Monday, April 15, 2019


Hanoi Old Quarter Map We thought we could do a grand tour of Vietnam on the way home to the US.  We wanted to take the train from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) to Hanoi and see all the places in between.


No Significant Landmarks

Big mistake.  Just that train ride is over a thousand miles and it would have taken weeks to do it justice.

Instead, we chose to focus on Hanoi for a week since Hanoi is less urban unlike the business metropolis of Ho Chi Minh.

We stayed in the Old Quarter which is really the tourist district.  Restaurants are plentiful and so are the scams.  

Even the cars just turn an push their way through
It would be very easy to get lost in Hanoi since everything looks the same and in the beginning we had no landmarks.  We’re not very good city dwellers.  But after a day, the layout became more user friendly.

A little park along Hoan Kiem Lake
The Turtle Tower in Hoan Kiem Lake
The traffic on the other hand is crazy.  There are no breaks in the traffic so you start walking across and hope that the herd of motorcycles will go around you which they usually do.  You never stop nor turn around in the street because the motorcyclists have already planned there route to avoid you and they don’t have time for last minute corrections.

Hoan Kiem Lake is a significant landmark when walking south.  It is surrounded by grassy park areas and street side bars and restaurants.  It is really quite beautiful for a city.

It's about a mile long and provides a refuge of sanity from the crazy traffic while walking around the town.

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