- Tour Styles
Hanoi, capital of Vietnam, was voted as the city of peace. As the life is, there are good and some bad people everywhere in our world and our captial makes no difference in this point. Therefore, we would like to provide essential Hanoi travel tips and tricks to make your Hanoi vacation unforgettable.
We wish you to have a wonderful Hanoi vacation. However, sometimes bad luck happens to everyone. If you are cheated by local people, you can call the hotline 24/24: 09184.108.40.206. This telephone is to recieve the information about cheating foreigners of high price. Hotline in other cities in Vietnam: Hotlines for Travelers From Hanoi to Saigon
Where to exchange money in Hanoi: BANK, BANK, BANK - But which bank should you change your money. At the airport, there are also some banks. If you change a hundred dollar, you can change at airport banks. Surely, airport exchange rate will be a little lower than goverment bank. Therefore, before exchanging, please check the exchange rate of goverment bank here: https://www.vietcombank.com.vn/exchangerates/ Because there was a case with Saigon Air's money exchange service in Tan Son Nhat airport in Saigon - the staff gave a group of French travelers very low rate 2 070 000 VN Dong for 1 URO while the government rate is 2 700 000. So 100 URO, they lost 630 000 VN Dong. Later talking with the local tour guide, she discovered and told them and the whole group came back to the airport. Big talks with airport leaders as it was a big amount of money. The staff had to give money back to them. You can see the case in Vietnamese news paper here: Cheated Money exchange Service at Tan Son Nhat airport
Lower exchange rate at hotels: It is service and it is fair. You can check the rate at the government bank we mentioned below. If it is not so much different and you change small amount, it will be ok. Some small hotels created a bank website to cheat tourists with low exchange rate. So, you can check by yourself by copy this link: https://www.vietcombank.com.vn/exchangerates/
Don't change money with people on street: BIG LOSS - you will get! The street people offer quite good exchange rate. But I strongly advise you not to change with them as in the end you will get a big loss - fake money, confused Vietnamese big and small notes. If you do not know where the bank is, ask your tour guide to take you there.
No Change at Gold Shop: The gold shop will give a little better rate for Vietnamese people. But foreigner will get a lower rate in comparision with the bank rate as the shop owner thinks the bank is too far for you. Even we are Vietnamese people and we do not change often. The shop owner also give lower rate.
ATMS in Hanoi: There are ATMS at all airports in Vietnam. Around the big cities and where there are tourists, there are many ATMs. There are many ATMs at the hotels in Hanoi as well. Example: Near water puppet show theatre and Hoan Kiem lake there are a few ATMs and banks like ANZ bank, Vietcombank...
Banks in Hanoi: Very convinent with banks in Hanoi city center as ANZ bank, Vietcombank, HSBC bank, BIDV bank, ABC bank, Agri bank, Techom bank, Army bank..... - All Banks are located nearby Hoan Kiem lake. There are also many branches of the banks in many streets as banking is a very great trading in Vietnam.
* Bun Cha Obama called by tourists to visit Hanoi: There are some really wonderful shops, you much taste Bun Cha in Hanoi. Bun Cha Hang Manh: 1 Hang Manh street; Bun Cha Tuyet: 30 Hang Than street(only for lunch). Bun Cha Que: Lung Ngoc Quyen & Ngo Dong Xuan. Bun Cha Huong Lien(only for lunch): 24 Le Van Huu - it is the place where US President, Obama ate Bun Cha on his offical trip to Hanoi, Vietnam. In My opition, the reason why this shop was chosen for Sir Obama to have Bun Cha is Very good food and Le Van Huu street is not busy. Eating Bun Cha here and other above places, I have to say Bun Cha Hang Manh and Bun Cha Tuyet is much better.
* Pho Bo: Same with Bun, Pho is also noodle made from rice. Different with Bun, Pho is flat noodle while Bun is round noodle. The taste of Bun and Pho is very different. The different taste mainly come from the broth. Whether Bun of Pho is delicious or not depends 80% on the broth. Pho Bo is very popular food for the whole day. It can be your breakfast, lunch or dinner. There are thousands of Quan Pho - noodle soup shops in Hanoi. However, We would like to recommend you the best Pho Bo - Beef Noodle Soups in Hanoi.
Pho 10 Ly Quoc Su - Address: 10 Ly Quoc Su street & 42 Hàng Vôi street
Pho Cuong - Address: 23 Hang Muoi
Pho Bat Dan - Address: 49 Bat Dan Street, From 6h30am – 8h30pm
Pho Thin - Address: 13 Lo Duc street
Pho Suong: - Address: Trung Yen lane - Dinh Liet street.
