Early Doi Moi Hanoi through a Japanese lens

50-year-old Yuichi Kobayashi, has lived in Hanoi for 14 years and holds special feelings for the capital.


A corner of Hanoi in a photo by Yuichi Kobayashi

Kobayashi came to Vietnam in 1995 to monitor a factory construction process. Arriving in Hanoi when it was raining, his first impression was the lack of colour and unmaintained houses. But his love for the city grew and he considered Hanoi his second home.

He often took photos of the daily lives whenever he had free times. Even though many said the city was very crowded and dirty, for him, Hanoi has many green streets.

Kobayashi said the atmosphere in Hanoi in 1995 felt like Japan’s in 1960. Despite being poor, the citizens always found ways to cheer themselves up and kept working.

“I liked living in Hanoi,” he said after returning to Japan. He also wants to return to Hanoi someday.

Some more photos about Hanoi by Kobayashi:


Bicycles were also a main means of transport



Hang Gai Street

Pham Ngoc Thach Street in 1995 lacked clothes stores

Traffic on Long Bien Bridge

Bat Trang Village after a rain

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