Hanoi is the ancient and beautiful capital of Vietnam. This city is known for not only the culture and customs of the locals but also the development and heroic history. A trip for 5 days in Hanoi is a better opportunity to better understand the lifestyle, the age of history and admire the unique beauty of this city. If you are planning a short trip to this capital, 5 days is a reasonable time, neither too long nor too short to explore this city. Here are the best places to visit and activities to do to spend time for 5 days in Hanoi.

An ancient and poetic Hanoi

An ancient and poetic Hanoi

Best Time to Visit Hanoi

Hanoi’s climate is divided into 4 distinguished seasons: spring, summer, autumn, and winter. While in spring, the climate of Hanoi is very pleasant, neither too cold nor too hot. Summer is the hottest time of the year, the temperature can reach 39 degrees on certain days. It is also the rainy season, you may experience heavy rain, especially in the afternoon and evening and your trip may be affected if you do outdoor tours.

The best time for your trip to Hanoi is in autumn when the rainy season is often over. The sky is clear, the sun is not too hard, the temperature is average, the air is fresh. All of the above weather factors create the best conditions for visitors. Winter in Hanoi is a bit colder when the temperature can drop below 10 degrees. It is also the high tourist season in Hanoi.

5 Days in Hanoi – How to Get There?

By plane

There are daily flights between Hanoi and major cities in Vietnam, such as Hue, Dien Bien Phu, Danang, Nha Trang, Dalat, and Ho Chi Minh City. There are also direct flights between Hanoi and major centers around the world such as the United States, Europe, Australia, Japan and other cities in Southeast Asia.

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Hanoi Airport is Noi Bai, located 30km from the city center, the journey takes around 50 minutes by car.

By train

Traveling to Hanoi by train is a good chance for you to admire the scenery and lifestyle across poetic streets

Traveling to Hanoi by train is a good chance for you to admire the scenery and lifestyle across poetic streets

Daily trains run between Hanoi and other cities in Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City, Nha Trang, Danang, Hue, Quang Binh, Quang Tri…). The trains are of decent quality. And you will have the possibility of traveling according to different categories: hard seats, soft seats with or without air conditioning, hard berths, soft berths, with or without air conditioning. The train journey between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City takes between 30 hours and 42 hours. There is also a tourist train for travelers wishing to travel between Beijing and Hanoi.

By the road

The road network in Vietnam has improved considerably since 2000. There are daily buses between Hanoi and most cities in Vietnam. You can also travel between Hanoi and Vientiane (Laos) by road.

Getting Around for 5 Days in Hanoi

Go on foot

Hanoi is a fairly small capital and can be explored on foot in 1-2 days at a relaxed pace. The old quarter, the French Quarter and the West Lake are good places to walk.

The only thing to remember when you walk in Hanoi, and when you want to cross the streets, is to go slowly but without hesitation. The other vehicles will sneak around you. For many travelers, traffic in Vietnam is one of the most impressive things about their trip.

By moto-taxi (Xe om)

There are many xe om on every street corner in Hanoi. You should always remember that it is fun and a little adventurous to travel by motorbike and above all, the price must be accepted before leaving.

By taxi

In Hanoi, you can easily find a taxi for your visit, but because there are many different companies, the quality and price are poorly controlled. Taxis in Hanoi are mostly 4 – 7 seats, so if you are traveling in a large group, it is best to hire a car.

By bus

A two-stage bus waiting to pick up passengers at Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi

A two-stage bus waiting to pick up passengers at Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi

Compared to other western countries, the bus system in Vietnam is not really developed. The bus in Hanoi is very crowded, especially during rush hour, it is less convenient for you to travel by bus because of the limited quality of the bus.

Read more: Bus in Vietnam: Types, Important Routes & How to Book Tickets

By private car

One of the most popular means of transport for international tourists is the private car. You just need to contact a travel agency in Vietnam, provide them with information about your trip, the price and quality are set before departure to suit your requests.

Best Accommodation for Your Stay on 5 Days in Hanoi

Hotel

This city is known by another name “the tourist city”. So don’t worry about not finding a hotel that fits your budget. There are many types of hotels in Hanoi: 3 stars, 4 stars, and 5 stars. These hotels are located not only in the old quarter but also on every street. It is easy to find a luxury hotel at a cheap price. Here are some hotels you can rent during your 5 days in Hanoi.

