You have 7 days in Hanoi and confusing what to do next?
You are torn between choosing Hanoi – Halong Bay and Hanoi – Sapa, or between anything else?
There are so many things to do for one week in Hanoi and you don’t want to waste time on making wrong decisions?
If so, smile 🙂 cause I’ve got your back! My hanoi 7 days itinerary was meant for the ones who’d love to save time planning while having appropriate recommendations.
The daily routines for “1 week in Hanoi” was designed with experienced local advice, estimated budget and multi destinations included in each option.
Your “7 days Hanoi itinerary” starts…with 2 Main options
Option 1: (3 days in Hanoi, 3 days in Halong Bay, 1 days in Ninh Binh)
Day 1: Arrival Hanoi
Day 2: Hanoi City
Day 3: Ninh Binh
Day 4, 5, 6: Hanoi – Ha Long bay
Day 7: Hanoi
Option 2: (2 days in hanoi, 3 days in Sapa, 2 days in Halong Bay)
Day 1: Hanoi
Day 2, 3: Halong Bay
Day 4,5,6: Sapa
Day 7: Danoi
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I, Some local tips for your Hanoi 7 days itinerary
DAY 1: Explore Hanoi Old Quarter or French Quarter + Around the city
After your arrival in Hanoi, explore the area called the Old Quarter as I mentioned at the first half.
At its heart is the chaotic Old Quarter, where the narrow streets are roughly arranged by trade. There are many little temples, including Bach Ma, honoring a legendary horse, plus Đồng Xuân Market, selling household goods and street food.
Another choice for the first day is walking around Hanoi French Quarter with a local guide which will undoubtedly make your day. The area is full filled with European style buildings and contains historical stories of Hanoi that can bring you back in time.
- St. Joseph’s Cathedral which is also known as the Great Church to locals. After admiring its beautiful structure, having a fresh lemon iced tea at some street stores nearby is another must-do.
- Along the way to Hoa Lo prison, you will probably see some luxury hotels which are also an iconic image of the French Quarter. In contrast, Hoa Lo prison will guide you to a different world representing the French colonial period through impressive artifacts inside. You are noted to spend about 1 hour here.
- The next stop should be Hanoi Opera House that was inspired by the Paris Opera House. It is free to visit outside. Once you want to visit further inside, the ticket price is about $20/pax.
- Hanoi Nightlife
- Then, do a city tour for all main sites of Hanoi such as Ho Chi Minh Complex, Temple of Literature, Hanoi Citadel, or Museum of Ethonology
- Taking a food tour cause you know what they say “indulging yourself in local cuisines is one of the best ways to get fantastic travel experiences”
Day 3: Ninh Binh (Trang An – Bai Dinh or Tam Coc, Mua Cave)
DAY 4, 5 & DAY6: Discover Halong Bay
Halong Bay is a top must-check in any travelers’ bucket list. This World’s heritage site never disappoints tourists for its fascinating landmarks.
A budget of a trip to Halong Bay is higher than other destinations’ since all tourism services are mainly served on a cruise. But don’t worry, it costs more, but not too much and of course, it’s worth the money.
If you choose Cruises:
Halong Bay nightlife on the Bay has become both domestic and foreign tourists’ preference. With an overnight cruise trip, you will spend at least one night on the boat with many activities like watching the beautiful sunset or dawn on the sea, join kayaking, swim at some fascinating beaches of the Bay, go midnight squid fishing on a boat, visit floating fishing villages,…
Night tours on the bay can last 2 days 1 night or 3 days 2 nights depending on the journey of each cruise.
- 3-star cruises: V’spirit, Majestic, Calypso, Halong Sails, Oriental Sails, Glory
- 4 to 5-star cruises: Au Co, Bhaya, Indochina, Emeraude, Paradise, Starlight
If you prefer hotels in Halong Bay:
There are many 3 to 4-star hotels here to choose. In order to easily rent a room at an affordable price, you should go early in the week or midweek. Weekly, from Friday to Sunday, Halong is often crowded so all the rooms are likely to be full and the prices are way higher than usual.
