Hanoi | Hanoi Travel Guide
In recent years, the Capital of Vietnam is gaining its footing. This Hanoi travel guide has got you covered why this 1,000-year-old city worth to be your next destination. By looking at its colonial buildings, Hanoi is a Southeast Asian city that blends the charms between Chinese and French influences perfectly.
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, you will get to see that its downtown area of the Old Quarter has become a sight to see where 36 roads intertwined and formed Hanoi’s oldest shopping center.
Geographically benefits from the Red River, Hanoi had made it to the world famous by introducing Halong Bay to the world. Visiting Hanoi is a complete package of cultural immersive experiences, historical sites, local bars, unique and flavorsome street food and virgin nature.
1.Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum | Hanoi Travel Guide
The marble edifice situated in sprawling Ba Dinh square is an eternal home for embalmed Ho Chi Minh, also known as ‘Uncle Ho’ despite the fact that it opposed to his wish to perform typical cremation and requested his ashes be scattered throughout the country. He was and will forever be the great president and the great leader in the struggle for national liberation and reunification of Vietnam. When setting foot in Hanoi, tourists shouldn’t miss to visit Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, one of the things to do in Hanoi.
The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum was built on faith and loyalty. It could be said that almost all structures in building it are the results of great contribution by the 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.Halong Bay | Hanoi Travel Guide
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. Favored among island hoppers, scuba divers and rock climbers, this vacation getaway can only be reached by boat. Halong Bay 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 parts of the islands are still unaffected by human presence due to the precipitous nature. The only thing to disturb you is wondrous seascape of limestone pillars. Choosing among which islands to hop on might be hard to decide, then Cat Ba National Park can be your best bet for avid hikers. For those who prefer to take a tour around the area, nothing beats cruising along the Halong Bay. This is unforgettable experience to watch the sunset over cotton candy sky.
3.Tam Coc | Hanoi Travel Guide
Overshadowed by its big brother, Tam Coc is Halong Bay on land and is on a par thanks to its spectacular nature which provide much-needed energy to whoever 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 in popularity since then as some movie scenes were filmed here. Spanning across 350 hectares, the territory of Tam Coc is not limited to rice paddies, but also the three caves which is the literal meaning of Tam Coc. So follow this Hanoi travel guide by driving 90 kilometers south of Hanoi and feast your eyes on the unending rows of rice fields against limestone outcrops. That is everything!
4.Hoan Kiem Lake & Ngoc Son Temple | Hanoi Travel Guide
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. Hoan Kiem Lake and Ngoc Son Temple are widely known among locals as a quiet and peaceful getaway of the city. It is centrally situated and also 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 have become attractions itself. 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 land by the Huc Bridge, a red wooden bridge connecting daily chaotic life of the city dwellers with spiritual realm. Sit back and relax by the lake and ponder about life can be on of the things to do in Hanoi too.
5.Hanoi Opera House | Hanoi Travel Guide
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, Paris’s celebrated opera house. 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 once was used to held many performances by Western artists for the elites audiences. Today, Hanoi Opera House is used to arrange art shows, concerts, traditional performances with the ability to accommodate audiences up to 589 velvet seats. Other than that, here too is a top photography spot for Vietnamese newlyweds and foreign tourists. So follow this Hanoi travel guide to visit Hanoi Opera House which is centrally located at the downtown intersection, where the 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.Dong Xuan Market | Hanoi Travel Guide
Mouthwatering 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. Toward the north of Hanoi Old Quarter lies a four-storey Soviet-style building where it is fully occupied with merchant stalls from Vietnamese local dishes, womenswear, men’s ties, traditional Vietnamese costume, fresh flowers, household appliance and a list goes on.
Having been a place to shop for 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 looking for souvenirs, head to the upper levels to find exclusive souvenir including Vietnamese conical hat, which is sold at wholesale price. Also, did you know that 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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