Hang Trong Sidewalk - Address: Sidewalk of Hang trong street & Hang Gai street. Open at 16:00pm - 20:00pm
Pho Vui - Adress: 25 Hang Giay street
* Bun Thang: Round noodle soup with chicken egg, pork paste, chicken. The broth is very different from pho and bun cha. Local Vietnamese eat Bun Thang with Mam tom - prawn paste. I advise you to eat Bun Thang without Mam tom - prawn paste. Best eat in Hanoi: 40 and 29 Cau Go streets, 29 Hang Hanh street, Hang be market, Hang Trong street, Mrs. Am - Cua Nam
* Bun Rieu: Round noodle soup with small fresh water crab soup and tofu. Best eat in Hanoi: 4 Hang Da street, Hang Buom street, Phan Boi Chau street.
* Bun Ca: Round noodle soup with fried fish and vege. Best eat in Hanoi:Trung Yen lane, Hong Phuc lane, Nguyen Truong To street, Nguyen Trung Truc street.
* Bun Dau Phu: Dry round noodle with tofu and herbs. Local Vietnamese eat with Mam tom - prawn paste. I advise you to eat Bun Thang without Mam tom - prawn paste unless you have strong stomach. Best eat at: Phot Loc lane, Trang Tien lane, Dao Duy Tu street, Ngo Gach street, T-junction of Ma May street and Dong Thai street
* Bun Oc Dau Phu: Round noodle soup with snail, tofu and herbs. Best eat in Hanoi: Mrs. Thuy at Dong Xuan lane near Dong Xuan market, Dao Duy Tu street, O Quan Chuong, Hang Chinh street, Hang Chai street.
* Bun Bo Nam Bo: Dry round noodle with beef and herbs. Nam Bo means Southern part of Vietnam. However, it is changed to serve the taste of the Northern people in Vietnam. the Best eat in Hanoi: 67 Hang Dieu
It depends on what you want to see and do on your Hanoi tour package. Tour Hanoi City Only or Tour The Beautiful Nature around Hanoi as well .
If Tour Hanoi City Only: Best time to travel Hanoi is from August to Discember and from March to May. Travel Hanoi this time, you can avoid the heat and the cold. The heat could be sometimes from 30oC to 39oC. The cold could be sometimes from 4oC to 11oC - It is very cold as the humidity in the air is over 95%.
If Tour Hanoi City and Beautiful Nature around Hanoi: Best time to travel Hanoi is from March to Discember. The heat will not matter you as you go to cool areas like Halong bay or Sapa - 1600m higher than the river. It is cool all the year round. Summer time and Autumn (from May to September) is the best to tour Halong bay and Sapa with blue sky. Some our clients traveled Hanoi for 2nd time in the summer. They said it is MUCH MUCH BETTER than the winter.
Get Vietnam Visa on arrival in Hanoi: If you can get Vietnam visa before your travel to Hanoi, we advise you to get it first. If there is no Vietnamese ambassy in your city or the cost too much in your city, we can help you to get Vietnam visa on arrival in Hanoi, Danang, Saigon.
To get Vietnam Visa on arrival in Hanoi done, we will help you to get the visa invitation letter first. Without this Visa letter you can not get on the airplane to Vietnam. One thing you may face - there may somtimes be many people waiting to get the visa as you are and it will take around 1 hour or more. Solution to this problem, We can arrange our tour guide to meet you inside and get visa arranged for you. There are many people from certain countries enjoying visa exception. Please check before you go.
Hanoi is the second biggest city in Vietnam. So it is most of time convinient to travel around Hanoi by Taxi, Moto-bike taxi. In rainy or hot days, it is sometimes very difficult to call a taxi. It is hard for you to travel in Hanoi by public transportation. Because it is very very busy at rush hour - No seat, Have to stand. You do not know where you should get off. And how to go to the sightseeing place from the bus stop. There are also pickpockets happening to Vietnamese people on the bus. We strongly advise no public buses on your Hanoi travel.
Wifi and internet in Hanoi: All the hotels in Hanoi have free wifi and some hotels also have a computer connected to internet for free use. Most of coffee shops and restaurant have wifi. In the countryside around Hanoi, it is also very easy to have wifi as well.
Electricity in Hanoi - Vietnam: It is 220V - 50Hz in Vietnam. If your electrical equipment is 110V, please bring your adapter equipment. Please see the adapter plug if your electrical equipment is not in the same system with the electrical system in Vietnam. You can buy a adapter plug at electrical shop - 1 - 1.5 USD. Some hotels have adapter plugs for you to borrow.
Where to stay is also a big question on planning your Hanoi tour Vietnam. Looking online. Seeing beautiful photos on Hanoi hotel websites. Surely, the photos on their websites are more beautiful than themselves.
You will consider beautiful room, excellent service, excellent breakfast when booking Hanoi hotels. Surely, it is not enough. Another very important feature is the location.
