Hanoi overview, the capital of Vietnam

Before you visit Hanoi, you’ll need to know some useful facts and tips to help you plan your trip.

Capital

Hanoi is the capital of The Socialist Republic of Vietnam, also is the leading city of Vietnam on the natural area, second in the urban area behind Ho Chi Minh City and standing the second in population with 6472 million people. This city is located in the center of the northern Vietnam, where the Red River flows through. Being in the top 17 largest capitals in the world, Hanoi becomes the centre of politics, culture, science, technology and economy of Vietnam.

Connectivity

Hanoi is also a connectivity centre with Noi Bai international airport which serve the people of the capital city and the other neighboring provinces and cities. This airport performs domestic flights from Hanoi to Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Hue, Nha Trang, Vinh… and international flights from Hanoi, Vietnam to Bangkok, Singapore, Hong Kong, Seoul, Moscow, Paris, London… In addition, Hanoi railway station provides the trains to destinations in Vietnam as Lao Cai, Hai Phong, Vinh, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City… and Gia Lam railway station is also the starting place of the train from Vietnam to Kunming in Yunnan, China.

History

Hanoi was formed about 4000 years ago. Ancient people migrated from midland to build the first civilization of Hanoi under the Red River civilization. This city was chosen as a political centre in Chinese conquerors period. In 1010, Ly Cong Uan (Ly Thai To King) moved the capital from Hoa Lu (Ninh Binh province) to Dai La. Since then, Hanoi – Thang Long really became the center of politics, economy and culture in Vietnam.

In 1397, Ho Quy Ly built the Tay Do in An Ton (Thanh Hoa province) and moved his capital to there. Thang Long was renamed Dong Do. In 1406, Minh troops invaded Dai Ngu (the name of Vietnam at that time). In January 21st, 1407, the Dong Do fell. Dong Do was renamed Dong Quan and become the place of machinery of government in Dai Viet (Viet Nam). On 29/04/1428, Le Loi came to the throne, restored the name Dong Do and put the capital here. In 1527, after Mac Dac Dung usurped the throne of Le dynasty, Hanoi returned to the name Thang Long.

In 1931, Minh Mang King established Hanoi province including Thang Long citadel and 4 districts. October 1st, 1888. Hanoi officially became French concession. On 02/09/1945, Ho Chi Minh President read the Declaration of Independence, giving birth to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. Hanoi returned to the role as a capital.
From 19/12/1946 to 17/02/1947, Hanoi people heroically struggled against the invasion of the French colonialism. October 10th, 1954, Hanoi was liberated and became the capital of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.
July 2nd, 1976, The Democratic Republic of Vietnam was renamed as The Socialist, Republic of Vietnam with Hanoi as its capital.

Attractions

In the aggressive war in many centuries ago, a lot of places in Hanoi were destroyed, but there remain several historical and scenic points, among them should refer to Hoan Kiem Lake with Turtle Tower, Ngoc Son Temple and The Huc Bridge. Historical sites include Imperial Citadel of Thang Long, The Temple of Literature, One Piller Pagoda. Specially, Imperial Citadel of Thang Long was officially recognized by UNESCO as the world culture heritage in 2010. In additions, Hanoi also has many big universities such as The National University of Hanoi, The National Economic University, The Foreign Trade University, Hanoi University of Science and Technology… Besides, there are many activities that attract many tourists as Hanoi night market, Hanoi street foods tour…

Restaurants

There are thousands of restaurants in Hanoi. But there are some special place that you should come to the foods, include Vietnamese cuisine restaurants as A Taste of Hanoi, 33 Chau Long street, Ba Dinh District; La Vong Restaurant, 14 Cha Ca Street, HoanKiem District; Madarin Restaurant, 74 Xuan Dieu street, Tay Ho District… and foreign cuisine restaurants as Mama Rosa, 6 Le Thai To street; Cielo, 172 Xuan Dieu street, La Vertical at Ngo Van So street or Dragon Chinese Restaurant at D8 Giang Vo street…

Shopping

Hanoi is a shopping paradise of Vietnam with many large and small fashion shops, accessories stores…along the streets and the shopping centre of this city. Here, you can enjoy at the famous shopping streets as Ba Trieu, Pho Hue, Hang Non, DinhLiet, QuanThanh, Chua Boc…, in the major commercial centres like Lotte, Keangnam, Vincom, Royal City, Times City…, or in big supermarkets of the capital as BigC, Metro, Coopmart, Fivimart…

Hotels

When visiting Hanoi, you may choose to rest at expensive 5-star hotels like Hilton Hanoi Hotel, Hanoi Pearl, Hanoi La Siesta & Spa, Royal Palace, The Landmark Hanoi, Meliá Hanoi, Intercontinental Hanoi Westlake… or cheaper price hotels as Mai Hanoi Hotel, Thang Long 2 Hanoi, Joy Journey Hanoi, Camellia 6 Hanoi… but still have the best conditions and services.

Transport

You can use a variety of transports to go to Hanoi or to move in the city. If you are living in the neighboring provinces, you can go to Hanoi by passenger car, train or even by your motorcycle on the highway. Even if you stay at a distance, you may choose the train or the fights of domestic airlines such as Vietnam Airlines, Jetstar Pacific Airlines or Vietjet Air to go to Hanoi. While moving in the city, you can use motorbike, bike, taxi, or more probable way by bus with price 5000 Vietnam dong for 1 line. Especially, when you want to visit the centre area of the city, HoanKiem Lake, the old town, you may take by electric cars, pedicabs or leisurely walk to enjoy the atmosphere and save the beautiful scenery here.