Hanoi is Vietnam capital city and the second largest in the country, after Ho Chi Min City (former Saigon). Besides the fact that is consider a big city, still carries a lot of the old communist influence and for that an old city vibe is still around making it more special.
How to reach: Flights from Europe, EAE or Asia. From Singapore, direct flights from Vietnam Airlines and JetStar.
Visa: If you are a Brazilian or any of other nationalities that need visa to enter Vietnam, you gonna need a visa. The good thing is that its ON Arrival and easy to get. Go in at Vietnam Visa and apply for an Approval Letter. With the letter on hands, before immigration, go to the visa counter and present the letter to the officers. Then you gonna have to pay a stamp fee of US$25 per person.
Leaving the airport: In many cities here in SEA, public transport can be a hustle so is always a good idea to try to book a transfer. In Hanoi I used Hanoi Transfer Service. It cost me US$16 each way, same as taxis. If you go for the taxi, just make sure you get it from the airport oficial counter.
Where to stay: OThe ideal is to get an hotel in Old Quarter , somehow near the Hoàn Kiêm lake if possible.
Any hotel within this area it will be perfect. I stayed at Apricot Hotel. Great hotel. Its not cheap for vietnam, but was worth.
Hoe many days and What to do in Hanoi:
The touristic area in Hanoi é small. One whole day is enough to visit the main points.
Walk around the Old Quarter: Is the nicest thing to do in Hanoi. Is where everything happens and where you can actually see and feel the real Vietnam vibe. Lots of motorbikes, street markets and little stores.
The Hoàn Kiêm lake and Ngoc Sam temple are the center of Hanoi Old Quarter. A great thing to do is to walk around the whole lake without too many routes and discover the streets. At night the lake gets its special light and its beautiful. Every Friday night until Sunday, the streets around are open for pedestrians.
Night Market: Street Night Market open from 7pm onwards. Its sells it all. mostly local things and china.
There other places to visit as Literature Temple and HoChiMinh Museum.
The highlight of the trip to Hanoi in my opinion is to try the local street food. Vietnamise food is considered one of the best in the world, and not to try it on the spot is like missing the best part of the party. Their food is delicious, light and the smell mixes with the flavor. Vietnamita é considerada uma das melhores do mundo. Super saborosa, leve e o cheiro se mistura com o sabor. Uma maravilha.
To have a full experience is possible to book a food tour around their local markets. Besides tasting the real food you get the chance to see how the local eat and live.
I made a vlog showing a bit of the tour! Click here to watch!
We tried to most different dishes, not the ones yu van find in any hotel or restaurant.
Their most famous dish, is a soup noodles called PHO. This one is easy to get in any place. And its also good.
What I’ve tried:
Mango Salad: fresh and tasty. You can choose to have it with dry beef or dry squid. The seasoning is garlic, vinegar, peanuts etc.
Egg Coffee: Almost a desert is coffee mised with sugar, egg yolk, egg white and vanilla. Good but really sweet.
Rice pancake with minced pork: delicious.
Baby Duck Egg: duck fetus. Couldn’t taste this one.
Cabbage salad with chicken: Also good.
Chicken Fried Roll filled with mushroom
Coconut sweet filled with sesame and seaweed.
Sandwich with local duck pate
I did the tour with o streetfoodtourshanoi.blogspot.com.
See you next time!