I - How is the weather in Hanoi in December?
In December, Hanoi is in the middle of winter and the climate is strongly influenced by Northeast wind blowing from mainland China, so the temperature falls down remarkably. Cold, even bitter cold, small sudden rains, and dense mist are the main characteristics of Hanoi weather in December.
Enjoy pedestrian coffee in winter - Source: Kenh14
1 - Temperature in Hanoi in December
The average temperature in Hanoi this month ranges from 15.6°C to 22°C (sometimes, it drops to below 10°C). This level is relatively low compared to the annual temperature of 23.6°C. In particular, the temperature usually drops dramatically at night and in the early morning, along with fog and hoarfrost causing the bitterly cold feeling. Regularly check the weather of Hanoi in December and keep warm when going out.
3 - Humidity
Due to the influence of the cold dry wind, the humidity also decreases to 70%. The highest humidity in the year falls in April, which is 89.4%.
4 - Precipitation
Summer rain - Source: Mike Kotsch
The amount of rainfall and the number of rainy days in Hanoi in December are quite low (only about 5 days). The precipitation of the whole month is only 20mm. In general, the weather is dry which makes December is one of the best time to visit Hanoi for outdoor activities such as sightseeing, cycling, and motorbike riding. Some vespa tours to Hanoi sub-urban areas or city tours are highly recommended.
II - Top 3 best things to do in Hanoi in December
1 - The season of rapeseed flower
The weather in December in Hanoi is dry and cold, so the scenery of Hanoi this time is not so lively when most of the trees lose their old leaves. However, you can go to the sub-urban of Hanoi to visit the immense yellow rapeseed flower fields.
The vibrant yellow rapeseed fields blooming along the Red River are great places for nice pictures and peaceful moments. Some best places to visit in Hanoi in December to admire the rapeseed flower:
- Yen Vien rapeseed garden: Yen Vien commune, Gia Lam district, Hanoi - 16km from the city center, about 30 minutes traveling by scooter.
- Tay Tuu flower village: Tay Tuu ward, Bac Tu Liem district, Hanoi - 18km from the city center, about 35 traveling minutes by scooter.
- Trau Quy rapeseed garden: Agriculture Academy 1, Trau Quy town, Gia Lam district, Hanoi - 17km from the city center, about 35 minutes traveling by scooter.
The rapeseed flower fields are the ideal places to visit in Hanoi in December - Source: Kenh14
Most of the rapeseed gardens are grown by indigenous people for photo taking. To get the most beautiful photos with fewer tourists, you should go to the garden in the early morning.
2 - Hanoi streets
Visiting Hanoi in December, you can see all the streets of the city, especially Hang Ma street, are beautifully covered by Christmas decorations. On the occasion of Christmas Eve, St Joseph’s Cathedral is a must-visit place. Besides that, if you come on the last days of December, joining the Hanoi countdown party is an interesting thing to do. The best places for having a great night countdown party are the Old Quarter, around the Hoan Kiem lake and near the Hanoi West lake. The dynamic atmosphere will last for several weeks because the Lunar New Year of Vietnam comes soon after the Solar New Year.
3 - Top activities in Hanoi in December: enjoying the local cuisine
A bowl of plain rice flan - Source: Kenh14
For international tourists, Vietnamese cuisine is one of the main reasons to visit Vietnam. And Hanoi is considered as a food paradise in Vietnam with countless dishes to try. Enjoying hot dishes such as hot pot, noodles soup in cool weather is the way to appreciate life. Some typical dishes standing in the favorite list of Hanoians:
- Fried shrimp cake
Hanoi West Lake is one of the best places to visit in Hanoi in December. Aside from sightseeing, you should not miss trying “fried shrimp cake” - a typical Hanoi food inspired by the locals living around the lake in the past. The crispy crust made of flour, and the firm meat of shrimp are the main ingredients of the dish. When eating, fried shrimp cake is served with fresh veggies and special dipping sauce. Along Thanh Nien street, and around the lake, there are lots of places to enjoy this dish. A dish of shrimp cake costs about $2.
- Bánh Đúc (plain rice flan)
Enjoying a bowl of plain rice flan in cold weather is one of the most amazing things to do in Hanoi in December. The fatty taste of pork, the aroma of cilantro, fried onion, and rice flour soup dipped in sweet fish sauce is the best dish to warm up your stomach. The price of a bowl of “Banh Duc” is only from 15,000 to 30,000 VND / bowl ($0.6 - 1.3)
- Grilled sweet potato and grilled corn
Grilled sweet potato and grilled corn are extremely popular in December in Hanoi. On winter evenings, at every street’s corner or small alleys of Hanoi, you can easily find the vendors selling grilled corn and sweet potato at the price of 10,000 - 15,000 VND ($0.4 - 0.65).
- Hanoi egg coffee
Having a cup of hot Vietnamese egg coffee and watching the surroundings on a winter day will be the most peaceful moments besides the exciting activities. It costs about 50,000 - 80,000 VND ($2.15 - 3.5) for a cup of egg coffee.
Hopefully, with the mentioned suggestions, tourists will have a wonderful journey to Hanoi in December as well as at other times of the year.