Hanoi, Vietnam Things To Do

Old Quarter

Hanoi’s Old Quarter is a must see and arguably the most popular of all of Hanoi’s sights. Dating back to the 15th century this crowded and bustling district of 36 narrow streets is the perfect place for sightseeing, shopping, eating or sipping tea in one of the many tea houses. Whether you are walking or taking a cyclo tour you’ll love visiting the heart and soul of old Hanoi.

Address: near Hoan Kiem lake


Hoan Kiem Lake & Ngoc Son Temple
Hoan Kiem Lake, south of the Old Quarter, has a pleasant tree-lined walking path encircling it with a bridge to a little temple that sits on an island. It’s a favourite place for locals to exercise in the mornings or lovers stroll or cuddle in the evenings. Consider a leisurely walk around (30-45 minutes) to achieve some serenity from the city chaos.

Address: Centre of Hanoi

Hanoi Opera House

Built by the French between 1901 and 1911 the Opera House has classic colonial French architecture and is a small-scale replica of the Palais Garnier, the older of Paris’s two opera houses. Today the Opera House still plays concerts, ballet, symphonies, opera and jazz concerts.

Address: 1 Trang Tien Street, Hanoi. Get tickets www.ticketvn.com



Dong Xuan Market
The renowned Dong Xuan Market in downtown Hanoi has long been a favorite shopping place for locals and foreigners visiting the capital city.  Open late into the night 7 days buy everything you never knew you wanted from electronics, fabrics, designer clothes, food to DVDs

Address: Hang Ngang Street, Hanoi (West end of Old Quarter)

Cyclo Tour

Originally known as a Rickshaw today’s modern Cyclo is one of the most typical vehicles in Hanoi. (Three wheeled bike with driver riding behind seated passengers) It’s a cheap and efficient form of transport but for tourists it’s a great way to tour the city and an exhilarating experience but be warned, especially in the bustling downtown area, a Cyclo ride is not for the feint hearted. Hanoi is home to some 4 million motorbikes, and where road rules hardly matter, for the uninitiated the traffic is somewhat overwhelming.



Thang Long Water Puppet Theater
The puppet theatre is a unique Vietnamese traditional art. Originating from rural festivals the artists stand waist deep in water to manipulate the puppets, making them move on the water surface performing Vietnamese legends and tales. Professional musicians accompany the troupe playing traditional songs and music of Vietnam.

Address: 57b Dinh Tien Hoang Str., Hanoi – Vietnam

Van Mieu – Temple of Literature

Hanoi’s first university including the Temple of Literature dating back to the 11th century was built in honour of Confucius. Throughout its more than 700 years of activity, thousands of Vietnamese scholars and philosophers have graduated. Today the collection of buildings and courtyards is a peaceful retreat from the streets of Hanoi and is worth a visit for the traditional Vietnamese architecture and peaceful ambience.

Address: Pho Quoc Tu Giam St, Dong Da District, Hanoi


Presidential Palace
Like most French Colonial architecture, the palace is decidedly European, the only visual cues that it is located in Vietnam at all are mango trees growing on the grounds. Visitors can take photos of this restored colonial beauty but you aren’t actually let onto its grounds. When Vietnam achieved independence in 1954, Ho Chi Minh refused to live in the grand structure for symbolic reasons. Today the palace hosts government meetings and is part of the Ho Chi Minh complex, containing the museum, mausoleum, residences and one-pillar pagoda.

Address: 1 Bach Thao, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi   

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

The resting place of the revered leader Ho Chi Minh. Silence reigns as visitors file past for a glimpse of this illustrious leader. Free admission

Address: Ba Dinh Square, Hanoi




Hoa Lo Prison
Referred to as the Hanoi Hilton by American POWs, the prison was built by the French in 1896, and used to house Vietnamese political prisoners. Much of this vast prison has been razed but the front section has been preserved. The bulk of the exhibits relate to the prison’s use up until 1950’s depicting the Vietnamese’s struggle for independence from the French.

Address Hoả Lò, Hànội

Halong Bay – Day Tour

Visiting Vietnam travellers cannot miss one destination that epitomises the beauty and the people of Vietnam – Halong Bay. Three hours east of the country’s capital Hanoi, Halong Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage site featuring thousands of awe inspiring limestone rock formations, islands with caves and grottos. Visit as a day trip from Hanoi or to spend an overnight aboard one of the classic sailing Junks


Hanoi is a wonderful city to explore and obviously there are many more places to visit. If any reader has a personal favourite please help expand this list by adding a comment below

How to get there

China Airlines fly daily to Hanoi ex Taipei.

Contact Vietnam Tourism
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: R.M
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