If you love flowers, you'll love a poke around Hanoi's colourful and photogenic Quang Ba Flower Market, where masses of glorious flowers are bought and sold by the impossibly laden-motorbike-full.
Primarily a wholesale market, vendors buy from pick-up trucks bringing in flowers and greenery from Da Lat and Hanoi's outer suburbs, and on-sell to buyers from retail shops and the bicycle vendors you'll see roving across town. If you just can't resist, they will still sell retail to individual buyers.
This is Hanoi's busiest flower market, and it's supposed to really get going from around 02:00 till 06:00, but we dropped by around midnight and it was still interesting to see. You'll genuinely be amazed at the volume of flowers being packed onto single motorbikes. We spied sunflowers, roses, chrysanthemums, orchids, gerberas, lilies, hydrangeas and various kinds of greenery being sold at the market. A couple of stalls sell arrangements, but mostly the same kind of flower is sold by the bundle. The single globes used to illuminate the market add to the atmosphere.
As with any busy market, keep your eyes peeled for motorbikes zipping along unexpected spaces, and be ready to get out of the way.
The market is a way out of the Old Quarter in Tay Ho, but if you like flowers it's definitely worth the trip. Keep a visit to the market in mind particularly if you're arriving in Hanoi on the overnight train from Sapa, which gets in at around 05:00, as dropping by will let you kill a little time till the rest of the city wakes up.
Samantha Brown is a reformed news reporter. She now edits most of the stuff you read on Travelfish.org, except for when you find a typo, and then that's something she wasn't allowed to look at.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.
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