Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (2023)

Being known as the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, the place has become an indispensable culture center of Hanoi, Vietnam. Water puppet is an outstanding and unique intangible culture of Vietnam. In a water puppet show, the stage will be a small pond, the performers hide behind a bamboo curtain, controlling the puppet and present scenes on the water surface. The Thang Long Theatre has been doing a great job of preserving and performing this type of art throughout the years, therefore the place is considered as a remarkable culture of Hanoi, Vietnam.

Location: 57B Dinh Tien Hoang street, Hang Bac ward, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
Phone: 024 382 49494 - 024 382 55450
Ticket price: 100,000 - 200,000 VND / ticket

I. Highlights of the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre in Hanoi

1. Long-term history

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (1)

The Water Puppet Theatre in Hanoi may be considered one of the oldest architectural structures in Hanoi, Vietnam. The place had been opened on the 10th of October, 1969. In 2019, the Hanoi City People’s Committee had arranged a huge anniversary to celebrate the 50th year of operating the Water Puppet Theatre.

Water puppet is one of the most outstanding cultures of Vietnam, attracting the attention of many people around the world. The Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre is among the few places that still reserve and perform this type of art. Therefore, the theatre is highly appreciated by major Vietnamese people.

At first, the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre was named the Kim Dong Artistic Union with only 9 people. In 1975, the place was named Hanoi Puppet Union. Finally, in 1993, the theatre moved to its current location on Dinh Tien Hoang Street and beared the name we all know nowadays: Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre.

Although having been opened for a long time, it was not until 1990 that the theatre started to build its water stage for the water puppet show. At that time, the theatre had been through many hardships due to the consequences of the war. In 1992, the water puppet was first performed by the theatre in a foreign country, Japan to be more specific, and gain the attention of many audiences around the world. Since then, there had been numerous amazing plays being created by the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre. The theatre has performed in more than 40 foreign countries as well as taken part in numerous international festivals, helping to promote Vietnamese water puppet to the world.

2. Special Location

Located on the Dinh Tien Hoang Street, the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre lies in the center of Hanoi. This place attracts hundreds of international tourists each month, so the theatre is also visited by a huge number of audiences. Travelers often combine sightseeing at Hoan Kiem Lake with watching water puppet shows at the theatre.

If you walk on Dinh Tien Hoang Street, you will be able to notice the theatre very easily, not only because the building lies right at the front of the street but also because it has 3 floors. That is one of the small reasons why the theatre was known and loved by many foreign people.

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (2)

3. Preserve the intangible cultural of Vietnam

Water puppet is considered as the symbol of intangible cultural in Vietnam, but due to the increasing development of technology, such traditions are slowly getting ignored by the young generation. The Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre take it as their responsibility to preserve and promote this unique type of art, in order to make sure that the Vietnamese tradition won’t be drowned in the new wave of modern customs.

In recent years, the theater has restored 17 ancient folk water puppets tricks, plays and traditions to create an artistic breakthrough nationwide. Not only recovered old water puppet tricks, but the Thang Long theatre also made new performances which are more creative, attractive and wonderful, but still based on the traditional features of the Vietnamese water puppet.

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Thanks to the theatre’s effort, more and more international people know about water puppet the one of a kind art of Vietnam, as well as helping young Vietnamese generations to not forget the traditional cultures of the country. The Thang Long water puppet theatre has received lots of honored medals and prizes for its attempt.

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (3)

4. Perform with live music

Every stage needs music and background sounds to support the performance, helping audiences to understand the feeling and meaning of the show. Most theatres often use music that had been recorded in advance. However, the staff in Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre perform with live music that is pulled off by a professional band. The music and sounds, therefore, are clearer, more melodious and high-class.

The music band performs in Thang Long theatre not only can perform folk music but also can perform Western music, which is very helpful in international events. Therefore, the Thang Long theatre is not only made for water puppet but also for various shows for both domestic and foreign audiences.

II. The Hanoi Water Puppet Show

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The Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre holds shows almost every day of the week. There are usually around 5 or 6 shows a day in different time phrases. The schedule is updated every week on the official website of the Thang Long theatre. Each show lasts for about 1 hour, which is enough for tourists to be immersed in the fascinating attractions of the water puppet in Vietnam.

During the time around holidays such as Christmas, New Year or other fiestas of Vietnam, the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre often holds special events and shows to celebrate these occasions. The water puppet shows are performed by a group of talented elite artists, who have gained such fame and recognition with their phenomenal skills.

