Issues to Do in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis: A Information for Vacationers

Things to do in Ho Chi Minh City: Skyline of Ho Chi Minh City in the evening - Vietnam.


Ho Chi Minh Metropolis in Vietnam, often known as Saigon, is a metropolis that by no means sleeps. It’s a bustling metropolis in southern Vietnam that gives a singular mix of historical past, tradition, and modernity.

It’s a spot the place you may get misplaced within the maze of slim alleyways, discover the colonial structure, and eat your manner by way of the markets. There are lots of issues to do in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.

On this information, I spotlight a number of the high points of interest and actions that you just shouldn’t miss throughout your go to to Ho Chi Minh Metropolis. It’s best to be capable to take pleasure in all these actions when you have 3 full days in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.

Take a look at our itinerary for 14 days in Vietnam!

Right here is an summary:

Discover the historical past of Vietnam’s largest metropolis

Ho Chi Minh Metropolis has a wealthy historical past, that’s mirrored in its many museums and landmarks. It has been the capital of French Indochina, South Vietnam, and the scene of the Fall of Saigon that ended the Vietnam Struggle. It additionally has a colourful tradition.

Listed below are a number of the finest locations to go to to study concerning the historical past and tradition of this fascinating metropolis.

Things to do in Ho Chi Minh City: Skyline of Ho Chi Minh City in the evening - Vietnam.
Skyline of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis within the night – Vietnam.

Go to the Independence Palace

Independence Palace was the previous dwelling of South Vietnam’s president throughout the warfare. It’s a image of the nation’s turbulent previous and serves as a reminder of the Vietnam Struggle, which lasted from 1954 to 1975. Through the Vietnam Struggle, the Independence Palace was the official residence of the South Vietnamese president.

The palace was initially inbuilt 1868 by the French colonial authorities, however was later destroyed throughout World Struggle II and rebuilt within the Sixties.

In the present day, the Independence Palace is a well-liked vacationer attraction. You may have a glimpse into the lavish life-style of Vietnam’s former leaders there. The palace is fantastically adorned with vintage furnishings, ornate chandeliers, and paintings that dates again to the seventeenth century.

If you’re not likely into this sort of museums—you possibly can simply benefit from the Palace’s lavish backyard, as I did. It offers a beautiful cooling aid on this all the time sizzling and humid metropolis.

Associated tour: War Remnants Museum & Independence Palace Walking Tour

Independence Palace in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Independence Palace in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Museum of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

Museum of Ho Chi Minh City is understood for its stunning structure and gardens.

The palace was inbuilt 1929 by French architect and was initially used as a customs home after which as a residence for the Governor of Cochinchina.

The palace has witnessed many historic occasions. It noticed the Japanese occupation, the Viet Minh rebellion, the assassination of President Ngo Dinh Diem, and the autumn of Saigon.

Museum of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis shows numerous artefacts associated to the historical past and tradition of Vietnam. You may see statues, ceramics, maps, automobiles, bikes, and private belongings of Ho Chi Minh there.

The palace was used because the momentary official residence of the Prime Minister (Ngô Đình Diệm). To organize for the potential of a coup, Diệm oversaw the development of three in depth tunnels stretching from the palace to varied elements of town.

The tunnels have been constructed for Diệm and different officers to flee if mandatory. Throughout a 1963 coup, Diệm used one of many tunnels to flee the palace siege, however was later caught and executed. The palace was later rebuilt in 1966.

You will note some tanks and helicopters in entrance of the Museum of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis. They’re a part of the Struggle Remnants Museum, which I describe under.

You may see there:

  • UH-1 “Huey” helicopter
  • F-5A fighter
  • a M48 Patton tank
  • an A-1 Skyraider assault bomber

The museum itself will not be massive, and there’s not that a lot to see. However the value will not be excessive both—40,000 Ok per particular person (lower than $2).

Handle: 65 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam

Museum of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Museum of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Go to the Struggle Remnants Museum to study concerning the Vietnam Struggle

The Struggle Remnants Museum is an informative museum for anybody excited about studying extra about historical past. Additionally it is a sobering reminder of the Vietnam Struggle and its impression on the nation and its folks.

The Struggle Remnants Museum shows images, weapons, and private accounts that doc the warfare. These reveals showcase the warfare from the Vietnamese folks’s perspective.

Right here is the museum’s web site – War Remnants Museum

This go to may be arduous and sobering. I do know it was for me, a US citizen. It was additionally unusual to see some navy helicopters (previous), which I’m used to cheering for on airshows, however they have been thought of being ‘the enemy’s’ tools.

