The Best Museum in Hanoi

Posted by bryanfairfax85 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

There are many interesting museums in Hanoi, including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Ethnology Museum, the Ho Chi Minh Museum and the Museum of Vietnamese History, which are all well worth visiting, but in my opinion, the often overlooked Vietnam Women's Museum at 36 Ly Thuong Kiet Street is by far the best.

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Most notably, it is the only museum in the city I've been to that features exhibitions addressing pressing social issues facing Vietnam (and the world) today.

Its impressive collection of vintage propaganda posters, many on permanent display throughout the building, is also the best I've seen so far.

The museum has undergone extensive renovations over the past few years and, in late 2011, celebrated the opening of its new exhibition spaces that proudly show off its fascinating collections of artefacts related to all aspects of Vietnamese women's lives today and throughout history.

The permanent exhibitions include sections on marriage and family life (including many of the country's 54 ethnic minorities) a costume collection that rivals those in the Ethnology and Fine Arts Museums; street vendors; and, the best of all, women in history, which explains the extraordinary roles ordinary women have played in Vietnamese history, particularly during the national resistance wars against the French and the US.

Perhaps the most interesting and relevant aspects of the museum are its temporary exhibitions about current social issues such domestic violence, mass migration from rural to urban areas, human trafficking, and the plight of single women.

Its strong connections to the Vietnam Women's Union and numerous governmental and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have enabled the museum to present these exhibitions and raise public awareness of these critical issues.

In this capacity it is actively making many positive contributions to national development.

Sadly however, this impressive museum is generally overlooked in most tour itineraries, which is a great detriment to both tourists and the country alike.

Since it reopened in its newly renovated form, the number of Vietnamese visitors has risen considerably, which is very good, but I feel it should be promoted further in the Vietnamese tourism sector and included in more standard tour itineraries. It is centrally located on a main street and within walking distance of other popular attractions such as Hoan Kiem Lake, the Old Quarter, and the water puppet theatre so it could easily be included in most tour programs.

Many foreigners visiting Hanoi are very interested in Vietnam's history as well as its current situation as a developing country.

The Women's Museum offers a well presented, original, and enlightening view of both, as well as ongoing efforts in the country to positively address many current international issues.

Anyone visiting Hanoi, regardless of gender, is well advised to visit the Vietnam Women's Museum for a unique glimpse of Vietnamese history that cannot be seen anywhere else.

The museum is open every day except Monday and is wheelchair accessible.

If you want a holiday in Vietnam, please contact us!

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