Dinner in Hue
Evenings in Hue are delightful. They show a different side to the city with its many lights glittering in the Perfume River and on the puddles from the thunderstorms. The kids, locals and tourists all come out to play, they like to sit in the cafes and open air bars. This might not sound like the ideal environment to bring your kids but I assure you they will be mesmerised by the sights ands sounds just as much as you.
Busy South Bank
Our base at the Pilgrimage Hotel was further away from the hustle and bustle in town but we went to enjoy the warm evenings on two occasions during our stay in Hue. Taking the complimentary hotel bus, we were dropped off in the heart of the busy South Bank area after a 15 minutes drive. We had spent our days on the other side of the Perfume River, at the Imperial Enclosure and at the market, these areas are more popular with travellers and residents during daytime.
The South Bank area has plenty of places to go for dinner and we went to HANH’s restaurant, which was recommended by a member of staff as an authentic local eatery. Seated in a large dining room with many other hungry mouths, from Vietnam and all over the world, including many families. The manager speaks good English and recommended the five-course menu, consisting of local dishes at a very reasonable price. The atmosphere is more like a brightly lit canteen than a restaurant for a romantic dinner a deux but the food was as tasty as promised. The place was teeming with locals and tourists alike.
Or Try a Banh Mi
Afterwards we treated Jerome to his second ice cream in a day for dessert and then took a lazy stroll through that part of town. Besides the bars and cafes, shops, tour offices and hotels lined the busy streets. I could not imagine sleeping in a hotel or hostel in the area, the constant partying and general hubbub would have spoiled my impressions of Hue massively. It is certainly more a spot for the young and backpackers in my opinion. We passed a lady with a banh mi cart, her Vietnamese style baguettes looked rather delicious and prove very popular, we kept an eye out for her the next evening but could not find her again.
The Night Market
If you feel more like trying some street food, head to the riverside near the Trang Tien Bridge, where you will find eateries popular with the Hue’s residents. Along the river’s promenade you have the chance to take a walk through a night market, purchase some souvenirs and eat at one of the low tables from the street stalls. Kids (and adults) will enjoy the lit up bridge and the many boats, anchored along the quayside. You will most likely not fail to encounter the floating restaurant in shape of a lotus flower, glowing pink underneath the night sky.
Japanese Food at Restaurant Ta.Ke
On our second night in Hue, Jerome wanted something else besides Vietnamese food. We had stumbled onto a Japanese restaurant online and decided to have some sushi and sashimi for dinner. We were lucky to get in at all as Ta.ke is a small restaurant with few tables. It is therefore highly advisable to book ahead. We were seated in the front room, on tatami mats with our shoeless feet under the table, just like in Japan. Jerome was extremely happy, especially when he had a large portion of salmon sashimi in front of him. To top it off we got green tea ice cream for pudding. We would need another day exploring to ease off the food indulgence.
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