• William Steel

Photo story - Hanoi: In motion

From the break of dawn and into midnight hours, Hanoi, like most of Vietnams cities, seems to be moving in a chaotic ebb and flow of trade. When walking the streets, one wrong footing feels like an accident waiting to happen, including but not limited to at least a dozen overloaded motorbikes and 3 ladies carrying traditional shoulder pole baskets (quang ganh).


The truth is that this city is slowly getting used to the oblivious international tourist, and with the same grace that the motorbikes dodge each other, they swerve almost subconsciously out of the way of a stumbling traveller searching for an air-conditioned bar to escape the heat.


I found myself captivated by Hanoi's charm. The city is developing at an unbelievable rate, and even though the Old Quarter holds most of its authenticity, Westernisation and tourism is still visibly laying its claim to the district. Normally I would hate this, but if anything it adds a level of intrigue to the city. Its adapting and coexisting in a beautiful way, where culture and development fit hand in hand with its future.


Atmosphere is always the most challenging thing to capture, but for me the element of motion not only visibly but of interacting pasts and futures is what Hanoi really is about.

A common method of transporting building materials across the city.

Colour isn't stationary in Vietnam, from the brightly painted buses and taxis to its vibrantly dressed locals carrying their vivid goods.

Every junction is a free-for-all as scooters, cars, hawkers and cyclists attempt to cross Hanoi's road networks.

A glimpse of what I see before attempting to cross the bustling streets of Hanoi.

Nothing stands still for long in Hanoi, even its restaurants are on wheels.

Movement ebbs and flows in the city.

No matter how packed a scooter is, they still hurtle along the unorganised streets, unphased by the weight of their cargo.

A modern city with a very visible culture.

Giving a new meaning to balance, a bike is overloaded with bricks as it winds through the streets of Hanoi.

Always a quirky means of transportation to be seen in Hanoi.

A rubbish collector makes her way along the street.

A trolly laden with fruit.

As the day fades into night scooters are used to help set up an extensive street market in the heart of the Old Quarter.

As night falls the markets become the new home of Hanoi's energy.

Thousands of people visit the night market in the Old Quarter.

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As a born and bred South African, I've grown up along many coastal towns across the Western and Eastern Cape (Yes, this means I eat pineapple on my pizza). I have always had a niggling sense that I was born to explore and travel but up until now,have constantly squished that feeling. Mainly due to getting caught up in the ''rat race;'' university, move to a big city and work, work, work. For the first time in a long time, I'll be fully focusing on my passion for writing, designing,photography and of course, travelling. 

STORM OLIVIER

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From a young age I was captivated by the wildlife that surrounded me. Raised in Botswana, I was able to explore and discover the beauty of untamed wilderness, and it sparked in me a love for nature and travel. That is where my photographic journey began. As my hobby blossomed into a passion, and then became an income. ​I am fortunate enough to call photography my career, but first and foremost it is my passion. 

WILLIAM STEEL

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