I visited 3 places while in Vietnam, Da Nang was my first stop and Hanoi my second.
My stay was at Little Hanoi Hostel which was a nice place. They were friendly and helpful with booking stuff to do.
My first goal was to see the Water Puppet show. This is a tradition from northern Vietnam. The show is comprised of wooden puppets attached to rods under the waist deep water. The puppeteers hide behind the background or curtains to control movements. Even tho it is completely in Vietnamese I was able to visually understand the story and was able to enjoy it. This is a great art form for any age and i would defiantly go see it again if I find myself in Hanoi for another visit.
There was a typhoon that passed through Vietnam while i was there and Hanoi got hit with tremendous rain, so I ended up being rained out of some of my exploration days after the first night. I ended up in some little shop trying to wait it out- but I ended up walking barefoot through the flooded streets back to the hostel with no umbrella. It was refreshing and strangely enjoyable to just wander through the streets in the rain.
My next goal was cà phê trứng (egg coffee). I know you are giving the screen a face of disgust but let me preface this to say it wasn’t as bad as you would expect. There are a few shops around the old quarter that offer this delicacy, the most famous being Giảng Cafe. I went to Cafe Phố Cổ which over looks the lake. To make egg coffee is a talent, you need to whisk together the egg yolk and condensed milk to make a froth and slowly add brewed coffee. I was impressed but would not want to drink it daily- it is very sweet to me, but DEFIANTLY something very traditional to Vietnam to try.
Since the weather was bad, instead of doing an overnight trip- I took a day trip to Halong Bay. (side note- when visiting Halong Bay if it all possible do more than just a day trip. I spent more time in the van shuffling to and from than I actually spent on the bay). It was beautiful tho. We had lunch on the boat at the dock- saw the chicken kissing rock a cave and visited the floating fishing village. It was rushed tho, but beautiful.
My last day I wanted to make sure I had experienced as much as I could so I joined a cooking class and learned how to make vegetarian dishes at Orchid cooking school. I was picked up and we went to the market to get some ingredients and then we started cooking. If you go solo be prepared to eat a lot. I wasn’t even able to finish half of what we prepared because it was just me, but it was a lovely time.