The Independent: What to do, where to stay, eat, drink and shop in Ha Noi

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- Reporter Tamara Hinson of The Independent, UK recently had an article about the city guide in Ha Noi, which according to him, a balanced mix of tranquil parks and temples, motorbike-packed roads and clamouring street-food vendors, the Vietnamese capital is a thrill to explore.

In the article published on The Independent, Vietnam is a country filled with a rich history, fantastic food scene and plenty of green space intermingled with unique architectures. Hinson further affirmed that a journey to Vietnam will not be perfect if visitors skip this buzzy capital.

Hoan Kiem Lake (Photo: Internet)

Hinson said, visitors come to Ha Noi should visit Hanoi’s historic sites, such as the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the final resting place of the man referred to as “Uncle Ho”, hundreds of temples in all shapes and sizes, in which the Ngoc Son Temple, is one of the most iconic of Ha Noi with a bright red bridge connects the temple with the lakeside. The temple is located on a tiny island at the northern end of Hoan Kiem Lake. Another option for visitors is the Tran Quoc Pagoda, on the southern shore of Hanoi’s West Lake, dates back to the sixth century and is one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Vietnam.

Ngoc Son Temple with the bright red bridge connecting the lakeside

For relaxing, visitors can take a walk around Truc Bach Lake, another way to get a good feel of the city. Visitors can hop in swan-shaped boats to feel the rhythm of the wind and relax.

Paying a visit to museums and mausoleums is an interesting recommendation. Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is one of the highlight spots of Ha Noi, where the body of President Ho Chi Minh is kept. In the yard of the mausoleums area, there is the fascinating Ho Chi Minh Museum, where exhibits include everything from propaganda posters to war relics, such as parts of a B52 fighter plane shot down during the war (and a comb made by soldiers using parts of said B52 plane).

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (Photo: TITC)

One of the famous traditional Vietnamese art forms that visitors should enjoy at least once is a water puppetry show. Immersing to the large pool of water stage with water-spitting dragons, fireworks and a soundtrack of traditional Vietnamese music.

Water puppetry show (Photo: TITC)

Regarding accommodations in Ha Noi, The Independent stated, there are many hotels from standard to luxury levels in the city. Visitors can choose to stay near the West Lake with a romantic view from dusk till dawn or stay right in the centre of the Old Quarter at the boutique hotel with full service.

Where to eat in Ha Noi will be the question of all most visitors coming to the capital of Vietnam, the article wrote down a list of the food such as 4Ps Pizza, traditional homemade meal at a restaurant in Cau Go street, a historic building in the Old Quarter, etc. After that, The Independent recommended a nice stop over for a shot of drink near Ha Noi Opera House with a variety of cocktails and fancy decoration. Besides, visitors can pass by the famous train street to have a coffee while waiting for a train to pass by.

For souvenirs, there is a wide range of handmade crafts such as perfume, soap, silk, jewellery, etc that visitors can find in the Old Quarter streets.

TITC