Monday, 21 April 2014

Hanoi Travel Part 2: Tourist Attractions Of Hanoi - Save Money By Walking

The good thing about staying in the Old Quarter of Hanoi is its proximity to major tourist attractions. Instead of paying for a city tour that may range from USD60 to USD150 (2 pax) we went on a leisurely walk to visit these places and it costs us close to nothing. We started our walk from our hotel in Hang Chieu Street.  All in we must have walked 6 or 7 km that day. It was a bit tiring towards the end but we discovered a lot more things.
Our first destination is just a stone's throw from our hotel. The Old City Gate of Hanoi (aka Quan Chuong City Gate) is located on Hang Chiew Street where we were staying. Year built: 1749
We walked passed a maze of streets in the Old Quarter and arrived at Hoan Kiem Lake. A very popular hangout among the locals as well as tourists, this lake is delightfully picturesque. The Huc Bridge (red color) and Ngoc Son Temple at the end of the bridge were swarmed by the visiting crowds.
A cute tower stands on a little island in the middle of Hoan Kiem Lake. The Turtle Tower is linked to some old legend about a Golden Turtle God. For more pictures of Hoan Kiem Lake click to view: Hoan Kiem Lake Photo Gallery
There are a few interesting statues next to the lake. One of them is the statue of King Ly Thai To, the first king of the Ly Dynasty.
A favourite pastime.
We walked pass a few beautiful parks around the lake and proceeded to Hanoi Opera House.
Hanoi Opera House located at Trang Tien Street is a majestic structure built by the French. Year completed: 1911
Details of the Opera House
Details of the Opera House
A 2 minutes walk from the Opera House brought us to The Museum of History (Bao Tang Lich Su). We just had a look at the building and left for our next destination.
We made our way to Na Tho Street to visit another spectacular building. St Joseph's Cathedral was built by the French (1886). I've seen pictures of the interior and it was beautiful. Unfortunately the church was closed for visitation and we could only view it from outside.
Tired out we took a lunch break at one of the streets we passed by. This modest meal which is authentically Vietnamese happened to be one of the best meals we'd had in Hanoi.
Helped ourselves to locally made Vietnamese ice-creams. From there it was a fairly long walk before we reached the Temple of Literature.
We passed by some interesting streets and buildings and observed the Hanoian lifestyle. The main mode of transport in Hanoi are the motorcycles. Very often we spotted young girls riding their motorcycles on 4 inch stilletos.
A street we passed by.
An ancient shop along a street we passed by.
An interesting building with so many balconies along a street we passed by.
A nice building we saw on the way
A less known water puppet theatre
A Street with heritage buildings
A primary school
We were finally at the gate to the Temple Of Literature. Paid a nominal entrance fee to enter.
Click here to view more photos of Temple Of Literature: Temple Of Literature Photo Gallery
Intricate paper cuttings sold outside Temple of Literature. These arts pieces are sold in many other parts of Hanoi too.
Water puppet figurines are popular souvenir items and were displayed at a few shops.
Our next destination was Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. It was a 20-25 minutes walk from the Temple of Literature.
The park at the Mausoleum was very well kept. A group of gardeners were seen weeding the garden.
An old building in the vicinity of the park.
We visited the One Pillar Pagoda which is just nearby.
A very short walk from One Pillar Pagoda is Ho Chi Minh Museum.  From here we took a metered cab to Trang Tien Plaza. The taxi fare for the 3km ride was 50000VND. There is a supermarket in Trang Tien Plaza and we were told we could purchase the items we were looking for there.
The things we wanted were much more expensive at Trang Tien Plaza (photo above) compared to Dong Xuan Market so we took another cab back to our hotel. All in we did our city tour for only USD10 (for 2 persons) - lunch included.

Related Posts:
1.Review Of Old Town Hotel and Golden Orchid Hotel, Old Quarter, Hanoi
3. Hoan Kiem Lake Photo Gallery
4.Temple Of Literature Photo Gallery
5. The Tastes Of Hanoi
6. Savouring The Aroma Of Vietnam Coffee
7. Dong Xuan Market
8. The Street Peddlers Of Hanoi
9. Exploring The Streets Of Old Quarter, Hanoi
10. Shopping In Old Quarter, Hanoi


Unknown said...

I have been visited this region a month ago with bestbustour and really enjoyed during my trip. It is a major city in Vietnam has many interesting tourist attractions to visit. Temple of Literature is one of my favorite places to visit there. It contains numerous courtyards and pavilions, many of which have undergone careful restoration in recent decades.

Faikka Aikka said...

St Joseph's Cathedral and the lake draw my attention to it. I have been there before my washington dc bus tours . We have enjoyed a few beautiful parks attractions around the lake Hanoi Opera House. The lake giving the breathtaking view with the stunning, crystal and shinning water. If I have a chance in my life then I will prefer to visit there again. Keep sharing the nice information with me.

Lily... said...

Do bookmark my blog site. I'll be sharing the places I've visited from time to time.

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