HanoiVietnam

Image for Hanoi featuring a lake or waterhole and a garden

Immerse yourself in traditional Asian lifestyle in the picturesque Vietnamese capital, with a multitude of markets, puppet shows, lakes and ancient temples.

Visit Hanoi to try typical Vietnamese food, see unique art performances and savor some of the most captivating sights in Southeast Asia. Thanks to its rich cultural heritage and tumultuous history there are many interesting attractions to explore in the bustling city, which has 2.6 million people in its urban center.

Hanoi first became a capital just over 1,000 ago, when it was still called Thang Long (Rising Dragon). It became Ha Noi (Between Two Rivers) in 1831. The city has since been occupied by the French and the Japanese and bombed by the Americans, events which have clearly left their marks. Through all this, Hanoi has stayed traditional and proud.

The language and cultural differences can be both limiting and interesting. For example, the Vietnamese consider pointing your finger to be rude. You should use your whole hand instead. Bear this in mind while browsing the Dong Xuan Market.

This market is in the Old Quarter, a good place to find souvenirs, traditional merchants and typical Vietnamese and French cuisine. Try pho (rice noodle soup) and sample Vietnam’s favorite brew, Bia Hoi beer, to get a taste of the Orient. At night, visit the nearby Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre with mesmerizing reenactments of dragon-filled legends.

Learn more about Hanoi’s legends in the temples that surround lakes such as Hoan Kiem (Lake of the Restored Sword) and Ho Tay (West Lake).

The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum contains the embalmed body of the revered revolutionary leader of North Vietnam. Learn about his constant struggle for his country’s freedom at the Ho Chi Minh Museum.

Book a trip on a wooden vessel to Ha Long Bay to cruise the turquoise waters around thousands of limestone islets.

To get around in Hanoi you can rent a bike or pay to ride in a traditional “cyclo”. Public buses are cheap and service the whole city. If you hail a taxi, negotiate a fixed price in dong (the Vietnamese currency), because the meters are often manipulated.

Where to stay in Hanoi

Hoan Kiem showing a city, street scenes and signage

Hoan Kiem

4.5/5Wonderful!(1,759 area reviews)

The panoramic lake views and popular shops are just a few highlights of Hoan Kiem. Make a stop by Hoan Kiem Lake or Hanoi Opera House while you're exploring the area.

Hoan Kiem
Hanoi which includes street scenes

Old Quarter

A noteworthy feature of Old Quarter is its panoramic lake views. While you're in town, be sure to stop and check out Hoan Kiem Lake and Hanoi Old City Gate.

Old Quarter
Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum featuring a monument and a park

Ba Dinh

4/5Very Good!(127 area reviews)

The ample dining options and fantastic lake views are top of the list for many visitors to Ba Dinh. A stop by Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum or Lotte Center Hanoi might round out your trip.

Ba Dinh
Temple of Literature featuring a temple or place of worship and a park as well as a large group of people

Dong Da

4/5Very Good!(12 area reviews)

You'll enjoy the bars and lake views in Dong Da. You might want to make time for a stop at Temple of Literature or Hanoi CIty Social Insurance Dong Da District.

Dong Da
Hai Ba Trung, Hanoi, Vietnam

Hai Ba Trung

4/5Very Good!(20 area reviews)

Hai Ba Trung is noteworthy for its restaurants, and you can make a stop at top attractions like Vincom Center and Van Ho Exhibition Center.

Hai Ba Trung
Gecko Cafes are all over Hanoi. They offer great food with a lot of variety between local and American/Western Europe dishes. The one located on 2 Hang Bong has a balcony for great people and crazy traffic watching. Be warned, it's LOUD!
trover photo by Scuba Mami

Thanh Xuan

4.5/5Wonderful!(9 area reviews)

You'll enjoy the museums and shopping in Thanh Xuan. You might want to make time for a stop at Vietnam People's Air Force Museum or Vincom Mega Mall Royal City.

Thanh Xuan

Top Hotels in Hanoi

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
O'Gallery Premier Hotel & Spa
O'Gallery Premier Hotel & Spa
4 out of 5
122 Hang Bong Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
¥5,316
per night
Mar 4 - Mar 5

Located in Hoan Kiem, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Hang Da Market and Vietnamese National Tuong Theatre. Ly Trieu Quoc Su Pagoda and Hang Gai Street ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,304 reviews)

"Great location, friendly and helpful staff, modern and clean rooms, and good breakfast. My friends and I will stay here again when we visit Hanoi."…"

Reviewed on Feb 17, 2020

O'Gallery Premier Hotel & Spa
The Oriental Jade Hotel
The Oriental Jade Hotel
5 out of 5
No. 92-94 Hang Trong Str., Hoan Kiem, Hanoi, Hanoi
¥8,885
per night
Mar 3 - Mar 4