Not only acts and perform Vietnamese traditional plays, such as Truong Ba’s Soul in the Butcher’s Body, Children of Dragon, etc, but the theatre also creates new plays based on the Western culture such as Ballet and more. Every scene is acted by the puppet, while artists control and voiceover for them behind the curtain. It’s the creativity and uniqueness of this kind of art that attracts the curiosity of foreign people.

III. What to See & Do in the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre?

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (5)

1. Learn about Vietnamese water puppet and culture

The puppet show is very popular in most countries, but not many people are aware that the water puppet is the kind of art that only appears in Vietnam. Coming to see a water puppet show is to understand more about the culture and traditions of the Vietnamese. Each play performed on the stage is a legend or a story that tells the heroic history and the colorful customs of the S-shaped country. Water puppet helps foreign people to know more about Vietnam, as well as help them to learn more about the Asian civilization.

Not only learn about the traditional culture of the country Vietnam, but the audiences of water puppet shows at Thang Long theatre also get the chance to review Vietnamese folk tales through the new perspective of water puppet art. After a 1-hour play, the audiences will be able to differentiate between the water puppet and the normal puppet show. The virtuoso technique of manipulating water puppets will surely impress international travelers as well as help them feel the peaceful beauty of the rural countryside of Northern Vietnam.

Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price) (6)

2. Sit down at the cafe of the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

The Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre was located on Dinh Tien Hoang Street the street that covers around the famous Hoan Kiem Lake of Hanoi with the remarkable Turtle Tower. On weekends, all means of transport are forbidden to enter the street, creating a wonderful space for people to walk around and enjoy the peaceful sceneries of the lake.

After enjoying a show, audiences can sit down and enjoy a delicious drink at the cafe that was placed on the first floor of the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre. The cafe is decorated in a modern Western-style, serves all kinds of delicious coffees and drinks, as well as savory and snacks. The cafe was named “Helio”, which is easy to find in the bustling street. If not, tourists can choose one of many other cafes and snack shops on Dinh Tien Hoang Street. The landscapes of Hoan Kiem Lake is absolutely worth visiting, so it will be an unforgettable experience to travel around the Dinh Tien Hoang street after enjoying a water puppet show at Thang Long theatre.

IV. How to Get to the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre?

The Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre is located on Dinh Tien Hoang Street, where numerous bus routes pass by. You can hop on buses number 08, 09, 14, 31, 36, 86 and get down at Dinh Tien Hoang Street, then walk to the theatre.

Taxis are the fastest means of transportation to arrive at the Thang Long theatre, although it may cost more money than other ones. In Hanoi, it is also easy to find a motorbike renting a place, if you want to try finding ways around the capital of Vietnam on your own, this will be the perfect option.

Remember that during weekends, all transportations will be forbidden to come into Dinh Tien Hoang Street. On these days, whichever transportations you go by, you will have to stop outside the street, get out of your vehicle and walk on foot.

V. Tips on Visiting the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

  • Consider carefully when choosing seats. The front seats which are near the stage will give you a better chance to closely watch the puppets, however, due to the stage being covered in water, audiences that sit near may get splashed on from time to time. If you don’t think this will be an inconvenience, don’t hesitate to choose the front seats.
  • Check the schedule before watching. The schedule of the shows will be updated regularly on the official website of the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre. Make sure to check it and choose the show you want to see. Some shows will have English subtitles for foreign audiences, which is shown on the screen, as well.
  • Extra fees will be charged for cameras. If you want to take pictures during the show, you will have to pay an extra fee of 20.000 VND, and 60.000 VND for filming. This price will be asked in payment for each device.
  • Sunday is a perfect day to come to Thang Long theatre. On Sunday, the Thang Long theatre often holds more shows than other days of the week. So if you are a busy person and can hardly find spare time, consider going on Sunday because there will be more options for you to choose from. However, on weekends there will be more audiences at the theatre, so you should arrive early to take great seats.
  • Buy tickets early. Due to the rules of the Thang Long theatre, one must have their ticket at least 30 minutes before the show starts.

VI. Frequently Asked Questions about Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

Do I need to book Thang Long Water Puppet tickets in advance?

No. But it is best if you do, because the theatre is often crowded with audiences, especially on weekends.

How much does it cost to visit Thang Long water puppet theatre?

Currently , it costs $4.78 for an entrance ticket to Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre.

What’s the best way to see Thang Long Water Puppet?

► Choose the VIP seat because it provides a better view, despite having a higher price.
► Arrive at the theatre at least 30 minutes before the show.
► Concentrate fully during the show. Each show only lasts for 45 to 60 minutes, you won’t understand its meaning if you don’t pay attention to every detail.