3-star accommodation

  • Noble Boutique Hotel

Address: 98 Hang Gai Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Church Boutique Hotel Hang Ca

Adresse: 9 Nha Tho Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Golden Lotus

Adresse: 39 Hang Trong Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Silk Path Boutique

Adresse: 21 Hang Khay Street, Trang Tien, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

4-star accommodation

  • Quoc Hoa Premier Hotel & Spa

Address: 10 Bat Dan Street, Hang Bo, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • La Siesta Hanoi

Adresse: 94 Ma May Street, Hang Buom, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

5-star accommodation

  • Sofitel Metropole Hanoi

Adresse: 15 Ngo Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Apricot Hotel

Adresse: 136 Hang Trong Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

  • InterContinental Westlake

Address: 05 Tu Hoa Street, Quang An, Tay Ho District, Hanoi, Vietnam

Homestay

Many tourists choose this type to save money and better understand the life and culture of the locals. It is an art of traveling in agreement with the populations and their environment in order to discover in a DIFFERENT and UNIQUE way the soul of a region and its population.

The tourist is welcomed by charming families who open the doors of their homes located in an atypical environment. Meeting these populations is a great experience during your 5 days in Hanoi! Their hospitality is real

Graffiti House

  • Address: 13 Hang Hom Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

Victoria Home Travel

  • Address: 1 Hang Tre Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

Anchie Homestay – City Central

  • Address: 15A Nha Chung Street, Quartier Hoan Kiem, Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi NuSmile’s Family Homestay

  • Address: No. 6, 19 Nha Chung, Nha Chung Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam

Suggested Itineraries for 5 Days in Hanoi

Itineraries in short

Option 1: Hanoi – the ancient city tour

  • D1: Hanoi city tour: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum – Ho Chi Minh Museum – One Pillar Pagoda – Temple of Literature – Tran Quoc Pagoda
  • D2: Bat Trang ceramic village or Van Phuc silk village – Museum of Ethnography
  • D3: Rickshaw – Dong Xuan Market – Water puppet show
  • D4: Hanoi food tour – The sunset at West Lake
  • D5: Departure to Hanoi

This city has a unique beauty, especially at sunset. On this route, you can not only admire the ancient beauty of this destination but also the change of this city to cross off each age.

Option 2: Exploring outside Hanoi

  • D1: City tour: Long Bien Bridge – Old quarter
  • D2: Perfume pagoda – Water puppet show
  • D3: Duong Lam Ancient Village – Ninh Binh
  • D4: Mua Cave – Tam Coc – Hoa Lu
  • D5: Admire the beauty of Hoan Kiem Lake

On this route, tourists can admire the beauty of destinations outside of Hanoi. Each place has its own beauty and characteristics which attract many tourists every year. You have unforgettable experiences!

Itineraries in Detail

Option 1: Hanoi – the ancient city tour

Day 1: Hanoi city tour: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum – Ho Chi Minh Museum – One Pillar Pagoda – Temple of Literature – Tran Quoc Pagoda

You can admire the beauty of the monuments of this city. Each destination has its own beauty. It is a combination of modernity and antiquity. Here are the monuments not to be missed during your 5 days in Hanoi.

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

This is a place not to be missed during your 5 day trip to Hanoi. It was built in 1973 and opened to the public in 1975, the Ho Chi Minh mausoleum is one of the most visited historical monuments in Hanoi. Located on Ba Dinh Square where President Ho Chi Minh read Vietnam’s declaration of independence in 1945, this building was built to honor the national hero: President Ho Chi Minh. Visiting the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum not only brings you an extraordinary experience but also lets you discover a part of the history of Vietnam.

  • Address: 17 Ngoc Ha Street, Ba Dinh District

Ho Chi Minh Museum

The museum building is a square corner, beveled cross, almost 20m high, 70m each with the symbol of an elegant white lotus. The four square blocks on the top floor are both lotus petals and four windows overlooking Hung Vuong Street, Uncle Ho’s stilt house, Ngoc Ha Street and Nguyen Thai Hoc Street.

