Vietnam's capital lies on the Red River, from which it is protected by a huge dike. The city grew up from numerous small villages dotted around various lakes. Its charm comes from its restored pagodas, the tube-houses of the Old Quarter (once home to 36 guilds) and the colonial houses of the old French Quarter. Over the past few years, modern skyscrapers have extended the city upwards rather than outwards, increasing its population density and adding to its noise and bustling activity.
©G. Fischer/imagebroker/age fotostockHanoi