Hoan Kiem Lake (Lake of the Restored Sword)

Attraction Hoan Kiem, Hanoi, Vietnam Published on: 26-04-2017

1 hour
05:00 PM
06:00 PM
First-time visit
Must see
0.00 USD

Hoan Kiem Lake (Lake of the Restored Sword) is good for

Good for family with kids Family with kids Good
Good for senior Senior Good
Good for couple Couple Good
Good for solo Solo Good
Good for group Group Good
  • Highly recommended by fellow travellers.
Hoan Kiem Lake is located in the center of Ha Noi where you can observe the local lives at the early morning or enjoy the its romantic view at night.

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Why Hoan Kiem Lake (Lake of the Restored Sword) is special ?

Hoan Kiem Lake (Vietnamese: Hồ Hoàn Kiếm, meaning "Lake of the Returned Sword" or "Lake of the Restored Sword", also known as Hồ Gươm - Sword Lake) is a lake in the historical center of Hanoi, the capital city of Vietnam. The lake is one of the major scenic spots in the city and serves as a focal point for its public life.

What to explore at Hoan Kiem Lake (Lake of the Restored Sword)?

If you can wake up early in the morning, at about 5 a.m., you will see lines and lines of oldies and teenagers doing anything from yoga to tai-chi to aerobics (read Our Blog on early morning exercises in Hanoi). It looks as if the whole city was up and running for morning exercise. They work out in group or by themselves, with or without equipment. In the course of one of the high profiled meetings in Hanoi, an Australian prime minister also joined the early jogging around the lake.
In the afternoon to the South end you can see a matrix of motorbikes twisting along the lake. Blending in is a gang of “cyclo” – the famous three-wheeled carriers that take tourists with cameras handy around. To the North end where the old quarters lies, an influx of colourful clothes and shoes will dazzle you, together with the smell of trees and coffees.
When darkness takes over, you can see couples holding hands walking side by side along the lake, trying to breathe in the breeze of summer night or keep warmth against the winter cold. If you have time and really want to observe Hanoi’s life, sit down on one of the stone bench, enjoy the view and have a good talk with some local friends over an ice-cream cone.
Source: vietnamonline

How to get to Hoan Kiem Lake (Lake of the Restored Sword)?

Hoan Kiem Lake is centrally located and minutes walking from Hanoi's Old Quarter, where most hotels gather. From Noi Bai Airport, it takes about 40 minutes to get here. If you stay in West Lake area, just take Yen Phu Road to reach the Old Quarter and head east to Hoan Kiem Lake.
Shuttle buses: VND 40,000 (US$2) from the airport to the Old Quarter, but drivers may try to persuade you into staying at “their cousin’s hotel” by saying a typhoon in Halong Bay means your chosen hotel is still full. Don’t believe them.
Buses: VND 5,000 (US$0.25) from the airport to the Old Quarter, but they won’t take your baggage unless you offer a small “luggage fee.” In town a ride costs a standard fare of VND 3,000.
Scooter taxis: The best way to experience the rush and blur of daily Hanoi life, just make sure you are equipped with a helmet. And as they don’t have meters make sure you know what you’re paying before you set off. A typical 10-minute ride should cost around VND 10,000-15,000 (US$0.50-0.75).

Selling points

  • A pleasant stroll at Hoan Kiem Lake
  • Scenic walk, relax and watch the world go by
  • Beautiful lake in the middle of the hectic Hanoi
  • Tranquil spot
  • Great in the morning
9 Days in Hanoi, Sapa & Halong Bay

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9.0 days
238.81 USD
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Hoan Kiem, Hanoi, Vietnam

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Tips for you

  • It's a very manageable & pleasant walk around the lake &, should you go early morning or at dusk, you will see loads of people out jogging, dancing, using exercise machines
  • The bridge, temple and pagoda are good to see during the day but it is a great sight at night when all lit up, especially from one of the restaurants and cafés on the rooftop
  • There are people selling food and cards all around the lake.
  • It takes you away from the endless streams of traffic and blare of car horns
  • Tourist should be aware of wandering tricksters & pickpockets.
  • Visitors are recommended to hire a tour guide or book a Hanoi day tour so that they can learn many interesting stories and legends about the lake
  • The water color of Hoan Kiem Lake is not commonly found in other lakes elsewhere in the country: greenish, with dark or light shade depending on the reflection of the sky.


FourSquare View more

just come to hear around 4pm, its amazing view.

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One should never miss walking around Hoan Kiem when in Hanoi. you can see old folks doing tai chi & qi gong in the morning and around sunset. the willow and bending trees make for a good background

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Ngắm hồ và nhâm nhi coffee :)

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Muy bonito de visitar. Los vietnamitas se reunen a orillas del lago para hacer ejercicio, hablar y comer.

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Yêu những chiều Hà Nội... Dạo phố sách Đinh Lễ rất tuyệt

TripAdvisor View more

Like several others have said, this is a great place to walk around in the AM.Go get some coffee from one of the surrounding coffee shops and take a stroll around the lake in the AM. You'll see locals running, doing "work out classes" (not real sure what you would call it other than maybe "aerobic dance"), and just enjoying the cool mornings.

TripAdvisor View more

a very nice view of Lake in the heart of the city, which is surrounding with garden and some stores closed by is absolutely excellent combinaion

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Good starting point to start visiting Hanoi. Nice promenade, with a temple (the golden turtle) in it. Entry = 20 000VN. Nice view.

TripAdvisor View more

A pleasant place to go for a walk, as said in other reviews you meet students practising their English and people exercising and getting their daily ice cream fix. The lake is full of fish and turtles. Easy walk from the old quarter and close to restaurant, and banks

FourSquare View more

One should never miss walking around Hoan Kiem when in Hanoi. you can see old folks doing tai chi & qi gong in the morning and around sunset. the willow and bending trees make for a good background

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