Things to do in Hanoi for a week – Suggested One week Itinerary in Hanoi

Hanoi – the capital of Vietnam has so many things to offer, from cultural experience to tasteful streetfood, to stunning landscape.  There are many unforgettable experience awaiting you to explore. In the article, we will help you find out what’s the best things to do in Hanoi in a week and some suggested itineraries for you to choose.

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What to do in Hanoi for 4 days

5 Best tour packages for 7 days in Vietnam

Option 1:  Hanoi – Halong – Sapa 7 days

  • Best for: Suitable for all kind of visitors: family, couples, etc. It is easiest itineray for one week in Hanoi yet including the most desired destination in the North of Vietnam. 
  • Style: Classic
  • Best in : May/ September, November to March
  • Brief itinerary:

Day 1: Hanoi Arrival

Explore Hanoi Old Quarter – Hanoi Ancient House – Enjoy Hanoi Streetfood

Day 2: Hanoi city Tour

Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum – One Pillar Pagoda – Temple of Literature – Museum of Ethnology – Hanoi Puppet Show or Hanoi Foody Tour by motobike

Signature coconut coffee in Hanoi
Signature coconut coffee in Hanoi

Day 3: Hanoi – Halong Bay by shuttle bus – overnight in Halong

After having breakfast and checking out, we were picked up by a shuttle to head over to the cruise centre, head to Halong Bay by shuttle bus.

Embarking on a 2D1N cruise tour, we travelled towards Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The rock formations surrounding us were a truly spectacular sight, and everyone got on the cruise’s upper deck to snap photos as keepsakes.

Allow your eyes to swim through the azure waters of this magical place, where thousands of sculpted limestone and islands rise from the water like gigantic teeth of dragons.

Enjoys Sunset party while our cruise sailing to the overnight anchorage. In the evening, free time for joining games, you may also try your luck with squid fishing.

For Halong Bay cruise, you can either choose Halong Bay or Lan Ha Bay, Bai Tu Long route if you want to visit less-touristy places yet wonderful.

Day 4: Halong Bay to Hanoi by Shuttle bus – Night Train to Sapa

After a night’s sleep swaying with the ocean’s waves,  a pearl farm, where the farmers extracted pearls from oysters to crafted into jewellery. This was followed by a Vietnamese spring roll making class back at the cruise. On a side note, I find a one-day cruise to be sufficient for seeing the wonders of Ha Long Bay.

Back to Hanoi around 3pm in the afternoon and settle at a coffee house in Hanoi Old Quarter.

In the evening, catch a night train or bus to Sapa.

Day 5: Sapa – Ta Van Village

If you catch a night train, you will wake up in Lao Cai station around 5:30am, then hop on a bus or hire taxi to drive up to Sapa about 30 minutes.

Visit Ta Van Village. Ta Van village is hidden in the foggy cloud, far away from Sapa busy streets. All its natural beauty are well reserved by over 110 households living in this village. Though you can definitely to get there and back in a day, many choose to stay overnight at the homestay in Ta Van village to fully experience a day with the minorities groups culture other than H’mong, one of the most popular minorities group in Sapa region.

This afternoon, l explore some of the neighboring villages on foot, passing through picturesque scenery as you walk. Visits between May and October coincide with the planting and harvesting season, a chance to see local farmers in action.

Stunning Golden Terraced Field in May/ October
Stunning Golden Terraced Field in May/ October

Overnight in Sapa

Day 6: Sapa – Hanoi 

Day 7: Hanoi Departure

Option 2:  Hanoi – Puluong – Ninh Binh – Halong – Hanoi

  • Style: Mix of classic and adventure/ off-the beaten-path
  • Best in : May/ September, November to March
  • Brief itinerary:

Day 1: Hanoi arrival
Day 2: Hanoi full day city tour
Day 3: Hanoi – Pu Luong

Remote, rustic and supremely beautiful, Pu Luong might be one of the last places in Vietnam where you can truly unplug.  Pu Luong Nature Reserve (Khu bảo tồn Thiên nhiên Pù Luông) was established in 1999 to protect the area’s biodiversity. Inside the reserve, you’ll find a mix of pristine forest and cultivated rice terraces.  It’s a perfect landscape for trekking, and multi-day hikes are a favourite activity.

Puluong

Day 4: Pu Luong – Trang An – Mua Caves

Trang An

Day 5: Ninh Binh – Ha Long overnight cruise

Day 6: Ha Long – Hanoi

Day 7: Hanoi Departure

Option 4: Hanoi – Hoa Lu – Perfume Pagoda – Halong Bay – Bat Trang Ceramic – Hanoi Departure

  • Style: Family, culture
  • Best in :
  • Brief itinerary:

Day 1:  Hanoi arrival
Day 2: Hanoi city tour
Day 3:  Hanoi – Hoa Lu – Trang An – Hanoi
Day 4:  Hanoi – Huong Perfume Pagoda – Hanoi
Day 5: Hanoi – Halong bay – Hanoi
Day 6: Hanoi – Bat Trang Ceramic Village 
Day 7:  Depart Hanoi

Bat Trang Ceramic Village  is a 14th century porcelain and pottery village near Hanoi, housing local artisans who combine both traditional and modern techniques to create beautiful porcelain artworks. Not only are you able to purchase some of the finest handmade ceramic products in Vietnam, you can also see them made right before your eyes during your visit.

