Ho Chi Minh City is the largest urban area in Vietnam through its dynamic economic growth, modern structures, large commercial and department stores and recreational areas… Serving as an international gateway and a developed city, Ho Chi Minh City is determined to be a crucial tourist hub (up to 70% of foreign tourists to Vietnam visit Ho Chi Minh City).
10 Places in Ho Chi Minh city That Every Tourist Must Visit
Ho Chi Minh City’s tourism is characterized by the city’s history, urban services on the basis of a dynamic economic center in combination with landscape and ecological values.
Ben Thanh market
Situated at the heart of Disctrict 1, it built from 1912 to March 1914. In 1985, Ho Chi Minh People’s Committee conducted a great restoration and refurbishment of Ben Thanh market, yet its original architecture with clock tower remained intact. The market usually serves as an iconic symbol of the city.
A huge residence including district 5, district 10 and parts of Districts 11 and 6. Chinese densely populate this area, resulting in many Chinese restaurants, herbal stores, pagodas and Assembly houses such as Ba pagoda and Minh Huong pagoda…
Notre Dame Cathedral
Built by the French colonial authorities, it was inaugurated on April 11, 1880 in the Parisian Commune Square, District 1. The cathedral offers fine views from every angle with Its Noveau-Roman architecture mixed with Gothic influences as designed by architect J. Bourad. Construction materials and ornaments were all transported from France.
This solemn and divine cathedral is an architectural masterpiece of Saigon.
Vinh Nghiem pagoda
Commenced in 1964 and finished in 1971. The pagoda is named after the Buddhist school Vinh Nghiem (in Ly dynasty in Bac Giang), one of the birthplaces of the Three Divines Zen school. Inspired by the ancient northern pagoda, yet constructed using modern materials. This is a typical structure of 20th century Vietnamese Buddhism and also the largest Mahayana pagoda in the city.
War Remnants Museum
Located at No.28, Vo Van Tan Str., Dist. 3, the War Remnants Museumwas founded in September 1975 and previously known as the Exhibition Hall of the US and Allies’ War Crimes. The museum offers some war artifacts such as aircrafts, cannon, tanks, guillotines and two jail cells in the actual proportion of those in Con Dao prison. There are exclusive halls focusing on the Southwestern Frontier War, Northern Border Protection War, Spratly Islands Issues.
The outside of the museum features pavilions of Vietnam’s ethnic cultures and water puppet houses that appeal to large numbers of foreign tourists.
On its foundation once lay a structure called Norodom Palace that was built in 1873.
In 1975, the President of the Puppet Government, Ngo Dinh Diem chose the building as the Presidential Palace. In late 1962 the palace was reconstructed and renamed the Independence Palace. It comprises 5 stories with 100 rooms, each of which is characterized by distinctive decorative styles. The floor area is 4500km2 on a total land area of 120,000km2.
On April 30, 1975, tanks of the Liberation Army penetrated the Independence Palace to mark the end of the Saigon Puppet Government.
After unification, the palace became the headquarters of the City’s Takeover Army Committee.
In December 1975 there was the Consultation Conference of Unification and the building was renamed the Reunification Palace.
Commenced in March 1864 and finished in 1865 on an area of 12ha, it features rare species of plants and animals from all over the world. Many nearly extinct animals are also seen here, earning it the name The Zoo. In late 1865, The Zoo was extended to 20ha. Nowadays the Saigon Botanical Garden has an abundant collection of floras and faunas. Many animals unfamiliar to Vietnamese people are here such as hippos, pygmy hippo, South American cheetah, African ostriches, flamingos, orangutans or giraffes and more… Saigon Botanical Garden has forged ties with many other international organizations including the Southeast Asian Zoo Association (SEAZA), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUNC) and International Zoo Education Association (IZEA)…
Suoi Tien Recreational Complex
In Thu Duc district, Suoi Tien Recreational Complex covers 20ha and serves as a commonplace for the weekend leisure of Ho Chi Minh City People. Suoi Tien was inspired by folk legends and divided into four places of sacred beasts: dragon, unicorn, turtle and phoenix. The giant dragon measures 400m. The underground aquarium features over 500 marine species full of lively colors along with reenactments of Vietnamese history.
Suoi Tien complex is also famous for modern activities for dynamic young people such as an artificial ocean, waterfall and 4D cinema…
Vam Sat – Can Gio Eco Tourist Site
50km away from Ho Chi Minh City, the Can Gio Natural Reserve of Mangroves is one of the typical reserves of the tropical coastal region lying on an area of over 75,000ha. This was the first mangrove forest to be acknowledged as a World Biological Reserve by the UNESCO in Vietnam.
Vam Sat is an eco tourist site in the best position of Can Gio mangrove, covering about 2000ha in Ly Nhon commune and surrounded by four rivers: Dinh Ba, Lo Ren, Goc Tre and Vam Sat. There is a natural bird yard of over 100ha with rare water bird species. The Bat Marsh here also boasts 100 black flying foxes and a natural reserve of wild animals. Along with Binh Chau Hot Spring, Vam Sat was registered by the World Tourism Organization (WTO) as the World’s Most Sustainable Eco Tourist Site. Reaching Vam Sat, visitors should go through two wharfs Binh Khanh and Dan Xay. Roads are good.
Sites: Can Gio forests, alligator camp, islands with monkeys, pythons, snakes, birds and iguanas…, Sac Military Forest with interlacing tree roots that were once the shelter of anti-US guerillas, Can Gio market, April 30 beach, etc.
Cu Chi tunnels
In Phu My Hung commune, Cu Chi is 70 Northwest of Ho Chi Minh City’s center. Cu Chi tunnels are a revolutionary vestige with 250km of twisted underground tunnels with various floors and lanes combined to create a labyrinth of sheltering. The tunnels served as places for accommodation, meetings and fighting. The digging of these secret tunnels began during the Resistances against France (1948), but were only 17km at the time. After 1960, the system continued being reinforced and extended to 250km. Cu Chi tunnels have three floors; the greatest depth is 8 to 10m. Cu Chi is dubbed the “Home ofTunnel War” and has been awarded the title The Invincible Fortress. This historical site is also a tourist magnet that attracts thousands of foreign and domestic visitors per day.