Where to stay near Thang Long Water Puppet?

Some outstanding options of hotels in Hoan Kiem District, near Dinh Tien Hoang Street are:
► Golden Rice Hotel Hanoi: 36 Hang Trong Street
► Silk Collection Hotel & Spa: 58 Hang Gai Street
► OYO 376 A Dong Hotel: 46 Luong Ngoc Quyen Street
► Hanoi La Siesta Central Hotel & Spa: 18 Cau Go Street
► Royal Holiday Hanoi Hotel: 19 Hang Hanh Street
► The Oriental Jade Hotel: 92 94 Hang Trong Street
► Hanoi Sky Hotel: 27 Tong Duy Tan Street

What attractions are near Thang Long Water Puppet?

► Hoan Kiem Lake
► Turtle Tower
► Ngoc Son Temple and The Huc Bridge
► The monument of King Ly Thai To
► Dong Son Nghia Thuc Square
Hanoi Opera House
Dong Xuan market► The big church, or also known as Saint Joseph Cathedral
Night market and Dinh Tien Hoang walking street (on weekends)

Water puppet is one of the most remarkable cultures of Vietnam, and Thang Long theatre is the most famous place in the field of preserving this wonderful art. Coming to Hanoi, Vietnam, don’t miss the chance of watching and learning about this one of a kind type of performing, because the water puppet is only available in Vietnam. Not only experience something unique but you will also learn so much more about the customs and tradition of the beautiful S-shaped country.



Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre, Hanoi: History, What to See (w/Price)? ›

Map of Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre

Where can I watch the water puppet show in Hanoi? ›

The most famous place in Hanoi where you can attend a water puppet show is in the Thang Long water puppet theatre, next to Hoan Kiem Lake, in the center of Hanoi. The theatre is modern and shows are around 15 short performances within a one-hour show.

How long is Thang Long puppet show? ›

This was a 50 minute show made up for 17 short folk / traditional stories.

How long is water puppet show in Hanoi? ›

Experience one of Vietnam's most memorable and traditional art forms during a live 50-minute performance. The art of water puppetry has a distinct Vietnamese identity.

What do you find out about water puppet shows? ›

A water puppet show

Tễu is an iconic character, a whimsical storyteller who will lead you through different scenes and stories as they unfold on stage. The brightly coloured puppets recreate daily life in Vietnam's northern villages, including duck herding, fishing, rice planting, boat rowing, and royal parades.

What time is the water puppet show in Vietnam? ›

Show Timings

Five shows are held every day of the week at Thang Long Water Puppet Theater, with an extra show on Sunday mornings. Don't worry about missing out as the show runs 365 days a year. The timings may vary but they are usually at 03:00 PM, 04:10 PM, 05:20 PM, 06:30 PM and 08:00 PM.

How do I watch puppet history? ›

Puppet History (2020)

Puppet History is currently available to stream and watch with ads in the United States. JustWatch makes it easy to find out where you can legally watch your favorite movies & TV shows online. Visit JustWatch for more information.

How do puppet masters talk? ›

Ventriloquism (say ven-TRIL-o-kwism) is the art of talking with the tongue and not moving the mouth or face. When a skilled ventriloquist does this sitting beside a figure (or “dummy”) that has a moving mouth, it looks like the figure is talking. It works because humans use their eyes to find sound sources.

How old is the puppet theatre? ›

Puppetry is a very ancient form of theatre which was first recorded in the 5th century BC in Ancient Greece. Some forms of puppetry may have originated as long ago as 3000 years BC. Puppetry takes many forms, but they all share the process of animating inanimate performing objects to tell a story.

How old is the art of puppetry? ›

Nobody knows when the first puppet shows were performed in Britain, though there is evidence of puppetry dating back at least 600 years. Glove, or hand puppets, were very portable, making them popular with travelling minstrels and other medieval entertainers.

What was the biggest puppet in the world? ›

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (KCBS/CBS Newspath/WKRC) - The world's largest puppet, a massive two-story porcupine, was unveiled on March 1 in Los Angeles. The puppet comes from Jim Hensen's Creature Shop and was made for the San Diego Children's Zoo.

How old is the marionette puppet? ›

Marionette puppetry was used to display rituals and ceremonies using these string-operated figurines back in ancient times and is still used today. Puppetry was practiced in Ancient Greece and the oldest written records of puppetry can be found in the works of Herodotus and Xenophon, dating from the 5th century BC.

