As Vietnam's capital, Hanoi has a layered history involving both French and Chinese occupation. This has affected the architecture, from the sloping rooves of Buddhist temples, to the painted white facades of colonial government buildings. However, this city is over 1000 years old, and ancient Vietnamese culture has always remained strong. Spend some time in the traditional temples, ancient citadels, the exclusive theatre, and the contemporary neighbourhoods that are spearheading the modern face of Vietnam. Visit the area known as the Old Quarter, here you'll find well-preserved Buddhist temples and farmers offering their produce, while locals enjoy breakfast noodles, practice tai chi, and play chess with elders of the community. A trip to the French Quarter will reveal impressive villas and mansions, along with the striking Hanoi Opera House, where you can still catch a show if the mood strikes. Explore the storied attractions of the city as well, like the beautiful Hoan Kiem Lake, the serene Temple of Literature, and the fascinating mausoleum where the revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh is buried. Alongside celebrated street food stalls and pretty pagodas, this destination is also home to trendy cafes, art galleries and gourmet restaurants, leaving you with plenty to explore within the city limits. Whilst outside of the city, the gorgeous landscape of Halong Bay awaits you.