On December 24, thousands of people had a sleepless night, as they flocked to the streets, churches and shopping malls, sharing beautiful and memorable moments with friends and families.
From early evening, the streets around Hanoi’s Hoan Kiem Lake and those leading to the Saint Joseph Cathedral, decked with colourful Christmas decorations and gifts, were bustling.
For many years, the church has remained a highlight of the Christmas holidays. It is one of the most visited places on the eve of Christmas by both Christians and non-Christians.
Hang Ma Street was also full of people as it is well-known as a shopping street for decorations, gifts and everything else, not only during Christmas but also for the New Year and other festivals.
Most people chose to walk around Hoan Kiem Lake, and enjoyed the music, dance performances and folk games taking place there.
Shopping malls and hotels were also frequented by youngsters.
Trang Tien Plaza, located next to Hoan Kiem Lake, was beautifully decorated. The front of the commercial centre was lit up with thousands of lights, attracting people to take pictures.
Royal City and Times City looked like magnificent palaces, with sparkling Christmas trees, galaxy ornaments and beautiful wreaths everywhere.
The European-styled Metropole Hotel also saw people gathering under its glittering lights and shining garlands to take selfies.
Those who didn’t want to walk stopped by at cafés, to enjoy the Christmas atmosphere, albeit in a more quiet style.
Many stores around the area also cashed in on the holiday demand, by offering major price cuts.
In HCM City, the Notre Dame Cathedral in the centre of District 1 was the most popular venue for people.
The church is decorated beautifully, days before Christmas Eve and lures visitors from every corner of the city.
The people were spread from the church right to Nguyen Hue pedestrian street, which hosted street art shows along with jugglery and circus performances.
Other places which were popular among people to celebrate a memorable Christmas were Star Light Bridge in District 7, Bitexco building on Nguyen Hue, Phu My Hung Urban Area, Diamon Plaza and Aeon mall.
To make up for the warm weather in HCM City, people flocked to witness snow at the Snow Village event organised from December 22 to 24 at Crescent Mall.
Apart from taking photos with the falling snow under a European-styled space, people can also taste free ice cream and enjoy music shows every night.
Hanoi’s people had a similar event on December 23 and 24 at the Ly Thai To Flower Garden by Hoan Kiem Lake.-