The museum was inaugurated on May 19, 1990, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of President Ho Chi Minh “the hero of national liberation and eminent cultural house”, as the resolution of the Organization for Education, Science and the culture of the United Nations (UNESCO) has recognized this.

In terms of content, this museum represents the revolutionary life and career of President Ho Chi Minh in association with the nation and the era.

One Pillar Pagoda

One Pillar Pagoda - Hanoi

One Pillar Pagoda – Hanoi

Hanoi is the center of religious and Buddhist places in Vietnam, so in the city, there are many temples hundreds of years old.

The most famous is the One Pillar Pagoda, which is considered one of the most unique in Vietnam, and which is also a must-visit place on your tour in Vietnam.

Temple of Literature

This place is the first university in Vietnam. It was founded in 1070 by the third emperor of the Ly dynasty, Ly Thanh Tong, when the city was called Thang Long. This destination is the place of worship of Confucius and Chu Van An.

It is today one of the major cultural and tourist attractions points of the Vietnamese capital. The Vietnamese banknote of 100,000 dongs shows an aspect of one of the places of the temple: “the lake of celestial clarity”.

One of the pillars of the temple bears the famous inscription: “Confucianism lies everywhere, in the east, in the west, in the south, and in the north; dignitaries and scholars have all taken the same path. ”

Tran Quoc Pagoda

It is located in Thanh Nien Street, on West Lake, in the heart of the capital of Hanoi. Tran Quoc Pagoda is considered one of the oldest temples in Vietnam. It was built in the 6th century during the reign of the emperor Ly Nam De (544 – 548). This pagoda is made up of 3 main buildings: the front house facing the street, the house for burning incense and the upper palace. With a height of 15 meters, the main pagoda is made up of 11 floors.

Tran Quoc Pagoda has been ranked among the 20 most beautiful Buddhist temples voted by the American magazine National Geographic.

Read more: Most Famous Temples in Vietnam

Day 2: Bat Trang ceramic village or Van Phuc silk village – Museum of Ethnography

Bat Trang ceramic village

The village of Bat Trang is about 16 km southeast of the center of Hanoi. It is an ancient ceramic village which is 1000 years old. Bat Trang ceramic products are invaluable due to their beauty, shape and artisanal technique. In Bat Trang, tourists can participate in the process of making ceramic products.

Van Phuc Silk Village

This village is located 12 km from the center of Hanoi, the silk village of Van Phuc is known for its quality silk products and its traditional weaving. With over 1200 years of existence, Van Phuc is proud to be the oldest silk village in Vietnam, and surely the one that offers the most beautiful in the country.

By visiting this hamlet, you will also observe the traditional methods of weaving silk from Vietnam and keep unforgettable memories.

See more: Most Beautiful Towns and Villages in Vietnam to Visit

Museum of Ethnography

Traditional Ede longhouse, Museum of Ethnography

Traditional Ede longhouse, Museum of Ethnography

Nothing is more beautiful and interesting than a place offering a tour of the trip. Welcome to the Hanoi Ethnographic Museum. Not to be missed under any circumstances to discover the diversity and richness of Vietnam. This place is one of the most interesting museums in Hanoi. On 13,200 m2 indoors and outdoors, you will discover the 54 ethnic groups officially recognized in Vietnam and other ethnic groups from countries in Southeast Asia.

The 2,500m2 Bronze Drum building is made up of 2 floors dealing with nine themes: generality of 54 Vietnamese ethnic groups, Viet-Muong group, Thai-Kadai group, Mong-Dao group, Han-Tibet group, Mon group Khmer, Malayo-Polynesian group, Cham, Hoa, Khmer ethnic groups and the exchange between ethnic groups.

  • Address: 1 Nguyen Van Huyen Street, Cau Giay District, Hanoi
  • Entrance fees: Sightseeing (40,000 VND / ticket); Water puppet show (90,000 VND / adult and 70,000 VND / child)
  • Opening hours: 8:30 am-5:30 pm from Tuesday to Sunday (closed on Monday)

Discover: Top Must-see Cultural Museums in Hanoi

Day 3: Rickshaw – Dong Xuan Market – Water puppet show

A pedicab ride around the Hoan Kiem district is an interesting activity during your trip to Hanoi. It’s time to rest and contemplate the life of the locals as well as the beautiful landscapes of the center of the capital.

