“How many days in Hanoi?” And “How many days in Ha Long Bay?”- are common questions Hanoi Free Local Tours get all the time from the travelers visiting Hanoi.
If you are new to Vietnam, you’re probably scratching your head wondering “how many days should I stay in Hanoi and Ha Long bay”?
We have all been there my friends. Don’t worry.
The North of Vietnam is full of beautiful places and activities – to visit and to do – that it seems intimidating to design a suitable itinerary.
We know that many of you want to visit not only Hanoi and Ha Long Bay as well.
Since then, you won’t have to worry about creating your Itinerary in Hanoi.
Let’s answer the question: “How many days do you need in Hanoi”?
How many days to visit Hanoi?
The question is – how many days do I need in Hanoi?
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Worry not because today we’ll together design your perfect itinerary – so for next time – you can easily design a Hanoi itinerary on your own.
Let’s break it down.
Option 1: 2 Days in Hanoi
2 Days in Hanoi!? Seriously?
- “It’s impossible.”
- “It’s way too short.”
- “I cannot experience everything out of Hanoi.”
You must be thinking that, huh?
Not so much.
It seems that two days is a little bit short – but it could be your optimal choice.
There are a lot of tourists coming to Hanoi choose to visit Hanoi in 2 days.
In just 2 days, you might not visit every single corner, try all the amazing food at the bars and on the street.
You will experience the most popular, the most typical, must-try food and must-see attractions.
A quick free city tour can give you an amazing experience.
The tour takes only one day.
You will visit the mystical Old Quarter with 36 streets and guides.
You will not miss many beautiful attractions around the Old Quarter – St. Joseph Cathedral, Hoan Kiem Lake, Hoa Lo Prison, Ngoc Son Temple.
This kind of experience will be very brief, fast and exciting.
2 days will be your optimum choice if:
- You want a quick, fast and exciting experience.
- You want to visit places around Hanoi and mostly the Old Quarter.
- Try a few popular and delicious – dishes and drink.
- Your schedule’s tight.
Then you should go for a 2-day itinerary.
Get ready to have an exciting and fast-moving tour.
Let’s grab your belongings.
And just go.
Option 2: 3 Days in Hanoi
3 days in Hanoi?
You probably don’t know this but most of the tourist would go for a 3-day itinerary.
For the last 2 days, you’ve visited a lot of famous attractions around Hanoi.
But there’re more to see!
In day 3 you can experience most of the famous attractions around the Center of Hanoi – like Army Museum, Thang Long Imperial Citadel and Tran Quoc pagoda.
And if you still have some time
You must visit Bat Trang Pottery Village – to learn how to craft a beautiful pot on your own.
There are a lot of delicious dishes for you to try – like Banh Trang Tron, Banh Xeo, Banh Cuon.
Again, go for a 3-day itinerary if:
- You want to visit more attractions outside of the Old Quarter and around Hanoi.
- Try more food around Hanoi.
- Have more time to enjoy and relax.
Option 3: 4 Days In Hanoi
You have 4 days in Hanoi.
Now you have a decent amount of time here.
You can freely and calmly experience everything in Hanoi, enjoy the food, get some drink.
This time you don’t have to rush through all the attractions.
You can plan your last day to visit a few more attractions.
Suggestions are Perfume pagoda or Military Museum.
Or if not…
You can just relax and chill.
Grab some beer and have a conversation with your partners in Ta Hien.
Go shopping around the Old Quarter and Dong Xuan market.
Because it is flexible, the experience will be less rushing and more of comfort and ease.
In short, 4 days if you want to:
- Have a mildly calm and relaxing experience – no need to rush.
- Have the flexibility in your schedule.
- Finish the list of popular food in Hanoi – you must try them all.
- Make time to go shopping in Hanoi before you leave.
So in conclusion.
How many days do you need in Hanoi?
Depends on personal preference. You can choose 2 days, 3 days or even 4 days.
Some have limited amount of time – some have a lot.
Some want to visit a lot of places outside of Hanoi – some just want to stay in the City.
Some favor the food, the activities, the products of Hanoi – some want to have a taste of other provinces.
Pick the plan that suits you.
What if you want to leave the crowd and the bustle of Hanoi
What to do then…
Just go to Ha Long Bay.
How Many Days in Ha Long Bay
Now, we all know that Ha Long Bay – the most beautiful attraction outside of Hanoi.
That’s right. It’s a must-see.
It’s a place far away from Hanoi.
“How many days should I spend in Ha Long Bay?” – you must be thinking
Worry not then…
We will together design your perfect itinerary in Ha Long Bay.
Option 1: 1 Day in Ha Long Bay
Only 160 km away from Hanoi – it’s possible for you to visit Ha Long Bay in 1 day
You can find a one-day tour to Ha Long Bay everywhere.
You’ll get there by lunch. After that you can have lunch with delicious seafood dishes.
Once you get energy, why not get on a wooden junk and discover some of the amazing caves and islands, it’ll be epic.
Start the cruise trip to the center of the bay.
However, when should you make a 1-day itinerary in Ha Long Bay?
You should if:
- Your time is limited.
- You want to visit other places. Maybe you want to spend more time in Hanoi. Maybe you want to spend more time in Ninh Binh or Sapa.
- You want to visit Ha Long Bay only.
Option 2: 2 Days in Halong Bay
2 days in Ha Long Bay.
Now you have more time to spend here.
After the first day of visiting the Bay, you absorb all the glory of the scenery – the tastiness and freshness of the food.
We’re not done yet.
If you come to Quang Ninh – without visiting Tuan Chau Harbor – you will regret it.
For day 2, you’ll be visiting Tuan Chau Harbor, it has the most beautiful islands in Ha Long Bay.
Tuan Chau has one of the most beautiful islands in Quang Ninh.
Go to Sung Sot Cave to see the oldest and most beautiful stalacticles in Vietnam
You can enjoy the time with the locals living in Tuan Chau and learn about their culture.
There will be activities like volleyball, soccer, surfing waves with the locals – join with the people if you have some time.
When should you go to Ha Long Bay in 2 days? You should if you want to:
- Discover attractions in Tuan Chau harbor.
- Have a little bit time to relax, enjoy the food and the scenery.
- Discover attraction outside of the Bay like Tuan Chau Harbor.
Option 3: 3 Days in Ha Long Bay
3 days in Ha Long Bay.
After 160km of traveling – you just want a relaxing and calm experience
You’ve already experienced everything in Ha Long Bay.
You just want a calm and relaxing final day.
What can you do then?
You are into the weather, right? – You can enjoy your day swimming near Bai Chay Beach.
Getting a cyclo going through Bai Chay or a bike ride would be so fun and refreshing.
Want to keep some memory? Get some souvenirs and buy some products from Ha Long. You can shop at Ha Long Night Market – one of the biggest and most crowed night market in ha Long Bay
Or if you want to enjoy some street food? Go to Vuon Dao street to enjoy food on the sidewalk with the local
When should you go for a 3-day itinerary in Ha Long Bay?
You should if you:
- Don’t have limited amount of time
- Have a relaxing trip
- Have one day to rest
- Have time for shopping
- Enjoy more activities in the evening
You know what you can do with different itineraries.
To answer the question: “How many days in Hanoi and Ha Long Bay“? – It depends on your personal preference.
Some people have a short and limited amount of time—some have a lot
Some people want a quick and exciting experience—some want to relax and have fun
Find the one that suits you—to make the most out of your time here.
Plan it out.
Now you have your perfect itinerary
And make it an amazing trip.
Author: Quentin Nguyễn.