Friday, 9 December 2016

Hanoi (1)


AK 516 touched down at Noi Bai International Airport as scheduled at 8.15am.

Waiting for the driver to drive the car over.
Customs clearance was unbelievably simple, not even embarkation card was needed.

In order to avoid a scam, as suggested by the hotel, private taxi was arranged by the hotel and the driver was holding a card my name on it when we walked out.

Modern airport building.

In the taxi, modern bridge.
First glimpse of typical Vietnam narrow and tall building because everybody is trying to build the house face the main road and also the tax is based the land area.
About 45mins later we reached Royal Palace Hotel 2 at Old Quarter.
The area outside our hotel.
Royal Palace Hotel 2, triple room USD35/night for 4 nights. 
Got upgraded to premium room, real bonus!
Since it was too early to check in, we left our luggage there and promptly hopped into a taxi to our very first itinerary in Hanoi, the Temple of Literature aka Temple of Confucius which is Vietnam's very first university.

Arriving in about 10mins time.
It is really ancient as it was built in 1070 and over the years it had been restored a few times.
At the first courtyard.
When we entered and saw lots of students in their graduation robes taking photos, we realized that it was a day of their graduation celebration! How very lucky of us to witness this special day!

The pond at the second courtyard .
Beautiful girls in their traditional Vietnamese costumes.

Groups of students looking at their best for the great day!
As we moved further in, we saw familiar sights like what we had seen before in China. Pavilions, courtyards and TURTLE STELE!

The turtle steles which symbolize longevity. 
And after a few courtyards, we came upon the temple for the sage himself the Confucius of course!

Google translate this as Passage is Learning.

Always love ancient wooden beams and structure.

Pretty young girls and students are everywhere.

After that, it was time for lunch and we found a nice place for our very first meal of Pho in Hanoi.

My girl and her father enjoyed their Pho very much!
Our first eating experience in Hanoi.

After visiting the ancient university of many scholars and lunch, we walked further to reach the single pillar pagoda.

It is an ancient temple built in 1049 by the emperor then. He constructed the temple as an gesture to thank the god for granted him a long awaited son.

It is actually a very small structure elevated in a rectangular pond.
Us with the pagoda.

Though it is very small, the sight of the tiny temple built on top of a single pillar looks very unique.

Like the way it is constructed very much.
Elevated and supported by a single pillar.

Then we walked on to another landmark, the renowned Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the final resting place of the great man.

Entered a small temple on the way.
Us, enjoyed walking in nice cooling weather.

It was only after we bought the ticket and entered the compound that we found out that it was closed! 

This, is the heavily guarded mausoleum. Read that the body is well kept and it's always sent for touch-up in Russia. It reminded me of our visit to the mausoleum in Nanjing.

So we ended up walking in the gardens and the surrounding area.

The residence of the great man. Take notice of the peculiar plant by the bank.
Then we hailed a taxi to take us to the Hokiem Lake. And we had paid a fare of RM30++ which was definitely a scam! We only paid a few ringgits when we went to our first destination which is about the same distance!

The landmark of Hanoi!

Not to let this spoil our mood, we immediately went to the top of a huge building to "chill" as what my girl used to call for this kind of moment.

Lake Ho Kiem from our chilling place.

Her very first taste of mojito.
From the top, the view of the landmark of "Aldo" is opposite and the area in front and the lake is great!

 After we had enough of "chilling", we walked around for a while and then walked back to our hotel.
And we had our first horrifying experience of crossing streets which are full of moving motorcycles.

Apparently the street is closed and turned into a walking street on weekends.
The local folks dancing on the street gaily.
Welcome to the world of motorcycles!
We went out for dinner near our hotel after shower and walked around the area just to "check things out" to buy later on. It was not as impressive as what I read earlier.

Bustling streets at night.
We rested earlier for the highlight of the trip tomorrow, Halong Bay!

Free upgraded to premium room for 3 nights! 

No comments:

Post a Comment