Hanoi city’s hustling and bustling traffic can be overwhelming for many travellers. Although I enjoy my life here with the convenience of having a motorbike, I also feel the frustration of unimaginable congestion and crowd. Therefore, I seek for places to enjoy a peaceful stroll and have a little escape inside Hanoi.
Certainly, Hanoi is not a pedestrian friendly city. On the other side, it is a city of lakes, which is something I love about this city. There are also some other places for a good stroll.
So I want to share with you a list of my top 5 best places for a short city escape in Hanoi. It is for those in need of a small getaway from Hanoi’s crazy traffic. As well as for passionate walkers.
Top 5 Hanoi Escape for a Stroll
West lake is the biggest lake in Hanoi. In Vietnamese, it’s called Tay Ho or Ho Tay. The entire round of this lake can take more than a couple of hours by foot. Frankly, I’ve never done a whole round except on a motorbike. But you can go for a short walk here to admire the vast horizon of water. I think West lake view is super healing and a great Hanoi city escape. What’s even better is if you go during sunset to capture a moment like in the photo.
Truc Bach lake
Truc Bach lake is a small lake adjacent to West lake. Because it’s much smaller, one whole round of the lake is possible within an hour. However, my top suggestion is a walk on Thanh Nhien road between the two lakes. As you can see in the picture, the famous Tran Quoc pagoda is accessible from this road. I personally love this street because it’s covered with greens and there’s always a cool breeze from lakes on both sides.
Hoan Kiem lake
A stroll around this beautiful and remarkable Hoan Kiem lake is one of my favourites. I find it amusing how I can always find peace in the centre of the centre – the Old Quarter. In short, this is a true city escape in Hanoi tourist centre and also a top thing to do in Hanoi. One round of the lake takes more or less than 30 minutes. What I specially love so much about this lake is the night view. I don’t know why but I feel as though it becomes super romantic at night here.
Thong Nhat Park
Thong Nhat park is Union park in English and is the biggest park in Hanoi city centre. I truly enjoy and appreciate the time in this park. This place is full of greens and absolutely pedestrian friendly (except some occasional disruptions from sellers or fishers driving motorbikes). I recommend Thong Nhat park as your top Hanoi city escape.
Under Long Bien Bridge
The last one is a slightly different suggestion from others. I think this one is more for those interested in a little adventure. What I mean is that you’ll need to pass through the famous Long Bien bridge – rustic iron railway bridge, which can be quite hectic. However, that walk itself is an amazing opportunity to see the Red river from close. Also, it’s worth the effort to discover this palm tree forest, which you can only access from the middle of the bridge. For more details on this adventure, you can check out this article.
I hope you’ll be able to take a good city escape in Hanoi in one of the places above. So that you can be recharged to enjoy your trip in Hanoi and in Vietnam!