Hanoi: 60 attractions around Hanoi

What to see in Hanoi and its surroundings, photos, tips, secret locations

Hanoi (literally "city between rivers" or "(place) surrounded by a river") is the capital of Vietnam and the second most populous city in the country. The main political, educational and cultural center of the country. Population 8,246,500 (as of 2020). The history of the city begins in 1010, when Emperor Li Thai To ordered the construction of a city in the vicinity of the Daila fortress and the transfer of the capital of the state from Hoa Lu.

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Sights of Hanoi. What to see in Hanoi and around

We can arrange for you a sightseeing tour of Hanoi and its environs, during which you will see the main sights of the Vietnamese capital. We can also arrange individual excursions to places of interest that are not included in our standard excursions, a brief overview of which is given below.


3 MUST visit places around Hanoi:
*these are the main Must See places in North Vietnam, for which tourists come here. Visit them first:
1. Ninh Binh (Changan, Baidin, Hoaly)
2. Ha Long Bay
3. Sapa

The main attractions of Hanoi:
1. Sword Lake (Hoan Kiem)
2. Ngoc Son Temple
3. Tran Quoc Temple and West Lake
4. Thang Long Citadel (Dragon Citadel) and Forbidden City
5. Mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh City and Badinh Square
6. One Pillar Pagoda (Chua Mot Kot)
7. Temple of Literature
8. Quan Thanh Temple (Guardian of the North Gate of Hanoi)
9. St. Joseph's Cathedral

Museums in Hanoi:
1. Museum of Women
2. Hoa Lo Prison Museum (Hanoi Hilton)
3. Vietnam National History Museum
4. Vietnam Ethnographic Museum
5. Military History Museum and Flag Tower
6. Museum of Fine Arts
7. Ho Chi Minh Museum
8. House of Ho Chi Minh on stilts
9. Hanoi History Museum
10. Presidential Palace
11. Ancient House
12. Museum of the Revolution
13. Air Force Museum
14. Victory Museum B52
15. Police Museum

The main attractions in the suburbs of Hanoi
1. Fragrant Pagoda
2. Tam Chuc Pagoda
3. Secret Cave of Ho Chi Minh City
4. Bat Trang Pottery Village
5. Duong Lam Ancient Village
6. Bavi National Park
7. Ancient Citadel of Co Loa
8. Van Phuc Silk Village

Parks, theaters, zoos, aquariums in Hanoi:
1. Thang Long water puppet theater
2. Bao Son Paradise Park
3. Hanoi Opera House
4. Ho Tay Water Park
5. Hanoi Botanical Garden
6. Hanoi Zoo
9. Tuong National Theater
10. Thang Long Ka Tru Theater
11. Thong Nhat Park

1. Sword Lake

Sword Lake (Hoan Kiem, “Lake of the Returned Sword”, “Green Water Lake”) is a legendary lake in the center of Hanoi. According to legend, a magical turtle living in the waters of the lake gave a magic sword to King Le Loi, with which he managed to defeat the Chinese army. After the victory, the sword was returned to the turtle and rests at the bottom of the lake.

2. Ngoc Son Temple

The lake surrounds Ngoc Son Temple. Also known as the Jade Mountain Pagoda, the temple is located on Hoan Kiem Lake. The temple was built in the 18th century in honor of General Chan Hong Dao (who defeated the Mongols), La To (the patron saint of doctors) and the revered intellectual Wang Xuong.

Cau The Huc (Red Bridge) leads to the Temple. Cau The Huc, or the Red Bridge, is a beautiful wooden bridge that connects the shore of Hoan Kiem Lake with Ngoc Son Temple in the middle of the lake. The magnificent red color of the bridge makes a stunning contrast with the green water of the lake. At night, the bridge is beautifully lit.

3. West Lake and Tran Quoc Pagoda

The oldest pagoda in Hanoi, Tran Quoc, was built in the 6th century during the Ly Nam De dynasty. Located on a small island (which is called the island of the Golden Fish) in the West Lake (Tay).

4. Thang Long Imperial Citadel

The Imperial Citadel, also known as the Hanoi Citadel, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

5. Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Badinh Square

The mausoleum, located on Ba Dinh Square, is the final resting place of Vietnam's most popular leader, Ho Chi Minh, known to his people as Uncle Ho. It was opened to the public in 1975.
The square in front of the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is the historic site where the Vietnamese Declaration of Independence was read in 1945.

