The Lunar new year (Tết holiday) is the most important & meaningful event to all Vietnamese. Hanoi - the capital for over 1000 years, is a great place to travel and immerse in Vietnamese culture on the occasion of the Vietnamese Lunar new year.
I - The best places to visit during the Lunar New Year in Hanoi
1 - Famous shopping places
Shopping to prepare for Tet is one of the most exciting activities before welcoming the new year. In Hanoi, to experience the bustling vibes of Tet, tourists should not miss visiting the local markets in Hanoi. Top popular markets to shop for consumer goods and foods in Hanoi are Dong Xuan market, Phung Khoang market, Long Bien market, Thanh Cong market,...
Shopping for Tet at Dong Xuan market - Source: Vietfuntravel
Flowers and trees are very important things to prepare for Tet in Hanoi. Nhat Tan flower garden, Hang Duong street, Van Phuc flower market, Quang Ba flower market are the best places for flower shopping. You can find several different kinds of Vietnamese flowers that vary from peach blossoms, apricot flowers, chrysanthemums, lilies to special flowers.
For more great experiences during the Chinese New Year in Hanoi, you should not miss the Old Quarter. Hanoi Old Quarter with 36 unique streets where you can see countless beautiful decor items and things for Tet is an ideal place for admiring the exciting trading atmosphere of the locals. Hang Ma street in the Old Quarter is the most crowded and bustling place to experience the atmosphere of Tet.
2 - Famous spiritual attractions during Lunar new year in Hanoi
Visiting the pagodas at the beginning of the Lunar Year has become a cultural and spiritual beauty existing in the life of every Vietnamese people. Tourists frequent the sacred temples and pagodas to show their respect and pray for luck, wealth, and happiness. The most popular religious attractions in Hanoi:
Tran Quoc Pagoda during Tet in Hanoi - Source: Luong Anh
Tran Quoc Pagoda
Built in the Ly-Tran dynasty in the feudal time, the Tran Quoc pagoda with over 1500 years of existence is the oldest pagoda in Hanoi. This ancient pagoda is one of the most famous spiritual attractions that is frequented by locals and tourists on Hanoi New Year’s Eve.
Location: Thanh Nien street, Tay Ho district
Quan Su Pagoda
Built in the 15th century under the reign of King Le The Tong, this pagoda is considered the Central Vietnam Buddhist Association.
Location: No.73 Quan Su street, Hoan Kiem district
This pagoda is widely known as the sacred temple to pray for love in Hanoi, especially at the beginning of the year and at the occasion of the Lunar new year in Hanoi. Young people come here to pray for peace and for meeting their love.
Location: No.86 Chua Ha street, Cau Giay District
The Temple of Literature
The over 900-year old construction is known as the first university in Vietnam and a symbol of feudal education. From which thousands of talents graduated, thus the Temple of Literature is considered an extremely sacred place to pray for luck to all Vietnamese students. During the Hanoi Chinese new year, many people, especially parents and students come here to ask for calligraphy and pray for luck.
Location: No.58 Quoc Tu Giam street, Dong Da district
Tay Ho Temple
The temple was built to worship Princess Lieu Hanh - one of The Four Immortals in the Vietnamese belief. The temple is a famous & sacred place for luck and wealth in business.
Location: Nghi Tam village, Quang An ward, Tay Ho district
3 - Best places for having fun together during the new year in Hanoi
Hanoi Westlake and the Hanoi Old Quarter area are the most exciting places to visit on Lunar new year’s eve. The big crowd and many fun activities, folk games, and performances make the atmosphere more and more vibrant and bustling.
Colorful Tet in Hanoi - Source: VnExpress
Wandering around the Hoan Kiem lake, joining the locals’ fun activities, and enjoying the joyful atmosphere are the best things to experience. The spectacular firework performance near the Hoan Kiem lake is the most cheerful moment to welcome the new year.
II - Special things about the Lunar New Year in Hanoi
1 - Tet’s flowers and trees
Flowers and trees are indispensable things in the Tet of Vietnamese. Preparing some kinds of flowers such as peaches, narcissus flowers, and kumquat trees is a long-lasting tradition to welcome the new year of Hanoians. The flowers with red and yellow color seem to brighten the space and bring joy to all people.
2 - Cuisine in the new year party in Hanoi
New year's feast - Source: Kenh14
The traditional feast is one of the most important elements during the new year party. In the custom of Hanoians, the feast needs to contain 5 colors - 5 flavors. All dishes in the Tet meal are both delicious but also eye-catching. A traditional meal includes 6 bowls of 6 dishes or 8 bowls of 8 dishes well prepared with the hope for peace, fortune, and prosperity. Experiencing the Lunar new year in Hanoi, you have a chance to enjoy dozens of delicates. Aside from Chung cake - traditional cake in Tet, other indispensable dishes are sticky fragrant sticky rice, Vietnamese sausage, boiled chicken, fried spring rolls, and pickled onion.
3 - A silent Hanoi during the Lunar new year
Contrary to the hustle and bustle atmosphere of the capital city during normal days, Hanoi is completely different on the first days of the lunar year. Without many people and vehicles, Hanoi from a busy and crowded city suddenly became deserted and quiet during the Tet holiday.
Flower in Tet in Hanoi - Source: Kenh14
There is no more traffic jam or sounds from the horn, and the crowd. The city is simply more tranquil and fresher than normal days. Strolling around the streets, taking a cup of coffee, and enjoying the peaceful moments are such interesting experiences.
III - Tips for foreigners when enjoying the Lunar new year in Hanoi
To foreigners who are living and working in Hanoi, Tet is a good occasion to get an insight into the local culture.
Tourists enjoy the holiday in Hanoi - Source: VnExpress
Vietnamese often enjoy the Tet for a week, many kinds of services and activities are temporarily closed for several days. If you have not had any experience of new year's eve celebrations in Hanoi before, remember to prepare food for several days or arrange a good travel plan in Vietnam these days.
For international tourists, you should book accommodation and tickets soon before traveling to Hanoi.
In brief, we have already given you all the essential information related to experiencing the Lunar new year in Hanoi. Wish you all an amazing and memorable experience about this special holiday in Vietnam.