When in Hanoi, do as the Vietnamese do and celebrate with the locals on Vietnam National Day.
- When? 2nd September 2017
- Where? Hanoi
- Price: Free
It might not be to everyone's taste donning a T-shirt with the flag of the country you're visiting on it (it usually screams t-shirt-loving tourist). Yet on National Day in Vietnam, proudly parading around in red with a bright yellow star beaming across your chest will guarantee you fit right in.
September 2nd marks a national holiday in Vietnam and their declaration of independence from France. In WWII the country became occupied by the Japanese and following the August Revolution, the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam) was formed on the 2nd September 1945. Although it wasn't until 1976 that the two halves of the country were united, September 2nd still remains an important date that marked a significant cultural change in Vietnam.
In Hanoi there is mass celebration with parades, fireworks and entertainment across the city. One of the biggest attractions on the day is the march in Ba Dinh Square where the declaration of independence was made, while boat races also take place on Hoan Kiem Lake. Most of the major roads in Hanoi are closed so it can be difficult to travel through the city at this time if you aren't joining in on the National Day celebrations. You'd be a fool to miss it, National Day is the best way to experience the spirit of Vietnam and it's patriotic people.
If you're not feeling the tourist t-shirt go buy yourself a flag down at the market and wave it high for some brownie points from the locals.
- Get there: Try and arrive in the city a few days before National Day or you'll struggle to get around. Fly to Noi Bai International Airport (HAN) and take a taxi to the city centre.
- Stay: Find somewhere to stay near Ba Dinh Square if you want to be close to the heart of the festivities (not too close though, you'll be wanting to sleep at some point).
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