However I discovered the show of navy tools deserted by the US forces fascinating. They ooze historical past!

Nevertheless it additionally made me very appreciative of the flexibility of Vietnamese folks to place the previous previously. They’re all smiles and friendliness towards the foreigners and use any likelihood to follow their English with you. They usually actually recognize their French buildings!

Here is link to the see the museum’s location and photos.

Nonetheless, in the event you determine to go to the museum, possibly go to one thing vibrant and cheerful afterwards? You may go to Central Submit Workplace—the enduring French constructing of Saigon.

War Planes at the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Struggle Planes on the Struggle Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Admire the French Structure of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

For those who’re excited about colonial structure and historical past, take a stroll by way of District 1.

Ho Chi Minh Metropolis was the capital of French Indochina from 1887 to 1954. The French colonists constructed some spectacular buildings throughout that point. These buildings mirrored their type and affect. Two iconic landmarks, the Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Central Submit Workplace, have been each constructed throughout French colonization within the late nineteenth century.

Central Submit Workplace

The most effective locations to admire the French structure of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis is the Central Submit Workplace. It was constructed between 1886 and 1891, and it was designed by Gustave Eiffel, the well-known engineer who additionally designed the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Inside, you possibly can see an unlimited portrait of Ho Chi Minh, the founder of recent Vietnam, in addition to previous maps and telephones. The Central Submit Workplace remains to be functioning as a put up workplace immediately, and you may ship letters and postcards from right here to anyplace on the planet.

The constructing is gorgeous each inside and outdoors, and it’s enjoyable to go to.

Central Post Office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Central Submit Workplace in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Go to the Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica of Saigon – one other iconic landmark in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis is the Notre Dame Cathedral. It was constructed between 1863 and 1880 by the French colonists. The cathedral was named after Our Girl of the Immaculate Conception, and a statue of her stands in entrance of the primary entrance. It’s a place of worship for Catholics, in addition to a vacationer attraction for guests who wish to admire its magnificence and historical past.

The cathedral is presently underneath renovation and isn’t open to the general public, however you possibly can nonetheless see its exterior and take images from the surface.

Notre Dame Cathedral in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Notre Dame Cathedral in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Metropolis tour Ho Chi Minh

Taking a city tour in Ho Chi Minh is enjoyable as a result of you possibly can see many historic cities and buildings and map the best way to your self-guided stroll later.

Among the locations you possibly can go to on a metropolis tour are:

  • Ben Thanh Market, a bustling market the place yow will discover all the pieces from souvenirs to spices to native delicacies. Examine this market later on this put up.
  • Bitexco Monetary Tower and Saigon Skydeck, a contemporary skyscraper that gives panoramic views of town from its statement deck.
  • Saigon River, a scenic waterway that runs by way of town and presents boat cruises and water actions.
  • Nguyen Hue Strolling Avenue, a pedestrian-only avenue that’s lined with outlets, cafes, eating places.
  • HCMC Opera Home, a gorgeous colonial-style constructing that hosts cultural performances and occasions.
  • Rex Resort, a historic lodge that was a well-known assembly place for journalists and diplomats throughout the Vietnam Struggle.
  • Ho Chi Minh Statue and Metropolis Corridor, a monument to the revered chief of Vietnam and an impressive French-style constructing that serves because the seat of town authorities.

These are simply a number of the highlights of a metropolis tour in Ho Chi Minh. You may book your trip online or by way of native operators. The Ho Chi Minh Hop On Hop Off tour can be a good way to get round to all the large sights.

Hop on hop off tour in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Hop on hop off tour in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Pattern native delicacies

Meals is a serious a part of any journey to Vietnam, and Ho Chi Minh Metropolis is not any exception. With avenue meals on each nook and numerous eating places serving up conventional dishes, you’ll by no means go hungry right here.

Be certain that to attempt a number of the native specialties resembling pho (a noodle soup), banh mi (Vietnamese sandwich), and spring rolls. For those who’re feeling adventurous, head to native markets, the place you possibly can attempt all the pieces from snails to grilled goat meat.

For these on the lookout for a extra upscale eating expertise, Ho Chi Minh Metropolis has loads of choices as properly. Take a look at The Deck Saigon for gorgeous river views and gourmand Vietnamese delicacies or Cuc Gach Quan for a comfy ambiance and farm-to-table dishes. Right here’s one other farm-to-table expertise – a cooking class!

