Vietnam Hanoi and Ha long Bay December – Day 2: Hanoi
DAY 2 will be our full day of Hanoi city tour. As a whole, having a good breakfast is the first thing to do. Overall, the hotel breakfast was normal but it provided variety of choices.
After breakfast, visiting the fascinating Ho Chi Minh mausoleum.
Ho Chi Minh mausoleum
In brief, The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum located in the center of Ba Dinh Square. It is a significant place for the Vietnamese as the Chairman of the Communist Party of Vietnam Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945 as well as establishing the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.
The embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh is preserved in the central hall of mausoleum. Ho Chi Minh was the Chairman of the Communist Party of Vietnam from 1951 until his death in 1969. The open hours are from 9.00 to 12.00pm(Daily) and guarded by military. In short, there are rules and regulation for the visitors to pay their respects to Ho Chi Minh. The visitors are not allowing to photography, video taping, wear shorts and miniskirts to the mausoleum. The visitors must be silent and walk in two lines inside the mausoleum.
Next, few minutes walk to Presidential Palace from Ho Chi Ming Mausoleum. Presidential Palace, Hanoi built between 1900 and 1906 to house the French Governor-General of Indochina.
Ho Chi Minh Stilt House
The house is an interpretation of a traditional rural dwelling, and has been preserved just as Ho left it. It’s set in a well-tended garden next to a carp-filled pond.
Mango path where President Ho Chi Minh used to walk and do morning exercise.
The cars and living area of Ho Chi Minh were displayed.
Cars used to serve President Ho Chi Minh
House No.54 where President Ho Chi Minh lived and worked since 1954
One pillar pagoda
According to Wikipedia, The temple was built by Emperor Lý Thái Tông, who ruled from 1028 to 1054. Lý Thái Tông was childless and dreamt that he met the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, who handed him a baby son while seated on a lotus flower. Lý Thái Tông then married a peasant girl that he had met and she bore him a son. The emperor constructed the temple in gratitude for this in 1049.
Meanwhile, trying their local fruit (Star Apple)
In brief, the tropical fruit with the name Vu Sua (milk from the breast).The round smooth fruit are all of equal size. The shape of the star apple matches the name attached to it, as does its juice which is fragrantly sweet and milky white like breast milk.
Literature Temple and Quoc Tu Giam
Next visit, the Literature Temple and Quoc Tu Giam which is Vietnam’s first university constructed in 1070, its gardens and well-preserved architecture offers a relaxing glimpse into Vietnam”s past. The Temple is located to the south of Thang Long Citadel.
Turtle Steles (right pic) with the names of those successful at the royal exams
Altars to Confucius and his disciples
Quan Thanh Temple
Continue to visit the Quan Thanh Temple (Taoist, dating from the Ly Dynasty). It is one of the Four Sacred Temples that were built in four directions to protect the capital from malevolent spirits. Beside, It is also a training venue for several traditional martial artclasses including Vovinam.
Trấn Vũ bronze statue in main shrine of the temple
Next, Lunch at local Vietnamese restaurant
After lunch proceed to Buddhist Tran Quoc Pagoda on West lake (one of the oldest in Vietnam).
Buddhist Tran Quoc Pagoda
Buddhist Tran Quoc Pagoda in Hanoi is the oldest pagoda in the city. The architecture of this Buddhist Tran Quoc Pagoda is a subtle combination between the solemn and beautiful landscape and West Lake’s surface.
On the grounds of Tran Quoc is a bodhi tree (right pic) taken as cutting of the original tree in Bodh Gaya, India under which the Buddha sat and achieved enlightenment.
A cultural symbol of Vietnamese Buddhism – intricate architecture
The Next destination will be the Ethnology Museum.
According to VME ORG (http://www.vme.org.vn), Vietnam Museum of Ethnology is both a research Centre and a public museum exhibiting the ethnic groups of Vietnam. The Museum is located in Cau Giay district, about twenty minutes by taxi from the city center.
It is widely considered to be the finest modern museum in Vietnam and a tourist attraction in Hanoi.
An outdoor exhibit at the museum, consisting of an Ede dwelling from the Central Highland region.
End day by watching water puppets show
Water Puppets show
This amazing form of puppetry based on a liquid stage is more than 1,000 years old. However, there will be the language problem, as I do not know what are the locals singing.
End of Day 2