Chrilden learn to make pottery in Bat Trang Ceramic Village
Chrilden learn to make pottery in Bat Trang Ceramic Village

Huong Perfume Pagoda is a complex of temples scattering from the foot to the peak of Huong Tich Mountain is one of the alluring spiritual tourist attractions in Hanoi.

Option 5: Hanoi – Ninh Binh – Sapa – Can Cau Market – Gian Ta Phin – Mu Cang Trai

Best in May and September

Day 1 : Hanoi Arrival
Day 2: Hanoi City Tour
Day 3 Hanoi – Ninh Binh -Night train to Sapa
Day 4: Sapa – Can Cau Market
Day 5: Sapa – Ban Khoang – Giang Ta Phin
Day 6: Sapa – La Pan Tan – Mu Cang Chai
Day 7: Mu Cang Chai Trekking – Mam Xoi – Hanoi

Mu Cang Chai Vietnam  is one of the most amazing landscapes of rice-terraced fields in Vietnam.

Mu Cang Chai is famous for the stretch of hazardous roads spreading out for tens kilometers of infinite and primeval landscapes, grandiose ranges of mountains and the peaceful and poetic picture of ethnics’ houses covered by terrace fields.

Can cau market is remarkable market where Hmong, Tay and Ha Ninh ethic people exchanging goods for their daily life. The market is organized on a high land with lush forests mingling wonderful wavy terraces from afar. Here, tourists will find easy to catch a colorful upland fair in the costume of young girls of Hoa (Chinese) Hmong, Tay or Ha Nhi ethnic groups. Exploring Can Cau Market is one of things to do in Sapatourism. Going to Can Cau Market in Sapa travel, tourists have a chance to much more soak up the vivid upland fair; simultaneously, ascertain about the daily life of the locals. The market  usually held on every Saturday and holidays during the year.

Can Cau market
Can Cau market

Tips for things to do in Hanoi for one week

Hanoi is an extremely crowded city, so traversing using cars is still a good choice but not the optimal one. For traveling in the city, some of the best choices would be bicycle, motorbike, or Xe Om (motorbike-taxi). With the appearance of Grab (Uber for motorbikes) getting around the city will be much easier for tourists.

What to do in Danang in 5 Days? – Da Nang Itinerary, Travel Guide

how many days for vietnam and cambodia

The central part of Vietnam where the cities of Hoi An, Hue and Da Nang are located, is considered to be one of the main touristic centers of the country. The region contains a diversity of attractions ranging from a UNESCO World Heritage town to archeological sites and even Vietnam’s former imperial capital. For outdoorsy types, the area also has plenty to offer in terms of beaches and you can find plenty of award-winning luxury resorts here. The world’s largest cave – Hang Son Doong – can also be found in the region.

If you are visiting Da Nang, Hoi An and Hue and thinking how long you need to spend in the area, I would suggest you go for 5 days / 4 nights minimally. The three cities are accessible from each other to be day trip destinations but I would suggest spending at least a night per city to really appreciate the distinct vibe in each place.

Where you start really depends on your personal preference and where you are coming from. During my trip to Central Vietnam, I arrived via Da Nang International Airport and headed to Hue right away as it was the farthest of the three cities. From Da Nang, Hue is around a 2 hour drive.

 

Day 1:  Danang –  Marble Mountain – Hue City

Upon on arrival on Da Nang Airport, from here, you can head straight to visit Marble mountain.  The five mountains consist of rock outcrops that are made of marble. Each mountain is said to represent a natural element and is named accordingly to Water, Wood, Fire, Gold and Earth. The largest, Water, has a number of grottos and caves.

After visiting Marble Mountains, you will leave Da nang to Hue city.
Settle in and enjoy the rest of the day at a lovely hotel in Hue.

Overnight in Hue.

Day 2:  Hue city Tour – Hoi An

Visit the Royal Palace which has three perimeters of rampart, namely from outside to inside: Kinh Thanh (Capital Citadel), Hoang Thanh (Royal Citadel) and Tu Cam Thanh (Forbidden Citadel)

  • Capital Citadel: This construction started in 1805 under the reign of Emperor Gia Long and completed in 1832 under the reign of Emperor Ming Mang.
  • Royal Citadel: The Imperial City is located in the centre of the Citadel where established highest offices of Viet Nam’s feudalism and sanctums honoring the cult of decreased Emperors.
  • Forbidden Citadel: Located inside the Imperial City, behind the Throne Palace, the Forbidden Purple City is reserved for Emperor and his family.