Take a look at these healthy dishes in Vietnam.

Pho dish in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Pho dish in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Getting misplaced in native markets

Considered one of my favourite issues to do in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis is simply wander by way of its many markets. Not solely do these bustling hubs supply a number of the finest avenue meals round, however they’re additionally an incredible place to buy souvenirs, if you’re on trip.

They’re additionally nice sensible locations for a nomadic traveler to replenish its journey gear, and get, let’s say, a Nike backpack for $4!:). I don’t understand how a lot of an precise ‘Nike” is in my backpack, however it appears and feels good, and for $4 I wasn’t too choosy!:)

Folks watching can be enjoyable.

Ben Thanh Market

Ben Thanh Market in Chinatown is probably the most well-liked market within the metropolis and presents all the pieces you possibly can consider, and even didn’t know existed! Yow will discover a colourful number of objects on this bustling hub, from contemporary produce to clothes and souvenirs.

Ben Thanh Market is likely one of the oldest and most well-known markets within the metropolis. After you discover the market” countless stalls, you too can take pleasure in quite a lot of avenue meals and drinks. Yow will discover pho, banh mi, spring rolls, espresso, and coconut juice and rather more right here.

Ben Thanh Market is open each day from 6 am to 7 pm. And after darkish it transforms right into a energetic night time market crammed with extra meals stalls and distributors lining the streets.

If you’re on the lookout for an genuine cultural expertise, Ben Thanh Market is a must-visit vacation spot!

Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Bin Tay Market (Cholon Chinatown Market)

Bin Tay Market market is a vibrant market in Chinatown, the place you possibly can expertise the tradition and delicacies of the Chinese language group. Yow will discover quite a lot of items, resembling materials, electronics, home goods, and Chinese language herbs and medicines.

Did you just like the meals on the markets? Possibly you must discover ways to cook dinner this meals?

Take a Vietnamese cooking class

This cooking class in Ho Chi Minh City features a journey on a standard Vietnamese cyclo to Ben Thanh Market. You’ll store for contemporary herbs and produce there after which discover ways to put together quite a lot of typical Vietnamese dishes. You may be guided by an expert chef.

So now you’ve already tasted Vietnamese meals, and realized the historical past of Vietnam. You additionally explored French structure, so possibly you want to see the historic Vietnamese structure?

Cooking class in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Cooking class in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Cultural Vietnamese structure

Go to the Jade Emperor Pagoda

Jade Emperor Pagoda is a Taoist Temple.

Vietnam seldom practices Taoism in its pure kind; nevertheless, the Vietnamese folks faith has absorbed sure facets of it. You may see Taoist temples right here and there in Vietnam.

Go to the Jade Emperor Pagoda in the event you’re excited about Taoist tradition and faith. The pagoda is a crucial shrine in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis and was inbuilt 1909 by a Chinese language service provider named Liu Daoyuan.

It’s devoted to the Jade Emperor, who’s the supreme god of Taoism. You’ll discover statues, work, and woodcarvings inside, in addition to a pond with sacred turtles.

Admission is free, and you may be part of the locals in burning incense and making choices to the gods. It’s a peaceable and religious place that provides you with a glimpse into Vietnam’s wealthy spiritual traditions.

Temple in Saigon in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Temple in Saigon in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Benefit from the nightlife of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

Ho Chi Minh Metropolis is a metropolis that by no means sleeps, with a energetic nightlife. Whenever you stroll on a busy avenue at night time, it is extremely thrilling to see so many individuals outdoors, having fun with the cooler temperatures! I feel I loved this time of the day essentially the most.

You don’t have to stroll removed from any foremost avenue to eat if you’re hungry. There are such a lot of locations to eat in every single place, opened late!

And if you’re within the temper to membership, right here is the record of high nightclubs in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.

Greatest golf equipment round Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

Bars in District 1

That is the guts of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis’s nightlife and among the many hottest areas for clubbing. That is the place most vacationers keep. Yow will discover many bars and golf equipment right here catering to varied tastes and budgets.

