Archive for the 'Hanoi' Category

Sep 09 2012

Exploring Bac Kan province

Published by under Hanoi excursions

Corn is so important that it's given its own tent

You don’t always have to stick to the tourist trail in Vietnam; simply striking out somewhere for the hell of it can be richly rewarding. Bac Kan province is little visited by tourists, although its main point of interest, Ba Be Lake, attracts those looking for natural beauty outside of Ha Long Bay. We took … read the full post

Aug 30 2012

Buying Western-sized clothes in Hanoi

Published by under Shopping

Not to be confused with restaurant chain, Gecko

Your favourite T-shirt turned pink at the laundrette in Hue, you lost your shorts somewhere between Ko Samui and Bangkok – now, where did they go? – or you’re simply bored of wearing the same tatty clothes day in day out. Sound familiar? With a little knowledge you’ll find some Western-sized clothes in Hanoi, though … read the full post

Aug 26 2012

Review: Com Pho Co restaurant, Hanoi

Published by under Food

Nem Hue - crispy on the outside, soft and meaty on the inside

If you’re looking for good-value, tasty Vietnamese food but the street scene leaves you a bit nervous, air-con Com Pho Co is worth seeking out with its great range of standard Vietnamese dishes, such as light and crispy nem Hue, crunchy papaya salad or heartier aubergine and pork claypot. Although located on non-touristy Nguyen Sieu, … read the full post

Aug 24 2012

Piknic Elektronic in Hanoi

Published by under Events

The perfect Sunday afternoon

After the success of last summer’s weekly Piknic Electronik music event, organisers Synergy Music Production couldn’t resist another season. This year, to beat the heat, a swimming pool is being thrown into the mix – what better way to cool off than with an ice cold drink and a dip while listening to some electronic … read the full post

Aug 20 2012

Hanoi street food: Com binh dan

Published by under Food

Pot luck

Com binh dan roughly translates as commoner’s rice and is a popular cheap belly-filler in Vietnam. Com binh dan joints are buffet-like affairs, and are usually identified by a glass case showcasing the day’s selection — as well as the large signs. In Hanoi, the food selection varies from place to place, from day  to … read the full post

Aug 18 2012

Review: Commune, Hanoi

Published by under Food

Let's start with the view

Located on the narrow but often busy Duong Ven Ho, which runs along the southern edge of West Lake, Commune has an enviable position overlooking the lake, and, while not the most convenient location, has a lot else going for it besides: good food, WiFi and a relaxed ambiance. Set-up as a joint work/cafe space … read the full post

Aug 12 2012

Hanoi’s 36 streets: Hang Manh

Published by under Hanoi's 36 streets

Also available as a fish

A search for “Hang Manh” unsurprisingly brings up a raft of sites which mention the well-known bun cha joint at number 1. Well-known it may be, but good value it is no more: the dish under-delivers on flavour and it’s seriously over-priced compared to other bun cha places. Thankfully, there’s a more to Hang Manh … read the full post

Aug 05 2012

Review: Cafe Duy, Hanoi

Published by under Food

Cigarettes and coffee

When I wrote about coffee in Hanoi I mentioned cafe sua chua and promised more… I was introduced to cafe sua chua at Cafe Duy Tri, an historic coffee shop located on Pho Yen Phu. Pho Yen Phu is a lively street running north off Duong Thanh Nien (the street that runs between Truc Bach … read the full post

Jul 31 2012

Viet Pride 2012 in Hanoi

Published by under Events

Testing the flags. Photo courtesy of Ms Nguyen Thanh Tam

While not openly anti-gay, homosexual relationships and practices remain taboo in Vietnam and negative social attitudes and stigmas still exist. But now, for the first time, “Pride” comes to Hanoi in a series of events being hosted under the Viet Pride 2012 banner. Organised by Ms Nguyen Thanh Tam and volunteers from the LGBT community, … read the full post

Jul 28 2012

Hanoi’s street food: Bun dau

Published by under Food

Not the most colourful dish

In the UK, tofu is largely considered as “food for veggies” and certainly not a food group that any hardcore carnivore would ever rave about. So before coming out to Asia I didn’t eat tofu. I can’t say I’d never tried it, I surely must have done somewhere, but it certainly wasn’t among my usual … read the full post

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