French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go

French Quarter | Map and Guide for First Time Visitors

Posted By : Lê Hoàng/ 5 0

French Quarter

In the past, under the domination of the French colonialist, Hanoi was separated into three regions which are French area, Vietnamese area and concession area.

Up till now, the French area has been know as the French Quarter.

Compared to the Old Quarter, French Quarter might be not as bustling as its neighbor but it would take you to another part of Hanoi soul – the charming and elegant one. Let us help you to grasp some must-know things about the area.

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
French Quarter is represented by orange area

1. History:

French Quarter in Hanoi mainly formed and developed during the French colonial period, from the early 20th century until the 1945.

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
French Quarter in the past

These are the main areas for Vietnamese and French civil servants in Hanoi. The basic structure of a street is mainly for living with separate villas, works for the government such as the court, the office,…

Structurally, the French Quarter is based on the grid line. This structure is quite strong, therefore difficult to break.

In the French Quarter, most of the works were designed by French architects, much influenced by the style of colonial architecture. In addition, there are many villas, duplex houses, office buildings designed by Vietnamese architects or a collaboration between Vietnamese and French architects in the designing process. The details of cultural architecture, Vietnamese lifestyle has also been paid attention to these legacies.

Thus, the value of the neighborhood is the style of French architecture that has been reasonably changed for Vietnam in general and Hanoi in particular.

2. Attractions in French Quarter

Through the ups and downs of history, the French architectural works reflecting the mark of Indochinese architecture left in Hanoi still brings a unique beauty and also the romantic fragments for the city.

Many people come to Hanoi and love Hanoi also because of ancient architecture in the breath of modern life. Let’s take a look at the French-style architecture left over in the capital through these charming attractions.

2.1. Hanoi Opera House

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Hanoi Opera House in the past

Hanoi Opera House is one of the few French architectural works which is preserved almost perfectly. The theater was built for a long time, from 1901 to 1911.  Inspired by the famous Opéra Garnier Theater in Paris, the Hanoi Opera House is actually a massive architectural work of its time, with a total area of 2,600m2.

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Hanoi Opera House now

The Opera House and the Opera House Square are home to many important historical events of the country such as rallies and demonstrations. This is where the National Assembly of Democratic Republic of Vietnam first met on March 2, 1946.

2.2.  St. Joseph’s Cathedral, Hanoi

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
St. Joseph’s Cathedral, Hanoi

This is a well-known 19th century European style building. The Cathedral of Hanoi was built in 1884 and completed in 1886. The church’s style is a colorful Gothic architecture. The project is 64.5m long, 20.5m wide and two 31.5m high bell towers with large four-cornered stone pillars, topped with stone cross. When you come here, you will be overwhelmed by the solemnity of a religious architecture.

2.3. Hoa Lo Prison

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Hoa Lo Prison

Hoa Lo Prison was built in 1896 by the French colonialist, with the goal of detaining anti-colonialist and Vietnamese revolutionaries. This place is the most reminiscent of the heroic and painful past.

The artifacts displayed here are related to the struggle for independence of the Vietnamese nation. The prison site also features short documentaries, depicting scenes of American prisoners being detained there.

2.4. National Museum of Vietnamese HistoryFrench Quarter - Hanoi Where to go

National Museum of VietnameseLocated at No.1 Trang Tien street, National Museum of Vietnamese History was built from 1925 to 1932. It was followed the style of Indochinese architecture which means  the surface structure is completely as same as French style at that time , but there was some architectural changes to adapt to climate conditions, landscape as well as traditional culture. Therefore, this Asian-European architectural combination has an elegant and unique beauty.

Today, the work is used as a museum to display and present historical materials and objects through periods and Vietnamese dynasties. On the premises of the museum, there are also cafes catering for visitors to relax after visiting and exploring history.

Each building is not only of artistic value but also of historical significance. It is in the hearts of those who have come to Hanoi that the past and the beauty of human values ​​in the land of thousand years of civilization. If you have the opportunity to Hanoi, do not miss these interesting destinations.

3. Hotels, Cafés in the French Quarter

3.1. Hotel Sofitel Legend Metropole

This hotel could be considered an iconic of Hanoi’s colonial work with a grandeur and timeless charm unmatched in the city, or elsewhere in the region. The hotel lies in the heart of Hanoi since 1901 near the Opera House. It’s important role is hosting playwrights, ambassadors and heads of state.

Hotel Sofitel Legend Metrpole from outside

3.2. Restaurants:

La Terrasse Du Metropole 

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
A Paris corner in the heart of Hanoi

The high-class restaurant is located in the hotel. It has a Parisian side-walk style with air-opened sitting place to enjoy the Hanoian view. The menu is also covered with French food and beverage.

  • Opening time: daily 11:00 – 24:00
  • Address: No.15 Ngo Quyen street

Au Delice & Le Restaurant d’Arthur Hanoi

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Au Delice & Le Restaurant d’Arthur Hanoi

 The restaurant serves French cuisine as well as a wide range of drinks coming from many other countries in a homely setting.