A number of of the very best golf equipment in District 1 embrace:

  • Chill Sky bar:
    That is considered one of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis’s most famed rooftop bars. It presents breathtaking views of the skyline with an elegant ambiance. The music sometimes options EDM and hip hop, whereas the drinks may be expensive however price it. On the identical flooring, you too can take pleasure in positive eating on the Chill Eating restaurant.
    Handle: AB Tower, 76A Đ. Lê Lai, Phường Bến Thành, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh
  • Apocalypse Now Bar:
    A legendary membership that has been round for over twenty years, drawing locals and foreigners alike. Apocalypse Now Bar has two flooring with a spacious dance flooring, pool desk, and a stage for reside music on the bottom flooring. The higher flooring has a lounge space with sofas and a balcony. The DJ performs a mix of rock, pop, and dance, and the drinks are reasonably priced.
    Handle: 2F Nguyễn, Thi Sách, Bến Nghé, TP, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh 70000
  • Lush Membership:
    A classy membership that pulls a younger and trendy crowd. The membership spans two flooring, with a large dance flooring, VIP space, and a bar on the bottom flooring, Lush Membership additionally has a rooftop terrace with a pool and a bar on the higher flooring. The music primarily options EDM and home, and the drinks are moderately priced.
    Handle: 156/2 Lý Tự Trọng, Phường Bến Thành, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh

Bars in District 3

It is a quieter and extra residential area in comparison with District 1, however it nonetheless presents some wonderful choices for clubbing. Among the high golf equipment in District 3 are:

  • Carmen Bar:
    An intimate and comfy bar that focuses on reside music, particularly Latin and jazz. The bar boasts a country and chic decor with picket furnishings, purple curtains, and candles. The music is carried out by proficient native and overseas musicians, and the drinks are moderately priced.
    Handle: 8 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh
  • Envy Membership:
    An opulent and glamorous membership showcasing state-of-the-art sound and lighting methods. Envy Membership presents exhibits with spectacular performances by dancers, singers, and DJs. The membership has a big dance flooring surrounded by VIP cubicles and tables. The music primarily options EDM and hip hop, and the drinks are costly however high-quality.
    Handle: 74-76 Đ. Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa, Phường Nguyễn Thái Bình, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh 11111
  • Seventeen Saloon Saigon:
    A western-style bar offering reside rock music each night time. Seventeen Saloon Saigon has a cowboy theme with picket barrels, leather-based sofas, and cowboy hats. The music options energetic bands enjoying basic rock hits from the 70s to the 90s. The drinks are low-cost and robust.
    Handle: 130A Đ. Phạm Ngũ Lão, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh

Bars in District 4

It is a working-class district with a popularity for being tough and harmful, however it additionally presents some hidden gems for clubbing. Among the high golf equipment in District 4 embrace:

  • TNR Saigon:
    A pleasant and relaxed bar that gives low-cost drinks and wonderful music. The bar has a pool desk, and you may request your most popular music from the DJ. The gang is generally expats and backpackers who come right here to socialize and have enjoyable.
    Handle: 57 Đỗ Quang Đẩu, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh 700000
  • Ong Cao Craft Beer:
    A craft beer bar providing quite a lot of native and imported beers on faucet or in bottles. The bar has a contemporary and minimalistic decor with picket tables and stools. The employees are educated and useful, and the costs are affordable.
    Handle: 240 Đ. Bùi Viện, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh
  • Broma Not A Bar:
    A rooftop bar offering splendid views of the streets under. The bar has a laid-back and informal vibe with picket furnishings, fairy lights, and crops. The music primarily options indie rock and various pop, and the drinks are reasonably priced.
    Handle: 41 District, 41 Đ. Nguyễn Huệ, Quận 1, Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh

Be certain that to style this beer in Vietnam!

HCMC has a procuring scene that caters to all tastes and budgets.

Listed below are a number of the finest locations to take pleasure in procuring in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

  • Ben Thanh Market:
    Extra particulars about this marker are above.
  • Vincom Heart:
    This is likely one of the largest malls in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, with over 250 outlets, eating places, cinemas, and leisure services. Yow will discover worldwide manufacturers resembling Zara, Mango, Adidas, and Nike, in addition to native services and products.
  • Style boutiques:
    For those who’re on the lookout for a pleasant outfit by native designers, you possibly can take a look at a number of the style boutiques in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis. Among the standard ones are L’Usine, Nosbyn, Cashew, and Ren. Yow will discover stylish and distinctive clothes, equipment, and sneakers at affordable costs.

Store for bargains and souvenirs at Saigon Sq.

Saigon Sq. is a wholesale style mall in District 1, the place yow will discover a whole lot of low-cost clothes, sneakers, baggage, and equipment. The standard might differ, however you possibly can haggle for a cheaper price. The mall is standard amongst locals and foreigners alike.

Shopping in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Procuring in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Suoi Tien Theme Park

If you’re a touring with a household, go to Suoi Tien Theme Park, a Buddhist-Themed Amusement Park.

