Every country and city has its special and interesting features and so does Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). This is a city with a long history, the most developed city in the country. Surely when we come to a foreign country or somewhere, we all want to discover everything about that place. So, let’s go with VnTravler.com to discover great things, things to do in Ho Chi Minh city or places you must visit when coming to Saigon!
Things to do in ho chi Minh city for the first time
1. See Ho Chi Minh City from above (Map)
Being famous as a symbol of Saigon, Bitexco is one of the tallest buildings in the city, this place will surely bring visitors many interesting experiences.
Skydeck observation tower located on the 49th floor of Bitexco with bright light system in the night that will give visitors a wonderful panoramic view of the city from above, you will feel the bustling and uproarious life here.
This is definitely one of the things to do in Ho Chi Minh City.
Address: 36 Ho Tung Mau, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam.
2. Visit Cu Chi Tunnels (Map)
One of the things to do in Ho Chi Minh is to visit the Cu Chi Tunnels. Cu Chi is one of the longest tunnels in the country, this is a project voted by CNN at the top of the most intelligent underground structures in the world.
When coming here, there are 3 experiences that tourists should try: conquering the tunnel with places that must be close to the land to be able to go through, eating boiled cassava in Cu Chi, taking a nap in the hammock hanging between the two trunks.
The tunnel is located in Cu Chi district, just 25km from the city center. Guests can drive a motorbike, rent a taxi or take bus number 13 (from Ben Thanh market to Chu Chi, operating from 5 am – 5 pm) to come here.
Address: Provincial Road 15, Phu Hiep, Cu Chi, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
3. Sightseeing on the Saigon River
Saigon River is a poetic and famous river in the city. If you do not know what to do in Ho Chi Minh City, you should try to experience the feeling of watching the beautiful city on this river.
You have 3 options to start your journey to explore Saigon by waterway: dine on board, register by boat/canoe, or yacht tour. Each choice has different interesting points. However, dining at the restaurant of the board will be more economical and convenient. You can choose to buy buffet tickets at restaurants on the train, the ticket price is only 250,000 – 320,000 VND for 1 person.
4. Running a motorbike to explore everything about Saigon
The idea of renting a motorbike and accompanying your companions on the roads in Saigon is not a bad thing.
Only by a small motorbike, you will be able to explore the vast Saigon. A Saigon is not only with skyscrapers, luxurious and high-level shopping centers, but also simple things in life such as the smiles of street vendors, old apartments, or wobbly roofs,…
5. See the bridges at night
One of the best things to do in Saigon is to see the bridges in the city at night. You may not know it, but this is fun for city people in the evenings.
After a hard-working day, Saigon people often spend evening time with relatives, family, friends,… People often go to the beautiful and impressive bridges of the city to sit around together, to watch the scenery and to talk. Some famous bridges such as Thu Thiem Bridge (Binh Thanh District), Phu My Bridge (District 7), Anh Sao Bridge (District 7),…
Cheap or free things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
6. Enjoy the beautiful view from the top of Thu Thiem Tunnel
For those who love photography in Ho Chi Minh City, the roof of Thu Thiem Tunnel, which is also known as Thu Thiem Park in District 2, will be a familiar place. This place is chosen by many people as a place to have fun on the weekends.
In the afternoon, along the edges of the river are busy shops with hundreds of sets of plastic tables and chairs to cater for everyone coming here. Visitors are usually young people or foreigners who come here to eat and have fun.
Here, you will see the city center from the edge of the Saigon River. Every few minutes there will be boats, large ships carrying goods back and forth. When the sun goes down, the beauty of the city in the shimmering lights becomes more visible. This is one of the things to do in Saigon.
7. Sample the food you want to buy
Sampling the food you want to buy is one of the very normal things in Ho Chi Minh City but it has impressed international travelers. In this city, you will be able to enjoy free fruit, jam cake before buying with a very sincere invitation from the seller.
You can walk into the markets and sample dried fruits, candies, or jams without spending a penny. Do not worry that the seller will show an angry attitude, but they will be happy because of this. Sometimes you can even buy your favorite item for less than the listed price!
8. Snacking in Saigon
It is a pity and omission if we go to any land without experiencing the culinary culture of that place. Moreover, Saigon is the place where the culinary culture of the country converges. One of the things to do in Saigon is to once discover the snacks on the streets of Saigon!
Famous among snacking places in Saigon is the Turtle Lake area in District 3 (Map). This is everyone’s weekend rendezvous, many delicious snacks are sold here such as mixed rice paper, fried corn, hot tofu, baked greens,.. at very cheap prices which is suitable for everyone.
Address: Ward 6, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
9. Drink coffee on the sidewalk
Vietnamese in general and Saigon people, in particular, have had a tradition of drinking tea for thousands of generations. The tea culture was once put into the work of poet Nguyen Tuan by his poet Nguyen Tuan. Next to this tea-drinking culture. Vietnamese people have another culture, which is the culture of drinking coffee, typically sidewalk coffee.
