5 amazing cafés in Hanoi
August 30, 2019
When one comes to Hanoi, Vietnam, city tours usually cover the most famous landmarks with traditional values. What the tours do not usually offer, however, is a selection of coffee shops for resting after long distances and enjoying the atmosphere. There are many cafés or beverage chains available, such as The Coffee House or Highlands Coffee. Such types of coffee shops can be found almost anywhere, but if one favors cafés that are unique yet not too expensive, only a few are qualified.
As a local with a heart for cozy cafés, I have been searching and found five amazing locations, suitable for both locals and travelers. The list isn’t in any particular order, and these shops might not be the top 5 of all, but pay each a visit if you have a chance!
Tranquil Books & Coffee
- 5 Nguyễn Quang Bích street, Hoàn Kiếm district, Hanoi
- 15B Trần Hưng Đạo street, Hoàn Kiếm district, Hanoi
- 18B Nguyễn Biểu street, Ba Đình district, Hanoi
At Tranquil Books n Coffee, there is a wide selection of books to choose from, a strong enough wifi connection and calm ambiance for working or entertaining. It’s also a plus point that all the branches are located somewhere downtown Hanoi (central districts)! The only problem I find with this café is the price of beverages – rather high in comparison to the quality and the variety of the menu.
- 13 alley (ngõ) 19, Đặng Dung street, Ba Đình district, Hanoi
If you’re a nature lover or an environmental activist, this cafe is definitely for you! This is where you can find eco-friendly goods at an acceptable price and many fun offers (such as riding a bicycle for a discount). This cafe has been hosting many social events, not just limited to environmental ones. This is also a verified LGBT+ friendly avenue with rules against homophobia and discrimination!
This well-decorated space serves surprisingly good drinks with an average price! What a bargain! From simple coffee to sophisticated herbal tea, the scent and taste of the drinks themselves encourage customers to concentrate on their business and enjoy the moment. Let’s also not forget what plenty of books there is! I, as a bookworm, never seem to notice the lack of books in any category. If only the upper floor wasn’t burning up during scorching Hanoian summer days, the place would be perfect.
- 1 alley (ngõ) 4, Phạm Ngọc Thạch street, Đống Đa district, Hanoi
- 60s Thổ Quan, Đống Đa district, Hanoi
KoFi is one of those cafés in which you find great beverages for a fine price. What really makes KoFi stand out is the decoration and the atmosphere. The vintage arrangement and colors bring me back to the old times, which is calm and opposite to all the Hanoian noises. KoFi is cozy like a small home, not just thanks to the decors but also because of the people. Everyone treats each other like a close friend, customers and staff alike.
There aren’t any books at KoFi, for this is just a typical café. However, KoFi offers another type of entertainment which is live music. Musical events are usually hosted, with Vietnamese indie artists invited.
- 60s Thổ Quan, Đống Đa district, Hanoi
If 60s Thổ Quan sounds familiar, it’s because you’ve just seen it above as one of KoFi’s addresses! In this “quarter”, there is also a famous venue called Cầm. Cầm is known mostly for the ambiance and is the spot for gatherings of indie musicians. This is the perfect place to enjoy or practice music and to befriend those of the same interest. Regular singing sessions take place here too!
The café has a casual vibe, where everyone can communicate with another. One could describe its atmosphere and its way of functioning as “indie”, suitable for those who would prefer a change. The price of beverages is acceptable, though it takes a long while for drinks to be served.
Ơ Zone Films, Art and Coffee
- 33 alley (ngõ) 36 Hoàng Ngọc Phách street, Đống Đa district, Hanoi
Ơ Zone is one of the bigger coffee shops with 4 floors, easy to be found on the street. In this spacious cafe, one can find spots to rest in quietude or seats for talkative gatherings. It is an open space where you could do any activity. The strongest point of this cafe is the fact that you can capture wonderful pictures from every corner, since Ơ Zone is designed to be illuminated with sunlight. If you love film photography, there is X-Lab and Tiệm máy ảnh Đông Dương (Indochina camera store) that could meet your demands.
I wouldn’t recommend Ơ Zone for those who want absolute tranquility. However, this is an amazing venue to hang out with a group of friends or to participate in events. The staff here are also very nice and friendly!
As you might have figured, most of the coffee shops above situate in central districts, which would be far away if you live somewhere on the outskirts. Nevertheless, for travelers who mostly visit the old quarters and historical heritages which are also located downtown, these cafés are close by and definitely worth a visit!
I hope this list of five amazing venues would satisfy your love for beverages and a nice atmosphere. Leave a comment telling me your thoughts if you have dropped by any of them, or if you have other recommendations!