6. One Pillar Pagoda (Chua Mot Kot) and Park

One of Vietnam's most iconic temples, the One Pillar Pagoda is a single pillar elegantly built in the shape of a lotus flower, which is the Buddhist symbol of enlightenment. The temple inside the pagoda is dedicated to the Vietnamese Buddhist deity Quan Am. Built around 1050 during the Li Dynasty. There is a picturesque park next to the pagoda.

7. Temple of Literature

Van Mieu - a complex of pagodas with a park, the first university in Vietnam. Located south of the citadel in Hanoi. The Temple of Literature is an 11th-century Vietnamese temple dedicated to Confucius. Built in 1070 by Emperor Li.

8. Quan Thanh Temple (Guardian of the North Gate of Hanoi)

Taoist temple built in honor of the god of the North, Tran Vo. Located near Truc Bach Lake, it is one of the most significant temples in Vietnam.

9. St. Joseph's Cathedral

The cathedral is located in the Old Quarter of Hanoi, it was built in 1886 by the French colonizers in neo-Gothic style.

10. Old Quarter

Hanoi's Old Quarter, also known as Hoan Kiem District (or simply 36 Streets), is one of the oldest districts in Hanoi. Here are the most popular hotels, historical sites, tourist street shops and cafes of Hanoi.

Museums in Hanoi

1. Museum of Women

Vietnam Women's Museum, run by the Vietnam Women's Union. It details the history and role of women in Vietnamese society.

2. Hoa Lo Prison Museum (Hanoi Hilton)

The Hoa Lo Museum was created on the site of the Hanoi Hilton prison, which was used during the colonial period and during the Vietnam War. It is located in the Hoan Kiem area.

3. National Historical Museum

The National Museum of Vietnamese History, located in the Hoan Kiem district of Hanoi, displays artifacts from prehistoric times (about 400,000 years ago) to the founding of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.

4. Vietnam Ethnographic Museum

The Vietnam Museum of Ethnography is a great place to explore the socio-cultural diversity of Vietnam. The museum was built in 1995. It presents the cultural characteristics and reflects the daily life of 54 officially recognized ethnic groups in Vietnam.

5. Hanoi Military History Museum (Army Museum) and Flag Tower

Part of the Vietnam Military History Museum, the Flag Tower is one of Vietnam's iconic architectural structures. The view from the top of the 33-meter tower is breathtaking.
The Vietnam Military History Museum, also known as the Army Museum, houses authentic exhibits, a collection of weapons used during the Vietnam War.

6. Vietnam Museum of Fine Arts

The museum houses a large collection of local works of art from ancient times to the present day.

7. Ho Chi Minh Museum
This museum opened in 1990 on the anniversary of the birth of Ho Chi Minh. The museum presents the history of Vietnam and the biography of Ho Chi Minh.

8. Ho Chi Minh's house on stilts
The modest dwelling of Ho Chi Minh is surrounded by a pond with carps. It features his personal typewriter and armchair.

9. Hanoi History Museum

10. Presidential Palace
The Presidential Palace in Hanoi is located in the Badinh district of Hanoi on Hung Vuong and Hoang Van Tu streets. The palace was built in 1900.

11. An old house in Hanoi
The Ancient House in Hanoi, also known as the Heritage House, is located in the old quarter of Hanoi and provides an overview of the traditional lifestyles of the Vietnamese people.

12. Museum of the Vietnamese Revolution
Numerous exhibits dedicated to the revolutionary struggle of Vietnam are presented in the halls of the museum.

13. Vietnam Air Force Museum
The museum tells the history of the People's Air Force of Vietnam from its formation in 1954 to the present day. It displays history through documents, biographies, photographs, uniforms, weapons and a host of other exhibits. Outside the museum are jet fighters, helicopters, tanks and other equipment.

14. Victory Museum B52
The museum in Hanoi was created as a memorial to the 1972 "Hanoi-Dien Bien Phu in the Air" campaign, when Vietnamese air defense forces shot down 81 aircraft and forced the US to withdraw from Vietnam.

15. Hanoi Police Museum
The Hanoi Police Museum has interesting exhibits such as uniforms, weapons, motorcycles, station dioramas, as well as many photographs and documents introducing visitors to the history of the police.

The main attractions in the suburbs of Hanoi:

1. Fragrant Pagoda

Chua Chong is one of the two most important and revered temples in Hanoi. An extensive complex of Buddhist temples and shrines built in the limestone mountains of Huong Tit.

The center of the complex is the Inner Temple ("Tuachong"), located in the cave Huongtit.

