What are the best things to do and see with kids in Hanoi?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Libby Lowe

From water puppet shows to water park rides, here are our Forbes Travel Guide editors’ recommendations for some of the best things to do with kids in Hanoi:
1. Thang Long Water Puppetry Theatre. A delight for kids and adults alike, the cultural shows at Thang Long Water Puppetry Theatre feature a mesmerizing mix of singing, drumming and puppetry depicting rural life and ancient Vietnamese legends. It’s highlighted by lots of vibrant colors sure to keep kids tuned in from beginning to end.
2. Museum of Ethnology. A visit to this museum gives kids another chance to learn about the local culture and country’s minority tribes while traipsing around traditional Vietnamese houses spread out along the grounds. Admission for kids under the age of six is free.
3. Cyclo Ride. Vietnam’s famous three-wheeled bicycle taxis have essentially been replaced by motorbikes and other quicker ways of getting around town, but rides around Hanoi’s Old Quarter in a two-seater cyclo are still a lot of fun. Before you or your child hops into the cyclo, however, it’s essential that you first negotiate the journey’s cost with your driver — if you don’t you’ll be grossly overcharged afterwards. In general, the initial asking price will be at least double what you should pay after bargaining.
4. Ho Tay Water Park. Located on the West Lake shore about 20 minutes from the city center, Ho Tay Water Park is a great place for everyone in the family to cool off on a hot day. Here you’ll find a lazy floating river, water slides, swimming pools and areas for younger kids. The facilities are adequate, but they do feel a bit worn and dated.
5. Halong Bay. Kids will be fascinated by the dreamy karst-filled landscape of Halong Bay, which is located about three hours north of the city. In addition to cruising around the bay on a boat tour, during your visit you can also see massive illuminated caves, such as Sung Sot on Bo Hon Island. Plan on staying in Halong Bay overnight; Emeraude Classic Cruises is one recommended luxury cruise provider that offers two-day, one-night packages that include posh accommodations and a host of onboard activities.

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