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Sightseeing Hanoi

large_938978_14283306311002.jpgHo Chí Minh MausoleumAfter a reasonable sleep we got up around 7am, had a little breakfast, and went out. We went to the Mausoleum of HoChí Minh first. This man is the most important person, or at least the most well known person, in Vietnam's history, believing that the (back them) divided countries of North and South Vietnam one will become a united Vietnam. Against his will of being cremated people built a grand (black) granite mausoleum after his death. It reminded me a bit of Mao's Mausoleum in Beijing, it looks a lot like each other on the outside the way it is built.

There were long lines before the mausoleum, it took quite a while, almost 2 hours. It also started raining a bit when we were the, luckily the temperature wasn't that cold...There were a lot of school classes as well.large_938978_14283306552595.jpg As we heard it is common here that activities likes visits to the mausoleum are not on the usual school days, but in weekends.

After the mausoleum we went to the botanical garden, where the presidential palace is located. Ho Chi Minh never lived here even though he had a right to. He lived in one of the worker's houses. It is build in the french colonial style, big, square, and colorful yellow. The house whre Ho Chi Minh lived untill he dien was built in 1958. It was a simple wooden house on poles, with simple furniture, next to the lake. The view was beautiful.HoChí Minh also led the war against South Vietnam from this house, with only 2 telephones.

After this we went to the one pillar Pagoda.large_938978_1428330669602.jpg A pagoda that, as it says, is built on one pillar. Vietnamese people come here to pray for health and fertility. There also was a litle souvenir shop and such.

We moved on to the Temple of Literature, or Confucius temple. It was a university for the rich people, every 3 years there were exams. The names of those who passed the exams were ingraved on steles with turtles. now it is used to make class pictures for the ones that pass their exams, and a big tourist attraction of course. The temple itself is wonderfull to see. A few temples, a drum and bell tower, a nice garden. Also the image of the 100,000 dong bill can be found here.

We set out to have lunch, in a place called Little Hanoi. Lunch was delicious, and the place was cozy and in the middle of a busy street, so fun to watch all the people pass by.large_938978_14283306946503.jpg

In the afternoon we went to see a waterpuppet show, an art that is practiced mainly in Hanoi. It's like a puppetshow, but in water. the people moving the puppets are hidden behind a large curtain in a big pool. On the side are musicians and singers to guide you through the story. Unfortunately in Vietnamese so we couldn't understand a word of it, but luckily we had English programmes that explained a little of what we were seeing. ;) Special to see, very interesting and very beautiful. In the evenig we had a walk around the lake and the park close to it. we also saw the statue and on the square in front of it, there was a playground for children, people were dancing, sitting, eating and just having a good time, so fun to see! We had our dinner at a place called King BBQ. Delicious! And fun to see how the meat is barbequed right under your nose. The lettuce wraps were really nice...but difficult to eat as mine kept falling apart...

Then we decided to pay a visit to the night market. It was nice to walk around there, nice and busy, a lot of souvenirs, some food stands, clothing. Not weird foods though, no insects or anything of that sort. After that we decided to go back to the hotel. After a lot of impressions and a great day, and an early start to Halong Bay, we went to sleep.

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Posted by Astreia 17:00 Archived in Vietnam

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