Pedestrian streets and tourist attractions in Hanoi reopen

After having to stay locked up at home for almost an entire month due to the nationwide social distancing policy, Hanoians were eager to hit the streets to get their bubble tea and coffee fix when the order was lifted on 23rd April.

Aside from that, however, there was still not much else we could do, as it was not until just a few days ago that non-essential businesses such as cinemas and bars were given the green light to open their doors again.

So you can imagine our excitement at the news that this weekend, the Hanoi pedestrian streets – home to plenty of entertainment activities – are reopening. Many tourist attractions are also resuming operations as well.

Pedestrian streets around Hoàn Kiếm Lake return to normal business this weekend

Located right at the center of tourism of Hanoi, the Hoàn Kiếm Lake is a must-visit site in the city. For years now, the authorities would bar all vehicles from entering the streets around the lake every weekend from 7PM on Friday to the end of Sunday, creating room for cultural and entertainment activities.

Hanoians would come to the pedestrian streets every weekend to participate in entertainment activities or simply enjoy a stroll with their family
Image credit: Ngũ Yên Chung

Locals and tourists alike would flock to these pedestrian streets in the thousands to enjoy music performances from street bands, participate in Jenga, chess, and traditional Vietnamese games, or just immerse in the busy atmosphere.

An absurdly high wooden tower being built on a Hanoi pedestrian street, turning many heads
Image credit: Linh Thuy

That all changed when the COVID-19 pandemic hit Vietnam earlier this year, however. To contain the disease, all of these activities have had to shut down since February, and while the abnormal peace and quietness are appreciated, many Hanoians could not help but feel an empty space in their hearts.

Thankfully, with Vietnam reporting no cases of COVID-19 community transmission for almost a month, it has been announced that the pedestrian streets will be reopened again from this weekend. That’s right, that means from 7PM today, you can see that busy Hanoi nightlife again in all its fullest glory.

Tourist attractions resume operation

From yesterday, 14th May, several tourist attractions in the capital city of Vietnam have also been welcoming visitors again after a several-month period of hibernation.

These include the Temple of Literature – which is believed to be the very first university of Vietnam with a history that traces back almost a millennium, the Ngọc Sơn Temple built on top of the Hoàn Kiếm Lake – which pays tribute to several national heroes and mythical figures, and more.

Visitors queuing in front of the Temple of Literature, standing far apart from one another
Image credit: Di tích Văn Miếu-Quốc Tử Giám

Adhering to directives from the government, all of these sites have been thoroughly disinfected, and visitors are required to comply with safety measures, namely to maintain a safe distance, wear masks, and have their hands sanitized.

Everyone has to wear masks and have their hands sanitized before entering the sites
Image credit: Di tích Văn Miếu-Quốc Tử Giám

Tourism is being restored in Vietnam

With bars, cinemas, and now tourist attractions allowed to reopen, things have been slowly getting back on track in Vietnam. We hope that the pandemic will be over soon, so that more people can visit Hanoi and experience its vibrant nightlife and historical significance.

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Cover image adapted from: Ngũ Yên Chung, Di tích Văn Miếu-Quốc Tử Giám

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