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Hanoi Pho Noodle Soup - Facts, Tips & Hacks!

Fun facts, tips, and hacks so you can make the most of your Pho experiences while you are in Vietnam.

Pho Thin The Best Pho in Hanoi Vietnam


  • Pho originated in the northern Vietnam province of Nam Dinh in the late 1800's.

  • Pho is traditionally a breakfast food in Vietnam, though you can now find it sold all day long, throughout the country.

  • Beware, some of the most popular Pho shops in Hanoi close when they run out of beef stock, or beef. This can be anytime late morning, or into the afternoon. Don't be too late if you're thinking about hitting one of the hot spots!

  • Rice noodles are wide and flat in northern style Hanoi Pho.

  • Deep fried Chinese dough (quay) is a popular side item served in Hanoi Pho shops, Try it!

  • Pho Bo is 'beef' pho'. Pho Ga is 'chicken pho' Pho Ga is a local specialty, delicious, and almost as popular as Pho Bo in Hanoi. 

  • Pho Ga can usually, also be ordered 'dry', or without broth in most restaurants that serve it. We highly suggest you experience both versions to get the full Pho Ga experience in Hanoi.


  • Traditionally, northern style Pho is served with more green onion and without additional fresh vegetable garnishes (bean sprouts, thai basil, etc..).

  • A poached egg can be added to your soup for around .20 cents anywhere you eat Pho Bo & Ga.

  • Side soup condiments typically include: Fresh garlic pickled in vinegar / Chili Sauce / Fish Sauce / Fresh Chili's / Lime Slices / Black Pepper.

  • Sriracha sauce is not a thing in Vietnam. Chili Sauce takes its place and is usually different form shop to shop. A lot of places make their own, and it's delectable.

  • Hoisin Sauce is typically NOT served in the north.

  • We suggest you chase your Pho with Jasmin iced tea, which is a local favorite drink.

  •  Most of the top restaurants in Hanoi serve ONE food item and serve it well. DO NOT expect to find a good Pho at a western style restaurant that serves everything. The best spots serve only Pho Bo or Pho Ga.

Closeup of the Best Pho in Hanoi Vietnam, Pho Thin
Enjoying Hanoi's Best Pho in Hanoi Vietnam in 2022, With My Vietnamese Wife.


  • ALWAYS ask for 'takeout' bamboo chopsticks when you eat anywhere in Vietnam. Typically,  restaurant chopsticks are hand-washed and reused. Also, some shops use large clunky plastic chopsticks, which I've always found difficult to use when trying to shovel slippery noodles into my pho-hole as quickly as possible. 

  • Bring Wet Wipes to clean off your face, hands, then table, soup spoon, etc... After applying your condiments and squeezing your lime into your soup, you will want to give them a good wipe.


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