Around Hanoi

Hanoi's immediate surroundings are changing rapidly. Roads, factories, housing developments and even resorts are being furiously constructed everywhere.

Traffic is heavy and getting heavier. And while the farms and rice fields are still there, they are being progressively encircled by a less attractive, if more profitable, industrial landscape. If you're looking to escape the city quickly and breathe some fresh air in the national parks and tour some exceptional pagodas, be prepared to slog through the crusty brown rim to get there.