The Red River Vietnam (Sông Hồng in Vietnamese) is the largest river flowing through Hanoi capital city. Taking a cruise tour along the river, you can discover the daily life of local people on the river banks and pay a visit to several historical sites,...

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red river vietnam
Source: Phạm Hoàng Cương

The Red River Vietnam (other name: Hong Ha River or Cai River) is likened as a mighty, lively huge red dragon, contributing to the extremely beautiful landscape of the Northern delta. Besides, the river has accompanied a long course of Vietnam’s heroic history, where many fierce battles took place; therefore, it is also considered the bridge between the past and the future. 

I - The “gentle” beauty of the Red River Vietnam

red river hanoi

The boat on river - Source: rainforestcruises.com

The river used to be ranked in the top 18 most beautiful landscapes in the world voted by Russia’s Rianovoosti magazine. It originates from the mountainous area of Nguy Son District, Van Nam Province, China at a height of 1,776m; through Vietnam and pouring into the South China Sea in Ba Lat Estuary (border between the provinces of Thai Binh and Nam Dinh). The total length of the Red River Hanoi is 1,149km, in which the section flowing over Vietnam territory is 510km long. 

One of the Red River Vietnam facts is that its water during the flood season is red-pink because of the alluvium, which is the origin of its name. It is fertile alluvium which has created many mudflats and contributed to the formation of long-standing traditional craft villages in Hanoi such as Nhat Tan Peach Blossom Garden, Quang Ba Flower Village, Bat Trang Pottery Village, Ngu Xa Bronze Casting Village, Dong Du Guava Village, Bac Bien Sweet Starfruit Village, etc. 

Along the Red River Vietnam are bushes of wild green trees and small fishing villages featuring rustic, makeshift houses on the bank or floating houses. There are many bridges across the Red River Hanoi, but the most impressive one is the historic Long Bien bridge, the world’s famous nearly-hundred-of-year bridge, the critical witness along the heroic history of Vietnam. From this impressive bridge, the river looks like a soft, winding silk.  

The Red River Vietnam is not only the place marking the victory in the history of the country in the war against invaders but it is also associated with the rich culture of Vietnam. Every Spring and Autumn, the river becomes vibrant and active with the sounds of drums and Gongs of the dragon boats amidst the river. Moreover, there are many appealing river tours along the river that attract the curiosity of many tourists. 

Furthermore, the Red River Vietnam is of great importance to daily life of the locals as well as to production. The alluvium that the river brings about makes the soil more fertile, expanding the delta in the coastal areas of the two provinces of Thai Binh and Nam Dinh. It also provides a huge source of freshwater fish in the Northern Delta. In addition, hydropower resources in the Red River Hanoi basin are relatively abundant, a favorable condition to build many power plants. Currently, there are 843 power plants in the basin which have a total capacity of 3,375 million kW.


red river map vietnam

Tourist site on the bank of the rivcer - Source: baogialai.com.vn

Currently, along the Red River Vietnam has arisen many places for check-in, sightseeing and camping, typically the Red River rock beach with a diversity of colorful flowers and attractive miniatures, the large area at the foot of Vinh Tuy bridge, the longan gardens, Banana Island, small islets on the river, etc. which are exploited by many tourist agencies to make biking tours and camping sites. 

II - Taking a cruise along the Red River Vietnam 

A cruise along the river is most ideal to discover the utmost beauty of the river. You can book a day tour along the river to pay a visit to historical sites and Hanoi’s conventional craft villages. On the other hand, a night tour features some services and activities such as enjoying dinners on the cruise, listening to folk songs, and taking a deep breath to inhale fresh air on the deck, etc. 

1 - The main tourist sites in a Red River cruise Hanoi

After picking up guests and finishing different procedures in boat wharves on the Red River Vietnam, cruises will flow along the river to pay a visit to many tourist spots of Hanoi city. The means of transportation are usually both cruise and car. When the cruise drops you off in any place, you will be taken by an awaiting car to go into the mainland and visit tourist spots. 