Drink coffee on the sidewalk does not mean that the quality of coffee is low, customers are served poorly but this is considered an indispensable specialty in Vietnamese culture. It has had a very important meaning in every Vietnamese person for so long.
Drink coffee on the sidewalk is not for sale in dirty places, but on cool, clean sidewalks, where you can sit and watch the city, the road, and talk freely with your friends. And in Vietnam, you will definitely be able to find sidewalk cafes everywhere.
The best attractions in Saigon
10. Notre Dame Cathedral (Map)
Notre Dame Cathedral is located in the central area of District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. This is one of the Ho Chi Minh top attractions that tourists should visit when coming to this “the city that never sleeps”.
Notre Dame Cathedral is one of the outstanding architectural works of the city. Designed by French architect – Jules Bourard, the church was built in about 2 years (from 1877 to 1879) and was officially launched in 1880. This work is considered as a special edition of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. This is the favorite place of Saigon people in important ceremonies.
Address: 01 Commune Paris, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
11. Nguyen Hue Street – District 1 (Map)
Nguyen Hue is a street in the central area of Ho Chi Minh City. Along the two sides of the road are high-end shopping malls, restaurants, luxury hotels, some architectural works that have existed for hundreds of years.
Nguyen Hue Street also has Nguyen Hue Walking Street – one of the most crowded and bustling places in the city. There are entertainment activities that often take place on Walking Street at night. This is one of the sightseeings in Ho Chi Minh city that visitors should experience.
Address: Ben Nghe, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
12. Landmark 81 (Map)
Officially put into operation in 2018, Landmark 81 appears as a representative of modernity, technological progress and it becomes a symbol of Ho Chi Minh City.
Like other shopping centers, Landmark 81 is a complex of fashion, dining, shopping, …This is a luxurious destination for you to explore.
Besides Landmark 81 also has some special services such as Vincom Ice Rink – the largest ice rink in Vietnam for all ages, Landmark Food Hall – Food heaven where you will experience all Food in the world, Landmark 81 SkyView – An opportunity to see the city from the 80th floors, …
Address: Vinhomes Tan Cang, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam.
13. Ben Thanh market (Map)
Ben Thanh Market is one of the unique features of Ho Chi Minh City that when reminded everyone will think of it first. This is one of the places to go in Ho Chi Minh. It will be a great regret if you miss this place when visiting Saigon.
With a large area, more than 13,000 m2, Ben Thanh market sells a variety of items such as clothing, textiles, shoes, fresh food, handicrafts, fruits, fresh flowers, …
Coming to Ben Thanh market, visitors will be overwhelmed by the variety of items here. Visitors will be able to find their favorite items at this market.
Address: Le Loi Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
14. Ho Chi Minh City Museum of Fine Arts (Map)
Ho Chi Minh City Museum of Fine Arts is a suitable venue for art and culture lovers. In the museum, there are many unique art paintings, containing heroic historical stories of the nation which is depicted vividly and attractively.
The museum is designed according to Asian architecture combined with European architecture. It brings a classic space but very cinematic. Each corner of the museum has beautiful pictures, you can freely take photos here.
This is one of the places to go in Ho Chi Minh City.
Address: 97A Pho Duc Chinh, Nguyen Thai Binh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
What to do in Ho Chi Minh city at the weekend
15. Visit the luxurious Saigon Garden (Map)
One of the famous places in Ho Chi Minh City that people often visit on weekends is Saigon Garden. Besides this impressive name, Saigon Garden also attracts anyone from the first sight by its unique design.
This is a funny place in Ho Chi Minh City that is much loved on weekends. The entire house is covered with green trees ahead. This design is completely not to be confused with the tall buildings or other shops around it.
Moreover, at Saigon Garden, there are many restaurants, beautiful and airy spaces for you to enjoy with your friends.
Address: 99 Nguyen Hue, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
16. Snow Town Saigon (Map)
Snow Town Saigon is one of the interesting places in Ho Chi Minh. It has many interesting games that are suitable for all ages and it is a place for you and your family to enjoy the weekend together.
In Snow Town Saigon, there are a number of game areas such as snow town games area, foam gun shooting area, rope adventure games area, entertainment area. Coming here, you will have a fun and comfortable time with family through new and interesting games
Address: CBD Premium Apartment, Floor 3-4, 125 Dong Van Cong, Thanh My Loi Ward, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
17. BCR tourist area (Map)
It would be a regret if not mentioning the resort BCR – a bustling and funny weekend destination in Saigon. This is a resort and entertainment area with many outdoor activities to serve tourists, BCR has a large swimming pool right next to the river bank with very beautiful scenery.
