People in Vietnam are different from those in other countries, whether it’s about custom, culture, beliefs or likes. One of the places which you must visit is Hanoi. Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam situated on the banks of the Red River. Earlier it was known as Thang Long which was later changed to Hanoi in 1831. Hanoi means “Between Rivers”. Vietnam has been taken by French and Japanese twice, French took Hanoi in 1873 and 1946 while Japan occupied it in 1940 and 1945. After a struggle for 9 years against the French forces, in 1954, Hanoi was made the capital of independent North Vietnam and later of reunified Vietnam, when North and South Vietnam were reunited on July 2, 1976. At present Hanoi is the second largest city in Vietnam. This city is growing at a fast speed with rapid construction boom lately. Hanoi is ranked at 39 by Emporis in the list of cities with the most skyscrapers (more than 100m). Hanoi has a warm, humid subtropical climate with abundant precipitation. From may to august, the city experiences hot and humid weather with plentiful rainfall. From September to October, there is a decrease in temperature and precipitation. Winter lasts from November to January with the dry and cool weather. During February, it remains cloudy and foggy. Such diversity in weather makes Hanoi a must visit place. Below we are suggesting you some things to do in Hanoi.
Things to do in Hanoi:
1.) Heaven of Food
Hanoi is known for its mouth-watering food which is bound to make you forget about your fast food. Most of the famous Vietnamese dishes are considered to have originated in Hanoi itself. Such food includes Cha ca La Vong, Pho which is a Vietnamese noodle, Banh Cuon and Bun cha. Do not forget to have a bite to them. This is really going to be one of the most delicious things to do in Hanoi.
2.) Old Quarter
If you want to have a feel of old Hanoi, Old quarter, near Hoan Kiem Lake is the place you should visit. This place has the real street layout and architecture of old Hanoi. Visiting the place is one of the most delightful things to do in Hanoi. Here you can find the above mentioned famous Vietnamese food. So, enjoy food along with the feel of old Hanoi.
3.) Hanoi as City of Lakes
Hanoi is sometimes called as the city of lakes as this city constitutes of famous lakes such as Hoan Kiem Lake, West Lake and Bay Mau Lake (which is in Thonghat park). Hoan Kiem Lake is also called Sword lake which is a historical and cultural center of Hanoi. West Lake is the largest lake in Hanoi, famous for spending quality time, plus you can find many temples in this area. Going to the lake will prove to be one of the most excellent things to do in Hanoi. The lakeside road is appropriate for jogging, bicycling and sightseeing. Westlake sunset view from Sofitel plaza rooftop bar is a must for sunset lover.
4.) St. Joseph’s Cathedral
St, Joseph’s cathedral is a church situated on the Nha Tho Street in the Hoan Kiem district of Hanoi. This is a 19th-century Neo-Gothic style church. This was one of the earliest structures build by the French government in Indochina and was completed on December 24, 1886. It is the oldest church in Hanoi. You can visit this church to have a taste of French architectures.
5.) Vietnam Museum of Ethnology
Vietnam Museum of ethnology is a great place to know and learn about Vietnam’s people. You will love the exhibits in this museum. The moment you walk into this museum, you will be welcomed by a huge wall dedicated to introducing different ethnic groups living in Vietnam. It is an excellent way to appreciate the diversity of Vietnamese society. You will also love their exhibits on the living quarters of the different groups. You will have no confusion moving around the museum and understanding the exhibits as this museum offers both Vietnamese and English descriptions.
6.) One Pillar Pagoda
This architecture is a must visit place located on the Ho Chi Minh complex. This temple is among the most iconic in Hanoi and rises out of a lotus pond on a single pillar. It is believed that this temple was built by one of the emperors who wanted to have a son. You should visit this temple for its uniqueness.
7.) Hanoi Opera House
The Hanoi opera house has a great architectural value as it symbolizes a significant period in the history of architectural expansion in Vietnam under the French at the end of the 19th century and early 20th century. Watch this at night and you will be dazzled by its appearance under warm lighting. It is known for holding important meetings, conferences and also hosting an amazing art performance of both national and international levels.
8.) Vietnam Military History Museum
This museum is unique as it is different from other war museums. Here you can find an interesting depiction of Vietnamese conflicts. You can also find the portrayal of all sorts of dreadful weapons. You can see depictions of crashed planes, symbols of revolutionary spirit like instruments, slogans and banners. This is a must visit for those interested in war history.
9.) Ba Vi National Park
The Ba Vi National Park is a naturally reserved place situated around 48 km from downtown Hanoi. It is famous for its 3 peaked mountain which is most of the time remains covered with clouds. This park has amazing scenery and a diverse variety of flora and fauna. Going to the park is one of the most fun things to do in Hanoi with kids. There you can also find an 11th-century ancient temple located on the top of the tallest mountain which offers a mesmerizing view if surrounding countryside. It is a perfect place for nature lovers.
10.) Dong Xuan Market
Dong Xuan Market is the only and biggest of its kind in Hanoi. This giant complex consists of several floors of apparel, fashion, and souvenirs which are available at reasonable prices. You can also come here for having quick bites. Shopping at this market is among the most awesome things to do in Hanoi.
11.) Water puppet Theatre
Water Puppet Theatre is a world famous theatre in Hanoi, known for its art form which takes you back to the 11th century. The tradition of water puppet theatre started by villagers for their entertainment, which became popular and is now one of the famous attractions in Hanoi. Paying a visit to the theater is among the most fantastic things to do in Hanoi. Watch it for an excellent and unique experience.
12.) Dragon Fly Bar Lounge
The Dragon Fly Bar Lounge is the place to visit if you enjoy hip-hop and dance music. You can find young Vietnamese and young expats grooving on the music. You can find Shishas, foosball and reasonable cocktails to keep the party going. Going to the bar is among the most outstanding things to do in Hanoi with friends. Every Sunday there is a ladies night. So, visit there for party, dance, play pool, or enjoy Jenga and flavored smoke from hookah bar.
13.) Hanoi Press Club
The open rooftop of the Hanoi press club is popular for its Friday night party. It is located on Ly Thai To Street. You can find DJs and Live bands performing a wide variety of music to get the party going. The view from this terrace is amazing and there is a monthly event on the first Friday of every month.
14.) Minh’s Jazz Club
If you want to get away from the frenetic pace and crowds of Vietnam, this club is the perfect place to hang in. You will love the live Jazz music played by Quyen Van Minh, who is the owner of this club. She is a locally celebrated saxophonist. So, jazz lovers must not avoid this place.
15.) Sunset Bar
This bar is located in the 1A Nghi Tam St. Intercontinental Hotel, west lake has plush daybeds and woven couches on the fine wooden deck. And, the sunset and West lake adds more feather to the view from here. This will prove to be one of the most amazing things to do in Hanoi. It is a perfect place to enjoy a cool evening martini alongside never forgettable sunset and lake view.