Guides & Tips

Decoding Saigon: Unveiling the Charms of Ho Chi Minh City

Mai Anh
3 min. to read

In this journey of exploration, we embark on a quest to decode the secrets of Saigon, peeling back its layers to reveal the myriad charms that make it a perennial favorite among travelers. Let’s delve deep into the heart of Saigon and uncover the treasures that await within its bustling streets and hidden corners with Sun Getaways Travel!

Table of contents

1. Ho Chi Minh City Overview

2. Practical Guide for Your Ho Chi Minh City Journey

3. Crafting Your Ho Chi Minh City Adventure

1. Ho Chi Minh City Overview

Ho Chi Minh City, commonly known as Saigon, stands as a vibrant and bustling urban center situated in southern Vietnam. Boasting a storied past, a captivating fusion of cultures, and an abundance of attractions, Ho Chi Minh City emerges as an essential destination for travelers seeking immersion in Vietnam’s rich tapestry. Often hailed as the “Pearl of the Far East,” this city holds a special significance in the nation’s narrative, serving as a beacon of resilience and progress.

Hustle and bustle city

Comprising 24 distinct districts, Ho Chi Minh City showcases a diverse array of neighborhoods, each characterized by its own unique charm and attractions. Renowned landmarks and points of interest punctuate the cityscape, including the bustling Ben Thanh Market, the poignant War Remnants Museum, and the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica of Saigon. Moreover, the city is celebrated for its delectable street food scene, enticing visitors with an array of mouthwatering dishes to savor and explore.

2. Practical Guide for Your Ho Chi Minh City Journey

Before embarking on your own journey, it’s essential to equip yourself with some key pieces of information from our Ho Chi Minh City travel guide. These insights will help ensure a seamless and enjoyable trip, allowing you to make the most of your time exploring this vibrant metropolis.

How to get around 

In our Ho Chi Minh City travel guide, we offer three convenient options for exploring and navigating the city:

  1. Public Bus: Tickets range from 7,000 VND (~ $0.29 USD) to 14,000 VND (~ $0.59 USD) per ride.
  2. Motorbike Rental: Prices range from 100,000 VND (~ $4.21 USD) to 160,000 VND (~ $6.74 USD) per day.
  3. Saigon Hop-on Hop-off Bus: Tickets cost between 149,000 VND (~ $6.28 USD) and 599,000 VND (~ $25.23 USD) each.

Insider Recommendations for Local Food: Top 10 Restaurants in Ho Chi Minh City: Delight in Exquisite Dining

Try kayaking

3. Crafting Your Ho Chi Minh City Adventure

One-Day Highlights: Essential Attractions and Experiences

With just a day to spare, you can still fully experience the vibrant culture of Ho Chi Minh City by visiting these top six destinations:

Exploring Saigon City Tour Bus

Traveling by the hop-on hop-off bus in Saigon is an efficient way to visit the city’s top attractions. This sightseeing bus service is a great option to get around the bustling streets of Ho Chi Minh City during the day.

  • Price:
TicketCity Tour (1 turn)City tour in 24 hoursCity tour + having a meal on a cruiseCity Tour (1 turn) + explore Independence Palace 
Price 149.000 VND (~ 6.28 USD) per person475.000 VND (~ 20.01 USD) per person599.000 VND (~ 25.23 USD) per person199.000 VND (~ 8.38 USD) per person
Active Time 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM, 5:00 PM – 22:30

Saigon City Tour By Bus

Independence Palace 

A trip to Independence Palace is essential for history buffs and anyone intrigued by the past. It provides a rich and enlightening exploration of Vietnam’s history and stands out as a key attraction in Ho Chi Minh City.

  • Address: No.135, Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street, 1 Dist.
  • Price: 40.000 VND (~ 1.69 USD) – 65.000 VND (~ 2.74 USD) per ticket.
  • Active time: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM.

Independence Palace

Ben Thanh Market

Ben Thanh Market is where Vietnamese culture, commerce, and culinary wonders come together. With its wide range of products, immersive cultural experiences, and opportunity to embrace local life, the market epitomizes Vietnamese traditions and serves as an exciting destination to shop, dine, and explore the essence of Saigon.

