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Ha Noi

Founded in 1010, and known by many names down the centuries, Thang Long (City of the Soaring Dragon), until 1802 was the political centre of an independent Vietnam with a few brief interruptions from Chinese and Mongolian. It was eclipsed by Hu? during the Nguyen Dynasty as the capital of Vietnam, but served as the capital of French Indochina from 1887 to 1954. From 1954 to 1976, it was the capital of North Vietnam and then the capital of unified Vietnam to date.

Vietnam’s capital city, Hanoi is a city of numerous captivating faces. Far slower and less developed than Saigon in the south. Hanoi has retained its appealing sense of the old world .The traditional commercial bustle, street markets, chaotic traffic and fascinating shophouse architecture of the Old Quarter contrast dramatically with the quiet lakes, historic temples, shady city parks and regal architecture of the French colonial districts. Hanoi lay in a deep slumber after Vietnam’s partition in 1954 until the effects of economic reforms kicked in four decades later. The city survived American bombs and Russian planners to emerge relatively unscathed in the early 1990s as an example of a French-conceived colonial city. Huge mansions line grand boulevards, and lakes and parks dot the city, providing a romantic backdrop to the nonstop soundtrack.