A look back at Hanoi City Walk: Imperial Citadel of Thang Long

Saturday 7th saw an amazing journey around Thang Long citadel with Mr. Alvaro Grana, an experienced guide from Friends of Vietnam Heritage (FVH).

This walk allowed us an opportunity to learn about the hidden stories of the Citadel – a place seemed familiar to many. Do you know that Lenin Garden used to be a lake for elephant-bathing? Or there was a moat surrounding Thang Long citadel? The reason why the dragon statures on top of the structure have their heads turned inwards? Or that those five-claw dragons were a bold response to the symbol of Chinese emperors?

Not only Vietnam’s feudal era, but its two modern wars were also mentioned during the walk. In the military operation bunker underground, the relics hold proof of the Vietnamese’ glorious fight.

Among the walk participants were expats coming from various countries – Germany, Australia, South Korea, and more. Some have stayed in Hanoi for 8 years, some was only here for 2 months, yet no matter who we are – long-time residents or newcomers, Vietnamese or foreigner, we all came to better understand and adore the beauty and Vietnam’s heritages after the journey.


Đinh Nguyen