  • Address: Le Loi Street, Ben Thanh Ward, 1 Dist.
  • Active time: 4:00 AM – 7:00 PM.

Ben Thanh Market

War Remnants Museum 

The War Remnants Museum is dedicated to the Vietnam War, offering a perspective from the Vietnamese standpoint and displaying the harsh realities and atrocities of the conflict. Through its extensive collection of exhibits, photographs, and artifacts, the museum vividly portrays the horrors of war.

  • Address: No.28, Vo Van Tan Street, 3 Dist.
  • Price: 15.000 VND (~ 0.63 USD) per ticket.
  • Active time: 7:30 AM – 6:00 PM.

War Remnants Museum

Cu Chi Tunnels

If you have just one day to explore Ho Chi Minh City, a visit to the Cu Chi tunnels is highly recommended. Located approximately 70 km northwest of the city center, this excursion promises valuable insights into Vietnam’s history. Booking a day tour through travel companies ensures optimal support throughout your journey.

  • Address: Phu Hiep Hamlet, Phu My Hung Commune, Cu Chi Dist. 
  • Price: 90,000 VND (~3.81 USD) – 100,000 VND (~4.23 USD) per person.
  • Active time: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM.
Tunnel door moves Cu Chi tunnel

The tunnel door moves Cu Chi Tunnels

Two to Three Days: Exploring the City’s Culture and History

For an enriching two to three-day adventure uncovering iconic landmarks, follow our Ho Chi Minh City travel guide:

SUP Rowing Tour on Water Coconut Canal  

The SUP Rowing Tour provides an enjoyable experience suitable for both novice and seasoned paddlers. Situated in the Binh Quoi Area, approximately 8 km from the city center, the canal boasts verdant scenery and traditional stilt houses, offering a glimpse into authentic Vietnamese rural life. As you glide through the tranquil waters, a profound sense of serenity and harmony with nature envelops you.

  • Address: Binh Quoi ecotourism Village area, Binh Thanh Dist.
  • Price: 830.000 VND (~ 34.97 USD) per person.
  • Active time: 8:00 AM – 12:00 AM, 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM.

When entering SUP tour, you can get a coconut drink for free

Mekong Delta 

The Mekong Delta unfolds as a lush landscape adorned with rice paddies, fruit orchards, and coconut groves, stretching as far as the eye can see. Located approximately 50 km east of the Saigon center, this verdant expanse offers opportunities to interact with local communities, explore traditional handicraft workshops, and immerse yourself in the delta’s captivating traditional music scene.

rowing along the river

Mekong Delta tour


Extended Stay: Venturing Beyond the City Limits

Can Gio Biosphere Reserve

The Can Gio Biosphere Reserve, situated around 50 kilometers southeast of Ho Chi Minh City, provides easy access to nature enthusiasts. Here, visitors can immerse themselves in natural surroundings, observe diverse wildlife, and appreciate the importance of preserving these fragile ecosystems.

  • Address: Rung Sac Street, Long Hoa Commune, Can Gio Dist.
  • Price: 35.000 VND (~ 1.47 USD) per person.

The stunning view in the Can Gio Biosphere Reserve 

Exploring Vung Tau Coastal City

Vung Tau, conveniently situated approximately 125 kilometers southeast of Ho Chi Minh City, offers easy access for travelers. Known for its stunning beaches catering to various preferences, from water sports enthusiasts to those seeking tranquil relaxation. Visitors also have the opportunity to explore ships and drilling rigs, adding to the area’s allure.

Vung Tau Beach

In this article, we provide an overview of Ho Chi Minh City and essential tips for your adventures. Additionally, we highlight some exciting day trips, three-day excursions, or longer journeys from the city center. We hope you find our Ho Chi Minh City travel guide enjoyable and informative. Feel free to reach out to Sun Getaways Travel for your Ho Chi Minh City trip or explore the available packages listed below:

Tour Information Offer

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