Tra Chanh (Lemon Juice) with a View of St Joseph’s Cathedral Hanoi

Iced tea peach (left), Tra Chanh (right) and sunflower seeds

Enjoying a drink while sitting on a tiny plastic chair on the street is a typical Vietnamese experience any visitor must try while visiting Vietnam. It is definitely not the most comfortable chair to sit for a long time, but missing out on it is almost like not trying a bowl of pho in Hanoi. 

You will see many street vendors selling or Vietnamese locals holding and sipping this orangey yellowish juice everywhere. It is sweet lime juice called ‘tra chanh’. Tra means tea and chanh means lime and you pronounce it like Cha Cha-ing. The flavour is, surprisingly, not sour but rather sweet and very refreshing.

Only recently, I found out that Nha Tho (Church) area in the Old Quarter has been famous for tra chanh since few years back. I have passed this area many times, but I realised only since that there are tra chanh shops surrounding the church and was full of Vietnamese locals enjoying the juice to cool down on a hot evening. 

tra chanh by st. joseph's cathedral

Not only can you enjoy the yummy lime juice here, but you can also sit by the church and enjoy this famous view spot in Hanoi. There are other amazing cafes and restaurants in this area with the church view. However, I think tra chanh on a plastic chair gives a more local vibe, which is what I love about it.

Ooh and on the side, I’ve got few more words to say about this iced tea peach (Tra Dao)! There are shark-shaped jellies in the juice, which I found super interesting. And two big pieces of peach, which I loved! 

And don’t forget to order a bowl of sunflower seeds for fun. It is the best thing to eat while people-watching and relaxing with a drink.  


Address: Nhà Chung, Hàng Trống, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam

Menus recommended: Tra chanh (lime), tra dao (peach), huong duong (sunflower seeds)

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