Dong Xuan market

It is one of the largest markets in Hanoi where you can find any souvenir. You can also taste a lot of delicious street food at Dong Xuan market.

Water puppet show

A show at Water Puppet Theater

A show at Water Puppet Theater

The water puppet show has been a popular art in the Red River Delta in northern Vietnam for 1000 years. The scenes in this show always present the daily life of the Vietnamese or the story of national heroes represented by light wooden puppets. The puppeteers, half immersed in water and hidden behind a bamboo curtain, manipulate the puppets.

During the show, the singers perform traditional Cheo folk songs to tell the story. Enjoying the water puppet show is an activity not to be missed during your trip to Vietnam.

Day 4: Hanoi food tour – the sunset at the west lake

On our special food tour among 5 days in Hanoi, you will have a chance to enjoy these specialties of Hanoi:

1. Pho

Vietnamese famous beef noodles

Vietnamese famous beef noodles

The “Pho” is the dish not to be missed when you travel to Hanoi. It is the most famous Vietnamese dish for international tourists, it is the specialty of many Vietnamese restaurants around the world.

Hanoi “Pho” is less sweet than Seasonal, it is served with slices of beef or chicken.

2. Cha ca

Cha ca, one of top must-try specialties of Hanoi

The “Cha Ca” is a mixture of fish and flour. This unique dish is eaten with baked bread, noodles, coriander, basil, dill, fresh onion, and shrimp sauce. The shrimp sauce is prepared with fresh lemon, chili, a little essential oil, a few drops of white wine, water and sugar.

3. Banh cuon (Vietnamese stuffed pancakes)

Banh cuon

Banh cuon

These pancakes are thin steamed rice flour pancakes, garnished with minced pork and mushrooms, served with a dip, fried shallots, and fresh herbs. Slightly bursting with texture, “Banh cuon” is often eaten for breakfast or in the evening.

4. Bun thang – Hanoi soup

A colorful and tasty bowl of Bun thang

A colorful and tasty bowl of Bun thang

Another type of rice dough soup is made with chopped chicken, omelet, julienned pork cold cuts and mixed shrimp. This good dish is appreciated for its refinement, its flavor, the diversity of its ingredients as well as the finesse of its preparation.

Walking in the old districts in winter, stopping in front of a small street restaurant to taste the “Bun thang”, it is the most authentic way to discover the capital of Hanoi, Vietnam.

5. Fruit mix

It’s the trendy dessert in Hanoi: fruit covered with a mixture of coconut milk and condensed milk… it’s very sweet but the Vietnamese love super sweet desserts… and if you want a little more sugar, add a scoop of ice!

6. Egg coffee

Vietnamese famous egg coffee

Vietnamese famous egg coffee

It is a specialty of Hanoi which aims to be a substitute for coffee with milk. The milk has been replaced by a mixture of egg yolk and condensed milk, all served in a bowl of hot water to stay warm.

This drink is close to tiramisu and very delicious! Egg coffee will be a great stop to end your street food tour of Hanoi!

Admire the beauty of the sunset at West Lake

Formerly known as Xac Cao, Kim Nguu, or Doai Ho, West Lake is the largest natural lake in the city. The lake has an area of ​​more than 500 hectares with a perimeter of 18 km. This lake is located in the northwest of central Hanoi. Here you can rent a pedal boat or take a boat trip around the lake.

There are many cultural and historical relics and tourist sites around the lake such as the Tran Quoc pagoda, the Nhat Tan peach garden or the Quan Thanh temple…

Day 5: Departure to Hanoi

Option 2: Exploring outside Hanoi

Day 1: City tour: Long Bien Bridge – Old Quarter

Long Bien Bridge

Long Bien Bridge, a historic witness of Vietnam's development

Long Bien Bridge, a historic witness of Vietnam’s development

This must-visit site on your 5 days in Hanoi is a historical witness during the period of the Second World War. The Long Bien Bridge was built by the French during colonization to speed up the transportation of products to France.

Old Quarter

The ancient streets here are Hanoi tourism highlights. “Hanoi 36 streets and neighborhoods” with old houses and streets have kept their appearance since the 19th century. The old quarter is a unique place in Hanoi where the buildings in French architecture are still well preserved and one can, at the same time, appreciate the traditional craft trades.

