Hanoi is located in northern Vietnam and will certainly offer to its travellers’ incredible sceneries, beautiful landscapes, pointed with colours, gorgeous food, friendly people and millenary culture.
In terms of accommodation, Hanoi has nothing to envy to some traditional fascinating cities providing at the same time good services to the travel industry. Being less developed than Ho Chi Minh City, and thanks to this, Hanoi has preserved a special vibe given by old colonial and traditional buildings, green boulevards, and colourful temples. In terms of accessibility, Hanoi provides many services as comfortable boutique hotels, internet point and restaurants with a good variety of food.
In the Old Quarter that preserves an ineludible French taste, many boutique hotels offer modest but unique charming environments to their guests. The recent refurbishments have been respecting the traditional architecture and design of Vietnam. Many of them, like the Pearls hotel for example, or the Old street Hotel, Hanoi Queen Plaza, the Ritz Hotel, the Joy Hotel, the Return Hotel, the Y Van Riverside Hotel or the Hanoi Plaza hotel are facing the still water of Lake Hoan Kiem offering sometimes a gorgeous view to the guests that ask for it.
In terms of cultural events, Hanoi’s calendar and Vietnamese calendar, in general, are spotted with many interesting festivals. Despite not within December, however, some of the most important events of Vietnamese culture are in January when you can still hope to get a mild wheat-ear.
In January, there is probably what it is considered to be the biggest festival that celebrates the Lunar New Year. The Tet Nguyen Dan festival lasts for an entire week and involves families in particular. Each family member is reunited and everyone is offered some little presents with special wishes for health and happiness. It is also a moment where family discussions, old difficulties and hangers are levelled in an atmosphere of forgiveness. But as the traditional family cannot forget the ancient relatives, the ancestors, many candles and incense sticks are burst for them. In the same month, the annual Dong Da Festival celebrates the triumphant historical victory of King Quang Trung (Nguyen Hue) against the invaders of the Vietnamese nation. There are different venues where processions, activities and games, competitions, war stories, fires of colourful dragons and much more will entertain adults and kids!
Still in January, but on the 6th day of Tet Hanoi and Vietnam celebrate the 5 elements (metal, wood, water, fire and earth) with music and sacrifices with the so-called Co Loa Festival. Colourful flags and Dai Flags (great ones) in the wind and sculptures adorning the temples, are just some of the magic things you will be assisting too.
Last but not least, The Cau Ngu Festival celebrates an ancient native who came from the north to teach the village locals many arts and techniques like fishing, trading etc. The name of this man was Truong Quy Cong or Truong Thieu.