cityinsight / Hanoi


Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, is over 1000 years old and there is no denying that Hanoi represents the most cultural and ancient cities in the World. It is a fascinating mix of the East and the West which is the vestiges and influences from centuries of dominance in the past.

Hanoi is located in the North of Vietnam and situated in Vietnam’s Red River Delta which is a prime location, therefore, Hanoi is the most important center of Vietnam regarding politics, economy, culture, society.

Hanoi is the second largest city by population and it was estimated at 7.7 million people in 2015.

Good to Know

Visa requirement
No Vietnam visa is required for those included in Vietnam visa exemption policy.
Languages spoken
Currency used
Vietnam Dong (VND)
Hanoi Old Quarter
Great place for street shopping or taking street pictures
Oasis of Hanoi
The greener-than-green Hoan Kiem Lake
Means of transport
Taxi, public bus, motorbike, bike and cyclo


In 1010, Ly Thai To or Ly Cong Uan the first king of the Ly Dynasty, decided to move the capital of Dai Viet (the name of Vietnam from 1054 to 1400 and 1428 to 1804) from Hoa Lu to the region of Dai La Citadel (name of Hanoi during the third Chinese domination of the 7th and 8th centuries and again in the 11th-century), during this time it was named Thang Long.

During Nguyen Dynasty, the emperor Minh Mang renamed it Hanoi (Hà Nội) in 1831, it means ‘inside the river” and this name became the official name of the capital until today.

The French occupied Hanoi in 1873 and from 1883 to 1945 Hanoi was the administrative center of the colony of French Indochina. The city was occupied by the Imperial Japanese in 1940.

On September 2, 1945 Hanoi was liberated and Ho Chi Minh – The Vietnamese Communist revolutionary leader proclaimed the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.

During two wars, Hanoi was the capital of North Vietnam and became the capital of a reunified Vietnam in 1976 until now.

Weather and best time to visit Hanoi

Hanoi is located in a tropical zone and features a warm humid subtropical climate. There are 4 distinct seasons in Hanoi. Spring starts from the end of January to the first of April; the weather is warm, very humid and has drizzling rains. Summer starts from May until August, the characteristics of this season are hot, humid with abundant rainfall. Fall, from September to October, the climate is cool, slightly dry, sunny but not too hot. Winter starts from November to January; it is very dry, cold, cloudy and foggy.

Autumn is the most beautiful season in Hanoi as well as the best time for traveling. Hanoi in autumn is truly romantic and charming with blue sky, warm sunlight and cool breeze, the street full of yellow or red leaves. This is an ideal time for wandering around the city and you are able to enjoy the Mid-autumn festival.

Hanoi Attractions

  1. Hanoi Old Quarter
  2. Imperial Citadel of Thang Long
  3. Hoan Kiem Lake
  4. Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum
  5. Hanoi Opera House
  6. Temple of Literature
  7. Hoa Lo Prison
  8. One Pillar Pagoda
  9. St. Joseph’s Cathedral
  10. Long Bien Bridge
  11. Hanoi Train Street