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Where to Stay in Hanoi
For several reasons, most visitors to Hanoi choose to stay in and around the Old Quarter in the Hoan Kiem District. More ancient sites, busy markets and well-known eateries are located in this part of the city than in any other, and this is where you’ll find the largest and most diverse selection of hotels. Though most of the hotels here are relatively new, a few in the Old Quarter are operated from within well-restored historic buildings. This district wraps around the city’s most famous lake, Hoan Kiem Lake, and is bordered on the east by the Red River.
If finding cheap hotel deals in Hanoi is a top priority, you may want to expand your search to the surrounding districts of Ba Dinh to the northwest, Dong Da to the southwest and Hai Ba Trung to the south. Each district has dozens of lodging options and notable attractions, particularly the Ba Dinh District, where you can tour the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the Hanoi Citadel and One Pillar Pagoda.
Hanoi Hotel Tips
The variety of accommodations in Hanoi is fairly comprehensive; five star luxury resorts, modern business hotels, swanky boutiques, affordable chains and spartan guest houses are scattered across the city. All of these options are available in Hoan Kiem, but as you search farther away in the surrounding districts and suburbs, you’ll find an increasingly higher proportion of modern, mid-range chain hotels. If you prefer accommodations with lots of character and individually appointed rooms, stick to Hoan Kiem.
Compared to accommodations in major U.S. cities, room rates in Hanoi are very inexpensive. If you choose to stay in the most modest hotels, you can do Hanoi on a shoestring budget. But since luxury suites are both readily available and affordable, you may want to take the opportunity to stay in some of the city’s finer digs. Many of the best luxury hotels are in the Old Quarter, but you’ll find a few each in the Ba Dinh, Dong Da and Hai Ba Trung Districts.
Hanoi Hotel Recommendations
To take the greatest advantage of Hanoi’s low hotel rates, stay at the luxurious Sofitel Metropole Hanoi, the hotel of choice for visiting dignitaries and celebrities. Its rooms are spacious and modern, and though it doesn’t overwhelm you with an array of upscale amenities, it does have its own bustling restaurant and bar scene. Be sure to dine in for excellent French cuisine and exotic cocktails if you stay here.
The Hilton Hanoi Opera is another standout, not just for its dedication to the Hilton brand’s impeccable style, but for its optimal location overlooking the Hanoi Opera building. Request a room with a balcony to enjoy some of the best hotel room views in the city. You may also consider Maison d’Hanoi, a small and modern boutique hotel with an art gallery, a fine dining restaurant and a delectable 24-hour room service menu.
A real value can be found in the Galaxy Hotel, where the expanded suites are competitively priced and the standard rooms are a steal. Though it isn’t lavish, it’s clean and comfortable, and it’s within walking distance of the heart of the Old Quarter.
When you arrive at Noi Bai Airpor (HAN)t, you’ll still be a 45-minute car ride from the city itself. Many of the larger hotels offer complimentary or discounted airport shuttle service to registered guests, which is usually the best way to get into town after your flight to Hanoi. If you don’t have a ride arranged, you can easily hail a taxi at the airport. Taxi fares are generally very affordable, but they’re not regulated, and they vary from company to company. Be sure to verify all charges before departing for your destination, and don’t hesitate to pass on a cab if you think you can find a better deal.
The Old Quarter is pedestrian-friendly, though its sidewalks can get a bit congested. If you need to travel longer distances within the city, your best bets are to hail a taxi or, if you’re brave, one of Hanoi’s many motorbike taxis. Consider hiring a private car by the hour if you want to spend an entire day sightseeing throughout the city. Your hotel front desk staff can usually refer you to a reputable car company.
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