When in Hanoi, bun cha – a dish comprising charcoal-grilled fatty pork served with white rice noodles, herbs and dipping sauce – is a must-try, and you can’t do any better than Bun Cha Huong Lien. Don’t let the eatery’s nondescript interior fool you – former US president Barack Obama himself dined here with celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain when they visited the Vietnamese capital in 2016.
Ca phe trung – or egg coffee – can be found in many coffeeshops around Hanoi these days, but the family behind Café Giang claims to have invented the local speciality way back in the 1940s. Here, the beverage is made with egg, coffee powder, condensed milk, cheese, and butter – along with a few secret ingredients – resulting in a rich, creamy yet well-balanced concoction.
If you’re an early riser, join locals as they brisk-walk, jog, or do tai chi around Hanoi’s peaceful Hoan Kiem Lake. If the idea of waking up at 6am is less than appealing, then head to the lake in the evening, when the illuminated Huc Bridge and Turtle Tower make for some beautiful snapshots.
When it comes to location, Somerset Grand Hanoi is hard to beat. As the serviced apartments are nestled in the heart of Hanoi’s largest commerce and business district, attractions including the Old Quarter, One Pillar Pagoda and Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre are a stone’s throw away.