A Grand Building for a Grand Collection
On top of its impressive collection, the National Museum of Vietnamese History is a spectacular piece of architecture. Built by the French in the 1920s and 30s, the building is notable for its blend of Vietnamese and European design. Inside its ornate, yellow facade, visitors will find thousands of archaeological relics from Vietnam’s earliest societies.
One of the most striking exhibits in the museum features jewelry, tools, and wooden religious statues–somehow still standing–from the Oc Eo society, which flourished in the Mekong Delta at the beginning of the previous millennium. Other highlights include Champa sculptures and Communist literature from the 1945 revolution. The museum even displays the original copy of Ho Chi Minh’s prison diary.
The museum is open daily (except the 1st Monday of every month), and tickets cost 40,000 dong per visitor. Many of Hanoi’s major attractions are nearby, such as the Women’s Museum and the Opera House.