Old City Gate Hanoi (O Quan Chuong) - The Last Remaining Gate of Thang Long Citadel

Duc - October 28, 2018

 

O Quan Chuong - Old City Gate Hanoi is a tourist attraction in Hanoi Old Quarter that should not be missed. It is the only one out of 21 original entrances to the old Thang Long Citadel to survive over a thousand years. Centuries have gone by, but Old City Gate still stands, a poignant reminder of Hanoi’s long history through peace and wars.

 

Walk through the arched main entrance of the Old City Gate Hanoi and imagine being one of the soldiers who heroically defended the city from this spot during several sieges, as well as the French and American wars. Admire the curved roof of the central tower and gaze up at the red and yellow Vietnamese flag flying in the wind.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi)

Hanoi Old City Gate at night glowing in the yellow dim light

According to records, in the reign of King Le Thai Tong (1740-1786), Thang Long has many gates such as Cau Giay, Cho Dua, Cau Dien or Quan Chuong. Each city gate was built as a gate, open day, night closed and fenced, with a guard to prevent thief and fire. Built in 1749, O Quan Chuong (also known as Dong Ha ward or East Gate) is the last remaining gate of the many that once surrounded the perimeter of the old city.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi)

Old City Gate in the past

Known locally as Quan Chuong, it takes its name from a military leader who lost his life fighting the French here in 1843. Reflect on the fact that the gate was important once again in resisting the French in 1946 to 1947. Note that the gate was also used as a strategic military point during the war against the U.S., with anti-aircraft guns placed here. The gate has maintained its original shape and structure although several restorations have taken place.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi)

Old City Gate on the election day in 1946

O Quan Chuong consists of two floors and is built as a watch-tower a typical architecture of the Nguyen Dynasty. The first floor has three doors, the main door is in the center, high and wide 3m, two side doors are on both sides, about 1.65m wide, 2.5m high. Special point is that all three doors are designed in a dome style. The second floor is the observation space.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi)

The gate survives through the flow of time thanks to its firm structure and design

The main entrance of the gate faces east toward the Red River. A small stele (inscribed column) was erected in 1882 and includes an inscribed order prohibiting soldiers from causing harm to civilians.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi)

An erected board on the left side of the gate stating Old City Gate’s title as a historical heritage

Continue through the smaller pedestrian walkways that flank the main entrance to reach the heart of the old town of Hanoi. Here, be sure to check out the vast array of markets where you can find fresh fruit and vegetables or beautiful handmade silk clothing for bargain prices.

O Quan Chuong (Old City Gate Hanoi) Large variety of markets and small food stalls around Old City Gate Hanoi

The only remaining old city gate of Hanoi, O Quan Chuong not only inscribed the mark of the Thang Long capital but also a proof of struggle of the indomitable people in the fight against foreign invaders.

  • Address: Hanoi Old City Gate is located at the intersection that joins Hang Chieu and Dao Duy Tu Street and is directly north of Hoan Kiem Lake.