Hanoi's train street attracts foreign visitors
The railway line runs through a street in Hanoi, between two rows of houses, giving it the name of "train street".
Hidden amidst the hectic, narrow streets of the Hanoi Old Quarter lies a funky little area, where motorbikes are no longer the biggest danger to locals stepping outside of their front door. They’re replaced by high speed trains, hurling through the residential street, mere feet away from peoples everyday lives – their dishes and laundry drying by the tracks. This is the Hanoi Train Street.
Hanoi's train street is running from Kham Thien street to the Giai Phong - Dai Co Viet crossroad.
Old houses along this street are home to some of old, simple, idyllic and rustic memories of Hanoi.
The street itself is not dissimilar to the majority of the streets in Hanoi’s old quarter – slim, tall buildings line the bustling, narrow streets. But of course with one main difference: a working railway track fills up the space where a road should be. It was pretty surreal to see locals sitting on their doorsteps going about their everyday lives – washing dishes, hanging up laundry, cleaning their motorbikes and even playing with babies. Right on the train tracks.
It's amazing to see the perfect unison with which all the locals vacated the street, moved items away from the tracks and took the children inside. All without so much as a glance at their watches. It was as if the train times were ingrained in their body clocks – and maybe that’s exactly what has happened after a lifetime of living by the side of the railroad.
A foreigner is taking a selfie at the train street.
A foreigner is setting up his camera to capture some shots at the train street
As it flew past, we were separated across the tracks for what felt like an eternity while the carriages trailed behind, though I’m sure it didn’t last longer than a minute. My hair whipped around my face with the speed of it passing only a foot away from my nose. It was exhilarating to be next to something so powerful and know that, as much of a novelty as it was for us, it was simply routine for those living here.