The weather is very cold but it's not convenient to go sight-seeing when it's rainning. There are many activities to do such as visiting Ho Chi Minh Mosoleum, watching water puppet show, shopping at Lotte Department Store, having lunch at Halong Bay and doing kayak is very classic.
Shopping at the airport is not so expensive.
We LOVE Hanoi!!! It's our 2nd time back and we still feel the same as if it was our first time back! Can't say enough about this beautiful city and its people! The food are amazing!!! We love walking around Hoan Kiem Lake and the night market on the weekends.
Shopping is a lot of fun! Be prepare to walk a lot and carrying loads of goodies/souvenirs. If you have time, make sure to visit Ha Long Bay--it's a few hrs from Hanoi and only about 35-45min from Haiphong. Make sure you check the weather as it does get very very cold in Dec. But due to El Nino, it was still hot around Thanksgiving time and it was just getting cooler in early December. We can't wait to go back!
Many tourist attraction places to visit especially Temple of Literature, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Presidential Palace, Nha Son Bac Ho (HCM house), One Pillar Temple, Hoan Kiem Lake, Old Quarter and many more places which we will come back for round 2 soon.
Be very careful when you cross a street either on the zebra crossing or not; if you have a stiff neck, it can be cured by crossing more streets in Hanoi (turning left and right very fast to see the incoming motorbikes).
The motorbikes practically taking over the pedestrian paths to make walking in the streets unsafe from traffics. Dirty streets.
Spend time just wandering the old quarter as well as the gracious French neighborhood. Great fun to see people playing badminton on the sidewalks, and to sit down for a nice coffee or bowl of noodles.
You should take a Hanoi City Tour Street Food Tour via Impressive Travel Vietnam and for sure after this tour you can be much more understand about Hanoi Culture, history, food, and life styles.
You might find Hanoi a little bit stressful at first since the traffic is so crazy and the airport is located quite far from the city and it'll take quite some times to reach the city center.
You might also find the city quite messy since there are lots of people eating on the sidewalk, but that's Hanoi style and it's actually fun if you try it. I didn't like Hanoi at first, but I felt sad when I head to leave Hanoi since I just started liking the city more and more.
The main highlight is definitely Halong Bay, there is nothing to do in Hanoi, except eat and a few sights to see, tops three nights is definitely sufficient for your stay in Hanoi.
Especially if you don't party, however if you do, you should be careful.
The traffic in Old Quarter is insane. All the motorists (both cars and motorcycles) are used to honking as a signal of 'be aware' but a lot of time they are unnecessary.
Some motorcyclists will even drive up to the pedestrian street when the road is packed with traffic. Nevertheless, there are many great cafes in Old Quarter. They serve really good coffee! There are a lot of good food around as well.
Lot's of shopping over in the old quarters but be prepared to bargain hard. Souvenirs are definitely alot cheaper over at the old quarters than at the airport.
On a visit to Hanoi, do make sure to set aside 3 days to visit the beautiful Halong Bay and Sapa Valley
nice and lively area. it can get weird with all the motorbikes, but the people were kind although of course most of them do not speak English.
quiet place, not too rowdy, a bit traditional (which i like)
If you like to see the culture differences and how they would make you pay more money in many ways, please come to vietnam to experience it.
If you are looking to party, go Saigon. Sightseeing/History come to Hanoi.
Even though it is a major city, it wasn't too difficult to find your way around, with a map. People are very friendly and it is very clean.
You get used to the traffic and didn't take a lot of practice to cross the roads, with all the traffic. I visit to Halong bay is a must-do and not too hard to organize.
There was no untoward incidence during our stay. The bus was quite efficient and cheap. Taxi was plentiful and always charged by the meter.
Except for the traffic, we felt very safe strolling around Hanoi city.
Hanoiasn people is warmly and kindly. But they almost can not speak English so you will be harder to have a communication with them.
good to visit Hoan Kiem Lake, St.Joseph's Cathedral, Opera House, Ho Chi Minh's Museum, Ho Chi Minh House and Quang Truong Ba Dinh
hanoi is busy city with friendly people,great streets foods, nice to understand the culture with many beautiful place to seeing !
Old lifestyle. A lot of cultural buildings and historical vestiges tourists can visit. Hanoi cuisine is nice and diversified.
Hoa Lo Prison was a good place to visit. Very educational and i return with a better understanding of the vietnamese spirit.
One of Asia's great cities to hunt for street food, and negotiate the bustling labyrinth of Old Quarter with FOOD on FOOT.
We totally immersed ourselves in Hamoi's heady combination of History and culture.
The more I visit the more I like it. Charming, enchanting; relatively easy to move around either on foot, taxi or bike.
Its a city where to spend several days enjoying the old neighbourhoods, monuments, museums and enjoy the fantastic food
Hanoi capital is busy city with crazy traffic have a lot of motorbike, all people are friendly , helpful , nice people.
The food us amazing and dilicious. you can seeing with many beautiful place !
Uber is a great way to get around -- very cheap and you won't get ripped off. Worth buying a sim card just to use it.
The one day Halong Bay tours are rushed and the minibuses there are not comfortable so going there and back in one day is pretty painful. Recommend doing a 2-day tour if you have to go (or just skip it, I wouldn't rate it a "must see").
Many people will not stay in Hanoi for more than 2 nights, max. This is a shame. Vietnam is Thailand 32 years ago.
Be courageous and rent a motorcycle. The trick to riding is Not to Stop. Best described as watching lots of fish swimming. You are a fish, swim in the crowd. Lots to see around Hanoi. We took a motorcycle tour with MotorcycleTourExperts.com Out of the city and into the farm land. 11 hours, which includes stopping 2x for drinks and once for eat (excellent!!) We stayed 5 full days in Hanoi. Enjoyed every hour.
There's a lot of history in Hanoi, and tons to see. Even hitting all the best restaurants will take a couple days.
It's a great place to amble around, and surprisingly walkable, if you don't mind dodging a moto or ten.
Very interesting city, wish i had stayed a little bit longer as i didn't get to all the things i wanted to see
Awesome city full of history sightseeing and the best go to the newest shopping mall - Aeon Mall Long Bien
The traffic patterns are very interesting and unusual. No "road rage". Rules of walking around not strict.
I enjoyed the seeming mess. The huge number of motor bikes was amazing.
A very quaint n old school laid back city. Full of charm n culture, food food food everywhere n anywhere.
Hanoi is culture rich and generally people though are not English speaking, they are fairly friendly.
Good shopping and eating choices are great. The local food is cheap and tasty.