MangoVine
Adventures in East Asia

Entries in Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh Museum in Hanoi
The Ho Chi Minh Museum is the final place we visit whilst in the Ho Chi Minh complex. The museum was built in the shape of a white lotus flower, which is nearly 20m high and includes 3 floors.

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The ground floor houses a conference hall whereas the main exhibition area of the museum is on the second floor covering an area of nearly 4,000 square metres.

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Mini One Pillar Pagoda
The One-Pillar Pagoda is also within the Ho Chi Minh complex in Hanoi, at the back of the Mausoleum. It's an ancient pagoda first built in 1049 under the Ly Dynasty and which has the shape of a lotus blooming on its stem.

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There's an interesting legend referring to the construction of the pagoda whereupon King Ly Thanh Tong had a dream about this lotus shaped construction. When he had it constructed, he was "rewarded" with a son.

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Ho Chi Minh’s Stylish Wooden House on Stilts
Next to the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi, are the grounds which form the complex that the Vietnamese President worked in from 1954 to 1969. That's just 15 years, yet even today, the place was packed out with visitors and we were frequently slowed by the pace of the queue when it passed through some of the features.

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We entered the grounds straight from the Mausoleum and the first building we see - albeit from a distance - is the impressively official looking and European-styled French Colonial President Palace.

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The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi
The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is a large memorial to the Vietnamese leader in Hanoi, Vietnam. It is located in the centre of Ba Dinh Square, the place where Ho read the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945, establishing the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.

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This was our first early morning stop on our last day in Hanoi, since the mausoleum is only open before noon to the public. We were told that basically, you get to go inside and see what is apparently, Ho Chi Minh's body preserved in a dimly lit glass case, in the cooled, central hall of the mausoleum.

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Traditional Vietnamese Water Puppet Show in Hanoi
One thing on our list to do in Vietnam was to see a traditional water puppet show and we did this in Hanoi at the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre - along with all the other tourists! The place is opposite the Hoan Kiem Lake and at showtime in the evening, seemed to draw in the tourists like moths to a flame.

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However, all the seats were bought earlier in the day - as we were advised to by our guide - as all the shows (several performances a day) frequently sell out. We booked two of the 60,000 VND (£2.50) around 5pm for the 9.15pm showing and half the seats were already booked. We knew because we could choose where we wanted to sit and the front half of the seats were all taken up.

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