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Tourism in Hanoi: A Guide for Travelers

Sightseeing in Hanoi is one of the things you should put on your bucket list. A beautiful city located in northern Vietnam, Hanoi is easily one of the best cities in Asia with its rich culture, magnificent architecture, picturesque landscapes, and bustling city life. There are many places to visit in Hanoi, and it will take more than one day to see them all. This is where this guide comes in handy.

Familiarize yourself with the culture.

The first thing to do once you arrive in Hanoi is to get acquainted with the city’s rich culture. As the capital city, Hanoi is also the second most populous city in Vietnam. It has a long history (the first inhabitants are known to have settled around 3000 BC) and was the capital of French Indochina from 1902 to 1954. A quick way to soak up the culture is to visit any of the many museums Hanoi, including the National Museum The Vietnam History Museum, the Vietnam Women’s Museum, the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, the Vietnam National Museum of Fine Arts, and the Ho Chi Minh Museum, to name a few. If museums are not your thing, you can also visit the Hanoi Opera House, if not to see an opera, but to admire the architectural beauty of the structure.

Visit Parks and Gardens.

Aside from the many museums, Hanoi also has several nature parks and gardens that the whole family can enjoy. Cuc Phuong National Park, about 100 km south of the city, is the most important national park in the country. Endangered species, ancient trees and varied flora and fauna are found within the park, along with caves and hot springs. There are also bike and hiking trails for the adventurous. Another park, but with a different theme, is Thanh Cuong Viet Palace. There is the Botanical Garden located in the city. Offering a welcome escape from the noise of the city, the Botanic Gardens boast ancient trees, sculptures and open spaces ideal for walking or picnicking.

Take a walk near the lakes.

Hanoi is a city built between two rivers, so it’s no surprise that the city also boasts a number of picturesque lakes. One of its famous lakes is Hoan Kiem Lake, or the Lake of the Returned Sword. It has a Turtle Tower in the center due to its association with the legend of a turtle that grabbed the emperor’s sword and then disappeared. Another famous lake is the West Lake, which is also the largest lake in Hanoi. Various gardens, restaurants and hotels, and other entertainment venues can be found around the West Lake.

Eat, eat, shop, shop!

Vietnamese cuisine has seen a rise in popularity over the years, and there is no better place to sample delicious local and fusion dishes than in Hanoi. From the smallest restaurants to the grandest restaurants, you are sure to find meals that will tickle your palate. A famous restaurant in Hanoi’s Old Quarter that should not be missed is the Cha Ca La Vong restaurant, which has been in business for over a century. Of course, after eating, shopping is a given. You can buy almost anything from small trinkets to expensive and exotic decorations at one of Hanoi’s many markets. The Dong Xuan Market in the Old Town is a popular tourist shopping stop. You can visit Van Phuc Silk Village, where the centuries-old art of weaving silk with silkworms is practiced.

Take a walk, then kick back and relax.

If you’re looking for a more laid-back activity, all you need to do is walk Hanoi’s less-crowded streets, visit a temple, or watch the bustling city from the confines of a laid-back restaurant. After a long day enjoying these activities in Hanoi, you can simply relax in your cozy hotel in Hanoi, like Serenade Hotel, and maybe try that spa and get a well-deserved massage.

Try any, if not all, of the Hanoi tourist activities listed above, and you’re guaranteed to have a great time.

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