Cyclo Tour and Water Puppet Show – It’s worth taking a cyclo for an hour or so at the start of a visit to Hanoi. Some will say walking is better, but I think the perspective you get from a cyclo ride is worth seeing — plus it’s far easier to look around and take photos if you’re not watching where you’re walking the whole time. Of course, if you want to explore and investigate the back alleys and stop off here and there, that’s not possible on a cyclo, but an introductory ride will help you get your bearings.
Originally inspired by Japanese rickshaws pulled by strong arms, the trishaw made its debut in Hanoi under the French colonial period.
Visit Hanoi by cyclo to dive in the soul of Hanoi. This "authentic" way allow visitors discover the city centre in intense emotions. It's like you are in the centre of a whirlwind of movement, wrapped in a cacophony of horns and the bustle of people who trying to make their way in the middle of all this excitement.
This is another interesting point of view letting you catch scenes of daily life of city, traders, small restaurants, side walks… They are a feast for eyes (dazzled by all these colors), nose (surprised by the spicy flavours of Asia) and ears (to whom are not used to noise and Vietnamese language) ...
It is not easy for a particular vehicle to exist, to be honoured and loved for generations. However, a rudimentary and simple cyclo in Vietnam has done it!
It is just simple and ordinary as its appearance. No noisy sound from engines, no obscure smoke and no spending too much for commuting.
From a long time, Vietnamese people have thought of the cyclo as a familiar means of transport when going out. It is not only close-knit to Vietnamese but also strongly connected with foreigners as all of them are attracted by this unique means at first sight visiting Vietnam.
Under the sweltering sunlight, the cyclo driver bends his back over his vehicle. That heavy cycling makes sweat roll down his cheeks.
Despite the hard work, he does not want to say farewell to the old cycle for a more modern, newer vehicle. This is because the cyclo has become an indispensable part of his family.
Not only do the Vietnamese feel close to cyclo, but foreigners are also impressed by this unique vehicle. You will be surely fond of sitting on a cyclo touring around Restored Sword Lake or along the streets at sunset.
You can take a full view of Vietnam’s water and mountains into your eyes and minds.
Besides, you can traverse shady streets perfumed with the scent of Hanoi flowers or take dreamy and peaceful photos in the ancient citadel.
Water puppetry rooted in the course of confronting with the nature disasters which usually threatened the people in this area. Water-one of the most four dangerous disasters: Water, Fire, Robbery, Invaders-was made useful to the wet-rice growing.
This unique art is the achievement of Vietnamese creation, which reflects the lifestyle, behaviour, and the attitude to Gods, nature and human beings.
Vietnamese culture had the origin and identity that arises and developed on the basis of the civilization of water rice agriculture, the cradle of the cultivation. The perfect harmony between human beings and nature created an agriculture foundation with the community settled into villages thousands years ago. From wet-rice cultivation, the habitants invented the wet-rice civilization, Red Rive Delta civilization. This age-old Vietnamese civilization leaded to the stable village tradition and customs, human and nature.
The technique used in wet-rice cultivation and other supplementary works related to it as well as the culture was like a bridge, which created a combination between human beings and nature. They contributed important parts in establishing water puppetry art. Living together with water, Vietnamese people combined farming with fishing, made boats become the main transportation and the most effective means used in wars. Those images were created on Bronze Drums. Vietnamese people tried to control the Red Rive and built huge dam system. In this time, many legends were made up such as Son Tinh-Thuy Tinh legend, an immortal heroic epic.
Water-stage used in puppetry art performances is a special thing of water puppetry art. Water is not only a place for puppets but also an intelligent, resonant and symbiosis element. Water hinders then supports and co-operates with puppets. Water is both performance stage and the wizard with much magic in the puppetry art. Water puppets are seemed to be simple and rough sculpture-works, solid lines, poor colour, and zigzag movements. However, they evoke the general conception of human beings and other things to the spectators. The liquid feature and reflection of water creates the fickle. Water stage mirrors the sky, clouds, trees, sights, changes unpredictably. This makes it become an idea background for puppet-characters to perform. From this "mirror", everything becomes sparkle, flexible, changeable in front of the spectators’ eyes. The simple and rough of line and colour of puppets’ movements become alive and lively. Water hides behind every secret of puppetry art. The spectators see puppets appear and then is appeared, hear softer and more flexible sound of drums, firecrackers.
When watching water puppetry shows, the spectators sat outdoors, commuted with nature. Everything here was so real and sensitive. Among these everyday-life-popular things, water puppetry was the most prominent. Its beauty was as the brilliant moon in the sky at night and expresses the creation of Vietnamese people, praised the victory of the combat against nature.Water puppetry is both real and unreal; not only stage but also life, familiar with Vietnamese people such as banyan trees (cay da), ferry (con do), folk songs. Water puppetry stage is a place for festivals, preserving many folk art creations, age-old technology, and spiritual life of Vietnam wet-rice growing during the establishment of the country thousands years ago.
Departs at point of meeting, with one-hour cyclo trip around the Old Quarter streets: expect to visit Hang Bac, Ma May, Hang Ma and the other usual suspects. To get a bit more variety ask to include a ride around Hoan Kiem Lake and over to the Opera House and past the Sofitel Metropole — that should be feasible in an hour.
Three hours Street food Walking Tour :
Walking through the maze of bustling streets that make up Hanoi’s Old Quarter, we tempt our taste buds with the famed Hanoi dishes such as ,Bun Rieu Cua, Banh Goi, Banh Cuon at a local eatery. Watch in awe as the skilled chefs demonstrate for you how this tasty dish is put together. Continuing into the atmospheric heart of the Old Quarter, we wander past street stalls and quiet residential lanes where you can observe local life that has changed little since Hanoi was founded over 1000 years ago.
Our next two snack stops are at outdoor barbecue stalls. We sit down with the Hanoi locals and sample various meat, vegetable and bread specialities that are flame grilled over hot coals for extra flavour. It’s then time for dessert as we venture down a small alley to join in the local tradition of feasting on fresh fruit served in a cup and smothered with crushed iced and condensed milk – this speciality is one not to be missed! Your local guide will then take you to one of Hanoi’s best kept secrets, a hidden café to taste Egg Coffee . This hard-to-find café is one of the few left in the city that still serves egg coffee, a scrumptious local delicacy that we will sample whilst admiring the hustle and bustle of the city centre below. Or, if coffee is not your style, a cold beer awaits!. At the end of the street food walking tour in front of Water Puppet Theatre to watch an hour puppet show. Trip ended.