Cafe Pho Co was recommended as a must visit cafe by a friend living in Hanoi. It's a bit difficult to find at first, as you don't see any signs for it on the upper floors of the building and you have to walk through a small silk shop to access it. Once you walk through though, you enter an open, and much older style courtyard with plants and bird cages and parked motorbikes. You'll place your order at the counter then walk up a few flights of winding stairs to get to the rooftop where you'll be rewarded with a lovely view of Hoan Kiem Lake and enjoy a nice coffee.
If you haven't tried a Vietnamese egg coffee, this is a good spot. I think the egg coffees at Giang Cafe #39 are better but you sacrifice having a view like this! Another spot with a good vantage point of the lake is Highland Cafe, which is a short walk from Cafe Pho Co but it's a commercial chain, which may detract from the overall coffee experience....just depends on what you are looking for.
Even if you aren't crazy about coffee drinking, this cafe is iconic and the design and old architecture alone are reason enough to stop by.
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