Every hotel wants to say their location is very good. For us, we are not a representative of any hotels in Hanoi. We will give you the best advice. As Hanoi tour operator, we advice you to stay at a hotel in Hanoi Old Quarter or nearby from mini hotels to 5star hotels.
Inside Hanoi Old Quarter, the best ones are Hanoi La Siesta hotel/ Hanoi La Siesta Trendy/ Golden Silk hotel/ Hanoi Essence group, Hanoi Elegance hotel group, Hanoi Silk Queen hotel, Hanoi Church Hotel group, Viet View hotel, Hanoi La Suite hotel.... Nearby Hanoi Apricot hotel, Hanoi D'Opera hotel, Metropole hotel....
What To Shop in Hanoi: There are so many things to shop in Hanoi. Hanoi is famous as Kingdom of hand-made gifts from high quality to low quality. From really cheap to really expensive. Hanoi is also the Kingdom of Chinese products as Hanoi is very close to China - 3.5 hour drive from Hanoi to China. Silk, clothes, tailor-made clothes, lacquer, paintings of oil, silk and lacquer, wooden products, pottery, pronze carving products, silver, gold, ruby, coffee, tea, cashew nut, lotus seeds, agriculture products like cake, candy, sweets.... Chinese toys, clothes
Where To Shop in Hanoi: For low and medium quality, go to Dong Xuan market to buy. Most of the things here comes from China. Bargainning is a must here. sometimes price goes down to 1/3.
- Vietnamese Silk, clothes, tailor-made clothes: Hang Gai street, Hang Bong street. Here the shops sell Chinese products of the same kinds as well. Be smart!
- Chinese clothes like jackets, jeans, shirts: Hang Dao street
- Chinese shoes: Cau Go, Hang Dau streets
- Lacquer products: Low quality looks bright. Hight quality looks deep.. Hang Trong, Ma May, Hang Be, Dinh Liet... streets
- Paintings of Lacquer, Silk, Oil: Should be bought at Vietnam Fine Art museum in Hanoi or at the artists' home. There are many art galleries in Hang Bong, Hang Gai, Hang Khay, Trang Tien... streets. But 90% of the paintings are copied
- Silver products: Hang Bac street
- Pronze products: Hang Dong street
- Cooking equipments: Dong Xuan market and its surrounding
- Agriculture products like coffee, tea, cashew nut, lotus seeds, cake, candy, sweets..: Hang Buom, Ma May, Hang Gai... streets and Dong Xuan market
Shopping Malls in Hanoi: Trang Tien plaza, Vincom center, Time City, Royal city..
Snail Eating in Dinh Liet Street:Opening from 16:30 to 19:00 It is not restaurant as people has to eat cooked snails on small plastic chairs on the pavement of the street. Snails are cooked with lemon grass and the leaves of grape-fruite trees. The broth is so special with lemon leaves, lemon grass, ginger.... It is so delicious that Hanoians are happy to sit unconviniently on the pavement. The price of this shop is even more expensive than other shops. However, local people still love this shop. Even famous Vietnamese movie stars or Singers are also their customers. Great Food Adventure in Hanoi for You!
Grilled Fish Restaurants - Cha Ca: Speciality of Hanoi. Small restaurant, but taste so good. Only grilled fish eaten with round noodle, peanut, inion, many other herbs and prawn paste. I advise you to eat Cha Ca with fish sauce. Best eat at Cha Ca La Vong at 14 Cha Ca street, Cha Ca Thang Long at 31 Duong Thanh street.
Eel Grilled - Frog Grilled Restaurant: Eel-grilled eated with glass noodle soup and sweet and sour stir-fried frog. Best eat at 34 Yen Ninh street.
Thit Cho - Dog Meat Restaurant: Oh Oh! terrible is what you will say.. But it is speciality in Hanoi. Dog meat eaten with herbs and prawn paste. Hanoians has eaten dog meat for a thousand years. Travel is experience. Another Adventure for You in Hanoi!
No one wants to see them on their tours to Hanoi. However, it is good to know. There are some hospitals with english-speaking doctors in Hanoi. Hong Ngoc hospital at 55 Yen Ninh Street. Viet - Phap( Vietnamese - French) hospital at 1 Phuong Mai street. SOS clinic at 51 XuaN Dieu street.
There are so many things to see and do in Hanoi at day time. It depends on your interests.
- History Interests: visit Hoa Lo prison, Army museum, history museum, Ho Chi Minh complex, B52 air-force museum
- Culture Interests: Temple of literature, Quan Thanh temple, Tran Quoc pagoda, Ethnology museum, Fine art museum, Ngoc Son temple, Nha Tho lon, water puppet show, Bach Ma temple
- Real Local Life: Hanoi Old Quarter on foot or rickshaw and electricity car
- Amazing Street Food on Foot: Best in Hanoi Old Quarter
Hanoi is not a big centre for night activities as Ho Chi Minh city. At night time in Hanoi, you can visit night market in the Old Quarter at weeken from Friday to Sunday night. Here, you can see some cultural activies here like traditional music shows.
