HO CHI MINH CITY GUIDE: ATTRACTIONS, ACTIVITIES, WEATHER, CUISINE & ACCOMMODATION

HO CHI MINH CITY

OVERVIEW

Ho Chi Minh City (or Saigon) is one of the busiest and largest cities in Vietnam. The highlights that make this city well-known are its diverse culture and historical sites, and unique architecture, which have turned this spectacular city into an essential economic-political-tourism center of Vietnam. ... Read more

I - Where is Ho Chi Minh City located? 

Ho Chi Minh city is located in the southern region of Vietnam with a total area of approximately 2,061 square kilometers and about 1,730 kilometers to the south of Hanoi. The North of it borders Binh Duong province, the Northwest borders Tay Ninh, the Northeast and the East borders Dong Nai and Vung Tau  respectively, the southeastern part of the city borders the East Sea with a system of large estuaries and deep-water ports serving the needs of large ships and boats. 

Where is Ho Chi Minh City located
Ho Chi Minh city at night - Source: Tron Le
 
Especially located at the center of Southeast Asia, Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam is an important traffic hub for roads, waterways, and airways. Therefore, this city has the capability of connecting provinces in the region. It is also a crucial gateway to Vietnam’s international trade, which is one of the compulsory conditions promoting the city to become a substantial economic, political, and cultural center of the region and the country. 

II - The best time to visit Ho Chi Minh city

This city is settled in a tropical savanna monsoon, so the weather in Ho Chi Minh is divided into two distinct seasons during a year: the dry season and the rainy one. The annual average temperature here is also relatively comfortable, only about 27°C, which is very suitable for outdoor activities. The best time to travel here is in the dry season, from December to April next year due to low rainfall (~ 75mm / month), a large number of sunny hours per month (230 - 272 hours/month); and the temperature ranges from 21 - 29°C.

III - How to travel to Ho Chi Minh City? 

 

Travel to Ho Chi Minh city
Tan Son Nhat airport - Source: Zing
 
The traffic and transport infrastructure system in this city has been continuously invested, expanded, and upgraded with more level-up service quality to meet the traveling needs of tourists, city residents, and economic trade. Some of the main arteries connecting this city with other provinces, cities, and countries are as follows: 
Airway
The airport is located about 8 km in the north of the city center. Direct flights from overseas to Tan Son Nhat airport can be mentioned as China, Korea, Thailand, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, Russia, Cambodia, Switzerland,...This airport welcomes more than 40 million passengers, of which international visitors account for 31.9% (13.6 million passengers). 
Location: Truong Son Street, Ward 2, Tan Binh District,
Railway
Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam is located on the railway line connecting the North and South. Saigon Railway Station serves about 2,075 passengers per day, the highest peak reaching 6,500 passengers/day. The station is designed with 5 train lines, with a total area of about 430,56ft2. As a consequence of the spectacular landscape on the road and the relatively low cost, traveling by railway is quite a new and fascinating experience for tourists. 
Location of Saigon Railway Station: No.1 Nguyen Thong Street, Ward 9, District 3
Roadway
The road traffic system here has a total length of 4,044km, which is the largest one in Vietnam. The whole city has about 7.6 million personal vehicles, including about 7 million motorbikes and 580,000 cars. Also, many types of vehicles from neighboring provinces arrive in Saigon to study, live, and work.
There are plenty of means of transportation for tourists traveling here to choose such as bus, coach, limousine, taxi, or motorbike. There are two major intercity bus stations here: the Eastern bus station, and the Western bus station. Here, there are a lot of bus arrivals from different provinces in Vietnam. 
- Mien Dong bus Station: No.292 Dinh Bo Linh Street, F26, Binh Thanh District
- Mien Tay bus station: No.395 Kinh Duong Vuong Street, An Lac Ward, Binh Tan District.

