West Lake, Hanoi

4 out of 5 stars 17 Reviews

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  • Overview
    Overview
    by Assenczo
  • Intercontinental/Sheraton combo
    Intercontinental/Sheraton combo
    by Assenczo
  • Venezuela a la Vietnam
    Venezuela a la Vietnam
    by Assenczo
  • Great place for recycling with lotus scent

    by Mollyparker Updated Oct 19, 2014

    On a few day trip in Hanoi, we were so lucky to visit there in May when the lotus flowers in West Lake were in blossom. The newly open flowers among wide greenish leaves cover lake surface. Late afternoon is the best moment to enjoy the fresh air and have a short cycling around the lake. It seems to be the favorite place for many couples for dating. The same number of people find here for short run to do some exercise. Due to the cool breeze from suface lake, many people came there to avoid the heat and noise from the crowded street. Let's come and enjoy scent there.

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    Things to do at the West Lake (Ho Tay)

    by King_Golo Updated Jul 20, 2014

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ho Tay, the West Lake, is Hanoi's biggest lake. According to a legend, it was created when a Chinese buffalo mistook the sound of a bell of a pagoda for its mother's voice and ran away, creating the lake by stepping into a small hollow... It must have been a giant little buffalo!!!

    Ho Tay is a vast area of water, situated in the northwest of Hanoi. Some of the city's most expensive hotels are located there, the place to get the best coconut ice-cream (eaten out of a coconut) - located at the top end of the dike road between Truc Bach Lake and Ho Tay, a 3-storey ice-cream place -, the Highlands Coffee with its chill-out ship and many things more (e.g. pagodas!)... An afternoon is easily spent at Ho Tay, especially if you include a cruise with a tourist boat.
    Combining Ho Tay with a visit to the nearby Ho Chi Minh Museum and Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is useful.

    Fisherman at the lakeshore
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    • Sailing and Boating

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    Best address in town

    by Assenczo Updated Feb 10, 2014

    The enigma of Hanoi is that looking at the housing in general there seems to be no discrepancies in income. Majority of the houses are three to four story structures so thin that it is difficult to imagine that they are anything else but single family homes. Despite the clouds of dust and general pollution of all, land, water and air, there are no slums to ogle at and presume dirt comes from. Still, there are some people with things to take care so much so that they have cordoned off an area of lake properties but this appears to be more of an exception than a rule. The West Lake is large, actually the largest in town hence the longest shore line where people of note can build their nests. It is also home to some of the most expensive hotels such as the Sheraton and the Intercontinental, which despite their lavish interior and extravagant exterior are no strangers to the general pollution of Hanoi in particular and Viet Nam as a whole. So the views are as “misty” as anywhere else; just the triple-glazed windows and some air filters do not let the dust in. Not a small feat in Hanoi!

    Overview Venezuela a la Vietnam Cohabitation of rich and poor Intercontinental/Sheraton combo Gated community
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    • Spa and Resort

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    Largest lake in Hanoi

    by Willettsworld Written May 15, 2010

    This lake is the largest in Hanoi with a shore length of around 17km (10.6 miles) and is a popular place for recreation with many surrounding gardens, hotels and villas. One legend suggests that the lake was shaped after a battle between Lac Long Quan and a night-tail fox spirit, which is why the lake was once called "Fox Corpse Swamp". The lake is bordered with many significant places in history of Hanoi such as Tran Quoc Pagoda, the oldest pagoda in Vietnam, built in 6th century and located on a small island in the middle of the lake, plus Quan Thanh Temple, one of the Four Sacred Temples of ancient Hanoi.

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  • zuyao's Profile Photo

    Ho Tay (West Lake)

    by zuyao Written Dec 4, 2008

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    This huge water feature lies to the west of Hanoi. There are actually two lakes here - the larger one called West Lake and a smaller one called White Silk Lake. Across the road from the White Silk Lake is a restaurant that offers a delightful buffet lunch with more than 70 variety of Vietnamese cuisine for only VND115000. A good place for quick try of Vietnamese specialties from the north, south and central parts of the country.

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    Tran Quoc Temple on West Lake

    by AKtravelers Written Nov 2, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On my last morning in Hanoi, I walked through the rain to visit Tran Quoc temple, whose pagoda I had seen every morning as I commuted from my hotel into downtown. I have no idea what the history of the temple is, but it seemed to be quite popular with westerners and locals alike. I only had a few minutes to spare, and I wish could have spent a little more time here when the rain was gone.