In addition, if you are a lover of action games, there is also archery, water gun shooting, … If you are a sports lover, you can join games such as kayaking, mini-golf,… Moreover, you can experience how to make handmade pottery and plant trees here.
Opening time: from Monday to Sunday weekly (except Tuesday). The ticket price for the games is only 50,000 VND to 150,000 VND. This is a suitable place that many people choose on the weekend.
Address: 191 Tam Da, Truong Thanh Ward, District 9, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
18. Thien Thanh water park (Map)
Thien Thanh Water Park is located in Nha Be district, adjacent to Phu My Hung urban area and it is only about 15km from the city center. This is a popular tourist destination for young people and families in Saigon.
Thien Thanh Water Park with an area of about 6000m2. This is the largest water park among the water parks in Saigon. In particular, the children’s pool has an area of 1000m2 with lots of attractive games such as swings, slides, water slides, …
Thien Thanh always ensures its service quality, the sliding system meets the US standard, the water is regularly renewed and there is always a water reserve.
Address: 35/2 Phan Van Bay, Hiep Phuoc, Nha Be, Ho Chi Minh, Viet Nam.
The best sightseeing in Ho Chi Minh City
19. Little Japan Town (Map)
Little Japan Town is one of Saigon sightseeings that visitors should experience if you have the opportunity to come to Saigon. The characteristic of this Japanese neighborhood is the cuisine of the land of cherry blossoms, the signs written in hieroglyphs, red lanterns, wooden doors, … make visitors seem to be lost in the true version of Japanese space.
Contrary to the noise and bustle of other streets, Little Japan Town is the opposite. This place is not noisy, passersby only hear the footsteps, talk, or invitation from the seller.
The space of the shops in Little Japan Town is usually in a simple, cozy style, imbued with the culture of “the land of the rising sun” rather than in the luxurious and modern style like Japanese restaurants run by Vietnamese people.
Coming to this Japanese neighborhood in the heart of Saigon, visitors will be able to visit and take photos freely. Besides, visitors can enjoy pure Japanese food here.
Address: 8A Thai Van Lung, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam.
20. Bach Dang wharf (Map)
Bach Dang Wharf is one of the historical places in Vietnam. Located in District 1, this is a beautiful location in the heart of Saigon. Experiencing many ups and downs of history and time, Bach Dang wharf has been associated with the growth of Saigon people and occupied an important position in their hearts.
At present, Bach Dang wharf has been increasingly renovated and renovated, since then it has also attracted a lot of tourists to visit. It includes the harbor area and the cool, green Saigon park.
Bach Dang wharf shows its most striking beauty at night. When night comes, the city lights become more sparkling, so is the beauty of Bach Dang Wharf. With poetic and charming scenery, this place is a suitable destination for couples, groups of friends at night.
Address: Ben Nghe, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Ho Chi Minh city free walking tours
21. WaterBus Saigon (Map)
Water Bus is considered as a new transit service in Saigon. Officially put into operation in the mid of 2017 with the purpose of serving the travel needs of the people but Waterbus is unknowingly becoming a new and interesting travel experience for many people, especially the young.
If you want to take part in the Waterbus Tour, you should consider going on weekdays because there are usually many people on weekends. Tourists should go in the early morning for cool or in the evening for romance because at this time the electric lights of the city are gradually sparkling, this is the time we can both relax and watch the beautiful city scenery on the romantic Saigon River.
Bach Dang Wharf is the main pier of Water Bus, visitors can come here to consult about the detailed schedule. There are also cafes and bars with beautiful spaces to serve you.
Address of Bach Dang Wharf: 10B Ton Duc Thang, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
22. Around Saigon by roaster bus
From mid-January 2020, Ho Chi Minh City has put into operation a double-decker roaster bus route. This bus is beautifully decorated, attractive, and the body of the bus is printed with the famous tourist spots of the city.
With a schedule of going through 30 famous buildings and attractions in the city center such as Notre Dame Cathedral, Ben Thanh Market, Independence Palace, Ho Con Rua, City People’s Committee, 23/9 park, …This tour is favored by many international and domestic tourists.
From the day officially put into operation, this tour is always crowded, many people want to experience the feeling of walking around the city on this 2-floor convertible bus.
There are 22 trips a day, 30 minutes interval time for daytime, and 60 interval time for the night. The time for the whole journey is about 60 minutes.
Many visitors tell how they feel after experiencing this tour that it saves time and health. In addition, there is an automatic interpreter to introduce visitors about the locations, the car has a cool space, spacious and clean seats. This is definitely a tour that visitors should experience when coming to Ho Chi Minh City.
Ho Chi Minh City always gives visitors the most wonderful and special experience that no other place can bring. This “city that never sleeps” always contains stories and interesting things waiting for visitors to discover. VnTraveler.com wishes that you have a memorable experience in Ho Chi Minh City.