Hanoi Nightlife: The Best Bars in Vietnam’s Capital
What is your go-to drink? Cocktails, craft beer, wine or whiskey? From wine lounges to themed bars to craft beer pubs, here are the best places to grab a drink in Hanoi.
Saturday, 22/02/2020, 03:23
1. 1900 bar hanoi
1900 Le Theatre is a bar/nightclub located in the Old Quarter in Hanoi, more precisely in the action-packed Tạ Hiện Street. It is in the center of Hanoi nightlife, and unsurprisingly it gets crowded every day of the week by both young Vietnamese (75%, mostly students) and foreigners (25%, mostly tourists).
It is my favorite club in this area but it closes early at 1AM (by 00.30AM they'll already stop selling drinks). You can go around 11PM, after drinking from the cheaper pubs nearby.
The entrance is free on most nights but if there is a special event you'll have to pay around VND250,000. Drinks are more expensive than average: VND80,000 for a beer and VND120,000 for cocktail/liquor.
It is worth it in my opinion. 1900 Le Theatre is a chic, Burlesque-themed venue, with a perfect set-up for events. This is logical as it used to be a theater during the French colonization.
The main point of focus is the elevated stage where DJs and live bands perform. Most customers will occupy high tables just below and share a bottle of alcohol. There is also a nice central bar for those who come alone and on the second floor, you'll find a mezzanine with VIP seating.
The dress code is not enforced as I saw plenty of foreigners wearing shorts. If you can, try to put on a pair of pants, a shirt and shoes. This will prevent you from being labeled as a "backpacker" by the bouncers and the Vietnamese girls.
Weekend nights are the busiest, but some weekdays are interesting as well. Wednesday is students night (2 free beers for students with valid ID) and Tuesday is ladies night (2 free drinks for girls).
My main criticism about 1900 Le Theatre is that its DJs play only commercial songs (EDM or Hip Hop) while the live band usually sing Vietnamese pop.
Overall: 1900 is a one of the best nightclubs in Hanoi. I liked the atmosphere, the crowd and the design. It is one of the best places to pick up Vietnamese girls along with The Bank and Hero.
Address: 8 Ta Hiên, Hoan Kiem
Phone number: 09 1111 1900
When separating good bars from exceptional ones, what matters most? Decor? Of course. Atmosphere? Obviously. Cocktails? Goes without saying. Tadioto ticks all those boxes and more. It sits within a tranquil neighbourhood a stone’s throw from the Opera House but a world away from the bustle of the Old Quarter. The interior reflects Vietnamese-American owner Nguyen Qui Duc’s interests, from journalism to writing to art and wine. In the dimly lit room, the people, the drinks and the inviting vibe really make a night out in Hanoi, especially during event nights.
24 Tông Đản, French Quarter, Hà Nội, Vietnam
3. Standing Bar
Standing Bar is an essential stop-off for craft beer lovers. Not only does it offer 19 high-quality ales on tap, it also hosts comedy shows, both local and international acts. But don’t let its name fool you — there are plenty of seats and space to chill out in. Significantly livelier in the evening, it has an upstairs terrace overlooking the Truc Bach Lake.
170 Phố Trấn Vũ, Hà Nội, Vietnam
4. Red River Tea Room
Red River Tea Room feels like the nest of an old man who seeks nothing but tranquility, with its shelves packed full of bottles and books. There’s no smoking, TV or loud music. You never quite know what you are going to get inside, but that’s part of the fun: table games, a rooftop terrace with views of the West Lake, table tennis, a small selection of craft and bottled beer, some cheap tasty food, quiz nights and even a tiny dog to cuddle.
176 Xuân Diệu, Hà Nội, Vietnam
5. 88 Lounge
A contemporary industrial space with a chilled-out ambiance, 88 Lounge opened in 2013 and has an impressive array of wines from top global wine producing regions. With four floors of bar and lounge spaces, you can enjoy your glass in the comfort of the garden terrace or on cozy sofas and armchairs on the upper floors, with beautiful views over the lake. Check out their occasional wine tasting events to sample sought-after wines from acclaimed brands.
