Entertainment and Attractions in Hanoi, Vietnam
In the palette of Hanoi there are colors for Europeans who love the spaciousness of avenues and parks and the height of skyscrapers, and for lovers of cramped quarters with colonial mansions and enchanting temples. One of the most ancient and beautiful is the Confucian Temple of Literature, founded in 1070. Its thick walls surround 5 courtyards with gardens, ceremonial pavilions and a square pond of Heavenly Purity. The Imperial Academy was located in the farthest courtyard, where for many centuries not only children of nobles, but also talented boys from the lower classes received education. After they received the title of mandarin, and their names were carved on stone steles – the most valuable relics of the temple. Check liuxers for customs and traditions of Vietnam.
A favorite place for tourists and Hanoi to walk is Hoan Kiem Lake, where Trang Thi Avenue leads quite European-looking. They say that in the 15th century a huge turtle lived in it, from which the local hero Le Lou received a magical golden sword. With the help of it, he expelled the Chinese who invaded the country, and then returned the sword to the mistress of the lake. In memory of this event, the Vietnamese built a three-tiered Turtle Pagoda on a tiny island.
Giant tortoises still live in the lake today. The largest of them, which died in 1968, was 2.1 m long and weighed 250 kg. Her lacquered effigy is kept in the Tap Bat tower.
The story of the magic sword and the turtle can not only be heard, but also seen at the Water Puppet Theatre, located on the northern shore of the lake. Originating in the Red River Delta nearly 1,000 years ago, this ancient theatrical art is unknown outside of Vietnam. It uses a large pool as a stage, and the puppeteers stand waist-deep in water, hidden behind a bamboo curtain.
In the northern part of the lake, on the island stands the Temple of the Jade Mountain, dedicated to the deities of medicine, earth and literature. One of his buildings is crowned with a stylized inkwell, and next to it is a tower built in the shape of a traditional writing brush. The island is connected to the shore by a red wooden bridge called The Hook. This graceful bridge is one of the symbols of Hanoi and a favorite place for newlyweds to take photos.
Museums in Hanoi
A must-see for all official delegations is the Ho Chi Minh Museum (19 Ngoc Ha Street). The lotus shape of its building symbolizes the spiritual purity of the first president of independent Vietnam, the hammer and sickle above the entrance – his commitment to the ideas of Marxism-Leninism. The exposition contains personal items, photographs and documents that tell about the life of Uncle Ho, as the Vietnamese themselves call him in a family way.
Most of Hanoi’s museums are open Tuesday to Saturday from 8:00 to 11:30 and from 13:00 to 16:30. Entrance fees: 20,000-30,000 VND.
Many of Hanoi’s museums are military-themed, including the Ho Chi Minh Trail Museum (Quoc Lo 6, bus no. 2 terminus). Weapons and ammunition were transported along the legendary transport route, which to a large extent contributed to the victory of North Vietnam over the South. On the territory of the Hanoi Citadel there is a very interesting Museum of Military History, where you can trace the history of the country’s armed forces, starting from the period of the Chinese wars. But the main place in it is given to the Vietnam-American War. Among the exhibits are a downed American B-52 bomber, standing nose down, and a tank of the National Liberation Front, which on April 30, 1975 was the first to break into the Presidential Palace in Saigon.
Numerous samples of Soviet and captured American military equipment – airplanes, helicopters, tanks, army trucks, air defense systems – can be seen at the Air Force Museum (171 Truong Chinh Street), located on the site of the former airfield. Most of the exhibits presented here were transferred to Vietnam by the Soviet Union.
Spring is a great time of the year to visit Hanoi: despite the short rains, the weather is wonderful, nature gives the aroma of blooming flowers and fresh wind. But going here in the summer is not the best idea: hot and mosquitoes, mosquitoes and hot.
There is something unique about Hanoi autumn. Perfect weather, comfortable temperature, flowering of the cay hoa sua tree, which occurs only at this time of the year. Only Russians can endure the local winter (we are not afraid of the cold), because it is not only cold here, but also damp.