ITINERARY BY DAY
Today, start your journey to the highlights and hidden gems of Hanoi at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, an imposing structure that houses the remains of the revered former president who led Vietnam’s campaign for independent from colonial rule. Next, head onward to the Temple of Literature, an ancient collection of courtyards, gardens and architecture built in homage to the Chinese scholar Confucius. Considered the oldest university in Vietnam, the Temple of Literature dates back nearly one thousand years!
For lunch, sit down for a traditional Vietnamese meal with a contemporary twist at Home Restaurant, a boutique eatery within the quiet Truc Bach lake area. The yellow walls and rustic décor here hark back to Hanoi’s past life as a French colony.
Follow your guide’s lead while you weave through some of the Quarter’s 36 streets named for the products historically sold here. Along the way, pass by some of the only remaining streets that continue selling the goods of their namesake, including Tin and Bamboo street. Head through labyrinthine back alleys well off the tourist trail and see Hanoi at its authentic best. Peer into temples and traditional houses, hear the stories of the ancient city and meet the people who call this fascinating place home. Wrap up your guided walk with a strong Vietnamese coffee at a café overlooking Hoan Kiem Lake - an important symbol of Vietnamese folklore – before heading to your final stop at Ngoc Son Temple on the tiny island on the lake. Enjoy a water puppet show for a look at traditional performance art in Vietnam before heading back to your hotel.