Hanoi | Hanoi Travel Guide
In recent years, the Capital of Vietnam is gaining its footing. This Hanoi travel guide has got you covered of where and why the city of 1,000 years history can be even more all-inclusive destination from colonial buildings showing the word that Hanoi is Southeast Asian city that has congruous mixture between Chinese and French influences.
Life in Hanoi is revolved around streets, which echoes through the iconic scooters, pho Vietnamese street food, and the sound of car horn literally every second. By way of locally experiencing Hanoi at its heart, such everyday monotony appears as a testament especially at the Old Quarter area which made up from 36 roads.
Geographically benefits from the Red River where it is settled on, Hanoi stays true to itself bragging about Red River & Halong Bay. Visiting Hanoi is a complete package of cultural trails, historical sites, pretty-pretty cafes, quaint street food, never-ending hustle and bustle, and virgin nature. From its preserved tradition to a touch of exuberant nature, Hanoi has long been awoken.
1.Hanoi Travel Guide | Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum
The marble edifice situated in sprawling Ba Dinh square is an eternal home for embalmed Ho Chi Minh, also known as ‘Uncle Ho’ whom the Vietnamese have great love for, the great president and the great leader in the struggle for national liberation and reunification of Vietnam that are still circulating throughout the area like when he was alive. When setting foot in Hanoi, foreign travelers cannot ignore to visit Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, one of the things to do in Hanoi, as each Vietnamese citizen almost never fails to express their gratitude to the national hero of Vietnam.
Contradict to Uncle Ho’s wish to perform typical cremation and requested his ashes be scattered throughout the country, the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum was built on faith and loyalty. The infrastructure of the museum from particles to giant parts are contribution of Vietnamese. With respect to keep their beloved uncle forever, granite and wood had been donated to decorate the museum. Not to mention the gardens surrounding the museum with various plant species, these are the seed of faith to create an intimate and familiar atmosphere around the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. So follow this Hanoi Travel Guide by going early before a long queue to enter the museum with proper etiquette. Finger-pointing, talking and taking photograph are strictly prohibited inside the museum.
2.Hanoi Travel Guide | Halong Bay
Halong Bay is probably a place for the word ‘ethereal beauty’ would have been invented. This Hanoi travel guide is not complete without the mention of Halong Bay, one of the places to visit in Hanoi. Towering limestone islets topped by forests rising from the emerald waters of the Gulf of Tonkin is best described Halong Bay. In favor among island hoppers, scuba divers and rock climbers, this vacation getaway can only be reached by boat giving it credit of unpolluted nature, which later has doubtlessly been acclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Halong Bay is brimming with 1,600 islands and islets. In an area off-limits to people, most of the islands are unaffected by human presence due to the precipitous nature. The only thing to disturb you is wondrous seascape of limestone pillars. Choosing among which island to hop on might be an overwhelming decision, then Cat Ba National Park can be your best bet for avid hikers. For those whose preference is to take a tour around the area, nothing beats cruising along the Halong Bay. From balconies, to sun deck, it is an experience all its own watching the sunset over cotton candy sky.
3.Hanoi Travel Guide | Tam Coc
Overshadowed by its big brother, Tam Coc is Halong Bay on land and is on a par with the beauty of natural spectacles providing much-needed green energy to whomever visited. Tam Coc is best described by rice paddies on Ninh Binh land in which the Ngo Dong River cuts through, and interrupted by karstic rock formations and limestone caves, allowing for languorous rowing-boat ride, one of the things to do in Hanoi. The rice paddies at its best extensively blooms in bright lime green and is so called the Green Sea by the Vietnamese.
After the famous film ‘Indochine’ won the Oscar in 1993, Tam Coc was gaining its footing ever since after words spread that some scenes were shot here. Spanning across 350 hectares, Tam Coc’s appeal is not limited to rice paddies, but also the three caves whose literal translation of Tam Coc is referred to. So follow this Hanoi travel guide by driving 90 kilometers south of Hanoi and cast a look on the seemingly unending rows of rice fields against limestone outcrops.That is everything!
4.Hanoi Travel Guide | Hoan Kiem Lake & Ngoc Son Temple
In the midst of Hanoi’s never-ending tumult, believe it or not, there really is a place where those bustle and hustle is muted. The so-called Hoan Kiem Lake and Ngoc Son Temple is on the lips of Hanoians for being a quiet and noiseless hideaway of the city. It is centrally situated and in close proximity from Hanoi’s Old Quarter, where most hotels located. Locally known as Sword Lake, this 12-hectare area is believed to make Hanoi a more airy and pleasant city to live in.
Places around Hoan Kiem Lake are attractions itself for this Hanoi travel guide. Ngoc Son or Temple of the Jade Mountain located on the small islet in the middle of the lake has been around for 177 years witnessing the ups and downs of the capital. The Jade Temple is connected to the lakeshore by the Huc Bridge, a red wooden bridge connecting daily chaotic life of the city dweller with spiritual realm. Take it easy by the lake and ponder about life can be on of the things to do in Hanoi too.
5.Hanoi Travel Guide | Hanoi Opera House
Hanoi’s 1,000 years of history is best appreciated through its largest theater which speaks volumes of major historical events of Vietnam under the French colonial administration. Hanoi Opera House, as one of the places to visit in Hanoi, was modeled after Palais Garnier, one of Paris’s celebrated monuments. Began construction in 1901 and finished in 1911, Hanoi Opera House was well decked out in European architectural style under the Renaissance period with crystal chandeliers, magnificent French murals on the ceiling and Italian-made marble floor.
Hanoi Opera House long ago used to host performances by Western artists for the elites audiences. Today, Hanoi Opera House is the stage for art shows, concerts, traditional performances accommodating with 589 velvet seats. Other than that, this Hanoi’s singular architectural landmark is a photo spot for vietnameses newlyweds and foreign travelers alike. So follow this Hanoi travel guide to visit Hanoi Opera House which is centrally located at the downtown intersection, where five main city roads lead to.
Tips: – Purchasing tickets to visit inside is required with VND 400.000/pax
– Hanoi Opera House is open for tour every Monday and Friday from 10:30 – 12:00. hrs.
– Duration of visit: 1 hour 30 minutes
6.Hanoi Travel Guide | Dong Xuan Market
Decent street food, fresh produces, and souvenir worth bringing home are great reasons enough to drop buy a visit at Dong Xuan Market, one of the places to visit in Hanoi. Don’t leave Hanoi just yet if you haven’t seen the city’s bustling shopping scene. On the northern edge of Hanoi Old Quarter, a four-storey Soviet-style building is busily occupied with ocean of merchant stalls, of which are vietnamese local dishes, finished dresses, men’s ties, traditional vietnamese costume, fresh flowers, household appliance and a list goes on.
Standing side by side the Hanoian since 1889, Dong Xuan Market is the largest indoor market with a bustling wet market portion on the ground floor just like every market where seafood, butchered meat and veggies are put up for sale. For those who keep an eye out for souvenirs, head to the upper levels to find a collection of exclusive souvenir including vietnamese conical hat, which are sold at wholesale prices. And did you know local dishes are best accompanied by vietnamese coffee. So do not think twice to follow this Hanoi travel guide and visit Dong Xuan Market!
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