2. Tam Chuc Pagoda

3. Long Tien
Secret Cave of Ho Chi Minh City and underground guerrilla base
4. Bat Trang Pottery Village
Bat Trang Pottery Village, commonly known as the "Ceramic Village", is home to local artisans who work in traditional and contemporary styles.
5. Duong Lam Ancient Village
The village will take you on a unique journey through the ancient culture and traditions of Vietnam. Tourists can admire mossy houses with gleaming 400-year-old architecture and even mingle with the locals.
6. Bavi National Park
Located in the middle of three mountain peaks, Bawi National Park is about 63 km from Hanoi and can be reached by both public and private transport.
7. Co Loa Citadel
3000-year-old citadel and the legendary capital of the ancient Vietnamese kingdom of Au Lac.
8. Van Phuc Silk Village
The Silk Village in Hanoi was introduced to the world at the Marseille International Silk Exhibition in France in the 1930s. This traditional Vietnamese village became an instant hit in the international market due to the quality of the silk.

Parks, theaters, zoos, aquariums in Hanoi:

1. Thang Long water puppet theater
Thang Long Water Puppet Theater is the best place to see the eponymous art form, an integral part of the country. The Vietnamese tradition of water puppets dates back to the 11th century when the rice fields were flooded and the villagers had fun standing in the water with the puppets.

2. Bao Son Paradise Park
The largest entertainment and tourist complex in Hanoi, Bao Son Paradise Park, consists of four main areas. The park provides a huge range of activities for the whole family.

3. Hanoi Opera House
The Hanoi Opera House, located near Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi, was built in 1911 by the French and imitates the Paris Opera in its structure and interiors.

4. Ho Tay Water Park
Ho Tay Water Park, located in the West Lake Park amusement park.

5. Hanoi Botanical Garden
The botanical garden, known as Bach Tao Park, is a green area located in the Badinh district. It was built back in colonial times.

6. Hanoi Zoo
Widely known as Thu Le Zoo, it features a beautiful garden adorned with flowers and trees. The zoo has over 600 animals of 100 different species such as lions, tigers, jumpers, elephants and hippos.

9. Tuong National Theater
Tuong is a genre of Vietnamese theater that combines dance, song, poetry and contemporary folk music. Vietnamese National Tuong Theatre, founded in 1959.

10. Thang Long Ka Tru Theater
Ca Tru is an ancient genre of Vietnamese chamber music featuring female vocalists.

11. Thong Nhat Park
The park covers an area of 50 hectares, with a large lake, many paths for jogging or walking, benches for reading, badminton courts and several attractions for children. The park is also called the reunification park as it was created in 1960 with the hope of reunification when the country was divided.

Other attractions in Hanoi:

1. Corner of Bia Hoi
Bia Hoi is considered the best nightlife spot in Hanoi. This place will be of particular interest to beer lovers (the name Bia Hoi itself translates as "fresh beer"), it is popular among tourists and locals in Hanoi due to the wide variety of alcohol and affordable prices.

2. French Quarter
The French Quarter in the old part of Hanoi is a prestigious area of the city. It is located southeast of Hoan Kiem Lake. There are many business centers and government buildings here. Many buildings show the architectural influence of the French.

3. Lookout Lotte

The best observation deck in the city (Lotte), located on the 65th floor of the Lotte Centre. From here you have a stunning panoramic view of Hanoi.

4. Ta Hien Street
Popularly known as the "International Crossroads", Ta Hien Street in Hanoi is the place where Western culture meets Eastern culture. Foreigners and tourists often come here.

5. Dong Xuan Market
Dong Xuan Market is Hanoi's oldest market, located in the old quarter and over three stories high. A typical Southeast Asian market, the ground floor is reserved for the sale of fresh seafood, vegetables and flowers. All other goods are on the upper floors.

6. Bach Ma Temple
The temple is located in the center of the Old Quarter, is a beautiful 11th century Buddhist temple in Hanoi. It is dedicated to Bach Ma or "White Horse", the legendary horse that is said to have led Emperor Li Tai to the best place to build a temple.

7. Night market
Hanoi Night Market, located in the Old Quarter of Hanoi. This is a busy street trading place. Here you can buy clothes, handicrafts, accessories and souvenirs or enjoy delicious Vietnamese dishes.

8. Long Bien Bridge
This bridge is a symbol of the courage and resilience of the Vietnamese people. The strategically important Long Bien Bridge is located on the Red River. During the American-Vietnamese War, it was the only link between the port of Haiphong and Hanoi, so it was repeatedly bombed by American aircraft.