IV - Interesting Ho Chi Minh City facts

 

Ho Chi Minh city facts
Source: Vietnammoi
 

1 - Old name (Saigon or Ho Chi Minh city)

Before July 1976, this was formerly known as Saigon, there are many explanations for this name but one has a clear basis and trusted by many people is the analysis based on the Sino-Vietnamese pronunciation of each word. Accordingly, "Saigon" is the Sino-Vietnamese word for the cotton tree - A type of tree that was grown quite popular here at that time. There are still many traces of cotton cultivation in this city left like Cay Mai pagoda, etc. Or else, it is a spoonerism of “Prei Nokor” or "Thầy Ngồn”. 
There is also another theory that the name Saigon is another way of saying "Sài Ngạn" - "Bến Củi" in Cantonese named by some Chinese people when coming to this land. In the past, Saigon also had several other names such as “Thù Nại”, Tan Binh district, etc. However, the names that left a deep impression on everyone more than others are Saigon before and Ho Chi Minh now. 

2 - Ho Chi Minh City history information

Right from the Stone Age (8700-2000 BC), in this city, there was the appearance and existence of human civilization. The culture that stands out above all and leaves many archaeological sites is Sa Huỳnh culture, Óc Eo, or Khmer culture. However, Saigon was only officially formed from 1623 to 1698, when Lord Nguyen asked his son-in-law - King Chey Chetta II, to set up a tax collection station in Prei Nokor (Sài Gòn) and Kas Krobei (Bến Nghé).
After that, there was the formation of a garrison in Tân Mỹ and the mansion of Vice Vương Nặc Nộn. Later, after experiencing many riots and wars, Saigon became the largest and most crowded economic center in the Southeast. 

Ho Chi Minh city history
Ho Chi Minh City in 19th centurt - Source: Thanh Binh
 
In 1859, after conquering the Gia Dinh citadel, the French were in a rush to plan Saigon City to become a big city to serve as accommodation for French officials during the colonial exploitation period. Soon after that, many great works were built like Nam Ky Governor Palace, Governor General's Palace, etc.
At that time, Saigon was constructed according to the model of European cities with a variety of special buildings like Governor's Palace, Department of Director of Internal Affairs, Court, Superior Court, First Instance Court, Commercial Court, Bishop's Court, etc. 

3 - Is Ho Chi Minh City safe for tourists?

As a dynamic city, the people here are friendly and hospitable. Under the management of the city government, large-scale protests are rare here. In consequence, this city in particular, Vietnam in general is one of the safest destinations for tourists. 

4 - Ho Chi Minh time zone

This city is located at 10o10’– 10o38’ north latitude and 106o22’-106o54’ east longitude, so it lies entirely in the GMT + 7-time zone - Indochina Time.
In conclusion, Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam is a young and dynamic city which is worth a visit. Hopefully, with all the information that we have just synthesized, you somewhat will have more knowledge about Ho Chi Minh City tourism. The friendliness, hospitality, and openness combined with the great sidewalk cafes in Saigon will leave an unforgettable impression on you.
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Airport: Tan Son Nhat
Timezone: UTC+7
Population: 8.993 million
Area: 2.061 km2
Map: Search Google Map

Time: 03:12 PM
nguyen hue walking street
Source:
Nld

HO CHI MINH CITY “NGUYEN HUE WALKING STREET”

Whenever the night falls, Nguyen Hue Walking Street truly becomes an attractive destination in Ho Chi Minh city. With a series of bustling stores and restaurants along either side and exciting entertainment activities, the street always receives the love of visitors coming to this teeming, modern Ho Chi Minh City.  ...Read more
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attractions in ho chi minh city
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Minh Nam

HO CHI MINH CITY “HO CHI MINH CITY ATTRACTIONS”

Ho Chi Minh City (another name is Saigon) - well-known as the sleepless city, is the top destination in Vietnam which is home to many impressive places of interest. This article is a travel guide to explore the most famous places in Ho Chi Minh City.   ...Read more
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Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral
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Saigon Scenes

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON NOTRE-DAME CATHEDRAL”

Notre Dame Cathedral in Saigon - an over 150-year-old church in Ho Chi Minh City, has recently emerged as a prominent tourist destination. The official name of this Cathedral is “Vương cung thánh đường chính tòa Đức Mẹ Vô nhiễm Nguyên Tội” which means "Immaculate Conception Cathedral Basilica" in English. ...Read more
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dong khoi street
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Nguyen Nam

HO CHI MINH CITY “DONG KHOI STREET”

Dong Khoi Street is one of the most luxurious and oldest streets in Ho Chi Minh City. It has existed for more than 150 years, associated with many ups and downs of the city's history. ...Read more
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bui vien street
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Van Thanh