Who invented water puppets? ›

Water puppetry arose in the Red River delta and other rice-growing regions of northern Việt Nam a thousand years ago, during the Lý dynasty. Villagers staged water puppet performances to celebrate the end of the rice harvest, at religious festivals, and simply for entertainment.

What do water puppets symbolize? ›

Through scenes depicting heroism, courage, perseverance, and others, Vietnamese Water Puppet Theatre serves as a tool for fostering nationalism, creating and solidifying a cultural identity, and serving as a reminder to the Vietnamese of their agrarian past.

What does water symbolize in Vietnam? ›

Water, in Vietnamese culture, symbolizes rebirth and a connection to heritage. Rice is a primary component of the Vietnamese diet (Gaboriault).

What is the most legendary puppet? ›

The undisputed king of puppets, Kermit the Frog is still around today.

How does Vietnamese water puppets work? ›

The puppets are made out of wood and then lacquered. The shows are performed in a waist-deep pool. A large bamboo rod supports the puppet under the water and is used by the puppeteers, who are normally hidden behind a screen, to control them. Thus the puppets appear to be moving over the water.

Which puppets means that dance on water? ›

Water puppetry, also known as Múa rối nước in Vietnam, means "making puppets dance on water." It is a Vietnamese tradition steeped in history, folklore, and mystery.

What do the Japanese call the puppet show? ›

Bunraku (文楽) is the traditional puppet theater of Japan. It started of as popular entertainment for the commoners during the Edo Period in Osaka and evolved into artistic theater during the late 17th century.

How do I know my puppet version? ›

To check the installed puppet version use puppet -V. root@ubuntu-client:~# puppet -V 3.8. 1 root@ubuntu-client:~# vim /etc/apt/preferences. d/00-puppet.

Will Puppet History ever come back? ›

Season 5 of Puppet History premiered on November 11, 2022 with an episode titled "How Hippo Meat Almost Saved America".

Is puppet a boy or a girl? ›

While it was confirmed that Puppet's soul is female, both The Freddy Files and Ultimate Custom Night confirm that The Puppet himself is a male.

How was The Puppet Master caught? ›

Blondeau said Hendy-Freegard had been located through the licence plate on his vehicle. “The East Flanders road police were able to intercept the man in Groot-Bijgaarden, and it turned out that it was indeed this person and the wanted vehicle,” he said.

Who controls the puppet? ›

A puppeteer is a person who works a puppet, making it move and appear to talk. A puppeteer might do this by putting her hand inside the puppet and moving its arms and head. Puppets come in many different shapes, sizes, and styles, and they all need at least one puppeteer to operate them.

Is the puppet friendly? ›

The Puppet is the only antagonist whose intentions are not purely selfish or malevolent in nature and is only truly an antagonist due to it being an enemy in the second game.

Who made the first puppet? ›

Puppets as we know them have also been found in Egyptian tombs that date as far back as 2000 BCE—which means puppets have been around for at least 4000 years! Historians suspect that Ancient Egypt or Ancient India may be the true birthplace of the first puppet.

What is the history of puppet theatre? ›

It is believed that the first puppet theatre was created in the city of Venice in the early 1600s. Since then, puppet theatre has spread to other parts of Europe and the world. Today, there are many different types of puppet theatre, each with its own unique style and history.

Who is the father of puppetry? ›

Eugene Lambert

What do you call a puppet leader? ›

A puppet ruler is a person who has a title indicating possession of political power, but who, in reality, is either loyal to or controlled by outside individuals or forces. Such outside power can be exercised by a foreign government, in which case the puppet ruler's domain is called a puppet state.

What puppetry is best known? ›

Wayang today is both the most ancient and the most popular form of puppet theatre in the world.

Who was inside puppet? ›

Personality. The Puppet was originally an inanimate object and therefore had no personality of its own, until it was possessed by the spirit of a selfless and noble little girl named Charlotte Emily.

Who was the puppet king in history? ›

Learn about this topic in these articles:

puppet king of Babylonia was Bel-ibni (702–700), who had been raised in Assyria.

Did the puppet give life? ›

It is also confirmed in the Completion ending that the Puppet, who was possessed by Henry's daughter, was giving life to the other murdered children from The Missing Children Incident and restoring their lives by making them animatronics as well.

What nationality is marionette? ›

Borrowed from French marionnette. The word originally meant a small statue of the Virgin Mary, then also a puppet of her used in religious theatrical presentations, finally generalised to any puppet.

Is the puppet master human? ›

Once discovered, the Puppet Master is assumed to be a human, most likely with mnemonic enhancements, who has incredible hacking skills.