Suoi Tien Theme Park is an amusement park in District 9, Thu Duc Metropolis, Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam. It’s the world’s first water park dedicated to Buddhism, particularly the SE Asian animistic type of Buddhism. The park consists of a number of leisure areas that illustrate Vietnam’s historical past and legends.

These areas are: Au Co and Lac Lengthy Quan, the Battle of Son Tinh and Thuy Tinh, and the 4 Noble Reality.

The park opened in 1995 and is likely one of the hottest vacationer locations in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.

Some points of interest within the park

  • Crocodile Kingdom:
    A big pond with over 1,500 crocodiles that guests can feed with fishing rods.
  • Tien Dong Seaside:
    A person-made seashore with a waterfall that has the face of an emperor sculpted into it.
  • Dinosaur Backyard:
    A backyard with life-size fashions of dinosaurs and prehistoric animals.
  • Curler Coaster:
    An exciting journey that goes by way of a dragon’s mouth and an enormous Buddha statue.
  • Unicorn Palace:
    A palace with statues and work of unicorns, fairies, and angels.

The park additionally has a zoo, a cinema, a spa, a temple, and plenty of eating places and outlets.

Suoi Tien Theme Park park will probably be served by Suoi Tien Park Station on the primary line of the Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, that’s presently underneath development. It’s open from 8:00 AM to five:00 PM every single day.

The admission payment is 90,000 VND (about 3.9 USD) for adults and 45,000 VND (about 1.9 USD) for youngsters.

You may go to their official website for extra info.

Day journeys from Ho Chi Minh Metropolis

Cu Chi Tunnels

The Cu Chi Tunnels are a community of underground tunnels that have been utilized by the Viet Cong (VC) guerrillas throughout the Vietnam Struggle. The tunnels have been positioned within the Cu Chi district of Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.

They stretched for about 250 kilometers, connecting completely different VC bases and hiding spots. The tunnels have been dug by hand, usually utilizing easy instruments resembling shovels and baskets.

The tunnels have been used for various functions, like:

  • Hiding from American and South Vietnamese forces, who relied closely on aerial bombing and floor
  • Transporting provides, weapons, and communications throughout the battlefield.
  • Offering shelter, medical care, meals, and leisure for VC troopers and supporters.

The tunnels had traps to cease enemies, like explosives, spikes, scorpions, and snakes. To destroy them, the Individuals and South Vietnamese used bombs, chemical substances, canines, and troopers referred to as tunnel rats who searched inside. However the tunnels have been robust and helped the VC resist the stronger enemy.

The Cu Chi Tunnels at the moment are a part of a warfare memorial park in Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, the place guests can study concerning the historical past and expertise of the tunnels. The tunnels have been widened and lit to accommodate vacationers, who can crawl by way of them and see numerous reveals and shows.

The Cu Chi Tunnels are a well-liked attraction for locals and foreigners who wish to study concerning the Vietnam Struggle or like any such attraction. There are lots of day journeys to the tunnels from Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, together with this half-day tour and this full-day tour that also visits the Mekong Delta.

Cu Chi Tunnels close to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Cu Chi Tunnels near Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, Vietnam.

Mekong River tour

Expertise the integral a part of Vietnam’s historical past with a go to to the Cu Chi Tunnels, thought of being a must-see attraction.

Improve your go to to an opulent tour that features round-trip transport by a luxurious limousine and a leisurely cruise on the Mekong River. You should have a customized expertise in a small group of seven with air-conditioned consolation whereas exploring the tunnels with a information.

Proceed the tour to Mekong River for an unforgettable expertise.

Discover the Mekong Delta on a rowboat and motorboat, and observe the agricultural lifetime of the locals.

Boats on the Mekong river in Vietnam.
Boats on the Mekong river in Vietnam.

There are alternative ways to ebook a metropolis tour in Ho Chi Minh, relying in your preferences, funds and time.

One of many choices is on-line reserving. You may examine costs, opinions, itineraries and availability of various excursions and select the one which fits you finest. Among the web sites that supply on-line reserving for metropolis excursions in Ho Chi Minh are Get Your Guide and Viator.

For those who plan to go to Vietnam, don’t miss Ho Chi Minh Metropolis!

You’ll take pleasure in this splendidly vibrant metropolis and all the highest points of interest it presents!

  • Tatiana

    Tatiana is a digital nomad. Tatiana travels full time and explores the very best locations on the planet to remain, eat and play.

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