Ho Chi Minh City
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Top attractions in Ho Chi Minh City

Top Tours & Activities in Ho Chi Minh City

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Top 10 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City

Named after Communist revolutionary Ho Chi Minh, the city formerly known as Saigon has emerged from its darkest days to become one of Asia's most exciting cities. It boasts vibrant street life, handsome buildings, and warm weather all year round. But what are the best things to do in this interesting city?

Photo: David McKelvey@Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Cu Chi Tunnels

How did the Americans lose the Vietnam War? Your guide will lead you through hidden trap-doors to explore the Cu Chi tunnels that helped thwart the US army at every turn.

Photo: Tun Tun Win@Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Saigon Opera House (Municipal Theatre)

Modelled on the Petit Palais in Paris, this striking example of French Colonial architecture is easy to reach and regularly hosts some of the city's best concerts.

Photo: seafaringwoman @Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Saigon Central Post Office

Saigon Central Post Office still operates, though it also serves as one of the city's top attractions, having been designed by the famous Gustave Eiffel.

Photo: yeowatzup @Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral

Pilgrims flocked to this beautiful basilica in 2005 when its Virgin Mary statue was reported to have shed tears. We're sceptical, but there are better reasons to visit the Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral, such as its superior architecture!

Independence Palace (Reunification Palace)

Originally built to demonstrate Vietnam's strength in the wake of Independence, it was torn down, replaced, and eventually renamed Reunification Palace after the fall of Saigon.

Pham Ngu Lao Street

Though known as the backpacker district, the bustling Pham Ngu Lao Street attracts people from all walks of life with its bounty of clothing, war memorabilia, and other merchandise.

Photo: amrufm @Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

War Remnants Museum

The War Remnants Museum paints a vivid – and often disturbing – picture of the country's 20th-century struggles. It's a must for anyone hoping to understand Vietnam's complex history.

Dam Sen Park

With lakes, gardens, and so much more beyond the rides, Dam Sen is the perfect amusement park for people who don't like amusement parks, as well as those that do!

Photo: ePi.Longo @Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Jade Emperor Pagoda

With its ornate carvings and constant aura of incense smoke, this is the pagoda to see if you've only time for one. Be sure to look over its gorgeous courtyard from the roof!

Ho Chi Minh City Museum

Located in the old Gia Long Palace, photographs and artefacts offer an exemplary account of Vietnam's bloody past. It's uncompromising without being gratuitous.

Planning Your Ho Chi Minh City Visit

How to get to Ho Chi Minh City from the airport?

The cheapest way to get to the city is by taking bus 152 near the arrivals exit. It costs extra if your luggage weighs over 10kg, but will take you all the way downtown to the bus station near Cho (market) Ben Tanh. Taxis are located to the left of the terminal. Make sure you take a metered taxi and do not pay in any currency other than Vietnamese dong or you risk being ripped off.

Where to eat?

One of the most charming things about Ho Chi Minh City is how the low-cost street food can so often outperform its best restaurants. You'll find many good ones on Dong Khoi, the lively stretch of shops and bars between the river and cathedral.

Where to shop?

Ho Chi Minh City has several markets worth visiting as well as the aforementioned Pham Ngu Lao Street. The two largest are Cho Ben Tanh and Cho Lon. Cho Lon – the Chinese market – has a dazzling array of goods on offer and is the least touristy of the two. Ben Tanh is also fun to visit, and better regulated, with less knock-off merchandise and fewer pickpockets. That said, you should always be wary of both those things.

Good to know

  • Language
    Vietnamese
  • Currency
    Vietnamese Dong (VND)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+07:00)
  • Country Code
    +84
  • Best time to visit
    Spring

Things to Do in Ho Chi Minh City

Top Attractions in Ho Chi Minh City

Cities in Vietnam

Other Sightseeing Options in Ho Chi Minh City

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What people are saying about Ho Chi Minh City

A very good tour with Henry, to Cu Chi and the Mekong.

Great guide, well informed, excellent English. A fascinating glimpse into a bit of history, and an enjoyable trip on the Mekong. Terrific seven person Limo for transport, and a very pleasant lunch as well. Highly recommended.

Best tour guide & Experienced the true local life in the Mekong Delta

Highly recommend this tour to anybody who want to discover the true local life in the Mekong Delta Region. Biking along the countryside roads with no Tourists in sight is so unique.

amazing tour to get a feeling of the mekong delta

The tour was great to see various aspects of this part of the country and as it was a rather small group also not a hassle or uncomfortable in any way. There was a lot to see with interesting information from the guide and interactions with locals on one stop or the other. Best part was definitely the small boat tour through the narrow canals and the honey tea on one of the small islands.

Exceptional, very professional, as a family we LOVED every Moment.

Our very well presented, well prepared (rain) and professional guide Min made us feel as if we were a big family out on a picnic. Loved all the taste and every moment of the tour. Thank you

Ho Chi Minh: Private Street Food Night Walking Tour Reviewed by Christopher, 07/17/2018

Fantastic way to start a holiday in Ho Chi Minh

The 2 guides were brilliant and a lot of fun and great food was had. Our hosts Clover and David were Fantastic. We were picked up at our hotel right on time and scooted to the first Resteraunt. I was nervous of being in the somewhat frantic traffic of HoChiMinh city but both made us feel safe as they expertly flowed through the traffic. At each stop, the food was consistently delicious and very definitely authentic local food, and served as a great way to get to know many of the styles of food available. Conversations over the food really added a lot to the experience of really meeting local people keen to provide lots of facts and help me with my appallingly bad vietnamese. (I have been pronouncing Pho wrong my entire life) We also had couple of detours to observe local sights that were really interesting, with the added benefit of giving you time to digest! Do it.