Vietnam, dating back thousands of years ago, has experienced a long history of colonization by powerful nations in the world. This partly explains why it is well-known as an indivisible whole represented by the beauty of both friendly, hard-working people and historical places. A visit to Vietnam, in addition to grabbing a chance to immerse in magnificently exotic sceneries, also gives you an opportunity to gain a first-hand experience of Vietnam’s history and ancient sites weighing heavily on Vietnamese people’s consciousness. Welcome to Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam and take time to explore the amazing Hoa lo Prison.
Popularly called with the name ‘Hanoi Hilton’, Hoa Lo Prison is a museum located in the heart of Hanoi. The name of the prison originated from street name Hoa Lo Street where local people sell wood stoves and coal fire stoves. First constructed in the late 1890s by the French and then renovated in 1913, Hoa Lo Prison used to be a place to impound Vietnamese prisons, especially political and economic prisons. After the first renovation, the capacity of the prison was considerably expanded, which could accommodate up to 600 prisoners.
What to see?
Explore this historic prison, you will be definitely overwhelmed by its unique architectural style. With a total area of 12,908 square meters more or less, the prison is the oldest Indochina’s architecture which surrounded entirely with stone walls and steels with 4 meters in height. Moreover, it is reinforced by barbed-wire system with a view to carefully observing prisoners. Furthermore, the gate was constructed with dome shape structure. A bit further is a system if iron doors built with the purpose of preventing criminals from escaping.
Time flies so fast. Nowadays, the Hanoi Hilton has become a cultural and historic symbol. Besides admiring its unique structure, visitors to this site can have an insight into one of the last galleries in which McCain’s flight suit and parachute was portrayed. What’s more, there is a picture which displays locals pulling the pilot out of the water when his plane crashed in Truc Bach Lake.
At the contemporary time, the prison is also a place for storing a collection of confidential documents and records of indomitable heroes who devoted their lives to the independence of the country.
Hoa Lo relic today still remains intact with a lot of precious documents and becomes a fascinating attraction in Hanoi that attracts both domestic and foreign visitors.
How to get to Hoa Lo Prison?
The easiest way to approach Hoa Lo Prison is to take a taxi. Located right at the corner of Hai Ba Trung Street, the south of Hoan Kiem Lake, Hoa Lo Prison runs from Hai Ba Trung Street to Tho Nhuom Street.
Opening hours: 8 am to 5 pm every day.
Entrance fee: 20,000 VND
You are allowed to take photos.