Hanoi in Vietnam under the eyes of foreigners

Hanoi was chosen as the capital of Vietnam since 1010 by King Ly Cong Uan, the first of the Ly Dynasty when he decided to move the capital from Hoa Lu (where Halong Bay On Land is located) to current Hanoi city.

The people of Hanoi eat in the street; they go to bed earlier and are generally curious on your age, salary ... but they help you quickly if you fall. These are the opinions of foreigners living there.

Hanoi in Vietnam

Hanoi is like a village, according Allister Esguerra, a 25 years old man from Philippines: After leaving the charming Hoi An ancient town where there is not much to do, Allister works in tourism in Hanoi. In his eyes: '' in Hoi An, at 21h, it's quiet as 24 h in Hanoi and 24 in Ho Chi Minh City is like 19 h in Hanoi. Hanoi is like Hoi An but larger, with 8 million inhabitants. That's why I love this place. ''

"In Hanoi, if you want to live well, you should have more friends. If you do not know anyone, life would be very difficult; it will be difficult to find a job. But it's not easy to find friends here. In Ho Chi Minh City, I just need a day. But if you want to be friends with people of Hanoi, you need time to get their trust. ''.
"In my opinion, Hanoi is like a village where everyone knows each other. So things spread very quickly. But I admire the local courage, they are not afraid to try something out of the security control. They like the risk. You can see many people who come from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City rather than the reverse. I remember the words of a friend: '' If you can live in Hanoi, you can live anywhere in the world".

The people of Hanoi are very affectionate according to Julie Vola: "With the implementation of the project of the book: Memories of Hanoi, I met about 100 people and I think everyone here is very interesting, they are ready to talk to me about personal memories while living in this city.’’.

Hanoi in Vietnam

"In all ages, people of Hanoi are courteous and willing to share their personal and very emotional story. When I asked the questions to an elderly lady, she invited me to her home. She brought me several things to invite me to eat. It was very affectionate! ''.

"My grandfather was born here, the family returned to France and I regret not being able to ask questions about the family life at that time. I lost my grand - father and I want to see and the people living here. The people of Hanoi are very generous and friendly. They maintain a traditional lifestyle, foregather in family and above all they are proud of their history. ''.

"When I arrived here, I could not understand why people in the streets honking so too loudly. It seemed they were very aggressive with me. But now when I drive well the motorcycle, I understand that honking is to prevent potential dangers. ''.

"Sometimes in public places, there are some people who hustle each other. For example, once when I was at the supermarket checkout, a woman kept trying to pass me. Once I held the door and everyone passed without noticing me. ''

"It's interesting to go to Ngoc Ha market where women taught me how to call the local dishes in Vietnamese language. When I know the higher prices, I bargained hard before leaving the shop but they me called 'Hey honey, come here.' It's very affectionate ".

Martin Rama, 57, from Uruguay: they eat, they love the street in Hanoi: Martin lived in Hanoi for 8 years as chief economist of the World Bank (WB) in Vietnam. "I see people still prefer to live outside, in the streets, in parks, where they eat, love... But I think the social, as conjugal life becomes more modern, not necessarily happier. It's different. For example, when I arrived in Hanoi for the first time 16 years ago, no one was divorced, but now it is quite common. The lifestyle that you have is westernized in some sense. "

Hanoi in Vietnam

"Just look how the woman sits back on the bike, we can guess the situation of their relationship." He wrote about the people on the bike in Hanoi.

"If she is sitting very carefully, trying to avoid touching the person in front, it means that he must put more effort to conquer. If she leans back by making SMS, it means that man is already in trouble. But sometimes if she leans forward, resting her chin on the shoulder of her driver, muttering something, then there is only one solution which is to pray for that the accident does not happen in Hanoi! ''.

"The way to be interested to each other in Hanoi is a lot like us, Latin Americans, warm, loving and respecting the friendship relations".

Hanoi is energetic according to Ms. Nandini Oomman, an Indian: "I live in Hanoi for over three years and am surprised to see many people at all ages do gymnastics in many places at dawn: In parks, on sidewalks .... This makes me think that I'm as energetic. ''.

Hanoi in Vietnam

"So I ride my bike. This is things I've never done during 12 years of life in the United State. When I ride my bike around the West Lake, I can stop anywhere for breakfast, buying flowers in Nghi Tam village ... ''.

"The people of Hanoi are very nice and friendly. I came to my colleagues with my husband who invited us to eat during the Tet festival. We meet in the whole family together, sitting on the floor. The tray was full of traditional dishes. This has made me think about my family, because we are Asians people and customs are quite similar, the family members share life to grow. ''.

"I am very impressed with the women who work in the street. It’s pretty hard. They sell fresh flowers. They are street vendors, collectors of waste ... ‘

"Once, a seller claimed me money when I took the photo in the old city of Hanoi. This happens also in developing countries, so I am not too upset. Sometimes I ride my motorcycle but with hesitation because people drive fast and some do not wear helmets. For me, life in Hanoi is very exciting, not like in the United States: just go to work and go home.”

Hanoi has contradictions in the behavior according to Paul Brown, an Englishman, the advisor of the Fund of ancient Americans fighters in Vietnam (VVAF).

Hanoi in Vietnam

 "I live in Hanoi for three years so that after each business trip to another country, I want to return earlier in Hanoi because I love the feeling of freedom and relaxation here. The people in Hanoi are at ease; they focus on work for money, but not too rushed as Singapore or Hong Kong. Compared to Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi life seems being slower. Hanoi has a quiet pace of life such as fish swimming in the aquarium. ''.

'' Hanoi has vibrant life on sidewalks and in public places. In Northern Europe, we live our lives in the house, because the weather is cold and wet. But here there are many outdoor activities: numerous cafes, street vendors, motorbike taxis ... At night, there are even people dancing in the park. ''.

"When I eat or go shopping in the street, people ask me the very dedicated questions if I need a few things. The feeling when someone cares for me is great for me. Some people tell me that they do it for the money, but in the restaurant, many servers still refuse tip. This is something that many people in European restaurants would to have. ''.

"The people of Hanoi are friendly, but at work, they seem to lack team work skills. They do not have the social skills to communicate to work together, they are earlier individual. Even leaders tend to order rather than creating favorable conditions for that subordinates do the job well. ''.

"For me, it's easy to make friends in Hanoi. I have a group of friends to chat together. I intend to live in Hanoi in the coming years."

In Hanoi, the people are very curious but very friendly, according to Saturn Zuhal, 34, an Afghan journalist. Zuhal lives in Hanoi for a year as an English teacher. She spent 15 years living in Hamburg, Germany and 18 years in Toronto, Canada.

Hanoi in Vietnam

"Hanoi sublimes me, but at the same time, breaks my heart. Hanoi is the city today you like as a lover, but maybe tomorrow, she (he) will hate you as enemies because it is very intense, restless ... ''.

"The first time I came here was in my journey through Asia: Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia. The moment I left Hanoi Railway Station, I knew I was falling in love with this city. Thus, Hanoi is like Hamburg Europe, but with the chaos and heat of Asia.

"The people of Hanoi are curious, from my neighbors to the owner of the restaurant of Vietnamese Pho soup who asked me about my salary. In my culture in Afghanistan, Canada, Germany, this is very rude. Three first questions I get always in Hanoi are: where are you from? How old are you? Are you married???

"However, people in Hanoi have a sense of helping each other, look after each other. In the Western, if you fall on the road, you are really lucky to be helped. I know several people of you will disagree with me but it's the truth. Here, if you fall, people just help you right away. This is the beauty of the city. I love Hanoi ".