What's the difference between a marionette and a puppet? ›

marionette, also called string puppet, any of several types of puppet figures manipulated from above by strings or threads attached to a control. In a simple marionette, the strings are attached in nine places: to each leg, hand, shoulder, and ear and at the base of the spine.

Why is the puppet show important? ›

Puppetry has played an important role in disseminating knowledge in most parts of the world. Puppetry imbibes elements of all art forms such as literature, painting, sculpture, music, dance, drama and enables students to develop their creative abilities.

What is the purpose of a puppet show? ›

Puppetry in its play and making theatre, is an activity that provides sensory stimulation simultaneously for intellectual and emotional development.

What is the symbol of puppet? ›

The puppet represents the invisible double of the human, from a dual perspective: the bright, positive side stimulates the spirit that is freed from the gravity of the matter; the negative side unveils the mind's hidden impulses.

What color is good luck in Vietnam? ›

In Vietnamese folk belief, people usually use red, pink, green or yellow as a lucky color. They are the symbol of good luck, happiness, power, wealth, prosperity and celebration!

Can you flush toilet paper in Vietnam? ›

The same applies in Vietnam, where you'll often see a sign in toilets asking patrons not to flush toilet paper down the toilet. Primarily attributed to the inadequate plumbing systems and the threat of blockage, there will be a bidet shower (or bum gun) on hand to wash your derriere.

Can I brush my teeth with tap water in Vietnam? ›

Yes, you can brush your teeth with the water in Vietnam. You can be sure that the tap water in urban areas is safe to brush your teeth and bathe. In most rural areas, the water is going to be safe as well for bathing and brushing your teeth.

Where can I watch puppet? ›

How to Watch Puppet Master. Right now you can watch Puppet Master on Shudder. You are able to stream Puppet Master by renting or purchasing on Amazon Instant Video. You are able to stream Puppet Master for free on Tubi.

Where can I watch atomic puppet? ›

Right now you can watch Atomic Puppet on Netflix.

Where can u watch puppet master? ›

Download the Peacock app and start streaming Puppet Master. Puppet Master has a running time of 1 hour and 28 mins.

Where is water puppetry performance from? ›

Water puppetry (Vietnamese: Múa rối nước) is a tradition that dates back as far as the 11th century when it originated in the villages of the Red River Delta area of northern Vietnam.

Is there a free version of puppet? ›

Open source Puppet is free for use and open to modification and customization. You get a comprehensive tool with core CM capabilities and functionality out-of-the-box, and—if you possess the skill set— can be tweaked and improved upon directly through modifying its source code directly.

Who is the most popular puppet? ›

By far one of the most popular puppets of all time, Kermit has appeared on several television shows, including The Muppet Show.

What was the first puppet show? ›

Puppetry is a very ancient form of theatre which was first recorded in the 5th century BC in Ancient Greece. Some forms of puppetry may have originated as long ago as 3000 years BC.
Gioppino and Brighella puppet show in Bergamo, Italy
Ancestor artsTheatre
Originating era3000 BC

How old is Atomic Puppet? ›

Atomic Puppet have its world premiere on Disney XD in France on March 13, 2016.

Where can I watch the deep animation? ›

The Deep, an adventure series starring Ashleigh Ball, Kathleen Barr, and Michael Dobson is available to stream now. Watch it on Netflix, Prime Video or Apple TV on your Roku device.

What was that puppet show in Netflix? ›

In this harrowing docuseries, a cruel conman masquerading as a British spy manipulates and steals from his victims, leaving ruined families in his wake. Watch all you want. This true-crime series comes from the team behind the BAFTA-winning documentary "The Imposter."

Is Puppet Master free? ›

Puppet Master: The Game is a Free to Play online multiplayer game will celebrate the series' 30 year legacy. Revisit iconic locations, Select from a large roster of playable characters from the movies.

Is the puppet master in jail? ›

The convicted fraudster has been dubbed The Puppet Master for his ability to exert control over his victims. He was jailed for life by a London court in 2005 for deception, theft and kidnapping in an extraordinary trial that heard from seven people whose money he used to enjoy luxury cars and five-star holidays.

What is the purpose of water puppets? ›

Water puppetry arose in the Red River delta and other rice-growing regions of northern Việt Nam a thousand years ago, during the Lý dynasty. Villagers staged water puppet performances to celebrate the end of the rice harvest, at religious festivals, and simply for entertainment.

What are water puppets made of? ›

These puppets are made out of fig wood and then lacquered. Puppeteers perform from behind a screen in a waist-deep pool by controlling the puppet with a rod and strings. This creates the illusion that the puppets are moving on top of the water. 3.


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