Top 10 Best Things To Do In Hanoi: Experience new things

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Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam, a vibrant and bustling city with a rich history and culture. There’s plenty to see and do in Hanoi, from exploring historical sites to enjoying street food. Let’s join Vietnam Motorcycle Tours Club as the 10 best things to do in Hanoi. 

Some details about Hanoi – Capital of Vietnam 

Hanoi, the thousand-year-old capital of Vietnam, has long been an attractive destination for international tourists due to its ancient yet modern beauty, unique culture, and friendly people.

Strolling through the ancient streets adorned with lanterns, visitors feel as if they have stepped into another world with centuries-old houses and narrow alleys filled with countless interesting stories. This place also preserves many valuable historical and cultural relics such as the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the Temple of Literature, Hoan Kiem Lake, the One Pillar Pagoda, and more. Each landmark carries its own historical and cultural story, contributing to the colorful cultural mosaic of Hanoi.

Hanoi’s cuisine is also a highlight that captivates visitors. Tourists can enjoy specialty dishes like Hanoi pho, bun cha, and Cha Ca La Vong, or savor a delicious egg coffee on the old streets. Each dish has its own unique flavor, leaving a lasting impression on visitors.

Hanoians are known for their friendliness, hospitality, and kindness. Tourists always feel comfortable and warmly welcomed when they come here. The smiles and enthusiasm of the locals make visitors feel right at home.


Top 10+ things to do in Hanoi 

Join a motorbike tour around Hanoi 

Hanoi is a bustling and vibrant city. When you come to Hanoi, you will be amazed by the countless motorbikes on the streets. They weave through the city’s small alleys, observing the bustling streets and the lives of the people. Therefore, the best thing to do when visiting Hanoi is a day tour on a motorbike with Vietnam Motorbike Tours. It allows you to experience the city in a very different way, like the locals.

join hanoi short motorbike tour

Riding along the ancient streets, witnessing the daily lives of the locals, exploring bustling markets, you will be immersed in it all. Stop by a roadside café, enjoy a cup of coffee or iced tea, and listen to the locals’ stories. Travelers will be surprised by the friendliness and hospitality of the Vietnamese people.

Exploring the capital city by motorbike will open up wonderful photo opportunities, capturing the authentic life of the capital, from street vendors to playful children. This is definitely a memorable experience for you.

Explore Hanoi’s Old Quarter 

The Old Quarter of Hanoi is a historic district located in the heart of the city. It is characterized by its narrow alleys filled with shops, cafes, and restaurants.

The Old Quarter was formed in the 11th century when Thang Long became the capital of Vietnam. Initially, it was inhabited by craftsmen and merchants, and each street was named after a specific trade. For example, Hang Ngang Street specialized in selling clothing items, while Hang Bac Street was known for its silver jewelry.

Exploring this area is definitely an interesting experience that any visitor to Hanoi should try. Here, you can visit historical landmarks, shop for souvenirs, and enjoy local cuisine.

explore the old town - the best things to do in hanoi

Visit Ho Chi Minh mausoleum

The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a deeply significant landmark for every Vietnamese citizen. It serves as the final resting place of President Ho Chi Minh, a revered national leader and international icon. Surrounding the mausoleum, which forms the heart of the complex, lies Ba Dinh Square, the Presidential Palace, and Uncle Ho’s stilt house, all offering a glimpse into his life and legacy.

Please note: There are some inaccuracies in the original passage regarding opening hours. Here’s a corrected version:

  • Summer & Fall (April – October): Tuesday – Thursday and Saturday – Sunday, 7:30 AM – 10:30 AM. Opening hours are extended by 30 minutes on weekends and public holidays.
  • Winter & Spring (November – March): Tuesday – Thursday and Saturday – Sunday, 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM. Opening hours are extended by 30 minutes on weekends and public holidays.
  • The mausoleum is closed on Mondays and Fridays, except for special occasions.

visit ho chi minh mausoleum


  • Choose formal, neat, and modest attire. Avoid wearing revealing, torn, or clothes with offensive prints. 
  • Do not carry bulky items, large handbags, backpacks, or suitcases. You can leave your belongings at the free cloakroom outside the Mausoleum.
  • Familiarize yourself with the visiting regulations to ensure a respectful and smooth visit to the Mausoleum. 
  • Maintain a serious and respectful attitude, demonstrating reverence for President Ho Chi Minh. Keep silent, avoid talking loudly, laughing, or causing disturbance.
  • Turn off your phone’s ringer, refrain from making or receiving calls, or using electronic devices. 
  • Children under 3 years old are not allowed into the Mausoleum.

Sip a cup of coffee early in the morning at Hoan Kiem Lake 

The heart of Hanoi beats around Hoan Kiem Lake, also known as Sword Lake. More than just a scenic spot, it’s a vibrant hub woven into the city’s cultural tapestry. Locals flock here not only for leisurely walks and relaxation, but also to connect with their heritage.

Early risers come alive with the lake. It’s a popular spot for exercise, offering a chance to greet the sunrise amidst the morning mist and mingle with fellow Hanoians. The lake itself boasts a wealth of activities and landmarks. Visitors can explore the historic Ngoc Son Temple, stroll across the iconic red bridge to the Turtle Tower, or marvel at the beauty of the Thap Rua (Tortoise) Tower.