88 Xuân Diệu, Hà Nội, Vietnam
6. Bar Betta
Bar Betta is a themed bar, but a highly authentic one: there’s a gramophone, vinyl records, an antique telephone, TV, radio and plenty of Hollywood prints. All of this is presented in harmony in a beautiful French colonial-era mansion. The rooftop bar has a laid-back ambiance and party vibes after dark, plus well-priced bottled beer, wines and cocktails.
34C Cao Bá Quát, Hà Nội, Vietnam
7. Bia Hoi Junction
A must-visit for any first-time visitor to Hanoi, Bia Hoi Junction is widely-regarded as the quintessential nightlife spot in Hanoi. Open throughout the day and late into the night, the ever-bustling beer haven is located at the corner of Ta Hien and Luong Ngoc Quyen streets in the Hanoi Old Quarter, where you can see hundreds of people sitting on plastic stools with a pint of bia hoi in hand.
Available at numerous makeshift bars within Bia Hoi Junction, bia hoi is a type of Vietnamese draft beer that only contains about 4% alcohol. Although it’s weak compared to European standards, bia hoi is incredibly cheap where you can enjoy a tall glass between VND 5,000 and VND 8,000
Needless to say, Bia Hoi Junction attracts a steady following of locals, expats and tourists looking to down some ice cold beers all night long. Alternatively, there are several bars that sell soft drinks and imported beers such as Tiger for about VND 20,000. In addition to numerous bia hoi joints with colourful plastic chairs spilling onto the streets, you can also find makeshift stalls selling a variety of snacks such as steamed peanuts, fried tofu, skewered meats, and delicious beef jerky.
As it can get very packed here, do keep your wits about and be mindful of your belongings. Nonetheless, Bia Hoi Junction is great for drinking on a budget as well as experiencing the local culture. The carnival atmosphere is a really memorable snapshot of Hanoi nightlife.
Opening Hours: Daily 11:00 – late
Address: Ta Hien & Pho Luong Ngoc Quyen, Old Quarter, Hanoi
8. Legend Beer Hanoi
Legend Beer Hanoi brews its own drinks and serves German-style dishes such as pork knuckles and sausages. Most tourists come here for the view, as the chaotic streets below are almost within touching distance, thanks to the low level of the terrace. Due to this, the price range is slightly more expensive than most bars within the Old Quarter.
The bar opens every day from 11:00 until 23:00, but gets very busy from sunset onwards. Travellers and photo enthusiasts come here to snap shots of the chaotic Hanoi roundabout below. If you have a tripod (or very steady hand), a neat trick to get some interesting night shots is to shoot with a slow shutter speed. This results in colourful trail lights from the scooters and taxis on the roads.
Opening Hours: Daily 11:00 - 23:00
Location: 01-03-05 Dinh Tien Hoang, Hanoi
Tel: +84 43 776 1666
9. King Pirates Pub
King Pirates Pub is a fun, pirate-themed nightlife spot in Hanoi Old Quarter. You can enjoy a good variety of rum-based drinks, local beers, and house wines. The owners are very friendly and chatty, so it’s a good place to get to know some of the locals during your visit. This small but charming pub has a loyal following among visiting tourists as well as serving as the watering-hole of choice for many expat locals in the Vietnamese capital.
King Pirates Pub offers local beers for only VND 20,000. You won’t see a DJ spinning dance tunes, but you can enjoy classic rock songs throughout the night. Its signature cocktails cost between VND 60,000 and VND 140,000. You can also enjoy two-for-one specials on all cocktails during their happy hours (which is all-day-long).
If you’re up for an adventurous night, attempt the popular Walk the Plank! Challenge. It costs VND 400,000 for five shots of Captain Morgan’s rum and you’ll get a free t-shirt upon finishing your drinks. The pub opens every day between 10:00 and 02:00. Set along Hang Giay Street, it’s a 15-minute walk from Hoan Kiem Lake.
Opening Hours: Daily 10:00 – 02:00
Address: 24B Hang Giay, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi