And what better way to celebrate this great time of year, than at Ngon Garden Restaurant in the capital city, which is hosting Reliving Autumn Tradition in Town

The fun-filled four-day festival starts this Saturday at the restaurant at 70 Nguyen Du Street in the heart of Hanoi.

Pham Bich Hanh, the founder of the Quan An Ngon chain which includes Ngon Garden, Quan An Ngon, and Mon Ngon Sai Thanh restaurants is Hanoian through and through.

Ever since she was a little girl, she has loved this time of year, and although she may have grown up, when it comes to the Mid-Autumn Festival, she's still a child at heart.

Memories come flooding back to her of gatherings with family and friends in a warm atmosphere, enjoying fruits, and of course moon cakes, in the evening.

“In the past, we children were eager to play with a star-shaped lantern so much,” said Hanh, adding that when Autumn, the nicest season, arrived, it inspired her to do something special in an effort to help people and children of today understand the importance of joyful lanterns in the past and present, representing both traditional and modern celebrations.

In 2017, a large festival named Thu Vong Nguyet (Memories of Mid-Autumn festival at Van Mieu (the Temple of Literature) in Hanoi, was held by Hanh.

Thousands of visitors joined in. This year, she wants it to be bigger and better than ever before.

Mid-Autumn is the festival of unification for family members and close friends so she arranged and displayed, at her beautiful Ngon Garden, a space to remember old festivals featuring different colorful lanterns hanging along paths to the restaurant in addition to beautiful flower and fruit stalls which makes people think that they are lost in a fairytale landscape, taking you back to a time of joy and happiness.

The festival aims to help family members and friends reunite while helping children to experience the past festivals.

Duong Trung Quoc, a historical researcher, appreciated Hanh's efforts, saying that she is among few celebrities who have a passion pouring from her heart and soul to preserve Vietnam's traditional festivals.

Joining the festival, Nguyen Thu Hoai, 50, from Hanoi's Tay Ho District, said all of her family members are interested in the decorations of Vietnamese hand-made lanterns and toys. Her father is very happy to enjoy past toys such as an iron boat that he had played with when he was young, while her children are interested in traditional toys like figurines, lanterns and many, many others.

Under a nice Autumn yellow sunlight with a faint fragrance from ylang ylang flowers wafting in the air, children are playing mandarin square capturing (locally known as O An Quan), a traditional Vietnamese children's board game, bamboo jacks, blind man's buff, cat and mouse game and many others.

In the middle of the grounds, other activities take place such as lion dancing and lantern parades attracting many people.

Hoai and her mother had a sneak peek of what was in store for festival goers and were both so impressed by stalls of flowers, grapefruit, persimmon, baskets of young sticky rice and golden apples.

“These things make our peaceful childhood memories come flooding back.”

Hoai and her family enjoyed a party with delights served by professional Ngon Garden waiters before a Mid-autumn festival tray of moon cakes and fruits was brought their way.

“Being able to experience what the festival will be like was really significant and valuable for us because we met with each other to relax and enjoy lively traditional games as well as tasty and delicious dishes.

“Thank you Madame Bich Hanh so much,” Hoai said.

So if you want to take a trip down memory lane, and enjoy this year's Mid-Autumn festival but with a bygone twist, then there's only one place to be - Ngon Garden.

The festival will wrap up on September 29. VNS