Preserved for Posterity
Like Vladimir Lenin before him and Mao Zedong after him, Ho Chi Minh did not want his body to be preserved after death. And like Vladimir Lenin before him and Mao Zedong after him, his adoring public did not listen. Visitors to Hanoi can now see the legendary leader’s body in repose at an imposing mausoleum in the city’s center.
Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum is not the easiest place to visit. It’s only open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, and only from 8:00 to 11:00 am. On top of that, “Uncle Ho” is still beloved by his people, so the lines are often incredibly long. And guards enforce a modest dress code.
However, the mausoleum is quite close to both the Presidential Palace and the Ho Chi Minh Museum, so visitors can tackle all three in one day. And it’s not often that one gets to see the preserved body of a famous leader. If nothing else, it’s a wonderfully strange way to experience Vietnam’s history.