Although each tour operator has different tours and schedules, basically, you will visit several sites below: 

Dam Temple


red river vietnam map

Dam Temple is an ancient temple in Hanoi - Source: focusasiatravel.vn

The first stopover in a Red River Vietnam cruise tour is Dam Temple. Located in Xam Duong Village, Ninh So Commune, Thuong Tin District, Dam Temple was established by the Tran Dynasty (the 13th century) and has preserved the precious worship of the Mother Goddess of local people in the Red River Delta. The temple has ancient architecture and airy space, still retaining old features. The festival of Dam temple is held from the 1st to 10th of February, the main day is on the 5th.  

Dai Lo Temple (Lo Temple)

Located in Dai Lo Village, Ninh So Commune, Thuong Tin District, this temple has an ideal location which is behind the Red River Vietnam, in front of the Kim Nguu River, next to the phoenix and elephant - shaped land. This famous temple is dedicated to the Four Holy Mothers. The rich culture and religion as well as the festival of Lo Temple are the profound impressions of this ancient temple. 

Chu Dong Tu Temple (Da Hoa Temple)


red river south east asia

Chu Dong Tu Temple - Source: @Nguyen Minh

Covering an area of 18,720m2, the temple worships Chu Dong Tu Saint, one of the four immortal Gods in Vietnam. The curved roof edges are intricately carved, brightly colored and decorated with the statues of dragons and lions. The bronze statues of Chu Dong Tu Saint and his wife are incredibly impressive. Many precious, ancient relics have been well preserved inside the temple. 

Bat Trang Pottery Village

Bat Trang Village is an outstanding point in a Red River Vietnam cruise tour. This 500-year-old village is the oldest and most famous ceramics village in Vietnam that is the paradise of ceramic products such as vases, dishes, bowls, mugs, plates, statues and reliefs, etc. with various designs. You can pay a visit to the village to watch the local artisans making delicate products, specially you can knead clay by yourself and bring your own products home. 

Kinh Duong Vuong Tomb

The next site in your Red River Vietnam cruise tour is Kinh Duong Vuong Tome, which is a special historical site about Kinh Duong Vuong, the grandfather of the 1st Hung King, the ancestor of the ancient Vietnamese people. On January 18th every year, there is the Kinh Duong Vuong festival in order to commemorate the merits of the first Hung King. 

But Thap Pagoda (Ninh Phuoc Pagoda)


red river valley vietnam

But Thap Pagoda - Source: disanvanhoathuanthanh.vn

This pagoda was listed by the Prime Minister as a Special National Relic in 2013 because of its high value in terms of unique architecture typical of the Le Trung Hung period in the 17th century and a diverse system of artifacts. 

2 - Tour agencies provide Red River Vietnam cruise tour

In general, tour operators have a relatively similar schedule consisting of tourist spots mentioned above. The price for a one-day tour varies from 350,000 - 550,000 VND/ person ($15.32 - 24). Here are some travel agencies you can refer to for a Red River cruise Hanoi: 

Thang Long GTC 

- Address: No.115 Le Duan Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi 

- Hotline: +84 243 826 1479 

- Website: http://dulichsonghong.com/


red river cruise hanoi

Taking a cruise along the Red River Vietnam is an amazing experience - Source: vietnamtonkintravel.com

The Sinh Tour 

- Address: No.29/48 Pho Tram Street, Long Bien District, Hanoi

- Hotline: +84 243 999 6476 

- Website: https://thesinhtour.com/

HVG Travel

- Address: No.192 Thai Thinh Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi

- Hotline: +84 243 759 3333 or +84 817 593 333

- Website: https://haivanxanh.com/

Hanoi Local Tour 

- Address: No.31A Van Mieu Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi

- Hotline: +84 974 301 339 

- Website: https://www.hanoilocaltour.com/

Note: The agencies have different pick-up points, so you can contact the agency to get more details. 

III - The Red River Vietnam map


The Red River Vietnam is not only an important witness of Vietnam’s history but also plays a very crucial role in the geological formation of the Northern Delta, the agricultural production, the tourism industry, as well as the daily life of the Hanoi people. There are many interesting hidden things about this “cultural and historical” river that are waiting for you in your upcoming trip to Hanoi - the 1000-year-old capital of Vietnam. 

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