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Sep 22, 2018 / 09:21

Independent lists reasons to visit Hanoi for Mid-Autumn festival

Some tourists think the Mid-Autumn festival (Tet Trung Thu) is the perfect opportunity to experience authentic Vietnamese culture.

Visiting Hang Ma street, enjoying the street puppet shows, lion dances, live music or markets and incredible food are just few reasons that holidaymakers should visit Hanoi for the Mid-Autumn festival, Chris Dwyer wrote in an article published on Independent, a UK online newspaper.
Mid-Autumn festival in Hanoi. Photo: Chris Dwyer
Mid-Autumn festival in Hanoi. Photo: Chris Dwyer
The Mid-Autumn festival may not be as well-known as the Lunar New Year fest, but it provides just as good excuse to visit countries which mark it in style. Of those, few are as memorable a destination as Vietnam, while the ancient capital of Hanoi is the ideal base for joining in the food and fun-filled festivities that this year fall on September 24.
According to the writer, unlike Christmas, much of the festival’s importance comes in the build-up and there’s no more atmospheric or Instagrammable spot to experience it than Hang Ma street in Hanoi's Old Quarter. Dozens of shops, stalls and walking hawkers sell a huge array of technicolor star-shaped lanterns and traditional toys hand-crafted in paper and bamboo.
There are animal face masks that kids decorate and paint, while vast piles of drums give a not very subtle hint that you’ll be staying up late on Mid-Autumn Festival. Even on a normal day, Hanoi easily ranks as one of Asia’s finest cuisine destinations.
In addition, the writer also picked street food one of the reasons why visitors should choose Hanoi for the Mid-Autumn Festival. “Eating at Mid-Autumn festival is largely about street food and snacks, so follow your nose and other customers to any intriguing, steaming bowl or grill. One dish that is absolutely fundamental to the festival is knows as mooncake or Banh Trung Thu. You certainly won’t miss them as they’re absolutely everywhere, and are offered by friends and family while celebrating,” Chris Dwyer wrote.
Earlier, Hanoi has been ranked 4th among the seven destinations in Southeast Asia that you can make a quick three-day escape from the busy life, according to a list released by Prestige, a lifestyle media of choice for the affluent and influential.
Looking at Hanoi now, you’d barely believe that the city was blocked from the outside world until the 1990s. No a high-octane hub of tourism, Hanoi combines the best of old and new Vietnam, according to Prestige.
“The heart of Hanoi, the Old Quarter, promises meandering lanes of utter chaos: Hawkers, honking motorcyclists and cyclists jostle for space while Hanoians watch on as they sip coffee by the roads,” Prestige wrote.
Prestige has some words of advice for travelers that through the French Quarter, they will find grand old boulevards, majestic colonial-style hotels, art galleries and upscale restaurants while the area around lake Tay Ho is now buzzing with cool bars, restaurants and markets for both locals and expats.
For coffee drinkers, Hanoi is heaven on earth. Coffee shops – hawking the country’s signature Vietnamese drip coffee with condensed milk – are countless and are the perfect spots to refuel at after a long day of city exploration.
The number of foreign visitors to Hanoi in the first eight months of 2018 is estimated at 3.8 million, a 19.8% increase from the same last year, according to the Hanoi Department of Tourism.
In August alone, over 2.2 million visitors arrived in Hanoi, an 8.2% from the same last year. Of the total, 458,333 were foreign visitors, representing an on-year jump of 13%, 330,000 were domestic holidaymakers, a 14% from the same last year.