HO CHI MINH CITY “BUI VIEN STREET”

Bui Vien Street Saigon (Phố Bùi Viện), located in Pham Ngu Lao Ward, District 1, is the hub of the most exciting tourist activities on the weekend (from 7pm to 9pm on Friday - Sunday). Going for savory street food, enjoying the hectic club atmosphere, contemplating street arts, experiencing massage services,....are the great ways of feeling the vibe of Saigon life. ...Read more
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markets in saigon
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Media.christinas

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON MARKETS”

The best markets in Saigon that you should visit are Ben Thanh market, Binh Tay market (Cho Lon Moi - Saigon new market), Ho Thi Ky flower market, Russian market, Antique market. So, what to expect when visiting these markets? Read on for the best things to see and buy. ...Read more
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Saigon central post office title
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Nick John

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON CENTRAL POST OFFICE ”

Saigon central post office is one of the most outstanding buildings in Saigon which impresses visitors by its unique French-style architecture. ...Read more
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Saigon river title
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Bao.Huyy

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON RIVER”

In Saigon, apart from historical relics and bustling streets, Saigon river is a city's "hidden gem" which is famous for its poetic beauty and tons of interesting travel activities & services. ...Read more
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Saigon Opera House
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Bone Nguyen

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON OPERA HOUSE”

Saigon Opera House (Ho Chi Minh Municipal Theatre) is a place for many events and performances. With a unique French-style architecture and a prime location in the city center, this is one of the most impressive attractions in Ho Chi Minh city. ...Read more
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churches in ho chi minh
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Tran Ngoc Dung

HO CHI MINH CITY “HO CHI MINH CITY CHURCHES”

Churches in Saigon are one of the most popular attractions to tourists with its unique architecture and regional activities. This list gives some information of the most famous churches in Ho Chi Minh city. ...Read more
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Independence Palace Saigon title
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Wikipedia

HO CHI MINH CITY “REUNIFICATION PALACE”

Today, the Independence Palace or Reunification Palace or Dinh Doc Lap has become one of the must-visit destinations for tourists visiting Saigon not only historically but also because the Palace clearly shows typical architecture of Vietnam in the 1960s. This is also the place where many big events of the city, the Communist Party and the State of Vietnam take place. ...Read more
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Ben Thanh market
Source:
Quynh Lee

HO CHI MINH CITY “BEN THANH MARKET”

Located in the central area of district 1, Ben Thanh Market Saigon is one of the most famous tourist and shopping attractions in Ho Chi Minh city. This over 100 year-old market is the center for trading activities where you can find almost all kinds of consumer goods and local street foods. ...Read more
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Cu Chi Tunnel title
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Nick John

HO CHI MINH CITY “CU CHI TUNNELS”

Vietnam Cu Chi Tunnel is one of the important historical relics left after the unification war. It demonstrates the strong will, the courage and  the stratagem of our army and people. You will be overwhelmed by the dense tunnel system which is scientifically structured like a spider web. ...Read more
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Cat Tien national park
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VnExpress

HO CHI MINH CITY “CAT TIEN NATIONAL PARK”

Cat Tien National Park is an ideal place where you can both release stress and satisfy your thirst for knowledge. It is suitable for those who are mesmerized by nature, plants and animals, wanting to understand more about the rich ecosystem of Southeast Vietnam. ...Read more
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binh tay market saigon
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Internet

HO CHI MINH CITY “BINH TAY MARKET”

Binh Tay Market Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) is one of the busiest wholesale markets in Ho Chi Minh City. This is a top place for sightseeing and shopping and welcomes thousands of tourists each year. ...Read more
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water parks in ho chi minh
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Vince Fleming

HO CHI MINH CITY “SAIGON WATER PARKS ”

Top 4 water parks in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh city) that are highly recommended for families with kids and groups include Dam Sen water park, Suoi Tien water park, Thien Thanh water park and Cu Chi water park. ...Read more
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Ho Chi Minh beaches
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Dale Coulombe

HO CHI MINH CITY “HO CHI MINH BEACHES”

If you are looking for some beautìul beaches near Ho Chi Minh city, here are maybe some great ideas for you. Recommended beaches in  this list are most popular and nice beaches for a short trip with many interesting activities you can try.  ...Read more
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HO CHI MINH CITY Food

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