Looking for the perfect Hanoi souvenirs to take home from Vietnam? These local, traditional, handmade and fair trade textiles, clothing, homewares and keepsakes are the best things to buy in Hanoi! At the bottom of the post you’ll find a handy shopping map.
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Don’t be tempted to do all your souvenir shopping at the Hanoi Night Market! Like many other markets and shops in Hanoi and across the region, it’s becoming increasingly dominated by cheap, low-quality, mass-produced products imported from China.
There are a growing number of Hanoi boutiques and creative retailers dedicated to trading in local, handmade and fair trade products. In my opinion, these always make for the best Hanoi souvenirs. Even better still, many of them double as social enterprises or support rural communities as part of their business model—so you can give something back to Vietnam at the same time as doing your souvenir shopping.
I’m not a huge souvenir shopper; but in the year-and-a-bit I spent living in Hanoi, I visited my fair share of shops, and purchased many gifts for friends and family. This post rounds-up my favourite things to buy in Hanoi and shows you where to get your own Hanoi souvenirs.
What to buy in Hanoi: Popular Hanoi souvenirs
Popular Hanoi souvenirs include propaganda posters (reproductions of war-era and Communist-style posters), and dong ho prints (traditional Vietnamese woodblocks). Hanoi is also known for its ceramics, silk and lacquer ware, which have traditionally been produced in villages around Hanoi for centuries. Hanoi Old Quarter is packed with clothing stores. Ao dai, the traditional Vietnamese women’s garment with a Mandarin collar and slits up the side (ao dai literally means ‘long top’) are particularly popular among tourists—as are non bamboo conical hats. Embroidery, batik and indigo textiles made by Vietnam’s ethnic minority communities are a perennial favourite, although the quality and authenticity varies wildly depending on where you shop.
Fashion, homewares and design objects made by Vietnam’s emerging creatives are quickly becoming increasingly popular Hanoi souvenirs. Locally grown coffee and chocolate make for excellent edible souvenirs.
The best things to buy in Hanoi: My favourite Hanoi souvenir shops
A round-up of my favourite souvenir shops in Hanoi.
My favourite retail space in Hanoi, Collective Memory is a one-stop shop, with more than 30 local labels under one roof. The ethos here is ‘anti-souvenir’: Everything sold is designed to be loved and integrated into your life back home—not just used once then thrown away. Owners Nga and Liem do a magnificent job of curating each and every item.
Handmade, organic and ethically produced goods (everything is made in Vietnam), include homewares (tea towels, cushion covers), papergoods (posters, postcards), clothing and accessories. I love the giant soft wall maps of Vietnam, which come rolled around a wooden hanger. Edibles on offer include Saigon Charlie hot sauce, coconut oil from the Mekong Delta, and local spice blends (the Hoi An sea salt with puffed rice and green tea is divine). There’s also essential oils, handmade soaps, books, posters, puzzles, and even Hanoi Monopoly!
Location: 20 Nha Chung (near St. Joseph’s Cathedral)
Opening hours: 9am–8pm daily
Founded in 1969, Hanoi’s Tanmy brand is synonymous with hand-embroidery. It was founded during wartime by grandma Tanmy, who ran a business embroidering handkerchiefs with love notes from girlfriends and wives to send to men on the front line. Now in its fourth generation, Tanmy still produces fine silk embroidered bed linens, tablecloths, garments and fabrics.
Their massive, multi-level store on Hang Gai (Silk Street) in the Old Quarter also stocks dozens of other local and international brands. Fashion, homewares, art pieces, lacquer ware and silver jewellery are all on offer. Look out for the cute cafe in the back of the shop.
Location: 61 Hang Gai
Opening hours: 8am–8pm daily
Another thoughtfully curated retail space that brings together multiple brands, aN Store is the brainchild of local creative Nguyen Mai Phuong. Many of the products on offer are handmade, including leather shoes and bags, ceramics and linen women’s wear. The vintage-style storefront near the Hanoi Opera House is instantly recognisable.
