In its musical theaters and diverse nightlife, Hanoi’s cultural allure comes alive when the sun goes down. Productions showcasing traditional music and theater are a great way to delve into the spirit of Vietnam. With the multimillion-dollar restoration of the Opera House in the late 1990s, Hanoi's performing-arts scene reemerged. The imposing French-built arts palace hosts Vietnam's top traditional musicians and pop stars as well as the occasional Western performer. Elsewhere in the city, you can catch a performance of Vietnamese folk opera, traditional music, or enchanting water puppetry. If you want a peek at the results of years of Eastern European physical training, head to the circus at the northern edge of Lenin Park for Vietnam's version of the Cirque du Soleil.