Singaporetourismmap: Wandering Unopen To Hanoi

After an interesting outset solar daytime exploring Ho Chi Minh's mausoleum etc too in-between stuffing our faces total of proficient food nosotros even so had plenty of exploring of the urban substance to produce earlier moving on to our side yesteryear side stop, Halong Bay.

One of the outset things nosotros did was purchase tickets for the H2O puppet demonstrate which several people had told us was a must meet during our visit. Hanoi is also plainly the house to meet i of these shows too. The theater nosotros chose was exactly a curt walk from our hotel so nosotros booked to produce this inward the eve afterwards our explore of the mausoleum. There are several theatres giving these performances but nosotros went to the Thang Long H2O puppet theatre. The house was packed out with both locals too tourists too although you lot purchase tickets, either inward advance or on the door, at that topographic point are no allocated seats so acquire at that topographic point prompt to ensure a proficient view! 

The H2O puppet shows are a tradition that dates from the 11th Century. As the elevate suggests at that topographic point is H2O involved, the demonstrate beingness performed inward a waist deep pool. The puppeteers are hidden behind a hide too command the puppets via long rods, giving the allusion that the puppets are moving on the transcend of the water. This type of puppetry came well-nigh when villagers would entertain each other when the rice fields flooded. The H2O acts every bit a phase for the puppets every bit good every bit a symbolic link to the rice harvest. The puppetry is accompanied yesteryear a traditional Vietnamese orchestra too the singers perform songs which tell the even beingness acted out yesteryear the puppets.                      

We were given a programme for the eve too got to relish xiv performances that had been selected from a repertoire of 400! H5N1 lot of the stories come upward from Vietnamese folklore too centre on solar daytime to solar daytime life with stories of the harvest too angling alongside many more.  The performances follow straight off on from each other too apart from a duo that got a picayune confusing I was able to position each functioning from the visual performances despite non agreement whatever of the words beingness sung or spoken. It was fun too quite a dissimilar way to pass our evening.



Displays of exactly a few of the puppets inward the entrance to the H2O puppet theatre



The orchestra that accompanies the puppeteers

Our duo of days inward Hanoi gave us the endangerment to explore a few of the city's other famous landmarks. One house nosotros decided to accept a expect at was Hanoi's Botanic Gardens, whilst non quite inward the same league every bit Singapore Attractions's or Kew Gardens it was nonetheless pleasant plenty to kill a picayune fourth dimension in. It is quite a drive from the centre (we got a cab) too I'm non sure you lot would desire to pass hours at that topographic point but it did also laissez passer us the chance to too so walk dorsum via the Tran Quoc pagoda on the West Lake. For me though the primary affair actually spoiling the gardens were the cages with monkeys too peacocks in. It would direct maintain been far nicer to meet the peacocks too monkeys roaming freely inward the park. 



Inside Hanoi's Botanic Gardens


As I said from the, slightly underwhelming, Botanic Gardens nosotros made our way dorsum to the centre walking yesteryear the huge West Lake. Take a expect at my photograph below, it is a exactly massive lake! We stopped inward a house for coffee, a breather, a fleck of wifi too watched the footing acquire yesteryear for a piece earlier carrying on to the Tran Quoc pagoda. 

The West Lake, stretching every bit far every bit the oculus tin see

Tran Quoc Pagoda

The Tran Quoc pagoda is the oldest pagoda inward the city. It was originally constructed inward the sixth Century during the reign of Emperor Ly Nam De who reigned from 544 to 548. The pagoda was originally constructed on the shores of the Red River but was moved to the West Lake inward 1615. When nosotros visited at that topographic point were a lot of people making offerings, burning incense too proverb prayers. It was lovely to detect exactly a picayune of that likewise every bit nosotros took inward the beauty of this ancient pagoda.


Thap Rua Tower (Tortoise Tower)

Back nearer the urban substance centre too nosotros constitute ourselves nigh the Hoan Kiem Lake on several occasions throughout our duo of days inward the city. As nosotros walked exactly about it you lot tin meet a modest tower on an isle inward the lake. This is the Thap Rua Tower or Tortoise Tower. It looked similar a beautiful tower on an isolated picayune isle which I acknowledge I would direct maintain loved to direct maintain been able to acquire across to too visit. 

I've since learnt that it was built inward 1886 on a site where a temple had i time stood too at some quest previously had been destroyed. This tower was built to commemorate a warrior called Le Loi born inward 1384 too the demeanour upon he had on Vietnam.The even goes that whilst he was growing upward he witnessed many atrocities committed against the Vietnamese people yesteryear the Ming Chinese who occupied Vietnam at that fourth dimension too that he vowed to costless his people. Eventually inward 1426 a battle took house at Tot Dong to create upward one's heed the outcome of this rebellion. This battle resulted inward the Vietnamese beingness successful inward capturing too executing the Chinese General too luring the Chinese forces into Hanoi where a trap had been laid. Instrumental inward all of this was Le Loi too the piece of occupation of his mystical sword which it is said he received from the Dragon King inward his underwater palace. The sword was said to direct maintain given Le Loi non bad ability too strength too also increased his physical stature when he used it. The lake that the tower stands on is called Hoan Kiem Lake which agency Lake of the Returned Sword. It is called this because this is the lake where the Dragon King reclaimed his sword afterwards Le Loi's victory. Legend says that Le Loi was inward a boat on the river when a turtle came out of the H2O too took dorsum the sword too despite Le Loi's best efforts the sword was never found. Le Loi determined that the turtle must direct maintain been sent on the Dragon King's behalf to recollect the sword too he renamed the lake, Hoan Kiem Lake. The tower hence stands inward laurels of what Le Loi did for the Vietnamese people too has stood since every bit a symbol of patriotic pride for the people of Hanoi.

St Joseph's cathedral

Our fourth dimension inward Hanoi would non direct maintain been consummate without a see to the real European looking St Joseph's cathedral, built inward the belatedly 19th century it is quite spectacular upward closed too dominates the modest streets inward its vicinity. The architectural pattern is said to resemble the Notre Dame inward Paris, hardly surprising I guess. It was i of the outset structures built yesteryear the French colonial authorities inward Indochina when it was opened inward 1886 too is the oldest church building inward Hanoi. We were able to acquire within during our see with the interior beingness a peaceful retreat from the bustle of Hanoi's busy streets.

Whilst nosotros did non acquire within nosotros also stopped yesteryear the Hanoi Opera House, enjoying a Vietnamese java inward a nearby cafe. Another legacy from the French colonial authorities built betwixt 1901 too 1911. It sure enough is a beautiful building! Today it seems to hold out inward the centre of the hustle of busy traffic going to too fro but definitely stands out every bit a existent landmark of the city.

Hanoi Opera House

All to presently our fourth dimension inward Hanoi was over too it was fourth dimension to caput off for the side yesteryear side halt on our Vietnam adventure. Hanoi was busy too sure enough a lot crazier than the likes of Singapore Attractions but it is somewhere I would happily provide to if the chance e'er arose.


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