The old town is the convergence of 36 bustling business streets with a thickness of nearly a thousand years of history. Each street name usually features a traditional handicraft industry such as Hang Bong, Hang Gai, Lo Ren, Hang Duong…
With an area of about 100 hectares, located in the east of the old Thang Long citadel, the Old Quarter has a quite unique architecture. Small tile-roofed houses, often with common yards, protruding from one street to another. Coming here, visitors will be attracted by the intangible cultural values with relics such as ancient temples, communal houses, temples, shrines, shops … and ethnic churches with festivals. The rich takes place annually on the streets of Hanoi Old Quarter.
According to old documents, the most crowded area of old Hanoi is Tho Xuong district (ie Hoan Kiem and Hai Ba Trung districts today) that people are known as Old Quarter. This place is a store selling or producing handicrafts crafted side by side to create rows of streets, each street sells a specific item or practice and people always take the product name to name it. city.
The streets are separated by large gates built like walls whose width covers the entire road surface. In each street, there are rows of san-like houses, which are now found in Hang Buom, Hang Bac, Hang Ngang, Hang Dao streets … It is both a residence and a shop.
Hanoi Old Quarter has managed to occupy an important position in the development history of the Capital, becoming the pride, passion and deep concern in the hearts of the people of the whole country like today, because, in Hanoi Old Quarter has been and contains a great system of historical, cultural, artistic, architectural … value.
In ancient times, along the banks of the Red River formed residential areas, gathering into small villages. In the fifth century (454 – 456), during the Northern colonial period, one of these residential areas developed into a small district called Tong Binh. Over thousands of years, from a primitive Vietnamese town with a small scale, Tong Binh has become a city of over three million people and is the center of politics, defense, culture and economy. important economy of Vietnam. From Tong Binh to Hanoi today is a complex urbanization process taking place in large space with large scale.
During the feudal period, Hanoi soon became the political center of the country when Vien Dai Cao Bien opened Dai La Thanh in 866 and housed the headquarters of the Chinese colonial government. But Hanoi only became the capital of Dai Viet in 1010, when Ly Cong Uan, aka Ly Thai To, the first king of the Ly Dynasty decided to move the capital from Hoa Lu to Dai La.
Hanoi Old Quarter is a unique architectural complex, bearing heavy Vietnamese national identity. It takes place at the same time many activities in the daily life of urban residents: living, producing goods, festivals, resting, entertainment, creating a strong vitality to the AQ. To exist forever and develop incessantly.
Under the Ly and Tran dynasties, Hanoi Old Quarter consisted of many wards out of 61 wards at that time. Under the Le Dynasty, at the beginning of the sixteenth century, Hanoi became Dong Kinh, everywhere flocked to business and commerce in 36 wards at that time, and gradually, this place is the Old Quarter today. So, along with other prominent historical factors, the Old Quarter deserves to be considered a space where one time it has shown an indelible mark on the quite comprehensive urban life of economic, social, customary, traditional.
In the history of development Hanoi welcomed foreign tourists and merchants in the seventeenth century, mostly Chinese merchants. From the end of the nineteenth century to the first half of the twentieth century, the Old Quarter of Hanoi urban structure became more dense, by the end of the nineteenth century the Kinh Thanh area had reached its natural limits, after which the opening of The width is concentrated in the direction of the core of the neighborhood, ponds, lakes, lagoons, gradually filled to build.
After the French colonialists conquered Hanoi, Hanoi’s planning began to change: The Old Quarter has many drastic changes. Streets are reshaped, with drainage systems, pavements, paved roads and lighting systems. Houses on both sides of the street built bricks and tiles. Besides the old houses with tiled roofs, the ridge of the roof has three houses with facades made in European style.
From 1954 to 1985, there was a change in the Old Town transition. Many families returning from the war zone were placed in the Old Quarter. Since then, the number of households living in each house has increased from one household to two or three households; then each household developed further in the style of four great synagogues, etc. From 1954 onwards, due to the policy of renovating private capitalist industry and commerce; production development policy, economic policy under subsidy period, the whole Old Quarter where the bustling trade became a simple residential area, the front of many houses was revised to the front of the house with doors. and windows – quieter streets; The bustle varies from place to place, from time to time, usually by the time of work shift in the morning, lunch, dinner …
Today, the old town area is taking advantage of economic development opportunities and welcomes a large number of tourists: cafes, restaurants, craft souvenir shops and small hotels. born. Walking to explore the “Old Quarter” 36 streets may be the greatest joy of tourists coming to Hanoi. In the middle of bustling Trang Tien street, there are lots of people coming to eat ice cream with a large art gallery to enjoy. Go to Hang Gai Street, through Hang Hom Street, Hang Ma, Hang Bac, Hang Buom … everywhere the shopping atmosphere is bustling, especially on weekends. If you love the legend of Che Guevara, stop by Hang Voi Street, where there is a shop called Hero Che Guevara with many souvenirs printed with Che pictures. And if you’re a book lover, take a stroll through Dinh Le Street to see how eager Hanoi is for books. And if you like the cafe style “Western” should walk along Ly Thai To Street …
On April 5, 2004, the Ministry of Culture and Information classified the Old Quarter as a National Historical Heritage.