9. Hanoi Ceramic Mosaic Mural
The world's largest mosaic fresco, built of ceramics and stretching for 6.5 km. The decorative patterns on the wall, designed by Vietnamese artist Nguyen Thu Thuy, are a visual narrative of the country's history from different periods.

10. Quang Ba Flower Market
Picturesque wholesale flower market in Hanoi. Every night, trucks from Dalat bring in a variety of colorful flowers such as sunflowers, roses, tulips, orchids, lilies, and more.

11. Thap Rua Tower
Also known as the Turtle Tower, one of Hanoi's most iconic landmarks, it was built in memory of Le Loi, who liberated Vietnam from the Chinese in 1425.

12. Fu Tai Ho
A temple dedicated to mother goddesses and the Jade Emperor.

13. Truc Bach Lake
One of the many lakes in Hanoi. This is the ideal place for those who are looking for a beautiful landscape with many historical relics and unique architecture. Around the lake, you can visit the ancient pagoda and statue of Amida, the Quan Thanh Temple to worship Saint Tran Wu, or the Chau Long Pagoda. There are many shops and cafes nearby.

14. Kim Lien Temple
Quiet and secluded, Kim Lien Pagoda is an ancient temple founded in the 12th century by the Li Dynasty. The pagoda has a very complex and elegant architecture with three curved pavilions. It houses statues of Buddha, Princess Tu Hoa and Lord Trin Jang among others.

15. But Thap Pagoda
Built in the 13th century during the Tran Dynasty, the pagoda is known for its unique architecture that combines Vietnamese and Chinese cultures.

16. Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower Skyscraper
Also known as Sky 72 Observatory, it is the tallest skyscraper in Vietnam at 350 meters. The top floor of the building is a platform that offers a 360-degree panoramic view of Hanoi.

17. Nhat Tan Bridge across the Red River
The first multi-span cable-stayed bridge in Vietnam. It connects Hanoi city center to Noi Bai International Airport, reducing travel time between the two. The bridge is made in a unique architectural form with five pylons and guys.

18. Monument to the martyrs

The Martyrs' Monument is a majestic monument erected in memory of those who died fighting for the independence of Vietnam.

19. Thanh Palace Chuong Viet
Thanh Chuong Viet Palace is home to thousands of cultural and historical artifacts that reveal Vietnamese culture.

20. Old East Gate
The only surviving city gate of ancient Hanoi. O Quan Chuong, also known as Old City Gate or Old East Gate.

21. Hai Ba Chung Temple
Situated near Hoan Kiem Lake, Hai Ba Trung is a 12th-century temple with decorative carvings and statues of the Trung sisters. These sisters are national heroines who fought against Chinese rule in Vietnam in the 1st century AD.

22. Tai Ho Pagoda
The pagoda is located on the northern peninsula in West Lake. The temple is dedicated to the mother goddess Thanh Mau.

23. Woi Phuc Temple
Widely known as the Temple of the Kneeling Elephants, it is dedicated to Royal Highness Lin Lang, son of King Ly Thanh Tong. Every year, the locals hold a festival from February 9th to 11th lunar calendar to celebrate Lin Lang's virtue.

24. Monument to Lenin
The statue of Lenin, located on Nguyen Tai Hoc Avenue in Hanoi, is a legacy of the communist leader's influence on the culture and politics of Vietnam.

Excursions in Hanoi

Below are some of our excursions with a visit to Hanoi:

Northern Vietnam from Hanoi in 2 days

  • Trang An Landscape Complex
  • Ninh Binh with its picturesque scenery
  • The ancient capital of Hoala and the picturesque Bai Dinh Pagoda
  • Tam Coc National Park
  • Dancing Cave
  • Hang Mua Peak
North Vietnam
$190 per person
Detailed program
 Organizer  Organized by

Hanoi sightseeing tour (1 day)

  • Lake of the Sword
  • Railway Street
  • West Lake (Thay)
  • Old city area
  • One Pillar Pagoda
  • Mausoleum and Museum of Ho Chi Minh City
Capital of Vietnam
$140 per person
Detailed program
 Organizer  Organized by

Hanoi - Ninh Binh - Ha Long Bay (3 days)

  • Ha Long Bay - the most picturesque bay in the world
  • Hanoi - the capital of Vietnam
  • Trang An Landscape Complex
  • The ancient capital of Hoa Lu
  • The magnificent pagoda of Bai Dinh
North Vietnam
$690 per person
Detailed program
 Organizer  Organized by