Finding an apartment to rent in Hanoi can be challenging. The city is a mix of different cultures, but also full of history, color, and entertainment. Choosing the best place can be tricky, with so many options out there, but not impossible. Depending on why you move to Hanoi, you might have to research safety, schools, medical facilities, and so on.
Tay Ho and Ba Dinh are some of the most popular areas of Hanoi, especially when it comes to ex-pats. Here is everything you should know before considering them.
Things to consider before renting an apartment in Hanoi
Also known as West Lake among foreigners, Tay Ho is located in the northern side of Hanoi. It provides great views of the nearby lake as well. Decades ago, it was covered in nothing but farms. Today, it makes an excellent choice for both foreigners and locals.
You will find people of all ages and all levels of wealth in Tay Ho. Once you get to know people, you will run into friends everywhere, as pretty much everyone gathers in the same popular spots. To many, it feels like a hub of Hanoi.
When it comes to food, there are all kinds of options – vegetarian, local, western, and so on. There are cafés and bars everywhere, not to mention gyms, malls, and small shops. You can find anything you might need within walking distance, so you do not need to leave the place.
Tay Ho is extremely safe, mostly because of the gated communities in it. Some of them house foreign embassy diplomats, not to mention local politicians who own impressive mansions by the lake. In other words, you are less likely to face any issues in terms of security.
All in all, given the high amount of foreigners, Tay Ho is one of the best areas to find an apartment for rent in Hanoi. Getting along with things is relatively simple; everyone seems to speak English, and local foreigners love welcoming new people to their community.
Ba Dinh is different and suitable for a different category of people. Practically, this is the touristic part of Hanoi. If you love being in the middle of everything and having attractions everywhere around you, this is the ideal place to find an apartment in Hanoi.
Decades ago, Ba Dinh used to be referred to as the French Quarter – some may still refer to it by this name. Apart from popular attractions, you will also find political buildings. In other words, security is quite high in the area.
French domination influences the French Quarter style. You will find buildings and streets that make you feel like you are in France. Unlike Tay Ho, Ba Dinh will provide a more traditional feeling. This is the right place to be in if you want to feel local and integrate into the local society.
Bottom line, both Tay Ho and Ba Dinh can make the difference to your experience. They are both beautiful but completely different. It is up to you to choose between the authentic experience and a foreign one.