Top ChoiceHistoric Building in Hanoi

Hoa Lo Prison Museum

Hoa Lo Prison Museum

This thought-provoking site is all that remains of the former Hoa Lo Prison, ironically nicknamed the ‘Hanoi Hilton’ by US prisoners of war (POWs) during the American War. Most exhibits relate to the prison’s use...

Top ChoiceLake in Hanoi

Hoan Kiem Lake

Hoan Kiem Lake

Legend claims that, in the mid-15th century, heaven sent Emperor Ly Thai To a magical sword, which he used to drive the Chinese from Vietnam. After the war a giant golden turtle grabbed the sword and disappeared...

Top ChoiceConfucian Temple in Hanoi

Temple of Literature

Temple of Literature

A rare example of well-preserved traditional Vietnamese architecture, the Temple of Literature honours Vietnam’s finest scholars. Founded in 1070 by Emperor Le Thanh Tong, the attractive complex is dedicated to...

Top ChoiceHistoric Site in Hanoi

Imperial Citadel of Thang Long

Added to Unesco's World Heritage List in 2010, Hanoi's Imperial Citadel was the hub of Vietnamese military power for over 1000 years. Ongoing archaeological digs continue on-site, revealing remains of ancient...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Hanoi

National Museum of Vietnamese History

National Museum of Vietnamese History

Built between 1925 and 1932, this architecturally impressive museum was formerly home to the École Française d’Extrême-Orient. Its architect, Ernest Hebrard, was among the first in Vietnam to incorporate a blend...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Hanoi

Vietnam Museum of Ethnology

Vietnam Museum of Ethnology

This fabulous collection relating to Vietnam's ethnic minorities features well-presented tribal art, artefacts and everyday objects gathered from across the nation, and examples of traditional village houses....

Top ChoiceTemple in Hanoi

Bach Ma Temple

Bach Ma Temple

In the heart of the Old Quarter, the small Bach Ma Temple (literally 'White Horse Temple') is said to be the oldest temple in the city, though much of the current structure dates from the 18th century and a...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Hanoi

Vietnamese Women’s Museum

Vietnamese Women’s Museum

This excellent and highly informative museum showcases the roles of women in Vietnamese society and culture. Labelled in English and French, exhibits cover everything from marriage customs to childbirth, but it’s...

Top ChoiceBuddhist Temple in Hanoi

Hai Ba Trung Temple

Two kilometres south of Hoan Kiem Lake, this temple was founded in 1142. A statue shows the two Trung sisters (from the 1st century CE) kneeling with their arms raised in the air. Some say the statue shows the...

Top ChoiceHistoric Building in Hanoi

Heritage House

One of the Old Quarter’s best-restored properties, this traditional merchants’ house is sparsely but beautifully decorated, with rooms filled with fine furniture set around two courtyards. Note the high steps...

Church in Hanoi

St Joseph Cathedral

Hanoi's neo-Gothic St Joseph Cathedral was inaugurated in 1886, and has a soaring facade that faces a little plaza that's usually stuffed with selfie sticks and posses of preening photographers. The church's most...

Historic Site in Hanoi

Ho Chi Minh’s Stilt House

Ho Chi Minh’s Stilt House

This humble, traditional stilt house where Ho lived intermittently from 1958 to 1969 is set in a well-tended garden adjacent to a carp-filled pond and has been preserved just as Ho left it. The clear views...

Viewpoint in Hanoi

Lotte Observation Deck

Lotte Observation Deck

The city's best views can be found on the 65th-floor 360-degree Observation Deck of the landmark Lotte Center in the western corner of Hanoi's Ba Dinh district. From this uninterrupted vantage point, high above...

Museum in Hanoi

Fine Arts Museum of Vietnam

The excellent Fine Arts Museum is housed in two buildings that were once the French Ministry of Information. Treasures abound, including ancient Champa stone carvings and some astonishing effigies of Quan Am, the...

Historic Building in Hanoi

Hanoi Opera House

Hanoi Opera House

This glorious neoclassical centrepiece of Hanoi's French Quarter is unmissable with its Gothic pillars and domes. The French-colonial 900-seat venue was built in 1911, and on 16 August 1945 the Viet Minh–run...

Lake in Hanoi

West Lake

West Lake

The city’s largest lake, West Lake is 15km in circumference and ringed by upmarket suburbs, including the predominantly expat Tay Ho district. On the south side, along Ð Thuy Khue, are seafood restaurants, and to...

Bridge in Hanoi

Long Bien Bridge

Long Bien Bridge

A symbol of the tenacity and resilience of the Hanoian people, the Long Bien Bridge (built between 1899 and 1902) was bombed on several occasions during the American War, and each time quickly repaired by the...

Gallery in Hanoi

Manzi Exhibition Space & Artist Residency

Just round the corner from its namesake cafe, gallery and shop, this art space and gallery hosts exhibitions and open studios for local and international artists, connecting with overseas art institutions and...

Buddhist Temple in Hanoi

Tay Ho Pagoda

Jutting into West Lake (Ho Tay), beautiful Tay Ho Pagoda is perhaps the most popular place of worship in Hanoi. Throngs of people come here on the first and 15th day of each lunar month in the hope of receiving...

Park in Hanoi

Thong Nhat Park

This park, formerly known as Lenin Park, is a lovely place to escape the bustle of the Old Quarter and see what the locals do in their downtime. Hint: they use the exercise equipment, chat and play badminton or...