Ho Chi Minh Complex – A special national monument in the heart of Hanoi

President Ho Chi Minh (May 19, 1890 – September 2, 1969) is so famous that not only Vietnamese people but many people around the world know him. Although he has been away for more than 50 years, his dedication to our nation is still remembered through many generations. When visiting Hanoi, you should visit the Ho Chi Minh Complex at least once, because it is well worth a visit to understand why Vietnamese people love him so much. Today, let us introduce more about this tourist destination.


Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

During the resistance war against the US to save the country, Vietnam was divided into two regions. At that time, the North was under the control of the Vietnamese government. It brought the Vietnamese to fight against the dominating American army in the South. People in the South always miss and look forward to the day when the country is unified and see off their great father. When Uncle Ho was still alive, Uncle Ho’s great wish was also to see the unified Vietnam and to visit the people in the South again. Unfortunately it didn’t happen. Therefore, the Vietnamese government decided to build a mausoleum to store his body so that later people from all over the country and foreign friends could visit him.

With the great help of the Soviet Union, the construction was started on September 2, 1973 and completed on August 21, 1975. Built at the very place where President Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence in 1945.

It is inspired by the Lenin Mausoleum in Moscow but incorporates distinct Vietnamese architectural elements, such as the pitched roof. The exterior is made of gray granite, while the interior is gray, black and red polished stone. The gate of the mausoleum has the words “President Ho Chi Minh” engraved on it. While the banner next to it reads “Long live the Socialist Republic of Vietnam”

The body of President Ho Chi Minh is preserved in the cool room, the central hall of the mausoleum, protected by the military honor guard. The body was lying in a glass cabinet with dim lights. He is wearing a khaki outfit with a pair of rubber sandals.

The coffin is a work of art made by craftsmen of the two countries Vietnam – Soviet Union. The bed is made of copper with lotus motifs, placed on a stone pedestal, with an automatic lifting system.

You can also see in here the saying “nothing is more precious than independence and freedom”, which is a famous quote of President Ho Chi Minh.

Ba Dinh Square

Ba Dinh Square (Independence Square) is the largest square in Vietnam. Here on September 2, 1945 in front of thousands of Vietnamese compatriots, President Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence of Vietnam – marking the establishment of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. That’s why Ho Chi Minh mausoleum was built here.

Ba Dinh Square has a campus of 320 m long, 100 m wide, with 196 grass plots, interspersed with a 1.4 m wide walkway. In the middle of the square is a flagpole 25 meters high. This is also the place to organize parades on the major holidays of Vietnam. In addition, the Square also has two daily activities: Flag raising ceremony (at 6 am) and Flag lowering ceremony (9 am). It will be a memorable moment if you witness the Flag Salute Ceremony with soldiers wearing white military uniforms, solemnly marching to the music of the Vietnamese army at Ba Dinh Square at 6am or the Summer Ceremony. flags at 9pm.

It’s also a favorite spot for locals to get some morning exercise or simply stroll around the pretty square at night.

Ho Chi Minh’s stilt house

Address: No. 1 Bach Thao Street, Ngoc Ha Ward, Ba Dinh District, Hanoi City

Opening hours: From 7:30 am to 4:00 pm, lunch break from 11:00 am to 1:30 pm.

Entrance fee: 25,000 VND for international visitors.

The house is called Ho Chi Minh’s Residence or Ho Chi Minh Stilt House. This building is located within the Ho Chi Minh Complex and is worth your visit to learn more about one of the greatest men of the 20th century. It is for simplicity that Uncle Ho’s stilt house in the Presidential Palace has become a symbol of Ho Chi Minh’s style and morality. This house has left a deep impression in the hearts of everyone who has ever come here.

Instead of living in the Presidential Palace, Uncle Ho chose to live in a more simple place. During a visit to the Northwest and saw the traditional stilt house architecture of ethnic minorities, Ho Chi Minh was inspired and requested a similar design to make his residence. A newly built house, simply furnished with wood and with only two small rooms – this is where Ho Chi Minh spent his life as the president of Vietnam until his death in 1969.

In terms of form, it looks no different from the traditional wooden stilt house of the mountainous ethnic group in Vietnam. Stairs lead up to two small rooms inside the house. Besides, the area of ​​the rooms is quite small, leaving only minimal space for personal activities – a testament to the simple lifestyle of the Ho Chi Minh people.

Ho Chi Minh’s office is a room equipped with books, old newspapers, and a typewriter. The bedroom consists of a simple bed, a vintage-style telephone, electric clock and old-fashioned radio.

Under the house is an empty space, used as a reception “office”. Communist generals and foreign guests visiting Ho Chi Minh were invited to sit on simple bamboo chairs. It also contains a number of concessions of the fierce war of the time such as telephones to call other parts, steel helmets and protective equipment against bombs.

One Pillar Pagoda


Rising from a pillar in the center of an elegant square lotus pond, the One Pillar Pagoda is said to represent a lotus flower rising above the water.

Opening hours: daily from 08:00-17:00

Location: One Pillar Pagoda in the park behind the museum, near Ba Dinh Square, Ong Ich Khiem Street, Ba Dinh District. It is also located within the Ho Chi Minh Complex.

Legend has it that King Ly Thai Tong (1028-1054) was old but had no son. One night, the king dreamed that Guanyin Buddha was sitting on a lotus platform, carrying a boy and giving it to the king. Not long after, the queen gave birth to a son. Then the king built a lotus-shaped pagoda and named it Dien Huu Pagoda, which means “long-lasting happiness and good luck”

The pagoda was built of wood on a single stone pillar with a diameter of 1.25m, a height of 4m (excluding the part submerged in the ground). Besides, One Pillar Pagoda has a unique architecture: square wooden floor, resting on a stone pillar in the middle of the pond. Around the stone column, there is a system of bent ironwood bars to support the floor; so the whole structure looks like a lotus standing upright on the water. As time went by, the pagoda has withstood much of the destruction of the colonial forces. In 1954, the French Union army destroyed the pagoda before withdrawing from Vietnam after the First Indochina War and rebuilt later.

Form Today: What you see today of the pagoda is a new form that was restored in 1955 when it was refurbished by the Vietnamese government with a concrete column from the remains. The structure today can be called a copy of the original temple, which is a large building. Locals believe that if you pray here, it will bring good things and prosperity.


Notes when visiting Uncle Ho’s Mausoleum Complex

  • Short shorts, mini skirts, blazers, tank tops, etc. are not allowed.
  • Style and attitude: Civilized, polite; no noise or disorder; Speak quietly and stand in line.
  • Cameras, cell phones and daytime packs cannot be brought inside. The guards will collect those before you enter the mausoleum.
  • Do not film or film in prohibited areas, especially inside the mausoleum
  • It is forbidden to put your hands in your pockets and take pictures.
  • Carry out luggage according to regulations and arrangements of the Mausoleum Management Board.
  • Do not bring food, electronics, jewelry or you may not be allowed to post items.
  • Children under 3 years old are not allowed in.

Opening hours: 

  • From April to the end of October: 7:30 to 10:30 (Weekend from 7:30 to 11:00)
  • From November to the end of March next year: 8:00 to 11:00 (Weekend from 8:30 to 11:30)

Ticket price: 25,000 VND for foreigner tourists