Back Arts & Culture » Culture » [Photos] The Unbridled Joy of Hanoi’s Walking Streets

[Photos] The Unbridled Joy of Hanoi’s Walking Streets

In a claustrophobic city where cramped houses huddle shoulder-to-shoulder and roads resemble battlegrounds, walking streets provide a rare breathing space for people used to clamor. More importantly, they offer a much-needed area in which children and parents can play.

In September 2016, the roads encircling Hoan Kiem Lake were pedestrianized; the traffic banished for weekends to come. The move has proved to be one of the most successful and popular developments the capital has seen in years.

From Friday evening until Monday morning each weekend, the streets grow thick with visitors, all thronging around musicians, watching performances or chasing blown bubbles. The abrasive horns of motorbikes and passing cars consigned, for a moment at least, to memory.

At times it feels more like a festival than mere streets to walk around, and one that never gets old. But what’s crucial is that, in a capital with relatively few parks for young people to play in, children are given an abundance of activities and traditional games to enjoy, all of which are free from the risk of traffic.

Hoan Kiem Lake is the beating heart of Hanoi, and its adjoining arteries have finally been given license to carry and support the city’s lifeblood – its people. 

Related Articles:

[Photos] An Urbexer’s Paradise: Inside the Rides of Hanoi’s Abandoned Water Park

[Photos] The Rustic Beauty of Hanoi's Red River Brick Factories

[Photos] Exploring Hanoi's Eerie 'Skeleton Cave'

Related Articles

in Culture

5,000 People to Take Part in a Street Festival in Hanoi This Weekend.

Themed ‘The Quintessence of Hanoi – Confluence and Shine,’ the street festival will take place around Hoan Kiem Lake between 8am and 11am on July 29.

in Culture

A Visit to Hanoi's Birdsong Clubs: Have You Heard the Call of the Oriental White-Eye?

Birdsong clubs, a tradition originating from China, are one of Hanoi’s hidden gems. If you’re willing to really look for them, it’s possible to find huge collections of birds kept in finely decorated ...

in Culture

Artisan Phan Thi Thuan and the Skill of Weaving Silk From Lotus Stems

As gentle as smoke, as strong as fire – lotus silk provides an alternative to silkworms that could revolutionize silk production in Vietnam.

Chris Humphrey

in Culture

At Hanoi's Thousand-Year-Old Flute Kite Festival, Melodies and Prayers Cross the Sky

Passed down by village forefathers since the Dinh Dynasty, Ba Duong Noi Village’s kite festival has become a source of pride for the local community. With three bamboo flutes attached to each kite, it...

in Culture

Experience: How Becoming One of Hanoi's First Drag Queens Transformed My Life

“Oh my god! You look beautiful! You belong on the runway, why aren’t you on the runway?” said Tamah Lake, the organizer of last year’s RuPaul’s Drag Race viewing party events in Hanoi. She came up to ...

in Culture

Hanoi Gets Inked: Expo Showcases Vietnam’s Tattoo Boom

When Link Do was a child in Hanoi, she learned English from an American woman with a tattoo on her hand. Link, who loved to draw, thought the tattoo was beautiful, and began to imagine a future as an ...

Partner Content