Opening hours: 9am–9pm daily
A favourite among expats, Emporium has two storefronts in the trendy suburb of Tay Ho (West Lake). They mainly specialise in furniture and home furnishings; but they also peddle some lovely small objects that would make for perfect souvenirs. Fashion, fabrics, home decor, jewellery and textiles sourced not only from Vietnam but also from Cambodia, Indonesia and Myanmar.
As well as cafes, galleries and a tattoo parlour, this up-and-coming creative precinct in Dong Da district houses a couple of small gift boutiques. One store upstairs is devoted to cutesy Japanese-style knickknacks; on the bottom level, you’ll find and a camera shop that sells film and accessories. Another shop, Tinh Dau, supports aspiring painters from the local area.
If you’re looking for a souvenir with a bit of edge, try Tired City. Street-inspired designs on apparel, tote bags, stationary and art prints all showcase incredible skill and attention to detail. Each design in the range is original and exclusive to Tired City, developed for the label by some of Vietnam’s most prominent young creatives. A big part of the store’s mantra is empowering and supporting emerging artists.
Housed in an uber-trendy polished concrete building near Hanoi’s ‘Train Street’, this cafe-cum-boutique peddles a minimalist range of ceramics, soft home accessories and wellness products made by local creatives. The word ‘vui‘ in Vietnamese means happy—which is apt, because Vui Studio‘s house line of quirky tote bags, natural soaps, scents and candles, and loose leaf teas are bound to make you smile. New collections are constantly being showcased; I love these silkscreened homewares by Linh Trinh (pictured above).
The philosophy behind this luxury homewares brand is all about preserving traditional skills and sharing handmade Vietnamese goods with the world. Hanoia specialises in high-end lacquer ware, silk and silver jewellery (all handmade in Vietnam), and also offers kitsch souvenirs, such as painted theatre masks, woven bags, and pouches made from Hmong textiles. As well as shops in Vienna and Paris, Hanoia has a couple of locations in Hanoi (including one at the rear of the Temple of Literature complex). I’ve been into them all, and I liked the range at Hanoia House best.
A mainstay of Hanoi’s shopping scene, Ginko is one of Vietnam’s original fair trade brands. Thei signature range of 100% organic cotton tees feature quirky and hip Hanoi-inspired prints. Ginko has a couple of different shopfronts in the Old Quarter, all selling shirts and pants alongside papergoods, playing cards, and a wonderful range of bags hand-made from tarpaulin and upcycled materials. I purchased a Ginko backpack when we first arrived in Hanoi and I’ve been using it ever since.
Location: 79 Hang Gai (flagship store)
Opening hours: 8am–10pm daily
Tohe Style has one of the coolest concepts in Hanoi retail. Tohe is a not-for-profit that runs an art and creative therapy program for disadvantaged kids in Vietnam. They fund their operations by selling their own line of children’s ware, toys and sweet accessories at their shop in the Old Quarter. The fun and playful designs that adorn their products are actually designed by the kids in their classes! They sell products for adults, too, including t-shirts and soft accessories. Talk about Hanoi souvenirs that give back.
Before we left Vietnam, we were gifted a set of Tohe passport covers and sleeping masks by some friends. We absolutely love them!
Location: 14 Nha Chung (Old Quarter branch)
Opening hours: 9am–9pm daily
Zo Project was devised by a group of Hanoians to breathe new life into the almost-lost technique of Vietnamese zo paper making. Traditionally, the paper—which is made from the bark of a rare tree—was used for calligraphy, poetry, and dong ho folk paintings. Zo Project works with a family in neighbouring Hoa Binh Province who make the beautifully textured, subtly coloured paper by hand.
Propaganda posters, notebooks decorated with heritage prints of old Hanoi, postcards, and even paper earrings are all sold in Zo’s shop on Hanoi’s famous ‘Train Street’. They also offer calligraphy and watercolour classes, as well as tours to the paper-making village.
