inks and equipment.

However, it’s still essential to do your research and find a reputable artist to ensure a safe and satisfying tattoo experience.

Look for a studio with a good reputation, clean facilities, and experienced artists, and don’t be afraid to ask questions about their sterilization techniques and equipment.

By taking the necessary precautions, you can have peace of mind and enjoy your tattoo experience in Hoi An.

How much does a tattoo in Hoi An cost?

The cost of a tattoo in Hoi An varies depending on several factors, such as the size, design, and complexity of the tattoo, as well as the experience and reputation of the artist.

For a small to medium-sized tattoo, you can expect to pay between $80 and $120 per hour to an experienced artist in a professional studio.

Can I get a custom tattoo design in Hoi An?

Absolutely. However, keep in mind that tattoo artists in Hoi An are often busy, so it’s best to contact them in advance to discuss your idea and book an appointment for a custom tattoo design.

This way, you can ensure that the artist has enough time to create a design that meets your expectations and schedule a session to get it inked.

Do I need to make an appointment to get a tattoo in Hoi An?

That’s correct! It’s always best to make an appointment in advance, especially if you have a specific design in mind or if you’re traveling during peak seasons.

Some studios may also accept walk-ins, but it’s best to call ahead and check first to avoid any disappointment.

How do I take care of my tattoo after getting it done in Hoi An?

Your tattoo artist will give you aftercare instructions. This may include cleaning, avoiding direct sunlight, swimming, or soaking in water for a few weeks after getting the tattoo.

Many professional tattoo studios in Hoi An use second skin, a protective covering that reduces healing time to 5-8 days.

This helps you plan your travel arrangements and reduces the chance of infection and sun damage when on the move. That way you can spend less time worrying about your tattoo and more time taking in the beautiful sites, smells, and sounds in Vietnam.