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Hoan Kiem Lake

  • Sight: Hoan Kiem Lake
  • Type: Lakes, rivers & waterfalls
  • Location:Hanoi - Vietnam
  • Address: Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Việt Nam
  • Opening hours: All day

Legend claims in the mid-15th century Heaven sent Emperor Ly Thai To a magical sword, which he used to drive the Chinese from Vietnam. After the war a giant golden turtle grabbed the sword and disappeared into the depths of this lake to restore the sword to its divine owners, inspiring the name Ho Hoan Kiem (Lake of the Restored Sword). Every morning at around 6am local residents practise traditional t’ai chi on the shore.

The ramshackle Thap Rua , on an islet near the southern end, is topped with a red star and is often used as an emblem of Hanoi.


Tips And Reviews

189 Tips and reviews
- Mar, 25, 2013 -

5 B

Must go place in Hanoi,nice view,should try to walk around the lake by day & by night,always wonderful.If Hanoi is the heart of Vietnam,so this lake is the heart of Hanoi

- Jun, 01, 2016 -

Simple Discoveries

Take a stroll at dusk and again in the morning. Watch how the locals come alive around 6am as some come to exercise and dance near by. Plenty of good eats near the lake too.

- Feb, 05, 2014 -

Louis P

Famous lake in Hanoi. You can run around lake to enjoy Hanoi. Don't miss try cycling around West lake. That's great.

- Aug, 06, 2018 -


Scenic & popular spot for locals & travellers. Area comes alive during evening where abundant activities start. Catch the famous water puppet show & enjoy Cafe Giang’s egg coffee ☕️ nearby.

- Oct, 11, 2018 -

Shane M

Beautiful and active place particularly at night. Take your dancing shoes to join in the group dancing or simply sit by the lake with your favourite food and drink and enjoy to atmosphere.

- Jan, 25, 2018 -

Ashley D

Great to wander around here, especially on the weekends when the roads are closed. Local Vietnamese come to hang out with their friends and family so it’s great to people watch. Must see area

- Oct, 08, 2019 -


Very green lake in the heart of Hanoi. Legend tells that once upon a time a golden turtle came out of the water and took a holy sword back. There is also a temple for a general emperor on an island.

- Jun, 05, 2019 -

Adam S

Gorgeous spot in the middle of Old Quarter. Go out early in the morning before it gets too hot and you’ll see all kinds of exercising and activities. It’s almost exactly a one mile loop if you run it.

- Jul, 17, 2019 -

Cenker K

Hoan Kiem=Returning Sword Lake: Legend says that, a holy turtle lived here gave a sword to the King. After the King won the battle, turtle took back the sword and dive into the lake and disappear.

- Jan, 15, 2015 -

Bang G

It takes 30 mins to go around the lake you can't help but stop and take a photo because of the scenic view. Surrounding the lake are benches, a resto and bar, souvenir stores, gym, a playground, etc.

- Recommended Hanoi Day Trips -

Hanoi City Day Tour


Trang An Eco – Hoa Lu 1 Day Tour


Hanoi Fabulous Food Day Tour

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