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Hanoi: cheap, cool places for a perfect getaway

By Kim Thuy   July 24, 2016 | 07:48 am GMT+7

Escape the grime and grind of the capital for as little as $10.

If you are in Hanoi this summer, the most affordable tourist destination in the world according to TripAdvisor, here are five places you should add to your itinerary. They are not too far from the capital, cheap to visit and on top of that, beautiful and interesting enough to make your camera run out of space.

Transport mode: Bus or motorbike.

Ba Vi

With its spectacular landscape, cool climate and biodiversity (more than 1,000 kinds of trees), Ba Vi National Park, known as the capital's lungs, is just 65 kilometers from Hanoi. It is an ideal place for those who want to immerse themselves in nature and leave all their stress and troubles behind.

Visitors can also explore deep caves hidden in the mountains or challenge themselves to climb the Ba Vi peaks that rise up to nearly 1,300 meters.

The best time to visit Ba Vi is between April and October. We recommend you bring some water and snacks as you will burn plenty of energy exploring the park.

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Ba Vi National Park. Photo by Tuandao

Bat Trang

Bat Trang, the world of pottery, is just 10 kilometers from Hanoi.

The best way to get there is to take bus number 47 from Long Bien Bus Station.

Here you have a chance to make your own pottery for about VND40,000 ($2) for each strange-looking dish, bowl or plate you fail to master. The pottery here is famous nationwide for being diverse, high-quality and cheap. What else could you expect?

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You can also hire a buffalo cart to take you around the village for VND45,000-VND50,000.

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Photo by gomsubattrang.com

Bac Son

About 150 kilometers from the capital, Bac Son Town hides a breathtaking valley which is engulfed by mountains, peaceful rivers and wide rice paddies.

Between July and November, Bac Son is at its best when the town is painted yellow by ripening rice paddies. 

Bac Son in Lang Son Province is a perfect place for motorbike enthusiasts.

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Bac Son Valley. Photo by VnExpress Photo Contest/Bui Vinh Thuan

Ham Lon Mountain

Welcome to the capital's rooftop.

Ham Lon Mountain (Pig's Tooth) in Soc Son District is only 50 kilometers north of Hanoi.

The mountain not only offers you a chance to challenge your legs but also a peaceful, relaxing time by the beautiful Suoi Bau Lake. You can also camp overnight here. Don't forget to bring along food and a blanket as it can get a little cold.

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Photo by instagram/tieuthao

Tram Mountain

Tram Mount on the outskirts of Hanoi is a sight to behold.

This limestone wonder in Chuong My District is 20 kilometers from central Hanoi.

The food is cheap as the mountain as tourism really hasn't taken off here yet, so get your skates on and enjoy it while you can.

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Multiple beaten paths cut deep into the surface of the mountain creating a picturesque scene.

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