Continue to visit the tomb of King Khai Dinh which is located in Chau Chu Mountain near Hue in Vietnam. It was built from 1920 to 1931 taking 11 years to complete. In comparison with those of the preceding emperors, Khai Dinh’s tomb is much smaller in surface but it is very elaborate

Enjoy a boat trip to Thien Mu pagoda, an ancient pagoda in Hue city. Its pagoda has seven storeys and is the tallest one in Vietnam. The temple is often the subject of folk rhymes about Hue, such is its iconic status and association with the city. It is regarded as the unofficial symbol of the former imperial capital.

After that, transfer to Hoi An and enjoy Hoi An – Hoi An is very beautiful city at night. Check out things to do in Hoi An at night here

Overnight in Hoi An.

Day 3:  My Son Sanctuary – Hoi An

Visit My Son Sanctuary, a cluster of abandoned and partially ruined Hindu Temples onstructed between the 4th and the 14th century AD by the kings of Champa The My Son temple complex is regarded one of the foremost Hindu temple complexes in Southeast Asia and is the foremost heritage site of this nature in Vietnam. It is often compared with other historical temple complexes in Southeast Asia, such as Borobudur of Java in Indonesia, Angkor Wat of Cambodia, Bagan of Myanmar and Ayutthava of Thailand. As of 1999, My Son Sanctuary has been recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site.

In the afternoon, take a walking tour around this enchanting port town of Hoi an, follow the narrow lanes lined with centuries-old houses influenced by Chinese, Japanese, French and European architectures and visit its numerous places of interest: the 400-year old Japanese Covered Bridge, the Phuc Kien Assembly Halls, the Tan Ky old house, the local market …

  • Japanese Covered Bridge dated back to the 18th century and is a beautiful historical piece of Japanese architecture. It is claimed that it was created by the Japanese then living in Hoi An as a way to reach the Chinese quarter across the water.
  • Phuc Kien Assembly Halls was built around 1690 and functions as a traditional assembly hall for the Chinese ethnic group from Fujian, China to socialize, but later was transformed into a temple dedicated to their deity named Thien Hau – the goddess of sea who protects sailors from danger.
  • Tan Ky old house is an almost perfect example of a 18th merchant’s residence in this major commercial port town.

Back to Danang and overnight in Danang.

Day 4:  Bana Hill- Golden Bridge

Start our trip to Ba Na Hills, a hill station and resort located in the Truong Son Mountain west of the city of Danang. The station, advertised as “the Dalat of Danang province” by local tourism authorities, was founded in 1919 by French colonists. A trip on cable car will offer you a chance to admire the panorama of Ba Na Hills, spring stream, Danang city and Danang coast from your cabin at the height of 1,487 metres above sea level. Then explore the grandeur of the Golden Bridge and witness the colossal hands stretching out the skies

During your time on the mountain, enjoy a visit to:

The Le Jardin with the relics of the French, such as the force of the French horse, nearly 100-year-old grapefruit trees and traces of ancient villas. Especially Debay cellar, wine cellar was built by the French in 1923, spent nearly a century, they still retain cellar wild, mysterious, is the work of the French single remaining fairly intact Ba Na.
Golden-Bridge-Ba Na Hills Dang TravelLinh Ung Pagoda, located on the peak of Ba Na Mountain at the height of 1.400 meters, was officially inaugurated on the 5th of March, 2004. Belonging to the Mahayana branch, the pagoda’s architecture is similar to the Tam Thai’s pagoda with a large stone-paved yard and a special pine tree with three different kinds of leaves in front of the temple. The Linh Ung Pagoda is not only built to preserve the spiritual values and ritual implements, it is an excellent tourist attraction because of its arrangement, surrounding landscape and architecture which boasts traditional marble carvings and animal statues.

You can also feel your interests with a lot of pretty villas, newly built hotels, and bungalows here. Each one has its own flower garden with many types of aristocratic flower that Frenchmen left during the 50 past years.

Free for joining games in Fantasy Park – the third biggest indoor games zone in Vietnam.

Heading back to Danang center around 5-6pm. If it is Saturday or Sunday, you can enjoy the s the longest bridge in Vietnam – Dragon Bridge breathing fire or spit water from 21:00 onwards. This is one of the most exciting experience everyone should have once in Danang.

Overnight in Danang

Day 5: Han Market – 

Heading to Han Market for souvenir gifts. Han Market is oldest and biggest market in Da Nang, having been in operation since the French occupancy in the 1940s. This local market is set within a two-storey building at the grand intersection of Tran Phu Street, Bach Dang Street, Hung Vuong Street and Tran Hung Dao Street, where you can find hundreds of stalls selling an array of local produce, handicrafts, T-shirts, and accessories.

 

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