WHAT TO DO IN SAIGON

Video source: Mark Wiens

There are more things to do in Ho Chi Minh City than travelers might imagine. While initial activities may consist of exploring historical landmarks, museums and motorbike-packed streets, as well as trying out the city’s various delicacies and favorite street eats, the bulk of Saigon’s activities remains to be discovered by new visitors.

Tours and excursions are must-dos for visitors stopping by for a day or two. Those planning to stay longer will be surprised to find plenty of activities besides sightseeing. Saigon’s nightlife is active every night of the week, with everything from low-key hipster bars to rooftop glamour lounges each sharing much appreciation among the city’s party-addicted crowd.

While bars, clubs and karaoke joints of Western and local variety reign supreme at night, things tend to tone down a bit during the day; Fortunately, activities are no less plentiful. Stop by the park for a quick read, play a variety of sports with the locals, join a live detective game, discover lesser-known districts like Cho Lon in District 5 (Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown), take a cooking or crafts class, experience the city’s massage parlours and much more.

Families will be happy to know there are numerous venues and activities that cater to all ages and sizes, including Ho Chi Minh City’s many malls, like Vincom Center and VivoCity, as well as cinemas with the latest Western movies and outdoor and indoor markets packed with interesting knick-knacks for both kids and parents.

Those planning on going suit or dress shopping and have a bit of time have the chance to get a bespoke suit crafted by a skilled tailor. Our guide on finding a tailor in Saigon should help you navigate the initially daunting task of getting great custom-made clothes.

Thanks to the city’s central location, many adventures await on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City, offering endless weekend getaways possibilities. Madagui Forest City, only a few hours away, is nearly as large as a national park and contains camping grounds, team activities and many hiking trails. Beaches at Vung Tau and Phan Thiet are no more than several hours away and offer excellent opportunities for whiling away an afternoon kicking the sand and watching the waves.

Whether you’re a backpacker, expat or exploring with your family, you will never run out of things to do in Ho Chi Minh City.

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