Location: 10 Dien Bien Phu (on Train Street)
Opening hours: 9am–7pm daily
There are dozens of ceramics shops in Hanoi Old Quarter—but Cerender always catches my eye because of the sheer volume of stock. Textured porcelains and extremely fine tablewear is all produced in nearby Bat Trang village, where families have been working their kilns for more than 700 years. Designs range from pretty florals inspired by traditional Vietnamese and Chinese pottery, all the way to eye-dazzling repeat patterns and on-trend motifs. Ceramics aren’t usually the best souvenirs, but Cerender does have a number of small products that are lightweight and less likely to break. Plus, staff are experts at wrapping.
Location: 16 Au Trieu (opposite St. Joseph’s Cathedral)
Opening hours: 8am–9pm daily
Huu La La
This fashion boutique specialises in hand-embroidered frocks and blouses for women and kids. Summer dresses, cotton shirts and handkerchiefs featuring floral motifs are all divine. For something uniquely Vietnamese, go for a lotus or dragon design. Huu La La has branches in Hanoi and Saigon; the Hanoi store near St. Joseph’s church in the Old Quarter also carries a selection of ao dai dresses and an affordable range of purses, lacquer jewellery, and other small gifts.
Location: 2 Nha Chung (near St. Joseph’s Cathedral)
Opening hours: 9am–10pm daily
Hanoi’s leading slow fashion label, Kilomet109, now has its own boutique store in Tay Ho. Garments, scarves and accessories are the work of local designer Vu Thao, who collaborates with ethnic minority artisans to create handwoven fabrics, natural dyes, embroidery and batik detailing. The skill and workmanship behind Kilomet109 is absolutely stunning—when you see them in the flesh, you can start to appreciate every little detail of the made-in-Hanoi line. I especially love the simple men’s collared shirts in handwoven fabrics, and the easy-to-wear collection of women’s dresses, jackets and slouch pants.
Location: 64 Quang An, Tay Ho
Opening hours: 10am–12pm & 2pm–7pm Tues–Sun (closed Mondays)
Vietnam’s premier arts and crafts not-for-profit, Craft Link partners with co-ops from different rural communities. They focus on product development to help artisans design new collections of homewares, scarves, kid’s toys and textiles, which are then sold at Craft Link’s two boutiques in Hanoi (located right opposite each other, near the Temple of Literature). The brightly coloured textiles aren’t really to my taste, but I have found some lovely wallhangings here. I especially love the resin tableware.
Location: 43 & 51 Van Mieu (opposite the Temple of Literature)
Opening hours: 9am–6pm daily
Located next door to Craft Link, this petite clothing boutique works with local artisans and seamstresses to create a range of Japanese-inspired women’s and menswear. Some of the best designs are tucked away upstairs, so take your time to have a good look around. Indigo‘s natural fibres are lightweight and perfect for Southeast Asia weather; some items are sewn from vintage silk kimonos. There’s also an on-site tailoring service if you need something made or altered on short notice.
Location: 33 Van Mieu (opposite the Temple of Literature)
Opening hours: 8am–6pm daily
The country’s first boutique chocolate brand sells blocks, bars and truffles made from cocoa grown in Central and Southern Vietnam. Flavours are inspired by local ingredients (puffed rice, candied ginger), and the colourful packaging references traditional Vietnamese woodblock prints. Multi-flavour gift packs make for the perfect Hanoi souvenirs—if you can resist the urge and hold onto it for long enough! Maison Marou‘s Hanoi digs is also one of the best-designed spaces in the city, with a built-in cafe/patisserie, and a glass-wrapped production kitchen so you can watch the chefs at work.
Location: 91A Tho Nhuom (near the Vietnamese Women’s Museum)
Opening hours: 9am–10pm daily
This cafe chain has three locations across Hanoi where you can enjoy a cup of Fair Trade brew. Each branch features a small retail section at the front, where you can shop hand-painted ceramics, Vietnamese drip filters, and other coffee and tea accoutrements. They also carry small, sealed bags of Oriberry beans and ground coffee.
Location: 36 Au Trieu (Old Quarter branch)
Opening hours: 7am–7.30pm daily
The best things to buy in Hanoi: Hanoi souvenir shopping map
Have you been to Hanoi (or elsewhere in Vietnam)? Did you buy any souvenirs? Which Hanoi souvenirs do you like the look of?