8:30am, ready to start the tour. Firstly visit Ho Chi Minh Complex; Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum, his house on stilts, the botanical garden and the Presidential Palace while learning about his life and revolutionary activities. This used to be the residence of the Governor of Indochina. After 1954 it was named the Presidential Palace and became the place where Ho Chi Minh lived and worked until he passed away in 1969.
On the way out visit the One Pillar Pagoda. The pagoda was constructed in 1049 by King Ly Thai Tong according to his dream of Bodhisattva sitting on a lotus flower and leading him to the pagoda. In 1954, the pagoda was destroyed by the French before their withdrawal. After taking over the city on October 10th 1954, Vietnam Ministry of Culture restored the pagoda. The pagoda of today remains since this restoration.
Around 11:00am arrive at the Temple of Literature. This is the combination of the Confucius Temple which was built in 1070 and the first Royal National university in Vietnam built 6 years later in 1076. Considered as 'an escape' from the bustling city, this temple and its beautiful garden provides an opportunity to learn more about education in Vietnam since 1000 years ago until recent times.
12:00am, enjoy a delicious lunch in local restaurant with traditional local Vietnamese Cuisines.
13.00am, continue to visit more interesting museums. There are some options that you can chose from such as the Ethnology Museum, the Museum of Vietnamese History the Hoa Lo Prison Museum, the Military Museum, the Women's Museum and the Art Museum.
Located west of the city centre, all of the museums offer informative and well-documented displays of country's heritage.
15:30pm, visit Hoan Kiem Lake (Restored Sword lake) and Ngoc Son Temple. Situated in the heart of Hanoi, the lake got its name according to a national legend. In the 15th century during the Ming Chinese invasion, general Le Loi was presented with a holy sword. With the help of this sword he expelled the Chinese from Thang Long, Hanoi and proclaimed himself king Le Thai To. One day, when the king was sailing on the lake, suddenly a golden turtle emerged from the water and claimed back the sword which had been believed to have been given to him by God. Since then, the lake has been known as Ho Hoan Kiem or the lake of the Restored Sword.
On as island in the northern part of the lake stands Ngoc Son or Jade Mountain temple, one of the most beautiful and important religious sites in the capital. The temple was established by a mandarin named Nguyen Van Sieu and is dedicated to the spirits of the soil, medicine, literature, and also to Tran Hung Dao, the general who defeated the Mongols in the 13th century.
Note: Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum and Museum is closed on Monday and Friday so there will be other alternative options