Whether you've just begun planning your next trip to Vietnam, or you're chasing down specific info on currency regulations or visa requirements, check out Vietnam Royal Tourism Online for up-to-the minute travel information.
Money changers are usually in most guest houses and banks, and they give bad rates. Don't exchange money from the black market people on the streets. The best place to exchange money is at Ha Trung road and Hang Bac where they give real good rates. Just walk into the gold shops or jewellery shops and ask them if they change money and ask to show their rates. Ask up to nearly 5 or more shops to see which shop gives the best rates. Best rates are at Ha Trung which is 4 to 5 mins walk from hoan kiem lake.
ATMs are everywhere and cash is king here. There is a transaction limit (2,000,000 dong). For a higher transaction limit (4,000,000 dong) try the ANZ and Techcombank. The Techcombank SE of the Hoa Lo Prison allows transactions of at least 7 mil (didn't try more than this, so try starting as high as possible, maybe 20 mil?). Many places will accept USD as well.
Check exchange rates daily. Jewellery shops will consistently offer a better rate than banks or hotels.
Hang Da. A 6-story building to house the market is currently under construction; all the kiosks are now located in the neighboring area, either on Phung Hung (second-hand clothing), Duong Thanh or Ly Nam De streets. They offer everything that one can think of, from pets, groceries, prepared food to fabric materials.
Cho Hom (the equivalent meaning in English would be Noon Market but the translation is not close), Pho Hue. They offer everything here. What it is famous for is the fabric market on the second floor. There are many kiosks selling different types of fabrics ranging from cheap, affordable to very good quality with a high price. However, please bear in mind that when shopping, take your time. Never rush into buying anything. Sellers often give a very high price that you can bargain down to half or one-third of the original price.
Dong Xuan. Famous for being the market for wholesalers. They have from school supplies, stuffed animals to clothing. It is quite an experience to spend some time in the market observing the sellers and buyers.
Night Market. Usually opens from 7PM, this unique market gathers on a walking street in the old quarter. Has anything from pirated DVD to traditional ornaments. Prices are negotiable but watch out for the "foreigner pricing" which is fairly common.
Bookworm Hanoi, 44 Chau Long (Hanoi Cooking Center), ☎ 043 715 3711, 0912561800, . New and used books.
Vietnamese society has undergone a profound transition in the past decademore info
Vietnam has a history as rich and evocative as anywhere on the planetmore info
Vietnam Food & Drink
The Hill Tribes