  • Opening time: daily 9:00 – 22:00
  • Address: No.2B Ngo Thi Nham street

RICO Steak House

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Inside RICO Steak House

This is a classy South America dining restaurant which is best known for its extensive food menu comprising a mix of Australian and Argentinean beef dishes, pasta, salads and seafoods.

  • Opening  time: 11:00 – 23:00
  • Address: No.56 Tran Quoc Toan street

AMATO

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
AMATO restaurant

AMATO  is a Western style restaurant located behind the Hanoi Opera House. The menu offers a wide range of  European delicacies.

  • Opening time: Mon – Sat  7:30 – 23:00
  • Address: No.1A Trang Tien street

Sen

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Serving places of Sen Restaurant (60 Ly Thai To street)

Sen is a buffet restaurant which will impress everyone by its “colorful” cuisines. This restaurant is followed Asian style in the architecture as well as its foods.

  • Opening time: 18:00 – 22:00
  • Address: No.60 Ly Thai To street

3.3. Shops:

Since the French quarter is home to luxury things so that shopping in this area involves high-end shopping malls and delicate boutiques as well as artistic  showrooms by local artists  and book stores.

Here, you can find high class brands such as: Dior, Louis Vuitton, Versace,..at Trang Tien plaza – a three-storey shopping mall located in Trang Tien – the most busy street in the neighborhood.

Also, there are other shopping choices for people who wanna look for local or chic designer art piece. Here are some galleries and boutiques highly recommended for this kind of demand:

Red Moon Gallery

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Art pieces at Red Moon Gallery
  • Opening time: 10:00 – 18:00
  • Address: No.38 Trang Tien street

Thanh Bình Gallery

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Paintings of Artist Nguyen Thanh Binh
  • Opening time: 10:00 – 18:00
  • Address: No.25,27 Trang Tien street

Dong Phong Art Gallery

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
Dong Phong Art Gallery
  • Opening time: 10:00 – 18:00
  • Address: No.3 Ly Dao Thanh street

Cho Hom market (This place is home to all kinds of fabric which would be the best choice for ones looking for material to make traditional customs)

French Quarter - Hanoi Where to go
A colorful corner in Cho Hom market
  • Opening time: 6:00 – 17:00
  • Address: No.293 Tran Nhan Tong street

You’ve visited most places of French Quarter in Hanoi. If you’d love to have more information about French Quarter, please don’t hesitate to book a Free Tour with local guides.

Written by: Kalyn.

Everything about St joseph cathedral

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi| Opening Hours – Schedule – Address

Posted By : Lê Hoàng/ 5 0

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi | Historical Information | Tourist Information

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Saint Joseph Cathedral

An Neo-Gothic Cathedral located in the heart of Hanoi Capital, Saint Joseph Cathedral is the representative evidence of the French colonial architecture.

Familiarly called by the local as “The Big Church”, Saint Joseph Cathedral is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hanoi for more than 4 million Catholics in the country.

Another place that also represents the evidence of French colonies is Hỏa Lò Prison (also known as Maison Centrale).
Click here to read more about Hỏa Lò Prison.

A. History of St. Joseph Cathedral Hanoi

A.1. The Construction:

The construction of Hanoi began in 1886, with the architectural style described as resembling the famous cathedral Notre Dame de Paris.

As an oldest church in Hanoi, St. Joseph was one of the first structure built by the French colonist during the expansion in its colonial empire Indochina.

St. Joseph was built on the site of Bao Thien Pagoda – a well-respected temple as the center of Buddhist practice in Lý-Trần dynasty demolished for the construction of the Church.

A.2. After the French colonial era:

After the retreat of French from North Vietnam in 1954, St. Joseph Cathedral is under the control the Vietnamese Nationalists and suffered decade of persecution, when priests were arrested, church property were seized and expropriated.

It was not until the Christmas Eve of 1990 that the mass was allowed to be celebrated there.

 B. The Architecture of St. Jospeh Cathedral

B.1. Exterior:

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Exterior of St. Jospeh Cathedral
  • 64,5 meters in length, 20,5 meters in width, 31,5 meters in height.
  • The façade consists of two towers, square in shape with five bells.
  • The twin bell towers with the resemblance to Notre Dame de Paris.
  • The exterior walls made of granite stone slabs, yet is stained with pollution with the pass of time.
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Granite stone wall of St. Jospeh Cathedral
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
St. Jospeh Cathedral become stained as time pass

B.2. Interior: 

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Inside St. Jospeh Cathedral Hanoi
  • Gothic style, tall windows with pointed arches.
  • Stained glass windows were produced in France then imported to Vietnam.
  • Rib vaulted ceiling.
  • Weathered nave with shiny sanctuary made of trimmed wood
  • The statue of Virgin Mary kept in palanquin, to the left of the nave.
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
St. Jospeh Cathedral on Christmas day

C. Tourist Information

C.1. Opening hour

  • For Outside visit: all time
  • For Inside visit: visitors can only enter the Cathedral in Hanoi in the opening time of ceremonial practice as the following schedule:
    • Weekday: 5:30 am and 6:15 pm
    • Saturday: 6:00 pm
    • Sunday: 5:00 am, 7:00 am, 9:00 am, 11:00 am, 4:00 pm, 6:00 pm and 8:00 pm
    • Special ceremony is on 19th March every year.

