It’s Chinese New Year Eve! Gosh, by the time this post goes live, I must be busy in the kitchen preparing a 10-course feast for tonight’s Reunion Dinner. In the end, I still decided to cook and have everyone eat in because we couldn’t find a CNY menu that everyone was happy with – we’re just too fussy, haha! Anyway, I’m going to go the traditional theme this time and will be whipping up classic dishes like Teochew Steamed Pomfret, Fish Maw Soup with Crab Meat, Braised Sea Cucumber & Abalone and the like. Will be sharing some of these recipes after CNY which you can easily make at home. 🙂
Anyway, this will be my last full blog post this week as I’ll be taking a short break over this CNY weekend to recharge myself. Will be back on Tuesday as I’ve yet to finish my Hanoi chapter, lol. So much to share and blog about – really can’t believe I’ve actually done that much in Hanoi in just one week and I haven’t even started sorting my Bangkok album and others too.
On a different note, I would like to wish all my readers (yes, that’s you!) a Happy and Prosperous Rooster Year. May good health, good luck and happiness always be with you! Huat ah!
This is pretty much a pictorial post as it’s my collection of random shots which I had taken while exploring Hanoi on foot. I wouldn’t be featuring them in individual blog posts so I’m going to compile them into one post here. Just sharing with you guys so you’d know what (more) to expect if you’re planning to travel to Hanoi soon. 🙂
I’ve plotted these miscellaneous sights and attractions all on one map above so it’s easier for you to mark off your map if you’re planning to visit any of these.
If I remembered correctly, this shot was taken while we were at Highlands Coffee (Flag Tower branch). The Flag Tower is part of the Hanoi Citadel and is now located at the Vietnam Military History Museum.
We passed by this place (opposite the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long) at least 3 times and we still didn’t manage to figure out what it was because all the information we could find then was in Vietnamese and the translated version didn’t make much sense. Anyway, I just managed to find out that this is the National Assembly Building which is equivalent to our Parliament House.
And that’s Bac Son Monument (War Memorial) on the left. The whole area is off limits but it is still possible to take pictures from the outside.
There’s something charming about the old houses here. 🙂
Cua Bac is a Roman Catholic Church located on 56 Phan Dinh Phung Street and is one of the 3 major churches in Hanoi. Its architecture is a perfect marriage of French and Vietnamese styles.
Another old French colonial building but nothing historical. VAXUCO is just another name for Van Xuan Corporation – it’s a company in the import/export and shipping/freight business.
This is the Vietnam Military History Museum that I’ve briefly mentioned earlier. If you want to go up the Flag Tower, you’d have to come here. Entrance fee is 40,000 VND per person and there is an additional fee of 30,000 VND per camera if you want to take pictures.
The entrance fee isn’t a lot of money but if visiting a military history museum isn’t quite your cup of tea, you can do what we did – walk around the facade of the museum and still enjoy the exhibits.
And that was how I managed to find the best spot to capture a clearer shot of the Flag Tower. 😉
Ok, I must say I’m never in tune with military history but seeing all these remnants of the Vietnam war was quite an eye-opening experience for me.
The Hang Dau Water Tank is one of Hanoi’s oldest water towers that was built in 1894.
Goethe-Institut Vietnam where you can learn the German language. It has a really lovely cafe at the main entrance area.
Another good place for a toilet break, haha.
As it was graduation season when we were there, it wasn’t surprising to see many youngsters clad in graduation gowns and having photo shoots at various places of attraction. This particular class was ‘unique’ though ‘cos they chose a random road side to take a group photo which really took the photographers a long while to get organised, lol.
Fancy having your hair cut in the open and possibly becoming an object for photographers?
I hadn’t really come across proper barber shops or perhaps this might count as one. This was located outside Temple of Literature along Van Mieu Street.
St. Joseph’s Cathedral is the oldest church in Hanoi. It’s a Neo-Gothic church that was built in the late 19th century and if you notice, it bears a striking resemblance to Notre Dame de Paris. We were here during the Sunday evening mass and it was so crowded.
Came by here again the next morning when it was all quiet and peaceful.
Quan Chuong City Gate is the only gate remaining of the Thang Long Citadel. It’s just pretty cool to see how a piece of ancient history is now embedded into modern day life.
Standing at the roundabout in front of the Hanoi Opera House and watching the world go by.
This is the Hanoi Opera House that was erected by the French colonial administration in the early 20th century.
Though this is one of the iconic architectural landmarks of Hanoi, it does function as a performing arts centre where you can catch plays, musicals and the like.
Just like the streets of Paris where houses are tall & narrow and are hemmed side by side. I just loved the feel of the French-style architecture which really reminded me of my trip to Paris.
Took another shot from the front ‘cos I saw a Golden Retriever up there. 🙂
All in all, it’s really about that piece of France in Hanoi, Vietnam that makes this place so unique and charming. I suggest that you plan for an extra day in Hanoi just to do ‘nothing’ so you can just walk where ever your legs can take you to. You never know what you may discover and I must say it’s indeed a very fulfilling experience. 🙂