- Halong hotels: Wyndham Halong Hotel, Halong Plaza (No. 08 Hang Road); Halong Dream (No.10 Halong Road); Mithrin (Hung Thang Road); Halong Pearl (Bai Chay); Halong Bay (Halong Road); Bach Dang (No.02 Halong Road); Bai Chay Union (Halong Road); Moon Light (Hung Thang Road) …
the 1st Day in Halong Bay
Visit Sung Sot Cave – One of the largest and most beautiful caves in the cave complex in Ha Long Bay. Indeed, when coming here, you will be amazed at the beauty of nature with the virtual stalactites and grandeur as the name itself …
Visit the famous attractions of Ha Long such as Hang Tien Ong, Ho Tien, Hang Luon, Titov Island,… This is a very good time for photography-lovers 🙂
Watch the sunset while chilling on the sundeck
Join the cooking program of Vietnamese dishes on the deck
Night activities such as squid fishing, partying,…
For the 2nd Day
Wake up early, admire the sunrise and join the Tai Chi exercise on the sundeck, enjoy the fresh air
Visit fishing villages
DAY 6 & DAY 7: Back to Hanoi to further discover the city
After some trips, we are finally back to the home-base to find the hidden beauty of Hanoi the capital.
As I’ve already recommended for Things you should do for 2 days in Hanoi in the first half, there’re still more places and must-do you can’t miss/
My first suggestion would be visiting museums which are quite far from the “tourism zone”. Some top-of-mind places are:
Vietnam Museum of Ethnology: here, you can know more about a diverse Vietnam – a country that has 54 officially recognized ethnic groups. Also, you can have fun while joining some traditional games here
Vietnamese Women’s Museum:
Ho Chi Minh Museum: Included in Ho Chi Minh complex, the museum will help you know more about Ho Chi Minh’s life
My second top-of-mind would be some further places such as Bat Trang Ceramic Village, Duong Lam ancient village
Coming to Bat Trang Ceramic Village, you are sure to get unforgettable experience while doing pottery items your own.
While Duong Lam Ancient Village gives you a journey to be back in time:
Option 2: Including Sapa for 2 or 3 days
Welcome to Lao Cai Province (Sapa is the main district of Lao Cao Province), if you go by train, you will reach Sapa after a 1-hour shuttle bus ride.
Then what to do next?
Once you reach Sapa, there are plenty of things to do here. The Holy Rosary church which is called the ancient stone church by locals, located in the heart of Sapa Town is the place where you can take your “check-in” selfie. Nearby is Sapa Market where you can wander around and grab some foods.
Next day should be for further places. For family and friends group, visiting villages which are home to most ethnic minorities of Vietnam will make your day.
– Among all the attractions in Sapa, Cat Cat Village is the easiest place to go since it is only 2km away from the main town. The place is home to H’Mong people, located at the foot of Hoang Lien Mountain, like a valley surrounded by terraced fields. Here, you can take pictures of Silver Waterfall and Love Waterfall, also, taking a deep breath while feeling the view of terraced fields is a nice idea.
– Ta Van Village (about 8km away from Sapa Town) and Lao Chai Village are often skipped since they are not as close to the main town as Cat Cat Village. The pristine beauty of Ta Van could reach another level when it comes to grain seasons. On the other hand, winters make the scenery here look dull.
Ta Van is home to the H’Mong and the Red Dao. In general, their customs are quite mysterious so that it takes time to explore. Otherwise, an afternoon could be enough for you to take a walk, take a scenic tour then take pictures.
Another activity that you’d better not miss is conquering Fansipan Peak (also known as the Roof of Indochina).
For trekking to the summit, it takes at least 3 days (1 night sleeping outside on the way mountaineering). So my advice is that you should take the Fansipan cable car to reach the mountaintop because it takes only a few hours for both ways.
Last but not least, I give you guys other suggested Hanoi 7 days itinerary which covers other cool attractions of Vietnam. For further information, don’t hesitate to contact us. We are glad to be your local expert 🙂 Hope you have a great trip!!!
- 3 days 2 nights will be the much better for overnight trips or cruises to Sapa, Ha Long.
- If you are wondering about a suitable Ninh Binh trip duration: It takes 4 hours from Hanoi to Ninh Binh and from Ninh Binh to Hanoi with 160 km in total. So, my advice is, do Ninh Binh instead of other places for 1- day trip.
You can also see Vietnam Itinerary 7 days
Or All recommended Vietnam Itinerary from 1 day to 7 days