Or you can drink a draft beer at Ta Hien Street with so many young people coming from different parts of Hanoi. It is a big social life centre for every night. Here, there are many bars as well. Here all have to close at mid night before 24:00pm.
After 24:00pm, you can relax in 2 cafe shops opening all day and through night - Puku Cafe - ADD: 16 - 18 Tong Duy Tan. And Xofa cafe - ADD: 14 Tong Duy Tan.
Puku Cafe - ADD: 16 - 18 Tong Duy Tan Opens 24 hours/day satisfying all kinds of guests even demanding guests with its own style. It has its own deco-style with special Vietnamese art. Next to this coffee shop also has some late dinner restaurant.
Xofa cafe - ADD: 14 Tong Duy Tan Opens 24 hours/day with its own deco-style of classical European art features. It will bring you the feeling of relax. It also serves food - an excellent destination for night-out lovers.
Ay cafe Loung - ADD: 63 Hang Bun Street Opens 24 hours/day. It is a popular place for the yourth who love the nights out. It is a romantic place for lovers espcially with some nights with live music. It is great to try cooktail or whisky here.
There are many good spa and Massage in Hanoi from cheap to luxury spa. They are located in Hanoi Old Quarter - SF Spa Hanoi Lakeview: 7 Cau Go - SF Spa Hanoi Corner: 30 Cua Dong; Le Spa du Metropole: Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi- 15 Ngo Quyen, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi; Menard Spa: 32 Le Thai To, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi; Zen Spa in West Lake - 164 Tu Hoa, Quang An, Tay Ho, Hanoi; Forever Beauty - Massage in Hanoi, Vietnam. Address: 75 Lang Ha, Hanoi; Dai Cat Foot Massage, Hanoi - 102 Tue Tinh, Nguyen Du, Hai Ba Trung, Ha Noi, Vietnam.
Aiden Webb is an experienced mountain-climber who arrived in Sapa - Vietnam on 2nd June 2016. Next day, he decided to climb Fansifan mountain alone - the highest mountain of Indochina - Laos - Camboida - Vietnam. The mountain is 3.143m high. He started climbing from Sin Chai village - the hardest way to the top of Fansifan. On the same day of 3rd June, he got hurt knees with dropping blood at 18:00pm. He contacted his girl friend staying in Sapa. She asked local goverment for search. She lost contact with him at 6:00 am on 4th June.
There were 150 people looking for Aiden Webb. However, they could not find him until 12:50pm. The reason why it took so long for hunders of people looking for him - It is the most dangous mountain area of Hoang Lien Son mountains range. GPS from his phone is not correct for the vast mountain area.
Local government and people in Sapa had tried their best to look for them. However, it took 5 days for them to find him as it is mountainous area - not the city. It is the same case to find a Japanese boy got lost in the forest in Japan. There were 200 people searching for the boy, but it took them 6 days to find the boy as it is in the forest.
Why did he die there? - It is because he is so subjective as an experienced climber. Every climbing trip is differently challenging. Solo mountain climbing trip without any help. Many experienced Vietnamese climbers still have to hire a local guide for their second trips to Fansifan mountain. How could he manage if the flood/heavy rain happens at night? Did he know the best place to stay at night in case the flood/heavy rain happens at night.
Vietnam Travel Tips
Surely booking your Vietnam tour package with local Vietnamese travel companies, you will get much cheaper price than the travel companies in your country. However, who or which Vietnamese travel company to book your Vietnam tour packages with is a big question for many travelers.
There are so many tourists booking their Hanoi tour package online with unknown local websites and there are no one to pick them up at the airport on arrival in Hanoi. Therefore, we would like to give you some travel tips to find out which company you should book your Vietnam tour package with
There are many Vietnamese travel agents which can arrange some parts of the Vietnam tour packages for backpackers in their nearby areas. They are located in Hanoi Old Quarter and Pham Ngu Lao street in Ho Chi Minh city. They are intermediary sellers. They are travel agents and are not allowed to operate Vietnam tours, so they will sell you to other travel companies and you will join in with a group of tourists. In this case, they can not control the quality of your trip. Our tips are that you come to their offices to check what available and book your trip. You should only pay the deposit. When you get picked up, you will pay the rest. You can ask them to give the mobile phone of a foreigner who joined their Vietnam holiday with them before. You phone to speak with them directly.
Online bookings, there are many fake websites selling Vietnam tour package. Our tips as follow:
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