Hanoi’s French Quarter

Let's face it. After enough time in Vietnam, there are going to be days where you've had enough time in Vietnam. The constant noise, impossible sidewalks and horrifying traffic eventually wear down the optimism of even the most passionate traveler. But escape is possible. Just head to Hanoi's French Quarter, where the streets are wide and clean, and the atmosphere is nearly European.

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A Concise History of Hanoi

Hanoi has been conquered, occupied, liberated and renamed more times than any other city we've visited. In fact, upheaval seems to be the only constant in Hà Nội... or is that Long Biên? Or Đại La? Thăng Long, Đông Đô, Đông Quan, or Tonkin? Here's a concise rundown of the most important moments in this schizophrenic city's history. 2879 BCHuman presence in Northern Vietnam dates back to at least 6000 BC, but the first significant event in…

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St. Joseph’s Cathedral

Consecrated in 1886, St. Joseph's Cathedral was one of the first buildings constructed by the French after the conquest of Hanoi. With a prime location just to the west of Hoàn Kiếm Lake, the church is among the most impressive pieces of colonial architecture in the city.

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