Hang market – where tradition competes with modernity

(VOVWORLD) - In the middle of the bustling shops and supermarkets of Hai Phong city stands Hang wet market, typical of Vietnam’s northern countryside. There, buyers can find seedlings, breeding animals, home furniture, and even pricey electronic devices. But to many, it is more a place to have fun than to buy things.
Hang market used to be the trading place of Du Hang village, which was a busy travel crossroads in the 17th and 18th century. Villagers earned their living primarily from farming, so they often traded seedlings, breeding animals, and farm equipment.

As urbanization expanded, Hang market became part of Hai Phong’s Du Hang Kenh ward, Le Chan district, but the farm trading there continued unchanged.   

The market opens every Sunday morning. Bamboo baskets and trivets, which harken back to a past now fading, are still sold in Hang market, which is starting to resemble a museum of antiquities.

Mr. Kha of Hai Duong province said, “I can find anything I want at Hang market. I love its traditional vibe of a rustic village. Handicraft items are plentiful. Today I bought a wooden bailer.”  

Hang market – where tradition competes with modernity - ảnh 1Buyers are enticed by colorful flowers and bonsais at Hang market. (Photo: laodong.vn) 

Hang market is not just for selling and buying. Farmers come there to showcase their home-grown products and swap farming experience.

Doan Huu Gia of Le Chan district, Hai Phong city, told VOV, “This is a traditional market. Hai Phong people love it. It’s a place for locals to sell their farm produce. Affordable prices ensure that Hang market is always crowded. I go to the market every Sunday.”

Each kind of product has a dedicated area. Stalls of ornamental fish and bonsai line the main roads. The flower area attracts customers with its vibrant colors, and the breeding animals area is always hectic. Pigs, hens, ducks, geese, cats, dogs, rabbits, hamsters, mountain turtles, and crickets of different varieties, sizes, and colors are for sale. Fist-sized yellow chicks are crammed into bamboo cages. Geese stretch their necks high. Puppies wag their little tails. Months-old parrots show off their bright blue feathers. Every corner of the market is pleasantly noisy with animal sounds and the laughter of shoppers.          

Hang market – where tradition competes with modernity - ảnh 2Domestic pets are sold at Hang market. (Photo: laodong.vn)

Nguyen Quang Tien of Hanoi told VOV, “Here I can buy things that can’t be found anywhere else. I buy Dong Tao chickens and Vietnam’s indigenous chickens.”  

At Hang market you’ll find antiquities, kerosene, needles and thread, mobile phones, game players, computers, home furniture, drills, and water pumps. Prices are fluid. Sellers and buyers bargain until they strike a deal, in the authentic rural style.    

In a modern society where convenience stores and supermarkets predominate, Hang market is keeping alive the cultural values of Vietnam’s traditional markets, linking the present to the past for the residents of Hai Phong city and a growing number of visitors.