Monday, November 24, 2014

Tran Bien Literature Temple - a peaceful and silent space

Tran Bien Temple of Literature, built in 1715 under King Nguyen Phuc Chu, was the first temple of its kind in the South. It is a place to honor Confucius and also serves as an educational center. Tourists in Vietnam travel will learn a great deal about the history of Vietnam through the stories of the national heroes and icons.

Tran Bien Literature Temple

Architecturally inspired by the Quoc Tu Giam (Temple of Literature in Hanoi capital), the Tran Bien Temple of Literature was rebuilt twice in the Nguyen Dynasty and then destroyed by the French in 1861. Then It was restored in 1998 and the first phase was inaugurated during the Tet holidays in 2002. The last phase is under construction.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Old French buildings in Hanoi

St Joseph's Cathedral
St Joseph's Cathedral (built in 1886)
at Christmas 2007.

During the French rule in Vietnam from 1858 to 1954, many cathedrals, government offices, hotels and villas of French architecture were built. You can see them in different cities of Vietnam, such as Hanoi, Hải Phòng, Sapa, Đà Lạt and Sài Gòn.

Some areas of Hanoi city are called "French quarters", as many old French buildings are still preserved there. They are now used as government offices, embassies, Hanoi post office, schools, shops, hospitals or museums. My secondary school also is an old French building near Hanoi Opera House. I studied there for 3 years and my mother was a teacher at this school for a long time.

The two biggest cathedrals in Hanoi (St. Joseph's cathedral and Cửa Bắc cathedral) were also built by the French in the late 19th century. At Christmas, the cathedrals are beautifully decorated and many people visit the sites for taking photos.

A part of Hoả Lò prison is open as a museum. It was the place where American pilots were imprisoned during the American war and they called it "Hanoi Hilton Hotel".

Hàng Đậu water tower
This used to be a water tower in the past.
During French occupation, 12,000 French
 troops were encamped in Hanoi. Two water
 plants were chosen (Yên Phụ & Đồn Thuỷ)
in 1894 to provide clean water for soldiers in
the center and in the Old Quarter. This water
 tower is called "Đài Đầu" (head reservoir) by
the French. It belonged to the Yên Phụ water plant.
This tower is 21.30m high and has a diameter of 19m.
Now it's no longer used, so it's closed.
According to an article dated 9 August 2012 on the Vnexpress, there are 1,586 old French villas in Hanoi, of which 562 villas are private owned, 1,024 villas are under State's management, and 42 villas in the central government area of Ba Đình district are not allowed to be owned by private sectors.

Biệt thự Pháp tại Hà Nội

Hiện nay trên địa bàn thành phố có 1.586 biệt thự do Pháp để lại. Trong đó có 562 biệt thự thuộc sở hữu tư nhân, 1.024 biệt thự thuộc sở hữu nhà nước, 42 biệt thự ở trung tâm chính trị Ba Đình không được phép tư nhân hoá. Hà Nội đã hoàn thành việc phân loại biệt thự thành bốn loại. Cụ thể, loại 1, là biệt thự có giá trị đặc biệt về văn hoá, kiến trúc, lịch sử, có quy mô lớn, vị trí đẹp, sân vườn còn nguyên bản; loại 2, biệt thự có vị trí đẹp, có giá trị về văn hóa, kiến trúc nhưng ít nhiều đã bị biến dạng, xuống cấp nhưng cần bảo tồn.

Biệt thự loại 3 là có giá trị trung bình về văn hoá, kiến trúc, đã bị lấn chiếm, cải tạo một phần được xem xét bảo tồn hoặc phá bỏ xây mới; loại 4, biệt thự đã bị phá bỏ, xây nhà mới.

Hoả Lò prison
This prison was built by the French in the early
 20th century and now it's open as a museum.
During the American war, it was called "Hanoi
Hilton Hotel" by American prisoners/pilots.
Theo ông Tú, biệt thự thuộc loại 3 và 4 được ứng xử bình thường theo quy định của nhà nước. Tuy nhiên, một số biệt thự gắn với di tích văn hóa hoặc có giá trị kiến trúc thì phải được Sở Văn hóa thể thao và Du lịch, Sở Quy hoạch và Kiến trúc chấp thuận mới được cải tạo.

(Theo Vnexpress - Ngày 9/8/2012)


Friday, November 21, 2014



Video by: Helen
 Chanel Youtube: 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Shopping in Lang Son border town

Shopping is top of the list in the itinerary for tourists and businesspeople alike as the city lies next to the border with China.

Tourists shop at Ky Lua Night Market in Lang Son City - Photo: Khue Viet Truong

Three markets which feature prominently in Lang Son’s tourism guide books are Dong Kinh market, Ky Lua night market and Tan Thanh border market.

Markets are a magnet for men or women, as they can buy anything in Lang Son and bargain freely to get the best price and it also helps the local economy.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Đồng Hới city

Quảng Bình Quan in Đồng Hới city
This is the symbol of Quảng Bình
 province in central Vietnam.
Tuesday 27 January 2009 - At 6:30am, a mini bus came to pick me up at my guest house in Lao Bảo town. As I was back in Vietnam via the Lao - Viet border crossing too late the day before, I decided to stay overnight in Lao Bảo border town and next day I would get a bus from Lao Bảo - Khe Sanh - Đông Hà - Đồng Hới, where I would fly back home in Hanoi.

It was the second day of the lunar New Year (Tết) and still early, so we saw only two people on the street in Lao Bảo town. I was the first person in the mini bus, but the driver picked up more people on the way. We passed by Khe Sanh which is a small town, about 20km away from Lao Bảo border gate. This used to be the bloodiest battle field in early 1968 during the American war. At a crossing in the town, there is a memorial statue of the Vietnamese soldiers and the driver said Khe Sanh museum was on that direction. I visited Khe Sanh museum and Tà Kơn airport on DMZ tour in September2000 and it was still one of the most interesting places in Vietnam that I've been to.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

China told to stop illegal activities on Truong Sa

HA NOI (VNS) - Viet Nam urgently requests China to immediately end its construction projects on the Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago and refrain from illegal activities in the future.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Le Hai Binh. — VNA/VNS Photo Lam Khanh
Foreign Ministry Spokesman Le Hai Binh made the request yesterday in response to China's illegal construction projects on Chu Thap (Cross) Rocks, part of Viet Nam's Truong Sa archipelago.
"Viet Nam has full legal and historical evidence proving its sovereignty over the archipelagos of Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa," he said.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

9 The most Popular Vegetables in Vietnam

Vietnam is well known as a paradise of delicious dishes. Unlike English, Vietnamese prefers to eat vegetable rather than eat meat. makes a list of popular vegetable in Vietnam for tourists to consult when visiting our country.

1. Water spinach- Morning glory ( rau muống)

Water spinach is the most common vegetable in Vietnam as the tropical climate creates favorable conditions for its growth and the veggie does not require much care. Used to be known as rustic veggie of the poor, water spinach has become an intergal ingredient in

Some Vietnamese cuisines such as sauteed garlic spinach. In the south, morning glory is often chopped into thin chips and eaten raw as salad or verved with many kinds of noodles. For most Vietnamese, water spinach is considered as important as rice in their daily meals.

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