Hoan Kiem Lake

Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi

Are you planning to visit the Hoan Kiem Lake? See our information below!


The main attraction in the city is undoubtedly the Hoan Kiem Lake. The lake is a central point in Hanoi and is a popular meeting place for locals and tourists throughout the day. The name Hoan Kiem Lake means ‘Reclaimed Sword’ and refers to a legend from the 15th century. It is said that Lê Loi, who later became emperor, received a sword from heaven with which he drove the Chinese out of Vietnam.

The Ngoc Son Temple is located on a small island in the middle of the lake. In the same leek near to the Ngoc Son Temple you can see an even smaller island with a pagoda in the lake. In that pagoda you can see a turtle that was taken from the lake in 1963. According to the scholar, this turtle was 500 years old, but the locals still believe that the turtle lives in the lake.

Opening hours:

Hoan Kiem Lake is an open lake that can be visited 24 hours every day of the year. Around sunrise and sunset, this area is especially busy with joggers, couples enjoying the relaxing view of the lake, and the elderly practicing Tai Chi and line dancing.

Photographer: Đoàn Thảo by Unsplash

Tips and Tricks!

Here are a few tips worth knowing before you visit the Hoan Kiem Lake.

  • Head to Hoan Kiem Lake at sunrise to watch the sun rise over the misty waters. Sit among the trees and watch the locals enjoy their morning tai chi or yoga.
Photographer: Elliot Andrews by Unsplash

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