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Updated by Joanna James on Jul 13, 2023
Headline for 6 Incredible Things to Do in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) - Experience the city at its finest!
Joanna James Joanna James
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6 Incredible Things to Do in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) - Experience the city at its finest!

Ho Chi Minh, also known as Saigon, is the largest city in Vietnam and is filled with exciting attractions, history, and culture. Here are some of the best highlights the city has to offer.


Visit the Reunification Palace

Also known as the Independence palace, Reunification Palace served as the residence of the President of South Vietnam during the Vietnam War. The location also marked the end of the war when an army tanker from North Vietnam rammed into the gate of the main entrance in 1975. The palace has been converted into a museum since then and gives a fascinating account of life during wartime. A Saigon hotel should be easy to find; the likes of PARKROYAL Saigon are some of the best options out there.


The Cu Chi Tunnels

The tunnels were utilised by Viet Cong forces at the height of the Vietnam War to enter the city undetected and defeat the US-led South Vietnam forces. Presently, the underpasses have become a museum site and give an engaging account of the life of the forces during the Vietnam War. There are displays of how the tunnels were used and the effect they had on the war.


Shopping at Ben Thanh Market

Ben Thanh market is Ho Chi Minh City's most prominent and has a vast assortment of stuff for sale, with almost 1500 stalls within the market premises. It is the ideal place for souvenir shopping, to take back home for family and friends. Find all kinds of trinkets, handicrafts, t-shirts, paintings, jewellery, electronics, and so much more. Bargaining is acceptable at Ben Thanh market, so you can haggle your way to an acceptable amount if you feel it's out of your range.


Nguyen Hue street

It is the city's most famous walking street and is located near the Saigon Opera House. The street gets sealed off for traffic during weekend nights and has all kinds of fun activities made available for visitors. These include live musical concerts, food kiosks featuring a range of Vietnamese foods, and plenty of shopping with ample boutiques and shops selling all kinds of souvenirs and goods.


Giac Lam Pagoda

Giac Lam Pagoda is the oldest of its kind in Ho Chi Minh City. It dates back to 1744. The main pagoda is in a lovely garden, while the name Giac Lam means 'Feel the Woods Temple'. At the entrance is a calming and sacred Bodhi tree, a gift which came in 1953 all the way from Sri Lanka!
The peaceful surroundings are lovely, and the architecture is unique and picturesque. Just the place for a moment of respite from the commotion you would typically encounter in the busy streets of Saigon.


Journey to the Mekong Delta

The famous Mekong is 39,000 square kilometres of water channels and is among the most populated regions in Vietnam. The middle of the Mekong is just four hours from Ho Chi Minh City, and travellers tend to visit it as a part of a guided tour. There are floating markets, homes as well as schools all along the river delta, it is among the unique places to visit in Vietnam.