In Hanoi, for people who like flowers or take part in flower-related work, probably anybody is also aware of a place that whenever being about, its name reminds people of a truly beautiful and fragrant destination: Quang Ba night flower market (Chợ Hoa đêm Quảng Bá). Being 5 kilometers away from the center of Hanoi, Quang Ba Flower Market is an ideal place for buying flowers and an appropriate place for exploring Hanoi at night.
General information about Quang Ba Flower Market in Hanoi
Location: 236 Au Co Street, Quang An Ward, Tay Ho District, Hanoi.
Normal days: 11 p.m – 6 a.m daily, except for Tet holidays.
On the holidays: 9 p.m – 6 a.m (because flowers’ consumption need is much higher).
Peak hours: 01 to 2 a.m on normal days, and 9 pm to 10 pm on holidays.
History of Quang Ba Flower Market in Hanoi
In the past, because of the self-sufficient demands of people living in flower-growing villages in Tay Ho and Tu Liem areas, the Quang Ba (or Quang An) flower market was spontaneously established, located at the junction of Xuan Dieu and Au Co Streets. However, after the establishment of Tay Ho District in 1996, it was then moved to the current location. Since then, the market has witnessed considerable development, soon becomes one of the largest night flower markets in Northern Vietnam.
Nowadays, Quang Ba Market not only sells locals’ flowers but also sells imported ones. The exotic flowers come from various sources, from national provinces such as Vinh Phuc, Da Lat to international areas such as China, Thailand, Netherlands, South Africa. Each season, each area has its own flowers, so flowers sold at Quang Ba Flower Market are seasonal and countless.
Highlights of Quang Ba Flower Market in Hanoi
1. Chances For Strange Experiences
Quang Ba Market is only open at night and will end before the sunrise. Before arriving at Quang Ba Night Flower Market, travelers have a high tendency of exploring new things on their way to the market. On travelers’ way to this market at night, they will surprisingly discover a new aspect of Hanoi, an abnormally quiet Hanoi.
It is said that visiting Quang Ba Night Flower Market is a strange experience. Absolutely, but in the most positive way! Visiting Quang Ba market, people would have a precious chance to try two “seem unbelievable” things in Vietnam, maybe even in the world! First, while the whole city is falling asleep after a long and hard-working day, almost all working activities are stopped, a bustling market is still open. Secondly, when the majority of consumers choose shopping for flowers in the early morning so that they can totally observe their beauty.
2. Friendly Atmosphere
Quang Ba Night Market, which is on Nghi Tam Dike (Tay Ho District), takes place every night and is always full of sellers and buyers. Flower market usually lasts from 11 AM to dawn, selling so many types of flowers, coming from various sources, not only nationally but also internationally. This market is a paradise for retailers because its vendors offer wholesale flowers at a very reasonable price.
Being at Quang Ba Flower Market for the first time, travelers will be highly likely to be fascinated by the countless flower stalls of all types and colors. Not only the most common, traditional flowers such as roses, lilies, chrysanthemums but also the imported ones such as willow, tulip are sold at the market.
Spending time visiting other markets, people usually see the bustling atmosphere that is typical for any market. However, in this market, even though the hectic atmosphere is still an unavoidable thing, the way that sellers treat flowers is extremely gentle. Unlike food or household appliances, flowers are in demand of being treated carefully. Therefore, each time you visit this market, you will see the florists cherish and gently select the freshest, most beautiful branches, then gently wraps them in a paper, put them at suitable places to welcome consumers.
3. Better View Into The Marginalised’s Lives
Besides the beauty of the flowers, Visiting this market provides travelers a valuable chance to understand the lives of Hanoi manual laborers at night better. Being opposed to the prosperous bustling life which is usually seen in the morning, there are a lot of marginalized people waiting for the night to earn their living. These people spend their lives making living on flowers, working when others are falling asleep even on the holidays. Despite their hard lives, sellers at this market still bring Hanoi a wonderful scene at night covered with colorful flowers and fragrance.
4. Enjoy Another Aspect of Hanoi’s Night
In Quang Ba Flower Market, there are a lot of buses carrying flowers going in and out. The laughter, the offers of the sellers, the bargain of the buyers create an energetic scene, which makes people hard to believe that this is the living night scene of a capital city. That is also an aspect that makes travelers feel interesting when visiting Quang Ba Flower Market.
5. Familiar Customers and Visitors
Despite being specialized for selling wholesales, Quang Ba Flower Market is still possible for consumers to buy a small number of flowers for daily activities. Therefore, familiar customers of this flower market are not only the small vendors but also normal buyers coming to search for flowers at such an appropriate price. Frequently, people see some women coming to get several yellow daisies’ bouquets to put on the altar for religious purposes or even to make their houses more beautiful.
Sometimes, small groups of high schools or universities’ students are seen to wander around Quang Ba market, looking for some pristine white daisies or yellow sunflowers branches so as to make their yearbooks’ photo more impressive.
Sometimes, people meet foreign travelers wandering to discover Hanoi at night with a camera in hand. Opposed to the customers that often try to complete their purchasing as fast as possible so that they can start their working day in time, travelers walk slowly so that they are able to leisurely enjoy the fragrant beauty of Quang Ba flower Night market.
Opposed to the customers who often try to finish their purchasing as fast as possible so that they can start their working day on time, visitors should walk slowly, so that they can leisurely enjoy the fragrant beauty of Quang Ba Flower Night Market.
