Must-see attractions in Hanoi

  • Interior of the Temple of Literature, known locally as Van Mieu, home to the shrine to Confucius named Van Mieu.

    Temple of Literature


    Set amidst landscaped grounds near the centre of Hanoi, the Temple of Literature honours Vietnam's finest scholars, and also offers visitors a chance to…

  • Hoa Lo Prison, an infamous prison built by French colonists where American POW were kept during Vietnam war.

    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…

  • Hanoi, Vietnam, January 2023.  view of Ngoc Son Temple, Confucian temple on the Hoan Kiem lake crossed by a bridge, with tower and pavilions dedicated to the national hero.
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    Hoan Kiem Lake


    Legend claims that, in the mid-15th century, heaven sent Emperor Le Loi a magical sword, which he used to drive the Chinese from Vietnam. After the…

  • Thang Long Imperial City in Hanoi, Vietnam
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    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…

  • 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…

  • Museum of Ethnology, exterior.

    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…

  • Bach Ma Temple, Hanoi, Vietnam, Indochina, Southeast Asia, Asia

    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…

  • 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…

  • HANOI, VIETNAM - AUG 20, 2018: 87 Ma May street old house, Ha Noi, Vietnam. Second floor; Shutterstock ID 1460756816; full: Digital; gl: 65050; netsuite: poi; your: Barbara Di Castro

    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…

  • 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…

  • St. Joseph's Cathedral (simply called “Big Church” in Vietnamese), Nha Chung Street near the Hoan Kiem Lake. This is a Roman Catholic cathedral with neo- gothic which was built over 100 year ago.

    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…

  • Ho Chi Minh's Residence, Hanoi

    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…

  • Aerial view of central Hanoi city, Vietnam

    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…

  • Ho Chi Minh City Museum of Fine Arts is the major art museum of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam

    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…

  • 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…

  • Sunset panorama over West Lake, Hanoi, Vietnam

    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…

  • 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…

  • 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…

  • 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:…

  • Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum at night, Ba Dinh district.

    Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum


    In the tradition of Lenin, Stalin and Mao, Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum is a monumental marble edifice. Contrary to Ho Chi Minh’s desire for a simple cremation…

  • North Vietnamese MIG-21 fighter used in American War, Ba Dinh district.

    Vietnam Military History Museum


    Easy to spot thanks to a large collection of weaponry at the front, the Military Museum displays Soviet and Chinese equipment alongside French- and US…

  • The One Pillar Pagoda, Hanoi, Vietnam

    One Pillar Pagoda


    The One Pillar Pagoda was originally built by the Emperor Ly Thai Tong who ruled from 1028 to 1054. According to the annals, the heirless emperor dreamed…

  • Vietnam, Hanoi, Ba Dinh Square, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, exterior of monumental building on dais

    Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum Complex


    The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum Complex is an important place of pilgrimage for many Vietnamese. A traffic-free area of botanical gardens, monuments, memorials…

  • Vietnamese bridge and pagoda entrance

    Ngoc Son Temple


    Meaning 'Temple of the Jade Mountain', Hanoi's most visited temple sits on a small island in the northern part of Hoan Kiem Lake, connected to the…

  • Tran Quoc Pagoda, West Lake and Truc Bach area.

    Tran Quoc Pagoda


    One of the oldest pagodas in Vietnam, Tran Quoc Pagoda looks new with its clean orange bricks. What gives it a photogenic advantage is the backdrop of the…

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    Dong Xuan Market


    The largest covered market in Hanoi was originally built by the French in 1889 and almost completely destroyed by fire in 1994. Almost everything you can…

  • Memorial Monument At Road 9 National Martyrs Cemetery In Quang Tri Province, Vietnam.

    Martyrs' Monument


    This dramatic monument depicts a woman with a sword and one man holding a rifle and another a torch. It was erected as a memorial to those who died…

  • Ho Chi Minh Museum


    The huge concrete Soviet-style Ho Chi Minh Museum is a triumphalist monument dedicated to the life of the founder of modern Vietnam. The often-confusing…

  • Truc Bach Lake


    Separated from West Lake (Ho Tay) only by Ð Thanh Nien, this lake is lined with flame trees. During the 18th century the Trinh lords built a palace on the…

  • Quan Thanh Temple


    Shaded by huge trees, Quan Thanh Temple was established during the Ly dynasty (1010–1225) and was dedicated to Tran Vo (God of the North), whose symbols…

  • Hanoi Ceramic Mosaic Mural


    Spanning almost 4km along the Song Hong dyke, from its terminus at the Long Bien Bridge, this mural project holds the Guinness World Record for being the…

  • Ngo Cam Chi


    This narrow lane is packed with local eateries turning out cheap, tasty food for a few dollars. Ngo Cam Chi translates as ‘Forbidden to Point Alley’ and…

  • Presidential Palace


    This opulent restored colonial pile was flung up in 1906 as the Palace for the Governor General of Indochina. The yellow (a colour of communism) beaux…

  • Flag Tower


    The hexagonal Flag Tower, one of the symbols of Hanoi, is part of the Vietnam Military History Museum complex, though tower-only admission is free from…

  • P Truc Bach


    A relatively quiet waterfront scene is around the northeast edge of Truc Bach Lake. Many lau (hotpot) restaurants are huddled together in an almost…

  • Ðuong Thuy Khue


    Near the southern bank of West Lake, Ð Thuy Khue features dozens of outdoor seafood restaurants. The level of competition is evident by the daredevil…

  • Ambassadors’ Pagoda


    The official centre of Buddhism in Hanoi, the wonderfully maintained and otherwise peaceful Ambassadors’ Pagoda attracts quite a crowd on holidays. During…

  • Pho Ly Van Phuc


    More commonly known as 'Chicken Street', Pho Ly Van Phuc is devoted to barbecued, grilled and roast chicken, usually dished up brushed with honey and…

  • Old East Gate


    Of the former 16 medieval gates to the city, only this one stone and brick gate remains. The portal – still used by scooter traffic – is inscribed on the…