Autumn in Hanoi starts from the last month of August and lasts until the end of October. At this time, Hanoi is portrayed by warm hues and cool breezes, the city takes on a captivating aura that beckons tourists. The early morning and evening will be a bit chilly, suitable for sightseeing, traveling and enjoying the warm and hot dishes of Hanoi. If you like the North’s crisp cold, this is the perfect time for a trip.
Below are the top 10 ideal activities to enjoy Hanoi’s autumn.
1. [Special] Participation in The Hanoi Autumn Festival with the theme “Hanoi Autumn – Come to love“ will take place in three days, from September 29 to October 9 at the pedestrian space of Hoan Kiem Lake and some districts in the city. (This is the first time the city has organized the Hanoi Autumn Festival to promote the beauty, cultural and tourism values, and attract tourists to the capital.)
2. Enjoy “cốm” – the culinary quintessence of Hanoi’s autumn. Cốm is a special dish made from young rice grains that are roasted and flattened. It has a sweet and fragrant taste that is unique to Hanoi. You can eat cốm on its own, wrapped in lotus leaves, or with other ingredients like banana, coconut, or ice cream. You can find cốm vendors on the streets of Hanoi, especially in Vong village, where cốm originated.
3. Autumnal hues of ancient temples. Hanoi has many ancient temples that are rich in history and culture. In autumn, these temples are surrounded by red and yellow leaves, creating a stunning contrast with the old architecture. Some of the temples you can visit are the Temple of Literature, the oldest university in Vietnam; Ngoc Son Temple, located on an island in Hoan Kiem Lake; and Quan Thanh Temple, dedicated to a Taoist deity.
4. Savoring the flavors of Hanoi’s street food. Hanoi is famous for its street food, which is diverse and delicious. In autumn, you can try some of the seasonal dishes that are popular among locals, such as snails, which are cooked in various ways and served with herbs and sauces; persimmon, a sweet and crunchy fruit that resembles a tomato; and egg coffee, a specialty drink that combines strong coffee with whipped egg yolk and condensed milk.
5. Visit Long Bien bridge – “Historical witness” of Hanoi. Long Bien bridge is a symbol of Hanoi’s resilience and history. It was built by the French in 1902 and was heavily bombed during the wars. Today, it still stands as a reminder of the past and a connection between the two sides of the Red River. You can walk or bike along the bridge and enjoy the view of the river and the city.
6. Explore the Old Quarter’s craft boutiques on a cyclo. The Old Quarter is the heart of Hanoi, where you can find many shops selling traditional crafts, souvenirs, clothes, and more. You can also experience the hustle and bustle of the streets, where motorbikes, cars, bicycles, and pedestrians share the space. A fun way to explore the Old Quarter is by taking a cyclo ride, which is a three-wheeled bicycle with a seat for passengers. You can sit back and relax while your driver takes you around the narrow alleys and shows you the highlights of the area.
7. Shopping and admiring the mid-autumn lanterns at Hang Ma street. This is a special tradition of Hanoians, when they decorate the lanterns of various colors and shapes on the old streets. You can also buy some lanterns for yourself or as gifts for your relatives and friends. Lanterns are not only a symbol of Mid-Autumn Festival, but also a part of Vietnamese culture and history.
8. Taking photos at the most beautiful street in Hanoi – Phan Dinh Phung. Phan Dinh Phung is one of the most splendid and charming streets of Hanoi, with the old French villas and the green trees. In autumn, this street becomes more dazzling with the yellow leaves falling on the sidewalks. You can walk and take photos at some famous spots such as Cua Bac, Cua Bac Church, or Botanical Garden.
9. Enjoying egg coffee – a specialty of Hanoi. Egg coffee is a unique and delicious drink of Hanoi, made from black coffee, egg yolk, and condensed milk. Egg coffee has a sweet, creamy, and aromatic taste, like a kind of coffee ice cream. You can find egg coffee at many coffee shops in Hanoi, but the most famous one is Giang at alley 39 Nguyen Huu Huan.
10. Exploring the history and culture of Hanoi through museums and relics. Hanoi is a city with a long history and rich culture, so you cannot miss its famous museums and relics. You can learn about the past and present of Vietnam through the National Museum of History, the Museum of Ethnology, the Vietnam Fine Arts Museum, or the Ho Chi Minh Museum. You can also admire the unique and meaningful architecture of relics such as Temple of Literature – Quoc Tu Giam, One Pillar Pagoda, or Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum.
The pictures of autumn in Hanoi
Tips when traveling to Hanoi in autumn
In Hanoi’s autumn, the weather will be crisp cold in the early mornings and nights, and it can be a bit hot at noon. Therefore, you need to pay attention to bring layers of clothing that you can easily add or remove.
Showers are frequent, so a light jacket or waterproof poncho is required.
Before you want to buy goods, or use services, you should ask the price first.
Hotels near Hanoi Old Quarter often have a limited number of rooms, so you should book in advance.
Hanoi’s roads are quite complicated with many alleys and crowded traffic. It’s best to prepare a map in advance to avoid getting lost.
Carefully read reviews from previous visitors to decide where to eat or shop. Maybe due to cultural differences, it will be difficult for you to adapt immediately.
Don’t forget to bring some medicine such as anti-motion sickness medication, antibacterial cream, fever reducer, allergy medicine, mosquito spray, cough medicine, etc. for a perfect trip.
Some Hanoi specialties can be bought and made too such as “cốm” of Vong village, o mai, banh com, …
Not only Hanoi, autumn is also the best time for you to enjoy a vacation in Northern Vietnam.
Vietnam Typical Tours hopes that these typical things and travel tips will help visitors have the most interesting and unforgettable journey to discover the capital!