    Tran Quoc Temple amidst the mist Tran quoc temple's pagoda
    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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    Tran Quoc Pagoda

    by tanamay Updated Jun 22, 2008

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    Located on an island on the West Lake is Tran Quoc (National Defense) Pagoda. The island can be reached via a short walk on a bridge from Thanh Nien Road. It is also callled the Twelve-Roofed pagoda. After visiting you can cross Thanh Nien Road and have a snack in any restaurant facing Tran Bach Lake.

    Tran Quoc Pagoda
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • School Holidays
    • Architecture

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  • aukahkay's Profile Photo

    Tran Quoc Pagoda

    by aukahkay Written Mar 8, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    To the west of the city is the largest lake in Hanoi, West Lake. Situated on an islet on the lake is Tran Quoc Pagoda. The pagoda was built under the reign of King Ly Nam De (544-548) under its original name of Khai Quoc (National Founder). It was originally built on the bank of the Red River (then West Lake and the Red River met). In the time of King Le Kinh Tong (1600-1618), the pagoda was removed to the Kim Ngu (Golden Fish) islet due to the river bank crumbling and was renamed Tran Quoc (National Defence).
    From the pagoda, there are splendid views of West Lake.

    Tran Quoc Pagoda Serenity of West Lake
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    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

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  • leffe3's Profile Photo

    Ho Tay (West Lake)

    by leffe3 Updated Feb 22, 2006

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    To the north of the old quarter is the enormous Ho Tay. Pretty it ain't, surrounded as it is by residential quarters of various ages and exclusiveness (it has a shoreline of 13kms). The lake was the setting for various palaces and pavillions, all of which have been destroyed by various feudal wars.

    But is has become something of a recreational spot, there are the two pagodas (see previous tips), there are a couple of new (western style) cafes open on the main road and you can take these rather ugly swans out on a pedalo trip if so inspired....

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  • Ewingjr98's Profile Photo

    West Lake

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Apr 27, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Massive West Lake is north of the Presidential Palace and west of Truc Bach Lake. Along the southern shore of West Lake there are several restaurant/bars from which you can enjoy a beautiful sunset over the water. The area around this lake is highly sought after and filled with modern hotels and expensive residences.

    Having a Hanoi Beer at West Lake Kid fishing in the lake sunset dusk over the lake kids playing soccer near the lake
    Related to:
    • Water Sports
    • Beaches
    • Sailing and Boating

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  • shrimp56's Profile Photo

    Tran Quoc Pagoda

    by shrimp56 Updated Jan 22, 2004

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    This beautiful pagoda is situated on an island in West Lake connected to the shore with a small bridge. It is a surprisingly big complex --and *almost* possible to get lost there! Don't be afraid to explore though as there is a second row of altars tucked way at the back

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

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  • dinhyen's Profile Photo

    Tran Quoc Temple

    by dinhyen Written Apr 11, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This temple on West Lake is purportedly the first Buddhist temple in Vietnam. However it was closed when we visited.

    Across the street from the temple is a good lakeside restaurant. Of note is the fact that the restaurant overlooks the lake from which former US presidential hopeful John McCain was rescued when he parachuted from his stricken aircraft during the Vietnam War.

    Chua Tran Quoc

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  • sunnywong's Profile Photo

    Tran Quoc Pagoda

    by sunnywong Written Feb 25, 2003

    Tran Quoc Pagoda is the oldest of all pagodas in Hanoi. Tran Quoc Pagoda is a cultural symbol of Vietnamese Buddhism.

    Unlike other ordinary pagodas, the Tran Quoc Pagoda was built behind the worshipping shrine followed by corridors, ten shrines and the belfry.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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  • Willettsworld's Profile Photo

    Ly Tu Trong Park

    by Willettsworld Written May 15, 2010

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    This park is located on the southern shore of the West Lake, opposite the entrance gateway of the Quan Thanh Temple.

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  • Ah_jack's Profile Photo

    WEST LAKE

    by Ah_jack Written May 23, 2008

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    A good places for couples to date and friends to chill out at floating restaurants and enjoy the scenic view.

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