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Hanoi is one of the most interesting cities you can visit. Whether you’re new to the city or have been there a while, some of the things you see will never fail to surprise you. I’ve seen a family of six on one tiny motorbike and that definitely wouldn’t be the craziest! The evenings in Hanoi are always busy as people head home during rush hour with traffic is just everywhere. If you want to head somewhere it’s recommended you use Uber and hire a motorbike or a taxi. These are extremely cheap options costing from a few dollars depending on how far you go. There’s plenty to do after 5:00 pm and here are some of my favourites.
Visit the Old Quarter
If you’re in Hanoi in the evening and are looking for the liveliest place to be then head to the Old Quarter. The Old Quarter has over the years become Hanoi’s backpacker area so it’s full of bars, little souvenir shops and is a good place to grab dinner as you can get anything from western to local food.
Water Puppet Show
The water puppet show is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the city. The extremely skilled water puppet masters will impress you with their interesting tales of Vietnamese culture. It’s a good idea to go early and but your tickets as they sell out fast. There are three evening shows currently at 5.20pm, 6.30pm and 8pm. Tickets cost between 60000 to 100000VND or 3 to 5USD.
Go to the top of Lotte Tower
Lotte Tower is the tallest building in Hanoi. Having a drink at its rooftop bar, Top of Hanoi, is absolutely essential. Drinks at the bar are a bit pricier than other bars in the city but you can still get a decent cocktail for approximately 10USD. The view is definitely worth it! Make sure to go on a day when pollution levels are low and the sky isn’t overcast or otherwise you won’t get to make the most of the view.
Drink cheap or free beer
Beer in Vietnam is extremely cheap and a bottle of beer will usually set you back only 1USD. If you’re looking for a really local experience the best place to drink beer with a few friends is at a Bia Hoy. These outdoor bars often serve local food too which is often simple and delicious as well as cheap. If you love an absolute bargain there are also a number of bars in the city that do free beer on certain evenings for a limited period of time. One of our favourites is Bar Betta for its relaxed atmosphere and funky deco. Their free beer offer is Wednesday from 8 to 9pm.
Eat dinner at Pizza 4 Ps
The local food in Hanoi is simply delicious but if you are simply craving something a bit more western, then we highly recommend Pizza 4 Ps. On their menu you can choose between a wide range of unique fusion pizzas, Italian Japanese style, as well as delicious pastas and more. They offer some great cocktails too as well as delicious desserts. They have a few different restaurants in the city and as they’re quite popular it’s highly recommended you reserve a table in advance.
If you’re in Hanoi and want to experience the city like a local then head to a café and drink a coffee. You can find a café almost anywhere you go in the city or you can search on Google Maps for popular branches such as the super stylish Cong Caphe. We recommend you try Caphe Sua Da, a sweet coffee with ice and condensed milk as well as Egg Coffee.
To conclude, if you’re in Hanoi after 5pm there’s no reason to be bored. There’s plenty to do in this unique, interesting and incredible city.
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- See Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur After Five
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