East Meets West Reflected in Vietnam’s Cities
Building sizes, shapes and façades as well as street landscapes all show the history, development and modernization of a city and country. Vietnam is one of those places where just walking around its main cities, one can readily see representations of the distinct cultural influences of each city.
Yet the main cities in each of the regions of Vietnam are so different from each other. In Hanoi, French influence is very noticeable in the elegant buildings and leafy boulevards. Best explored on foot, the Old Quarter is the highlight of the city and full of positive surprises hidden amidst the colonial architecture, Buddhist pagodas and Chinese temples. The Old Quarter is a pure reflection of the city’s history as well as the heritage and lifestyle of the city’s residents.
Many of the secrets spots in this part of Hanoi are known only to locals. Our expert guides at Khiri Travel Vietnam do a great job sharing this with your clients in our Explore Hanoi Like a Local signature tour. The combination of east meets west architectural styles, busy shops, and cafes with Asian/French fusion food all crowded together is what makes Hanoi a special destination. For a proper visit to Hanoi, we suggest a stay for at least two nights. We recommend our signature tour or guided tour the first day to explore those hidden, homegrown delights. The second day, your travelers can walk around on their own to take more time for that special coffee shop or café, street food stall, small pagoda, souvenir shop or historical building.
A similar mixture of architecture can be seen in Hoi An, where the district known as Ancient Town reflects a blending of Chinese, Japanese and European architectural influences preserved until this day. The majority of the houses, building façades, streets, canals and bridges remain as they were originally planned. Hoi An is one of the most charming places to visit in Vietnam.
In South Vietnam, the French influence is very evident; however, the mixture of traditional and modern designs, colonial architecture and skyscrapers spells the difference between Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) and the older sections of Hoi An and Hanoi. The Post Office building, Notre Dame Cathedral, and the beautifully restored Opera House all blend seamlessly into the modern skyline. If you look up to the sky, the 68-floor Bitexco Tower represents the rapid modernization going on in HCMC and the country.
For more information about how to plan a trip to the exciting cities of Vietnam or any number of tours in the country, please leave your contact information in the form below.