Whether you are moving to Vietnam for business or pleasure, you want to choose the right neighborhood that meets all your needs in a home and all your preferences in recreation. Obviously, your first step in determining which Hanoi neighborhood is right for you is to learn a little bit more about the city.
This article will provide you with a nice overview on the history and future of Hanoi while introducing you to Hanoi’s diverse neighborhoods. In the end, choosing a Hanoi neighborhood should be a pretty straightforward process for you.
Which Hanoi Neighborhood Will You Choose?
Named after the lake it sits on, Hoan Kiem has a landscape that consists of greenery, water, and folklore. Early in the morning, it is not uncommon to spot walkers, joggers, and other people exercising at nearby gymnasiums. During the day, tourists find their way in to shop for souvenirs and see the lake. At night time, local families and friends make their way outdoors to enjoy food and one another. Grocery stores, museums, theatres, cinemas, a bank, and a post office are all within walking distance.
Walking through the winding streets of Old Quarter may make you feel like you are in Europe more so than Vietnam. Just outside of Hoan Kiem, Old Quarter transformed itself from swampland to an outdoor shopping mall. Places of worship, flower carts, silk and embroidery stores, spice shops, restaurants, and most Hanoi tourists riddle the streets of Old Quarter every day.
By far the most polished neighborhood of Hanoi, West Lake lies north of Old Quarter and has been compared to Beverly Hills, California in the United States. West Lake’s landscape consists of palaces and other ancient architecture from Hanoi’s rich history. Hotels, restaurants, and real-estate hold up to West Lake’s reputation, but many residents also appreciate West Lake’s quiet atmosphere.
Home to Hanoi’s Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum compound, Ba Dinh district was initially established as the administrative center for the French during colonial times. Today, French chateaux remain standing but are home to various government offices and embassies. However, many tourists still flood this area for the Botanical Gardens, the Temple of Literature, the One Pillar Pagoda, and Ba Dinh’s classy hotels.
Hai Ba Trung
This is the only part of Hanoi that barely attracts tourists. In Hai Ba Trung, you can really immerse yourself as a resident by observing the everyday activities of locals. Hai Ba Trung’s landscape has lots of markets, merchants, and food stalls that serve some of the best rice, noodles, and seafood in all of Hanoi. Although it may be quaint, Hai Ba Trung is spread out, so taking a taxi from place to place is sometimes necessary. But overall, walking will offer you the best views of this lovely town.
Perhaps learning a little bit more about what Hanoi has to offer will help you in choosing a Hanoi neighborhood to make your home. As you can see, every Hanoi neighborhood has something special to offer you.