PARKS & OUTDOORS
1. A Magical Garden
- Address: Ba Vì national park – Ba Vì, Hà Nội, MAP/LINK
If you want to get lost in a spot with a magical atmosphere, especially for those who love to discover nature, Ba Vi is your destination.
This place has abundant flora and fauna. Preserving and promoting sustainable living, it’s located on a hilly mountain that includes communes from three districts.
From the bottom of the mountain, you will see the gardens. There are many different species of plants and flowers, some types are listed as endangered and need to be preserved. Stop and admire the charismatic cactus that cannot be found anywhere else.
There are also many beautiful architectural works waiting for you to explore.
Coming to this place means an escape to the mountains and forests with their fresh and cool air, green trees, misty air, and winding narrow roads. If that sounds like your kind of thing, add Ba Vi to your list of places to go.
2. Chilling in the Park
- Address: Thống Nhất park – 354A Trần Nhân Tông, Q. Hai Bà Trưng,
This place is well-known as one of Hanoi’s major parks. The beautiful Seven Pieces Lake is located right in its center. Although it’s adjacent to 4 big streets this park is very quiet and airy, an ideal choice for you to relax or have fun.
This park is also a place which is full of important memories of Vietnamese history. Although years have passed, everything is still preserved intact here.
LET’S GET CULTURAL
3. A Glimpse of a Dark Past
- Address: Hoả Lò prison – 01 Phố Hoả Lò, Trần Hưng Đạo, Q. Hoàn Kiếm,
Hoa Lo Prison is located in the center of Hanoi City, built in 1896. French colonialists made this prison to detain those who fought against the French colonial regime.
Maison Centrale is its French name. This is a destination that should not be missed if you want to learn and have a passion for history. Unfortunately, the prison retains only a small area compared its previous size.
It recreates the lives of political prisoners. The brutal torture and humiliating images of the prisoners give you a true insight into these dark times. These are things that simple books or pictures cannot reveal. Historical materials and images are also carefully displayed and preserved here. The prison attracts many visitors because of its powerful stories of the past.
4. A Body of Great Importance
Address: Hồ Chí Minh mausoleum – 02 Hùng Vương, Q. Ba Đình,
The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is where Ho Chi Minh’s corpse is placed for people all over the country and worldwide to visit and see the body of the man who changed history.
Not only is this the resting place of the former leader of the Vietnamese nation, but the landscape in this area is typical of the architecture and culture of Hanoi for thousands of years.
From the stilt house, you can also visit the Ho Chi Minh museum. This is one of the largest museums in Vietnam, which stores and displays precious artifacts and materials about Ho Chi Minh’s life.
DON’T BE LAZY
5. Tour the City Yourself
- Address: Cycling – Hoàn Kiếm lake, Hàng Trống, Q. Hoàn Kiếm,
Someone said of Hanoi: “The traffic here is like swimming in a sea of cars, with cars, trucks, electric bicycles, peddlers’ cars, and two-wheeled trailers all over the avenues, where green and red lights seem to be just decorative objects.” Renting a bicycle and to explore the city a great way to experience this crazy city first hand!
Traveling around the old town by bicycle is convenient and safe. You can stop at any time to take photos, buy souvenirs or simply pedal slowly while looking at the old, mossy houses that normally you would miss at high speed.
There are many places in Hanoi that sometimes, you need to stop and inspect slowly to fully understand them. So why not give it a try?
6. Get Hiking
- Address: Trầm mountain – Phụng Châu, Huyện Chương Mỹ,
This mountain is not too tall but it has a beautiful view, with large boulders of lively shapes. It is a suitable place for a short camping trip without the need to travel far.
The charm of Tram Mountain is in the long trails created by climbers over a long period of time, along with the rolling white cliffs. This place has a charming and poetic beauty.
As mentioned earlier it is not high but there are many steep cliffs and crags, so will be be tough if you want to conquer all 5 mountains. A pair of sturdy and comfortable shoes will be necessary to safely climb and avoid slipping or tripping. Once you have reached the top, bask in the glorious view. Green meadows spread throughout the mountains below. Don’t be lazy! This place is waiting for you to conquer.
7. Bargain Hunt
As one of the earliest constructions built by the French in Hanoi, Dong Xuan market is still the largest trading hub in the capital.
It has a wide range of products ranging from standard food and apparel, to objects you won’t have seen before. The items here are also cheaper than other places. Coming here, you will have many opportunities to find anything and everything you need for prices that could blow your mind
8. Luxury Shopping
- Address: Royal city – Ngõ 72, Nguyễn Trãi, Thượng Đình, Thanh Xuân,
As the capital of Vietnam, Hanoi is never far behind other cities in terms of modernity. High buildings that sprout like mushrooms have made this place a busy and developed urban area. Royal City commercial center is hailed as the largest shopping mall in Northern Vietnam. Let’s check it out.
This giant building is an endless shopping world with a variety of sections. It is arranged by ‘streets’, with each street housing particular sales items, such as Jewelry Street, Cosmetic Street, Fashion Street, Interior Street, etc. Each street is organized according to the shopping needs of customers, making it extremely convenient to navigate.
Not only is the shopping world contained in this building, but it also holds a culinary paradise from all over Vietnam. In the culinary area of Royal City, there are hundreds of restaurants with all kinds of flavors and colors. If you’re looking for a combination of quality and quantity, you must check out this place.
9. Vietnam’s first College
- Address: The Temple of Literature – 58 QTG, Q. Đống Đa,
This is a complex of relics about the first university of Vietnam. The Temple of Literature is not only a historical and cultural relic but also a place where many students come to pray for luck before exams. It would be a pity if you miss it.
It was built in 1070 and primarily dedicated to Confucius as well as other scholars and sages. A few years later, it was constructed next to a temple in order to provide education to the imperial bureaucracy.
It has many different small buildings. Through the ups and downs of history, some of the structures here have been destroyed, but this place is still considered as a symbol of the cultural beauty of Vietnam.
10. Make Your Own Gifts
Address: Bát Tràng Ceramic village – Bát Tràng, Gia Lâm,
Bat Trang is a unique destination for people who like the traditional culture of Vietnamese pottery and porcelain villages. Less than 15km away from central Hanoi, this is the ideal place for those in love with art.
This is the oldest pottery village in Vietnam. Bat Trang pottery village specialises in producing various types of ceramics in many styles.
The most interesting thing when coming to Bat Trang is that you can directly observe the artists making exquisite ceramic products and even get involved at crafting them yourself.
You will also have the opportunity to explore the old village in a ‘buffalo car’ to take in the rustic atmosphere, sights include a 200 year old wooden house and an architectural masterpiece consisting of ceramics from the 15th century.
This place should not be missed. Making your own products as gifts for your friends and families back home will be the perfect relic of your time in Vietnam.
11. Street Shows
- Address: The Walking street – Đinh Tiên Hoàng, Q. Hoàn Kiếm,
To enjoy the most interesting activities on Hanoi pedestrian street, you should be here from 7pm onwards. On beautiful days, the holidays, or when the city hosts art shows, the neighborhood will become much busier.
There are many different activities and music shows which take place. You will have opportunities to watch and enjoy all kinds of strange traditional performances which are unique to Vietnam.
Watching these shows while in town will be a great visual experience and is sure to help you learn more about Vietnamese culture.