Flights to Ho Chi Minh City (SGN)

Sample street food, explore fascinating history and become swept away with the crowds, noise and life of Ho Chi Minh City.
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Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

What to do in Ho Chi Minh City

Visit the War Remnants Museum

Grim but important, the War Remnants Museum documents the atrocities of war, particularly the effects of the Vietnam War on the population. Outside the museum there are retired armoured vehicles; inside, the photographs are moving.

28 Vo Van Tan
Ward 6
District 3
+84 83 930 6664
warremnantsmuseum.com

Visit Jade Emperor Pagoda (Phuoc Hai)

This atmospheric pagoda was built by Saigon’s Cantonese community and is filled with figurines, statues, elaborate carvings and incense. For many residents, going to the pagoda is an essential part of their routine, so this is a good opportunity to take a respectful peek into local life.

73 Mai Thi Luu
District 3
+84 8 3820 3102

Visit Cu Chi Tunnels

A short day trip from Saigon, the Cu Chi Tunnels are a sobering yet astounding sight. This is where the Vietnamese hid and lived (for weeks at a time) right under the noses of the American soldiers during the Vietnam War. Try crawling through one of the tiny tunnels when you visit to get a sense of just what a feat this was.

Phu Hiep Hamlet
Phu My Hung Ward
Cu Chi District
+84 8 3794 8830
en.diadaocuchi.com.vn

Get a suit tailor made

A fun thing to do in Saigon is to get clothes made to order. Pick up fabric at the shops along Hai Ba Trung and ask your hotel to recommend a tailor – everyone in Saigon has a favourite.

Chuong Tailor
270 Hai Ba Trung
District 1
+84 83823 0484
www.chuong.com.vn

Explore Reunification Palace (Independence Palace)

The photo of a North Vietnamese tank crashing through the gates of the Reunification Palace in April 1975 is one of the most memorable images from the Vietnam War. This palace, with its war command room and period details still intact, is an interesting and somewhat eerie place to explore.

135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street
District 1
+84 8 3822 3652
www.dinhdoclap.gov.vn
www.vietnamonline.com

Explore Notre Dame Cathedral/Central Post Office

These two legacies of French colonisation sit across the street from each other in District 1. The beautiful 19th century buildings, which are still in use today, are architecturally striking and stand out in the sea of motorbikes that flows around them. The Post Office was based on designs by Gustave Eiffel – best known for, yes, the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Notre Dame Cathedral
Bến Nghé ward
District 1
+84 8 3822 0477
facebook.com/pages/Saigon-Notre-Dame-Basilica

Where to eat in Ho Chi Minh City

Wrap & Roll (Vietnamese)

This is a sleek, air-conditioned restaurant that serves pretty-as-a-picture Vietnamese food. Wrap & Roll does a great job of retaining all the freshness and flavours that you get in local street food, served in a cool atmosphere that makes a nice break from the Saigon heat.

62 Hai Ba Trung
District 1
+84 8 3822 2166
wrap-roll.com

The Deck (International)

A 15-minute taxi ride from the city centre, The Deck sits on the Saigon River and offers a welcome atmosphere of peace and quiet. Upscale dining and socialising on the deck that overlooks the water make for a relaxing way to spend an afternoon or evening.

38 Nguyen U Di
Thao Dien
An Phu
District 2
+84 8 3744 6632
thedecksaigon.com

The Refinery (French)

Tucked away off busy Hai Ba Trung Street is The Refinery, a restored colonial building that now houses a gorgeous, French-style bistro with outdoor seating, great salads and an excellent beverage menu. Settle in with a cappuccino and a book during the afternoon, or reserve a table for dinner.

74, Hai Ba Trung Street
District 1
+84 8 3823 0509
therefinerysaigon.com

Nhà Hàng Temple Club (Modern Vietnamese)

Renowned for being one of the city’s most romantic restaurants, the Nhà Hàng Temple Club is a gorgeously decorated Art Deco dining room that offers high-end Vietnamese food and impeccable service. Come here for a special occasion and relax in the lounge before dinner.

31 Ton That Thiep Street
District 1
+84 8 3829 9244
templeclub.com.vn

Ben Thanh Market (Street food)

Ben Thanh is one of those tourist-packed places that is nevertheless truly worth visiting, if only for the food. While the market sells everything from clothes to souvenirs, the central food court serves up a fantastic variety of Vietnamese dishes. If your time in Vietnam is limited and you want to try as much as possible, head here.

Intersection of Le Loi, Ham Nghi, Tran Hung Dao Avenues and Le Lai Street
District 1
+84 8 3829 2096
congdongeva.vn/cho-ben-thanh.html

Barbecue Garden (Grill)

Grilling is a Vietnamese specialty, and the outdoor Barbecue Garden is perfect for evenings when the temperature has cooled. Each table has its own grill, so you can cook meat, seafood and vegetables the way you like.

134 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street
District 1
+84 8 3823 3340
barbecuegarden.vn

Places to stay in Ho Chi Minh City

The Alcove Library Hotel

A fairly new addition to Saigon’s hotel scene, The Alcove sits between Saigon’s city centre and the airport, a 15-minute taxi ride away from each. It’s got deluxe rooms, a quiet location, and an air of calm that’s a lovely respite from the Saigon buzz.

133A Nguyen Dinh Chinh Street
Phu Nhuan District
+84 8 6256 9966
alcovehotel.com.vn

Park Hyatt Saigon

Among the most luxurious hotels in the city, the Park Hyatt has a majestic exterior and an exceptionally comfortable interior. The rooms are modern and the facilities are as swanky as you’d expect – particularly the gorgeous outdoor pool. It’s got a great location right in the heart of District 1.

2 Lam Son Square
District 1
+84 8 3824 1234
saigon.park.hyatt.com

New Saigon Hostel

The Pham Ngu Lao neighbourhood is backpacker central, filled with lively hostels, lounges and shops targeting budget travellers. New Saigon Hostel is one of the best of the bunch: cheap, cheerful and clean. Wi-Fi and breakfast are included in the price, and it’s conveniently close to the vibrant nightlife.

270 Bui Vien Street
Pham Ngu Lao Ward
District 1
+84 8 3837 4811
newsaigonhostel.com

Cinnamon Hotel Saigon

The Cinnamon Hotel is a good mid-range hotel, boasting a welcoming atmosphere in a central location that’s within walking distance of plenty of sights. Breakfast (either Vietnamese pho or banana pancakes) is included, and you can get a free foot massage per stay.

74 Le Thi Rieng Street
District 1
+84 8 3926 0130
cinnamonhotel.net

Catina Saigon

Catina Saigon has a fabulous location on Dong Khoi (within walking distance of most major sights) and the atmosphere of a friendly business hotel. There’s free Wi-Fi, simple, clean and comfortable rooms, and you can enjoy the feeling of having scored accommodation in a brilliant neighbourhood without paying through the nose.

109 Dong Khoi
District 1
+84 8 3829 6296
hotelcatina.com.vn

Caravelle Hotel

Steeped in history, the glitzy Caravelle has been a Saigon fixture since 1959 (it was the first hotel in the city to have air-conditioning). During the Vietnam War, the ninth floor lounge was the unofficial headquarters for the international press. The rooms are plush and the service is excellent.

19-23 Lam Son Square
District 1
+84 8 3823 4999
caravellehotel.com

  Ho Chi Minh City