Hoan Kiem Lake

The lake is an enchanting body of water right in the heart of Hanoi city. Legend has it that in the mid-15th Century, Heaven gave Emperor Le Thai To a magical sword which he used to drive the Chinese invaders out of Vietnam. One day after the war, whilst boating, he came upon a giant golden Tortoise swimming on the lake surface. The creature grabbed the sword and disappeared into the depths of the lake. Since then the lake has been known as Hoan Kiem (The Restored Sword) because the tortoise restored the sword to its divine owners.