If you want to experience all of the charms of Vietnam, one of the best places to visit is definitely Ho Chi Minh City (also known as Saigon), the vivid mixture of chaotic traffic and local culture, enriched with the inevitable influences of the modern era. Check out some of the best things to do in Ho Chi Minh City, the largest city in Vietnam.
1. Find out about Vietnamese history
The best places to get to know more about the history of Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City are Ho Chi Minh City Museum and The War Remnants Museum.
Ho Chi Minh City Museum is actually established in the Gia Long Palace. This is the place where Ngo Dinh Diem spent his time before being killed in 1936. Here you can see the numerous exhibitions consisting of different artefacts, photographs, and memorabilia. The War Remnants Museum is also an important place to remind you of the war history of the country and all of its consequences.
2. Take a walk on Lam Son Square
Probably one of the most important and the most attractive spots in Ho Chi Minh City, Lam Son Square is a great place for everyone who wants to go shopping or experience the rich cultural offer of the city.
The Municipal Theatre, which is a 100-year-old building, is a perfect option for people who enjoy theatre, opera, and dance since it is a host for a large number of artistic companies every year. To experience the best of this prestigious area, you should have a cocktail on the luxury terrace of Hotel Continental located in the very heart of the square.
3. Admire Jade Emperor Pagoda
This Vietnamese religious heritage from the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century is a stunning monument built by Buddhists and Taoists.
The ornaments and carvings of both the exterior and the interior of the pagoda are impressively vivid and additionally beautified by lotus flowers and fruit offerings. If you go to the upper floor, you’ll be able to admire the Quan Am statue which represents the goddess of mercy and also enjoy the impressive view of the sacred bodhi tree.
4. Have a taste of the street food
To get a picture of the lifestyle of the ordinary people in Vietnam and see that it also has its charms, you should wander the streets of Ho Chi Minh City and try the delicious meals prepared in the streets right in front of you.
Some of the tourists may say that these are even tastier than the ones prepared in the restaurants. For just a couple of dollars (an average price of the meal is around 3 USD), you can enjoy a rich portion of meals based on different types of meat, veggies, and rice. Various versions of noodle soups and hot pots are definitely some of the meals you should not skip.
5. Explore the area of Dong Khoi
No matter whether you are the admirer of Vietnamese culture, nature, or nightlife, Dong Khoi is a great spot of the city, representing the vivid area abundant with various bars, stores, shops, and some quite interesting buildings such as Notre Dame Cathedral lying on Saigon river.