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Hanoi


Founded over 1000 years ago, Vietnam’s capital city is rich in history, with the streets of its rambling Old Quarter dating back to the 14th century. Wandering these tree-lined lanes past crumbling colonial facades will transport you back in time. However, today's Hanoi is about much more than the past. The ancient city is being invigorated with modern cafes, world-class restaurants, and cool art galleries. When the sun goes down, you have your pick of watering holes, from sophisticated rooftop bars to buzzing bia hoi.

A wander around a morning market provides a tantalising hint of what you can expect to hit your table in Hanoi. For an authentic taste of Hanoi, look no further than the street kitchens of the Old Quarter. Pho noodle soup is king of cuisines here, with steaming pots of its star anise-infused broth simmering on every corner; while every day, the irresistible scent of bun cha fills the air as barbecued pork sizzles over hot coals. In recent years a growing band of superb international dining rooms have emerged, serving everything from contemporary tapas to fusion fare. Hanoi’s Old Quarter serves up a sensory overload for the eyes, ears and nose. Wisps of incense drift out onto streets from ancient temples painted a riot of reds and oranges, while in a far-flung corner the clang of a blacksmith’s hammer mingles with a mobile fruit seller’s call. To fully immerse yourself, grab a map to explore. Or jump in a cyclo and take a tour of this intoxicating maze of markets, street kitchens, shop houses, and more.

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