Christmas in Hanoi

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Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi
November 6th 2013
Published: December 22nd 2008
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Christmas is not a big event in Vietnam and Hanoi in particular, but it’s getting more attention nowadays, especially from the young people. The only place in Hanoi where you can feel Christmas atmosphere is the St Joseph’s Cathedral (built in 1886). A few days before the event, the cathedral is beautifully decorated. In the evening of 24th December the streets around the cathedral are blocked off, so we only can walk into the area. It’s very crowded by mid night, as many people try to get inside the cathedral. The 5-star hotels in Hanoi also organize Christmas parties. Children at some orphanages and charity centers also celebrate the event with presence of western volunteers.

There are shops on Lương Văn Can street in the Old Quarter that sell Santa Claus outfits and Christmas decorations. Many families in Hanoi have started gift delivery services for their children. It's so funny seeing Vietnamese boys dressed like Santa either riding on a motorbike (with helmets) or running through the streets. They sometimes get caught in traffic and arrive late at their destination. Children in Hanoi like others in different countries cannot wait for Santa to arrive on Christmas day.

In general, Christmas atmosphere is quiet here in Hanoi, while it’s more exciting in Sài Gòn. My cousin emailed me and said the streets and shops there are nicely decorated. Only Christians and people working for some western organizations can take holiday at Christmas, while we still work as usual.

The photos in this blog were taken at the St Joseph's Cathedral, the 5-star Sofitel Metropole Hotel, the Vincom City Towers and some shops in Hanoi. You can see beautiful grottoes at the gate and on the right side of the St Joseph's Cathedral. Some years there's no decoration on the front side, but a grotto is set up at the rear of the cathedral. Some fashion fairs are open at the parks and exhibition centers in Hanoi that attracts visit of many people.

Additional photos below
Photos: 38, Displayed: 23


The 5-star Sofitel Metropole HotelThe 5-star Sofitel Metropole Hotel
The 5-star Sofitel Metropole Hotel

Some years ago this hotel decorated a Santa Claus riding a buffalo.
Decoration at St Joseph's CathedralDecoration at St Joseph's Cathedral
Decoration at St Joseph's Cathedral

I was wearing a violet traditional dress Áo Dài.
My niece at Vincom Center - December 2014My niece at Vincom Center - December 2014
My niece at Vincom Center - December 2014

She is standing next to Santa's mail box.
Christmas cake in my family (2012)Christmas cake in my family (2012)
Christmas cake in my family (2012)

I bought this cake and enjoyed it with my family. My nephew and niece really liked it.
On Lương Văn Can streetOn Lương Văn Can street
On Lương Văn Can street

The board means "Xmas gift delivery service".
At the Vincom City TowersAt the Vincom City Towers
At the Vincom City Towers

Two children wearing like Santa went to this place with their parents for taking photos. There are many children in Hanoi who also wear like Santa.
St Joseph's Cathedral at Xmas 2008St Joseph's Cathedral at Xmas 2008
St Joseph's Cathedral at Xmas 2008

This year there's no decoration on the front side of the cathedral. At Xmas 2006 and 2007, there were beautiful grottoes at its gate and on the right side.
St Joseph's Cathedral St Joseph's Cathedral
St Joseph's Cathedral

At the rear of the cathedral on the way to the grotto.

24th December 2008

Nice Pictures
Your blog is very good and I always look forward to reading them and seeing your pictures. I can't wait to return to Vietnam again this summer. Merry Christmas and a very good New Years to you and your Family. Keep up the great blogging.

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