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Hoa Lo Prison, Hanoi

4.0
Nicknamed the "Hanoi Hilton" by U.S. soldiers during the Vietnam War, Hoa Lo Prison has seen generations of Vietnamese revolutionaries who fought against French colonialists. The prison was built by the French in 1896. By the 1930s, nearly 2,000 political prisoners were incarcerated in the cells originally constructed to hold no more than 450 inmates--in fact, hundreds of prisoners broke away over the years through the sewage system. During the 1990s, most of the prison was torn down, leaving only the gatehouse for the museum. See the notorious French guillotine, a ghastly relic of French colonial presence in Indochina. The exhibits include U.S. Senator John McCain's flight suit, which he wore when he was shot down and rescued by locals in 1967. Find out how to plan Hanoi trip without stress by asking Inspirock to help create an itinerary.
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Hoa Lo Prison Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3.5
8,423 reviews
Google
4.2
TripAdvisor
  • Hoa Lo Prison, also known as the Hanoi Hilton back in the day is worth a visit to get some of the flavour of some of its historical past. Actually, a lot of the prison has already disappeared having b...  more »
  • Enjoyed our visit here but couldn't help feeling that it could be so much more. The primary focus is on the Indochina wars and showing the conditions that the prisoners were kept in. The prison is qui...  more »
  • I was moved beyond words by the stark presentations within the Hoa Lo Prison. The brutality of the French to the Vietnamese show the depths of human behaviour.  more »
Google
  • This is a old prison, long ago used by the Americans. So horrible to see what happened here. It's really sad to see the things. Historical stuff saved here. Can visit the real prisoner cells. Terrific experience. Must visit place. Just 2 US$ to enter. Walking distance from old quarter.
  • Thought-provoking and gives you incredible insight to the Vietnam War and how the Americans were treated during the tumultous time. As someone who didn't have much knowledge on the era, it was interesting to walk through the walls of the prison where these people lived and breathed for many years, and hard to imagine people living in such small spaces (the solitary confinement area was quite sad). I believe this museum is a way for Vietnamese people to explain their side of the story and how the felt about America coming onto their land even if they had no solid reason to. Definitely recommend checking out this place if you're ever in Hanoi!
  • I did not like it at all. Where we all know that there was a big war going on, this was more of a feel-good American camp where they had chickens and everyone was really friendly and played ball. Nothing what I expected. Not the drama I was expecting. It was more of a hotel than a prison although reading online a lot of bad stuff happened here.
  • Nice historical recap. Might be boring for very young kids. Had mock ups to really let you feel how is was like. Good place to learn about history, featured some American pows. English texts, and you can pay to hire a guide if you don't have the patience to read on your own. Maybe they can share more too? Not sure, we didn't hire a guide.
  • Very informative place. Be careful they try to sell you a booklet at the beginning you don't need ha.. all in all. Great place to learn about the prison
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