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First Time in Hanoi

St.-Josephs-Cathedral-hanoi St. Joseph's Cathedral in Hanoi

Hanoi, Vietnam's capital, is one of the most popular tourist cities in Vietnam. Hanoi means "the hinterland between the rivers". Ha: river, Noi: interior.

Population (2019): 8 million

Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Hoa, Muong, Dao, Tay, etc.

Highlights: Temple of Literature, Hanoi Old Quarter, Hoan Kiem Lake, Ngoc Son Temple, Imperial Citadel of Thang Long, Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum, Dong Xuan Market, St. Joseph's Cathedral, Tran Quoc Pagoda, Hoa Lo Prison Museum, Museum of Ethnology, Vietnam Military History Museum


There are 4 distinct seasons including spring, summer, autumn, and winter. From November to March, it is cold with little rainfall. From April to October, it is hot with heavy rains and storms. The average annual temperature is 24.6oC. The average winter temperature is 17.2oC, but it can drop to 5oC. The average summer temperature is 29.2oC, but it can reach up to 39oC. 

Administrative Districts

Hanoi is divided into 12 urban districts of Hoan Kiem, Ba Dinh, Dong Da, Hai Ba Trung, Tay Ho, Thanh Xuan, Cau Giay, Long Bien, Hoang Mai, Ha Dong, Bac Tu Liem, and Nam Tu Liem; and 17 sub-urban districts of Gia Lam, Dong Anh, Thanh Tri, Soc Son, Ba Vi, Chuong My, Dan Phuong, Hoai Duc, My Duc, Phu Xuyen, Phu Tho, Quoc Oai, Thach That, Thanh Oai, Thuong Tin, Ung Hoa, Me Linh, and one town of Son Tay.


Hanoi is 1,690km from Ho Chi Minh City, 740km from Da Nang, 654km from Hue, 480km from Dien Bien, 340km from Sa Pa, 154km from Lang Son, 160km from Ha Long, 102km from Hai Phong, and 91km from Ninh Binh.


Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) is 30km from the city center. A taxi from the airport to the city costs VND 350,000. For an airport bus into the city at the cost of VND 40,000 per person, wait outside the terminal building at the Vietnam Airlines Office at 1 Quang Trung Street. The route operates at regular intervals from 4:15 AM (check these departure times at the Vietnam Airlines Office). Air-conditioned city buses (No. 7 & No. 17) operate from outside of the Noi Bai terminal every 20 minutes between 5 AM and 9 PM daily at the cost of VND 9,000. The buses stop at Cau Giay Bus Station and Long Bien Bus Transit Station. 


Most travel agents or hotels can arrange car-with-driver rental services.


There are many companies offering metered taxi services in Hanoi. Some taxi companies: 52, CP, Airport, Group Ha Noi, Huong Lua, Mai Linh, Noi Bai, The Ky Moi, Thanh Cong, Thanh Nga, Thanh Loi, etc. Grab car is also available via the app.


Rentals are available at hotels, at Hanoi's Old Quarter, and along the backpacker streets: Ta Hien, Hang Bac, Ngo Huyen, Hang Be, Cau Go, Luong Ngoc Quyen, etc. Motorbike taxis are also available via the Grab or Go Viet app.


The city's heavy traffic isn't bicycle-friendly, although some areas around Tay Ho (West Lake) are great for bicycles.


The main operating area of cyclos is the old quarter of Hanoi, you can easily find cyclos there for a good way to view Hoan Kiem Lake. Only book from reliable companies to avoid scams.

Things to do:

What to do on Your First Time in Hanoi

Travel Cost: 

Costs of Traveling in Hanoi

Money tips for Hanoi Travel

Safety and Security in Hanoi:

Health Care in Hanoi:

General Information:

When You Should Visit Hanoi:

What You Should Pack for Hanoi:

Transportation in Hanoi: 

How to Get to Hanoi: 

Travel from Ho Chi Minh to Hanoi

Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) Arrival Tips

Shuttle Services from Noi Bai International Airport

Useful Mobile Apps:

Useful Mobile Apps for Your Vietnam Travel

Get your insurance plan for visiting Hanoi:



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