The most famous streets of the old quarter are fan street, silver street, silk street.

Day 2: Perfume pagoda – Water puppet show

Perfume Pagoda

This site is located in the center of the Huong Tich cave in Huong Son commune, in the My Duc district. In fact, the Perfume pagoda or Huong Son is a vast cultural and religious complex in the Vietnamese capital. This includes dozens of Buddhist temples, several temples of the gods, common houses and agricultural beliefs. The center of this complex is the Temple of Perfumes, also known as the Indoor Pagoda. Currently, there is a temple stele which dates the construction of the stone steps and Kim Dung Shrine in 1686 during the reign of Le Hy Tong. It is not only an important and attractive destination of spiritual cultural tourism but also a historical and cultural site.

Day 3: Duong Lam Ancient Village – Ninh Binh

The ancient village of Duong Lam

Peaceful and poetic view of Duong Lam ancient village

Peaceful and poetic view of Duong Lam ancient village

It is a commune in the town of Son Tay, 50km west of downtown Hanoi. With the architectural characteristics of an ancient village in the Red River Delta, the ancient village of Duong Lam is classified among the most beautiful ancient villages of Vietnam, just after the ancient city of Hoi An and the old city of Hanoi in terms of size and value.

Ninh Binh

Ninh Binh is one of the attractive cities of Vietnam. Each year, this city attracts more than 1 million strange people not only for the unique culture or the life of the inhabitants but also for the beauty of the landscapes. Ninh Binh is surely an ideal place that you should not miss on your tour to Northern Vietnam.

Day 4: Mua Cave – Tam Coc – Hoa Lu

This place is located at the foot of Mua Mountain in the eco-tourism area of ​​Ninh Xuan commune, in the Hoa Lu district. Mua Cave is one of the must-see tourist spots in Ninh Binh during your trip to Vietnam. While visiting this place, visitors can admire the view of the karst landscapes; a view which is the pride of the local population and which has made Tam Coc dear to tourists. Be careful, an ascent of 450 steps awaits you but your efforts will be largely rewarded: on one side its forest of limestone peaks crossed by the Ngo Dong river, on the other, its infinite carpet of rice fields.

  • Entrance fee: 100,000 VND / person

Tam Coc

Pure beauty of Tam Coc, Ninh Binh

Pure beauty of Tam Coc, Ninh Binh

It is an essential area to discover during a trip to Vietnam. Tam Coc is a kind of tourism-oriented village which is a few kilometers from Ninh Binh. If you are there at the right time of the year (May, the ideal month), when the rice fields are full of water and yellow in color, the reflections make the landscape almost as beautiful as Ha Long Bay.

The Tam Coc boat trip will take you to three caves along the Ngo Dong River. One of the peculiarities of the place is that the rowers do not use the oars by hand but with the feet.

  • Entrance fee: 120,000 VND / person
  • For children under 1.4 meters: 60,000 VND / person
  • Ticket price for a boat trip to Tam Coc: 150,000 VND / person (free for children under 3 years old).

Hoa Lu Temple

The best way to visit this temple is to include it as part of your Trang An boat trip. Hoa Lu is known for its historical background. Because it served as the ancient capital for the Le and Dinh dynasties. These kings reigned during the X-XI centuries. A visit to the attractive complex is rich in history and ideal for history buffs on their authentic trips to Vietnam.

  • Entrance fee: 20,000 VND / person.

Day 5: Admire the beauty of Hoan Kiem Lake

Hoan Kiem Lake, the highlight of Hanoi

Hoan Kiem Lake, the highlight of Hanoi

This lake is the heart of Hanoi. It is also the symbol of the capital and located in the wealthiest district of the capital. This lake is surrounded by the most beautiful streets in the city. The Hoan Kiem district and the old quarter are essential places for all tourists.

Near the lake is the most luxurious shopping center, the Trang Tien shopping center. You can walk the pedestrian streets around the lake with a lot of activities and shows on the street.

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Bich Ngoc

As a true Vietnamese enthusiast of music, books and coffee, Bich Ngoc loves researching into those typical cultural characteristics of Vietnam as well as exploring further destinations in the country of thousand years of civilization.

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