Asia Forums

Post New Topic

Recent Activity

View all Asia activity »
  1. 1 Itinerary help - 10 days Japan
  2. 2 myanmar
  3. 3 Tips in Myanmar
  4. 4 Trip Report The Mystic East - a tale of hot food, hot weather, airmiles and imodium.
  5. 5 Honeymoon destination help!!!!!
  6. 6 Feedback on rough one month SE Asia trip
  7. 7 A beach of choice on Samui
  8. 8 Internship in Beijing - 4 weeks Where to stay?
  9. 9 Quick question about Vietnam Visa Exception during overland crossing
  10. 10 Help w/ 20 Days in South India & Sri Lanka
  11. 11 Trip Report On the road again - to Incredible India.
  12. 12 Travel India solo
  13. 13 Month in Cambodia and Laos - January 2017
  14. 14 3.5 Weeks in Japan (First-time) Itinerary Help
  15. 15 Hotel Suggestions - New Delhi
  16. 16 Busan Central Bus Terminal
  17. 17 2 months in Taiwan - relaxing & hassle-free breaks in/out of the country?
  18. 18 Where to stay in Tokyo
  19. 19 Seeking Help With My Sri Lanka And South India Itinerary: Rough Draft #1
  20. 20 Osaka, aquarium?
  21. 21 Tuk-tuk, songthew or taxi?
  22. 22 Gilli t to Bali (Denpasar airport)
  23. 23 Shanghai as a base to also explore Jiangsu and Zhejiang?
  24. 24 Update on cash situation in India for imminent visitors
  25. 25 Bali in Feb. for nature & unique cultural perspectives
View next 25 » Back to the top

Experience 4 days in Ha Noi, Viet Nam - see,do and eat

Jump to last reply

Travel Ha Noi, Viet Nam: What to see, to do and to eat..
Hanoi is a city of contrasts and turmoil. The capital of Vietnam, it’s a metropolitan center offering everything from history to culture to great cuisine to a thriving expat community.
It’s a place where beautiful French architecture mingles with skinny sliver buildings, chic fashion boutiques stand alongside street merchants selling slabs of raw meat or steamed corn and almost four million motorbikes dominate the roads.
Most visitors to Hanoi head to the Old Quarter, which is a winding labyrinth of 36 busy streets containing dozens of guesthouses, shops, cafes, restaurants, markets and street vendors – and enough activities to fill several days.
What to Do in Hanoi
The best part of being in the Old Quarter is being in the Old Quarter. Explore the streets. Wander among the people. Dodge the motorbikes. Inhale the aromas. There are cultural and historical places to visit, but the essence of the city is the street life. I recently spent four days here and here are some of the attractions that I sampled, in order of preference:

The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a fascinating overview into the life and death of the former Vietnamese president. The structure contains his embalmed remains and the museum offers an attractively organized display of historical writings, pictures and memorabilia. Shorts and miniskirts not allowed. No cost for admission.

The One Pillar Pagoda is a tiny adjacent wooden structure measuring three square meters sitting on a concrete pillar in the center of a pond. No cost for admission.

Hỏa Lò Prison, mockingly nicknamed “Hanoi Hilton” during the Vietnam War by American POWs, provides an interesting insight into this prison which dates back to the beginning of the 20th century, along with photos, writings and exhibits. Admission fee of $1.
Thang Long Water Puppet Show is a 50–minute performance of traditional Vietnamese puppets who act out in a pool of water. Despite reading a number of favorable reviews, I couldn’t find anything worthwhile in spending almost an hour watching a bunch of marionettes frolic in the water. But that’s just me. Tickets cost $3 and $5.
Dining in Hanoi
One of the best things about Hanoi is the cuisine. Often named as one of the best food cities in Southeast Asia, it offers not only great street food, such as banh cuon, (steamed rice pancakes stuffed with minced pork), bun cha (barbecued pork patties in noodle broth) and nem ran (fried spring rolls), but also beautifully prepared cuisine in settings ranging from plastic stools on the street to candlelit dining rooms and open-air patios. Here are some of the places I sampled and recommend for a visit (or two):

La (which means leaf) – 25 Ly Quoc Su: Excellently prepared variety of dishes, ranging from crab cakes with chilli mayonnaise to duck breast to Asian specialties in an intimate bistro-style restaurant.


Madame Hiên – 15 Chan Cam: Beautiful open-air courtyard and villa restaurant with a menu that encompasses the flavors of Vietnam mixed with classic French cuisine.

Hương Mai Café: 49 Lo Su street- if you are looking for special and high quality coffee. I think this is the number one choice. In old quarter, you will see a hundreds of shops selling coffee and it was difficult for me when I wanted get some souvenirs for my family. And then when I walked around I found their shop. Excelent taste, good packed, friendly staffs and high quality. I bought a kg of weasel coffee and guess what my family loves it. They beg me to buy more for them. Must try it!

Puku – 16/18 Tong Duy Tan: Very comfortable café/bar in an old French villa with outdoor seating, padded couches, excellent breakfasts, occasional live music and special events.

Pineapple – 35 Hang Buom: Delicious Vietnamese food in a small two-storey dining spot in the heart of the Old Quarter.
Don’s Bistro – 16/27 Xuan Dieu: A total delight – from the trendy design to the incredible presentation to the exquisite food. Don’s is located in the stylish Tay Ho area overlooking West Lake and is one of my all-time most memorable dining experiences. The triple-storey space includes an oyster bar, pizza kitchen, cigar lounge and rooftop patio.
Well those are my experience Whatever you get up to in Hanoi, stay safe, cross the roads confidently and purposefully and enjoy the rich heritage and culture of this thriving city!

Advertisement