6. Beautiful Shimmering Scenes
Finally, for first-time visitors who worry that the dark of the night will prevent them from totally enjoying the flower market, there is nothing to have to worry about that. Each stall has a small light so that the sellers, as well as the customers, can conveniently trade the flowers. The shimmering light of numerous flower stalls offers viewers a surprising scene, in which Quang Ba Night Flower Market is immersed in splendid colors.
Choosing Flowers and Bargaining at Quang Ba Night Flower Market in Hanoi
1. How To Get The Freshest Blooms?
Going shopping for flowers in the night hours is a relaxing and interesting experience. However, it is not easy to choose the freshest as well as the most beautiful flowers. Actually, for first-time buyers or foreigners, it can be a hard challenge. Like any other goods, Flowers are expensive at times and sluggish at times. Therefore, it is evident that there will be a number of flowers not sold in their freshest condition.
Some sellers are not really honest. They will sometimes mix the old bouquets into the new ones. In the dark of the night, under the deem light from the stalls’ overhead light bulbs, inexperienced customers would have a high possibility of buying old flowers.
In order to solve this problem, whenever going to this night flower market, visitors remember to bring a flashlight so that they can illuminate to observe the flowers more thoroughly. So as to figure out if the flowers are fresh or not, look at the calyx as well as the leaves. For flowers that have just collected, the calyx still sticks to the flowers’ head. Besides, buyers can pick a flowers’ branch and shake slightly; this flowering branch is fresh if its leaves still attache to the branch
Besides, for small flowers such as heath bell flowers, buyers can hold the bouquets upside down to see whether there are any flowers or leaves falling apart. If the answer is “No”, you have chosen a fresh bouquet. However, if the answer is “Yes,” you had better choose another bouquet or choose another stall to buy.
2. How to Bargain at Quang Ba Flower Market in Hanoi?
Vietnam is not a rich country, so the sellers in markets usually expect to have a lot of profits, which is a reality. Therefore, buyers, especially foreigners (Vietnamese usually thinks that foreigners are rich) shouldn’t forget bargaining. Please do not be shy as it is one part of the purchasing process in Vietnam generally. If you want to get the lowest price possible, you had better purchase flowers in large numbers. For wholesale, the price can be merely VND 50,000 for a bunch of 50 blooms.
Finally, another tip to gain the best price for you is that flowers’ costs of stalls at the end of the market are usually lower than those of stalls situating near the market gate.
What to Eat After Visiting the Market?
Flower Market does not sell food, if you want a wealthy breakfast to get your energy back after a busy night wandering around Quang Ba market, then you are able to look for plenty of restaurants near there.
If you want to try traditional Vietnamese food, you should go along the outer surrounding areas of the market. On the left-hand side, you would find some food stalls that offer you a quick and simple breakfast, but it helps you have an energetic day.
If you want to have more choices, have another small walk toward the Old Quarter, you can find countless amazing food spots here, both local and international. Definitely, the cuisine at Hanoi Old Quarter will make you satisfied.
How to Get to The Flower Market?
Because the market goes on at night when there is no bus running, travelers can only have two ways to get to the market at that time:
– Motorbike: Rent a motorbike in advance and use Google Maps to look out the way leading to the market.
– Car or taxi: For a safer choice, book a Grab Car or Grab Bike in advance and simply use them to get to the market.
Tourists are highly encouraged to choose the second way because looking for road yourselves at night in a strange place would definitely be a challenge.
Tips and Tricks Before Wandering Quang Ba Night Flower Market in Hanoi
*Arrive at The Market Early if You Want to Buy Flowers
To have the freshest as well as to have a much larger range of choices, buyers are suggested to go to the market as early as possible, the ideal time is during the rush hours.
After 4 AM, the freshest flowers usually are sold out. At that time, customers do not have the opportunity to choose the most beautiful flowers, and the costs are also higher at the ones during peak time. Therefore, customers should arrive at the market before 4 AM, as earlier as possible.
For travelers who only come to enjoy Hanoi’s hectic market life, the peak hours are also thought to be the most appropriate time to come. The reason for that is easy to understand: Time goes on, the prettiest flowers have been sold out, the smaller number of people is at the market; no one wants to wander around a market with a boring situation like that.
*Be Polite When Taking Photographs
The majority of sellers coming to this market are to make their living; therefore, paying attention to take photos may cause difficulty for them. You do not surely want to be in a quarrel. Moreover, that thing is really dangerous because there are so many vehicles here.
In addition, some sellers do not want to appear in your photos so to avoid potential trouble, and also to show your courteous, you should ask people that you want to take pictures whether they agree or not.
*Keep An Eye On Your Belongings
In each crowded market, there are sometimes several bad people (pickpockets, for example) so, for your own safety, carefully keep your eyes on your belongings. You had better leave all of your passports as well as important papers at your hotel, just bring a small amount of money and low-valuable things. This will bring you a safe feeling, enjoy the sight of the night flower market.
*Quang Ba Market in Tet Holidays
On holidays, the market is open earlier, so travelers should plan to go at their most appropriate time. The peak hours these days are from 9 to 10 PM. In these national holidays, there are some kinds of special flowers being on sale, for example, Nhat Tan, kumquat, apricot, narcissus. Unlike normal days, the market these days spread to several square kilometers on the Nghi Tam Dike, making a more hustle atmosphere. If possible, travelers should truly plan to visit this market on Tet holiday. The unique traditional color here at that time make travels excited.
Quang Ba Flower Night Market can be considered a paradise for flower-lovers where a lot of kinds of flowers can be found. Visiting this place, travelers will have a priceless occasion of learning and discovering new things. So, why do not you come here one time?