Come weekends, the area transforms into a bustling walking street. Street performers fill the air with music, while locals engage in traditional folk games, creating a lively atmosphere around the picturesque lake.

enjoy the morning mist in hoan kiem lake early in the morning

Watch the sunset at West Lake

Gazing upon the West Lake sunset is a quintessential Hanoi experience, a unique spectacle not every city can offer. Thanh Nien Street bordering the lake provides a particularly stunning vantage point, facing directly towards the fiery descent of the sun. But fret not about finding the absolute best spot. Any open and airy location along the lakeside will suffice for immersing yourself in this captivating display. Witnessing the sun melt into the waters of West Lake is an undeniably moving experience. Here, amidst the vibrant tapestry of colors, the wind, and the clouds, you can find a sense of serenity and share a silent conversation with the breathtaking beauty around you. 

watch the sunset at west lake

Enjoy Bun Cha – Things to do in Hanoi 

A staple for residents of the capital, bun cha isn’t just a dish, it’s a must-try Hanoi experience. This flavorful offering combines three key elements: a perfectly balanced dipping sauce, smoky grilled pork rolls, and silky vermicelli noodles. The star of the show is undoubtedly the sauce, a symphony of sweet, salty, spicy, and sour notes, complemented by a refreshing salad of crisp green vegetables.

While bun cha is a versatile option for any meal, Hanoians traditionally savor it for lunch. This time-honored custom reflects the city’s unique “culinary art,” a testament to centuries of culinary tradition. Don’t miss your chance to delve into Hanoi’s rich food scene and experience this iconic dish firsthand.

enjoy bun cha

Watch the street on a cyclo

Cruise through Hanoi’s Old Town in a cyclo, a must-do for any visitor. It’s not just sightseeing it’s a cultural immersion! These iconic three-wheeled taxis whisk you past bustling street markets and charming alleys, offering a glimpse into the heart of the city. Breathe in the fresh air and soak in the peaceful atmosphere as you navigate the ancient streets.

Pro tip: negotiate the fare before setting off. Each cyclo driver may have their preferred route, so discuss your desired destinations to ensure a smooth journey. This unique perspective allows you to witness Hanoi’s vibrant energy, admire its architectural gems, and discover the hidden corners of the Old Town.

Drinking beer on Ta Hien Street

Unlike anywhere else in Hanoi, Ta Hien pulsates with an infectious energy, making it a nighttime must-do.  This vibrant street comes alive after dark, transforming into a dazzling display of close-quartered pavement shops and beer bars.  The aroma of sizzling street food mingles with the lively chatter, creating an unforgettable sensory experience.

Ta Hien’s true heart lies in its iconic beer.  This local brew serves as a social lubricant, drawing young and energetic crowds together.  The unpretentious pavement bars, a hallmark of the street, offer a refreshingly authentic way to enjoy a cold drink and soak up the atmosphere.

But Ta Hien isn’t just about libations.  Food lovers will rejoice in the delectable offerings lining the street.  From classic Vietnamese bites like fried spring rolls to unique treats like lemongrass chili chicken feet, the variety here is sure to tantalize your taste buds.  Exploring Ta Hien’s culinary scene is a delicious adventure, giving you a true taste of Hanoi’s street food magic.

drinking beer on ta hien street

Enjoy sidewalk iced tea and coffee 

Hanoi’s vibrant street food scene isn’t just about the delicious bites, it’s a social experience. Locals gather, laughing and chatting, over steaming bowls of phở or skewers of grilled meat, all while the lively city buzzes around them. Food becomes a way to connect and unwind.

Equally unique is Hanoi’s love affair with iced tea and coffee. Around nearly every corner, especially in the Old Quarter, you’ll find a simple yet charming iced tea stall. A kettle perched on a long table, surrounded by cups, packs of gum, and colorful bottles of water, sets the scene. With a few chairs and a stool, the invitation is clear. Grabbing a seat on the sidewalk after breakfast, Hanoians savor their daily dose of cool refreshment, making it a cherished ritual.

Visit Temple of Literature Quoc Tu Giam

Nestled amidst the bustling heart of Hanoi, the Temple of Literature stands as a serene oasis, preserving the invaluable cultural and historical heritage of the nation. With each step through the imposing Great Portico, visitors are seemingly transported back in time to Vietnam’s illustrious educational past.

The foremost highlight of the Temple of Literature is the Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam, an architectural masterpiece characterized by its gracefully curved roofs reminiscent of upturned swords, reflecting elegantly in the tranquil waters below. This site symbolizes the cherished values of filial piety and a thirst for knowledge ingrained within the Vietnamese ethos. Visitors are then invited to admire the Stelae of Doctors, a collection of 82 stone tablets inscribed with the names of scholars who passed the imperial exams from 1442 to 1779, serving as golden annals documenting the nation’s scholarly tradition and academic spirit.

visit văn miếu quốc tử giám

Furthermore, guests can partake in various engaging activities such as calligraphy writing with feather pens or donning the traditional attire of scholars and mandarins, capturing cherished memories of their visit. These insights are shared by the Vietnam Motorbike Tours Club as part of their list of the 10 best things to do in Hanoi. It is hoped that through this article, readers will gain valuable insights for their upcoming journeys.

Contact us for more interesting information​

  • Address: 3/7/36 Duy Tan Street, Cau Giay District, Ha Noi City
  • Mobile: +84 976 024 986
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