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Hanoi's Noi Bai Airport got a spanking new terminal and concourse in 2001. It's is a hike from downtown, but a modern four-lane highway makes the trip reasonably short. We recommend taking a taxi for the 45-minute drive downtown. Taxi fare to town is a flat US$10. A taxi from downtown to the airport can be hired for a flat US$12. Ask your hotel to schedule a pickup or call 873-3333. Departure tax is US$14 for international flights payable in dong or US dollars.


Those traveling by train will arrive at the Hanoi Train Station on Le Duan. From there it's a short taxi or cyclo ride to most everywhere in Hoan Kiem District. Beware! Train travel in Vietnam will try the patience of a saint; it won't save you much money, either. Unless you're a train buff with plenty of time to kill, skip the rails. (The exception is the train to Sapa.)


If you're traveling by bus, you'll be lucky to arrive at all. Even hard-core travelers who have done the bus scene in other developing countries should think twice before getting on a bus here. Enough said. There are several bus stations in Hanoi. Where you arrive will depend where you're coming from. Pay attention when you exit the bus. At Gia Lam station, for example, another bus takes passengers to downtown. Miss it, and you may have to wait a while.

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