C.2 Address

Visitors can easily find St. Joseph Cathedral Hanoi, located at 40 Nhà Chung street, as it lies in the connecting corner of Nhà Chung and Nhà Thờ street.

Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi Address

C.3. Entrance Fee/ Ticket Price

Public space and free

C.4. Transportation

  • Bus:
  1. take 01 to Trieu Quoc Dat street stop
  2. 02 to Hai Ba Trung Street stop;
  3. 09, 14, 36 to Hoan Kiem Lake stop and

Then walk to the Cathedral

  • Motorcycle/ Bicycle: park vehicles near Hoan Kiem lake (the parking line is parallel to Cau Go Street) and walk to the Cathedral

Parking fee: 10.000 VND (0.4 USD)

D. What’s next after visiting St. Joseph Cathedral?

D.1. Where to go next?

As a benefit of location in the center of Hanoi, visitors are provided of a variety of choice for the next destinations. Visitors can consider these following:

  • Hoan Kiem Lake and Ngoc Son Temple:
  1. Hoan Kiem Lake, the lake of Returned Swords, as the most representative site pertaining the value of Hanoi with famous historical legend.
  2. Ngoc Son Temple as the symbol of educational tradition of the Vietnamese
  • Hoa Lo Prison: also known as Maison Centrale, a representative testimony of the period of Vietnamese revolutionary struggle against the French colonists

Address: 1 Hoa Lo Street

  •  Vietnam Museum of Woman: preserve and display various tangible and intangible historical and cultural heritage of Vietnamese women through the long-standing pathway of the history

Address: 36 Ly Thuong Kiet Street

 D.2. Where to eat next?

  • Bánh gối and deep-fried cuisine: 52 Ly Quoc Su Street
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Bánh gối – a deep-fried cuisine
  • Pork Porridge: Ngõ Huyện Street
Saint Joseph Cathedral Hanoi - Hanoi Where to go
Pork Porridge on Ngõ Huyện Street

E. Free Tour with Hanoi Free Local Tour

Visitors are highly recommended to book a free tour with Vietnamese locals when visiting St. Joseph Cathedral to understand more about its presence in the local’s social life and further fully explore Hanoi with other nearby attractions.

Free tour is organized by Hanoi Free Local Tour with tour guides are groups of young passionate and energetic students who seek to guide the foreigners as a way to practice and improve their English skills but are trained to have full knowledge about attractions in Hanoi and tour guide skill.

Booking a tour is easy as visitors only have to go to websites and place a tour’s order. Visitors will receive a confirmation from tour director and they will be picked at their hotel or arranged meeting place at time as appointed.

Written by Trang Nguyen

long-bien-bridge

Long Bien Bridge

Posted By : Hanoifreelocaltours/ 1 0

Long Bien Bridge

When visiting Hanoi, every foreign visitor often goes to such very famous places as The Temple of Literature, Ho Chi Minh mausoleum, Hoan Kiem lakeBut now, I will introduce you a destination that you don’t often go: Long Bien Bridge.

Hanoi Where to go—romantic sunset in Long Bien Bridge
romantic-sunset-in-Long-Bien-Bridge


On visiting Long Bien Bridge, you will be impressed by its antiquity and the sencenery around. Being constructed from 1898 to 1902, Long Bien Bridge is the first bridge to cross the Red river, the biggest river in the north of Vietnam. With 2290 m in length, 19 spans, it was designed by French engineers; so, it is also called “Eiffel tower” of Vietnam. More than a century has gone by, overcoming so many ups and downs, Long Bien Bridge is still wonderful with values of time. It serves the trade between the two ends, helps people a lot in transportation.

HISTORY ABOUT LONG BIEN BRIDGE

In the war period, Long Bien Bridge was the shelter of Vietnamese soldiers. It protected the brave ones from bullets of the enemy. Therefore, it was in heavy demolition and until 1973, it was restored. Long Bien Bridge is also the place to welcome the soldiers to come back from the two pointless wars against France and the USA. Thus, to those soldiers, it is not just a bridge, it is the witness and memories of the glorious historical period.

LONG BIEN BRIDGE AT PRESENT 

Nowadays, Long Bien Bridge is a very interesting place for strolling and sightseeing. You can easily see many corns and vegetable fields under the bridge, breathe fresh air and take many photographs with the romantic view. Besides, you can go to the Red river rock shore near there to see the beauty of the flowers. Whenever you visit there, you can easily be impressed by the beautiful flower fields. In the spring, the peach blossom makes you feel warmer to reach Tet holiday. In the summer and autumn, there are landmasses of white blooming reeds. It is so beautiful and romantic. If you visit in the winter, you can immerse in the yellow color of borecoles.

In general, Long Bien Bridge is a very fascinating place to visit when you come to the capital of Vietnam, Hanoi. Welcome you!

Nguyen Thi Diem