The capital of Vietnam is a contradictory city where ancient culture meets modern golf in Hanoi. To the new visitor Hanoi appears very chaotic. The streets are packed with bicycles, trishaws, motorcycles, cars and pedestrians. The one tip I give golfers is walk slowly and steady when crossing the streets and everything will be fine.
Beyond the crowdedness Hanoi maintains planned order. The main tourist area is the historic old quarter where golfers can find many shops built from well-preserved architecture of old times selling Vietnamese handicrafts and delicacies. The most interesting sites are the Temple of Literature, the Ethnology Museum and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum Complex.
For golf, there are now 8 Hanoi golf courses. The two best courses for Hanoi golf visitors are Van Tri Golf Club and Kings Island Golf Resort. Van Tri Golf Club is a private members course located only 30 minutes from the center of Hanoi. Tee-times are hard to get, but some Vietnam golf agents can book a round for you. The 36-hole Kings islands Golf Resort is the original Hanoi golf course and is accessed by boat on its own private island.
Other Hanoi golf courses include Chi Linh Star Golf & Country Club on the way to Halong Bay, Tam Dao Golf Club in the mountains north of Hanoi, and Phoenix Golf Resort which resembles Halong Bay on land.
Sky Lake Golf Resort is one of the newer Hanoi golf courses and will host the first ever Asian Tour event to be staged in Hanoi in September. Conditions should be excellent and demand for this course is sure to skyrocket after the event.
The other minor golf courses in Hanoi are Heron Lake Golf Club, Hanoi Golf Club, and Dai Lai Star Golf Club. These later courses are best left for locals as playing conditions are variable.
Hanoi may be 1000 years old and chaotic, but golf is readily available and modern. While not a golf destination in and of itself, the Vietnam capital is a good stopover for anyone on a Vietnam golf holiday.