Located in Hoan Kiem, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of St. Joseph's Cathedral and Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre. Hanoi Old City Gate and Hanoi ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (343 reviews)

"The hotel is an oasis away from the business of Hanoi. The staff are really welcoming and clearly care about going the extra mile. The rooms were spacious and clean and managed to block out most of the sound from the surrounding street's (an impressive task)."…"

Reviewed on Feb 14, 2020

The Oriental Jade Hotel
Oriental Central Hotel
Oriental Central Hotel
3.5 out of 5
39 Hang Bac Street, Hoan Kiem Dist, Hanoi
¥3,780
per night
Mar 4 - Mar 5

Located in Hoan Kiem, this romantic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre and Hoan Kiem Lake. Hanoi Old City Gate and St. Joseph's ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,043 reviews)

"Very clean and new hotel. Friendly and polite staff. The breakfast is delicious. Will visit again next time."…"

Reviewed on Feb 13, 2020

Oriental Central Hotel

Popular things to do in Hanoi

Hoan Kiem Lake
Image for Hoan Kiem Lake

Hoan Kiem Lake

4.5/5(897 reviews)

Wander around the banks of this peaceful lake and discover an historic temple, observe locals going about their daily life or enjoy a picnic lunch under the shade.

Hanoi Opera House
Image for Hanoi Opera House

Hanoi Opera House

4.5/5(331 reviews)

This historic building is the centerpiece of Hanoi’s French Quarter and host to shows by many of Vietnam’s premier singers, dancers and musicians.

Hanoi Old City Gate
Image for Hanoi Old City Gate

Hanoi Old City Gate

4.5/5(306 reviews)

The attractive shape of the only city gate remaining in Hanoi harks back to a time when the city was under siege.

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre
Image for Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

4.5/5(435 reviews)

Stories from local legends are told at this theater with hand-carved wooden dolls and colorful dragons that perform on a stage on the water.

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum
Image for Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

4.5/5(495 reviews)

This massive tomb houses the embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh, a former Vietnamese president.

Dong Xuan Market
Image for Dong Xuan Market

Dong Xuan Market

4.5/5(403 reviews)

Browse hundreds of stalls in Hanoi’s biggest marketplace in the heart of the Old Quarter.

Top activities in Hanoi

Halong Bay 2-Day Adventure
Image for Halong Bay 2-Day Adventure

Halong Bay 2-Day Adventure

¥16,924

Spend the night in a boat cruising in the gorgeous Ha Long Bay, the UNESCO-listed majesty of sheer limestone cliffs rising from crystal clear waters. Explore caves, eat delicious Vietnamese fare, and admire the remarkable results of millions of years of tectonic shifting and erosion.

Full-Day Ha Long Bay Boat Excursion from Hanoi
Image for Full-Day Ha Long Bay Boat Excursion from Hanoi

Full-Day Ha Long Bay Boat Excursion from Hanoi

¥4,900

Pickup from your hotel in Hanoi is followed by a drive out to Tuan Chau Marina Pier, where you board a traditional wooden junk and begin your cruise. Option 1: 4 Hours on Boat to Explore Ha Long Bay - Kayaking at Ba Hang Floating village - Thien Cung Cave 8.

Halong Bay Boat Cruise with Lunch
Image for Halong Bay Boat Cruise with Lunch

Halong Bay Boat Cruise with Lunch

¥5,615

Sail through jungle-blanketed islands, spectacular limestone karsts, and unique grottos on this day tour from Hanoi. Drive to the shores of Halong Bay to board a traditional junk boat, where you can relax on the sun deck, and enjoy a delicious seafood lunch as you take in panoramic views of the magnificent landscape.

Reviews of Hanoi

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
817
5 - Excellent 58.482462419470295%
4 - Good
456
4 - Good 32.64137437365784%
3 - Okay
100
3 - Okay 7.158196134574087%
2 - Disappointing
18
2 - Disappointing 1.2884753042233357%
1 - Terrible
6
1 - Terrible 0.4294917680744452%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Feb 15, 2020

Pros: Good food and massage. Cons: Streets are dirty, crowded and noisy.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Feb 9, 2020

So many things to do.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Feb 8, 2020

It's amazing.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Feb 8, 2020

Wonderful place

5/5 - Excellent

Don

Feb 5, 2020

I had the opportunity to visit the Vietnamese Museum of Fine Arts. Hint: allow yourself at least three hours, as this museum is massive and captivating. I had the luxury of being invited by a dear friend, a local, and her history buff son.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Feb 5, 2020

Once we learned how to navigate the streets we loved it. Miss the great food!

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