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Updated by Joanna James on Jul 13, 2023
Headline for 6 Things to See Around West Lake- Straight out of a Painter’s Fantasy
Joanna James Joanna James
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6 Things to See Around West Lake- Straight out of a Painter’s Fantasy

The Hanoi West Lake is a nature-kissed poem and a site that marks Vietnam's rich and turbulent history while carrying all the romantic nostalgia of a painting. Here are some unforgettable sights and sensations associated with this dreamy and inspiring landmark.


A Colonial-Style Highschool

While Vietnam's eclectic Capital is rich in stunning lakes, as it is in European-inspired villas, secret alleyways, and dramatic boulevards, the mesmerizing and moody West Lake has been at the heart of countless artistic endeavours for thousands of years. With its unique blending of the old and new, old-world avenues. flower-rich markets, and fragrant seafood stalls hobnobbing with luxurious high-rises and bon-vivant eateries, this idyllic destination offers a profound glimpse into Hanoi's rich past and futuristic present. The best way to drink in its charms and enjoy the fresh air is atop a bicycle, and the sunrise or sunset hours are the most spectacular for watching the lake melt into different hues. While on your cycling spree, don't forget to stop at the Chu Van An Highschool in the Tay Ho district, one of the oldest of its kind in Vietnam and grandly designed to reflect the French architecture of the early twentieth century.


The Museum of Ethnology

If you're a culture-slash-history buff with a thirst for adventure, venture off the beaten path, just a few kilometres west of the lake, and gain an intimate glimpse into Vietnam's 54 ethnic groups and their unique lifestyles at one of the nation's most illustrious museums and ethnological research hubs. From games, traditional costumes, calligraphy, and craft to life-size models and folk housing brought from all over the country, you will find yourself transported to the fascinating communal lifestyle of Vietnam's minority population.


Thuy Kuey Seafood District

If you've strolled or cycled up a hearty appetite, the enclaves of West Lake are generously stocked with local delicacies, and you can't pass through Thuy Kuey without sampling the golden and herbaceous fried shrimp cake with its piquant dip, the deliciously satisfying vermicelli, and shellfish soup, and famous rolled pho on Ngu Xa Street. The Pepe La Poule restaurant offers an enchanting view of the lake and serves an Eastern-Western fusion menu that you don't want to miss!


An Epic Water Park

Just 5km north of Hanoi's Old Quarter is a lush green oasis that hosts the enticingly modern Ho Tay Lake Water Park on the post-card perfect West Lakeshore. From deliciously cool wave pools and diving pools to water slides of many twisty varieties and a 450-metre-long lazy stream with its gentle 'rapids', there's no shortage of aquatic thrills for children and adults alike! If you're looking for sophisticated serviced apartments in Tay Ho, located close to the West Lake enticements, venture no further than PentStudio West Lake Hanoi.


An Artistic Café Scene

There's nothing like a steaming cup of Vietnamese coffee after a sumptuous meal or a scenic ramble, and many of Hanoi's classiest cafés are concentrated by the lakeside, characterized by colonial-style façades full of old-world romance and blossoming nature.


Truc Bach Lake

For a more imperial flavour than the slightly contemporized West Lake, Truc back is a tiny, peaceful, and picturesque walk away from its more touristy counterpart. The 18th Century lakeside palace has an intriguing story to recommend it of King Le's rebellious concubines being sentenced to spend their days spinning pure white silk there as a punishment. While not much of the grand structure remains, there is a picnic-perfect waterfront causeway and plenty of quaint shopping and dining spots to enjoy.

  • A true believer that the pen is a mighty weapon, ventures into reaching the minds of every reader with the earnest hope of leaving an indelible stream of thought.

    A travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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