Photo by age fotostock
Hoa Lo Prison Museum
Perhaps the most relevant museum in Hanoi for American visitors is the Hoa Lo Prison Museum, popularly known as the "Hanoi Hilton” during the Vietnam War. Its exterior is a strangely cheery yellow, and it was part of a complex built by the French around the turn of the 20th century. You’ll know you’ve reached the building when you see its original French name, Maison Centrale, in bold letters above the entrance. The exhibits cover both the French treatment of Vietnamese prisoners and the U.S. soldiers and pilots housed here during the Vietnam War—including Senator John McCain, who was detained here from 1967 to 1973. (His flight suit is among the displays.) A visit can be a powerful, and at times emotionally difficult, experience.
By Sanjay Surana, AFAR Contributor
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1 Hoả Lò, Trần Hưng Đạo, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
+84 24 3934 2253
Sun - Sat 8am - 5pm