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Where to stay in Hanoi

Making it easy to choose the neighborhood that suits your needs the most.
Old Quarter
Central Bus
With 36 streets all named after the product or material they sell, Old Quarter is the lively commercial hub and heart of the town, and also where you'll find the most backpackers and tourists. During the day you can meander through endless markets, street food stalls and hip cafes, with many buildings hiding interior courtyards. Nighttime finds a lot of cheap drinks and accessible revelry, with stools, small tables and mixed crowds of locals and visitors alike spilling out onto the sidewalks.
French Quarter
Central Bus
Lots of French Colonial architecture, embassies and historical buildings, as well as boutiques, bookshops and cafes. Many foreign dignitaries stay in this area in posh hotels, so it also has upscale nightlife.
Dong Da
Close to center Bus
There are several universities here, which means cheap accommodation can be found. It's also very dense with locals so be prepared for crowds and minimal English. Hit Chua Boc street for lots of cheap and delicious eateries, including street food.
Hai Ba Trung
Close to center Bus
Quieter but still bustling area south of Old Quarter, full of co-working spots and parks.
Ba Dinh
Close to center Bus
Ba Dinh is considered the political center of Vietnam and has lots of historical sites, including the Imperial Citadel and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum. It's less hectic than Old Quarter and has a more local crowd, though you'll still find plenty of expats and tourist friendly spots. Check Truc Bach for cool cafes.
Tay Ho
Central Bus
This district is full of expats and pricey rents, but it's where you'll also find lots of Western amenities including upscale gyms and restaurants. It has a lot of historical sites as well.