West Lake in Hanoi


  • Location: Ba Dinh District, Hanoi 100000, Vietnam
  • Recommended reason:the largest freshwater lake in Hanoi
  • Entrance Ticket: Free
  • Opening hours: All day


West Lake

West Lake, or Ho Tay Lake, is the largest freshwater lake in Hanoi, Vietnam, which enjoys the reputation of “the most beautiful scenic spot in Hanoi”. It is one of the most popular places for outdoor recreation in the Vietnamese capital.


West Lake Facts

West Lake, covering an area of 500 hectares, a shore length of 17 km and about 18 kilometers in circumference, is located in the northwest of Hanoi city. It was originally a section of the Red River. After the river was diverted, the water inflow formed the West Lake. You can easily accessible to other well-known attractions in Hanoi from West Lake. The most famous lake – Hoan Kiem Lake is located just about 2.5 KM from the west lake. Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is just 1 KM from the southern part of the lake.


West Lake Legend

There are many kinds of legends about the West Lake. One of the interesting legends go like this: In ancient times, there were two fairies in the sky who came to earth secretly. Fearing to violate the rules of heaven, they did not dare to stay on earth for a long time. On their return to heaven, each of them threw down a dressing mirror from the clouds as a souvenir. Two mirrors fell on Hangzhou in China and Hanoi in Vietnam, and they became two beautiful "West Lakes".


West Lake Attractions 

West Lake

As early as Ly Dynasty, West Lake has become a famous spot in Hanoi. Since the beginning of the Ly and Chen dynasties, many temples and palaces have been built around the West Lake. The eastern shore of the lake now has become a high-end residential area where foreigners and wealthy Hanoi people live, but the lake is also dotted with historical attractions. The oldest pagoda Tran Quoc Pagoda, the Taoist temple Quan Thanh Temple and one of the oldest school Chu Van An High School are located close to the west lake.


Next to the West Lake, there are 13 large villas and modern hotels that are good places for tourists to avoid summer heat and enjoy the beautiful scenery. Besides, modern water theme park, Saturday flea market, restaurants, cafes and bars are easily available. When it comes to dining options, the southern part of West Lake is the place to go for seafood bites, with a whole street dedicated to local seafood restaurants.


Top Things to do in West Lake

Cycling around West Lake

As Hanoi's largest lake, located right in the center of Hanoi, here are some entertainments that enable to you have a good time at west lake. Over the last couple of years, cycling around West Lake has become a trend for enthusiasts and visitors alike. The distance of about 18 kilometers is not too short, nor too long. Cycling not only can exercise, but also enjoy the fresh air by the lake. It takes an average of an hour and a half to completely circle the lake. Cycling in the early mornings or late afternoons allows you to beat the heat.


Go for a stroll

West Lake

If you like to enjoy the scenery, you can depart from the Youth Road on the east bank of the West Lake, which is one of the most beautiful streets in Hanoi, with wide sidewalks and evergreen trees. You can see the soft sunset through the leaves of the roadside trees sprinkled on the lake.


Appreciate the lotus flower

In addition, you can also look at the lotus pond by the lake and enjoy the vast turquoise waters. In the summer, when the lotus blooms, it is an ideal place to take pictures, and is very popular among young friends. The attractive water sports and entertainment at West Lake Water Park will surely bring you happy moments. Renting Duck Pedal Boats are the perfect idea for you and that special someone you want to impress while enjoying West Lake.


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