The historic about “Door-eye” - Spiritual Symbol Of The People In Hoi An

Explore The History “Door-eye” Symbol Of Hoi An Ancient Town

When visiting Hoi An Ancient Town, especially the old houses dating back more than 300-400 years, you might encounter the unique symbol on the door. There are many explanations for the presence of these “door-eye”. So what does the history “door-eye” symbol of Hoi An Ancient Town mean in spiritually and culturally? Let’s find out together through this article below!

The shape of the history door-eye in Hoi An

On the front doors of spiritual constructions, or any ancient houses in Hoi An, there are two wooden circles in the shape of a circle, a hexagon, or an octagon which are carved quite elaborately and sometimes painted illuminated. Hoi An people call this the “door-eye”.

The shape of the door-eye

In Hoi An, there are more than 20 different door-eye styles according to the concept of Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. The door-eye is divided into two parts: the “Center Part” and the “Rim Part”. The center of the “door” is often decorated with the ying-yang circle. The rim is shaped like chrysanthemums, sometimes decorated by the images of bats or an 8-trigram, which is very diverse and rich, carrying many spiritual meanings and wishes of the owners.

The meaning of the spiritual door-eye in Hoi An

There are many explanations for the presence of these “door-eye”. But for the most part, Hoi An people believe that the “door-eye” hanging in front of the house is because it is considered the “god’s eye” guarding the house. The “door-eye” is both a decoration and a spiritual element, like the gods who bring luck to the homeowner and drive away evil.

The meaning of the door-eye

Currently, the origin of the “door-eye” has not yet come to a definite and clear conclusion. But in terms of cultural and spiritual factors, it is similar to the “boat-eye” on boats of fishermen in the sea and islands. According to the people in Hoi An today – those who live in houses that have “door eyes”- think that “door-eye” are the souls of the houses, which are created to protect the owner from bad things, showing the concept of animism of the Vietnamese people.


It can be said that the door-eye is a unique spiritual symbol of the Vietnamese people in general and the people of Hoi An in particular. The animist belief – everything in the universe has its own soul- has been vividly and skillfully shown through the eyes of the door, thereby expressing the owner’s respect for the space they are living in.

In addition, it also shows the way that the Vietnamese view the universe, they believe that besides the physical world that humans live in, there is another world, the world of deceased souls, which can be able to interact with the real world.

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1. About our tour

– Visit 6 places to admire the heritage beauty and have a summarized about Hoi An Ancient Town included: Phuoc Bao Pagoda, Ba Mu Temple Gate, Thu Bon river, Japanese Bridge, Phung Hung Vietnamese Ancient House, Fujian Assembly Hall

>>> More information about our tour: The Walking Tour to the Ancient Town

2. Schedule expected (dependent on chosen option)

– Schedule: 08:30 am – 12:30 pm on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday (Tour duration: 4 hours )

– Maximum 20 slots

– Price: FREE

3. Cancellation flexibility: Free cancellation up to 24 hours before the start time

4. Meet your local tour guide, Bao

As a culture lover himself, he loves to visit, explore, and study history, people, and customs everywhere he goes. Hoi An Ancient Town is the place where he decided to settle down and stay for the rest of his life because of the huge value this little town brought to him. 

>>> Contact us at +84 88 942 3608 to reserve your spot and unlock the secrets of Hoi An! 

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