InterContinental Hanoi Landmark72
Start your day with the traditional Vietnamese breakfast of “Pho” and “Ca Phe Sua Da” (Vietnamese coffee with condensed milk), as people say, you don’t know Vietnam until you try “Ca Phe Sua Da”. Then, visit Ho Chi Minh Complex which includes Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Ho Chi Minh Museum, One Pillar Pagoda, Stilts House and Fish Pond. Here after visit to Temple of Literature, a rare example of well-preserved traditional Vietnamese architecture. For lunch, a must-try is Bun Cha – the signature dish of Hanoi that even Obama paid a visit while staying in this city. From the sweet and sour broth to grounded-grilled pork, Bun Cha is a timeless recipe that is unique in its own way. You can hardly find any authentic Bun Cha anywhere away from Hanoi so it’s wise to give it a go while wandering around town.
After lunch, take a walk to the nearby Tran Quoc Pagoda, the oldest Buddhist pagoda of the capital, located on Thanh Nien Street, a tranquil road which links two charming lakes of Hanoi: West Lake and Truc Bach Lake. Pay a visit to the Museum of Ethnology, one of the largest and most interesting museums in Vietnam. There are a number of houses modeled after the traditional architecture of ethnic minorities, especially those who live in Northern and Central highlands. You will be amazed with the elaboration of these architectures, at the same time being thoroughly engaged in traditional games and activities such as water puppet show.
As the sun sets, we recommend you head back to Hoan Kiem Lake and Old Quarter, the heart of the capital for a cyclo tour around these symbolic destinations. Enjoy the famous water puppet show at Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, a unique traditional performance of Northern Vietnam that has recently found recognition on stages all over the world. For dinner, you can enjoy another local dish: La Vong fish patty for dinner at Old Quarter before living the night life at Ta Hien street that welcomes many tourists to sit on local wooden chairs along the street for a cold beer.
Hanoi Ancient House
Hanoi Ancient House at 87 Ma May has a restored typical Vietnamese tube house. It is an excellent example of Northern Vietnam urban architecture and interior design.
Trang Tien Ice-cream
Trang Tien Ice-cream has been a signature brand of Hanoi. Its unique traditional yet elegant and fresh flavors have stayed in the hearts of Hanoians since the 70s.
One can find all specialties of Hanoi as people from all walks of life bringing their hometown recipes to the capital city, creating an amazing street food culture. Especially, the city is a heaven of noodles with a large variety of versions such as phở, bún, miến, etc. Your trip to Hanoi will not be complete without a bowl of Phở.
Sword Lake (or Hoan Kiem Lake) has its legend that Vietnamese King Le Loi (emperor who won back independence for Vietnam from China in 1428) returned his sword to Saint Kim Quy (Golden Turtle). Nowadays, tourists can see the body of a real giant turtle of 2.1-meter long lying solemnly in Ngoc Son Temple by Sword Lake side.
Hanoi’s architecture was greatly inspired by its French colonial legacy (now becoming a fine blend with the city’s modern look of towering skyscrapers). A tour around the city centre will give you a sense of Hanoi’s journey from the old days to its current stand as the national cenre of economy and culture.