This Week in Saigon: Special Tet Edition
FLOWER FESTIVALS AND MARKETS AROUND SAIGON
Flower festivals are a huge part of Tet holiday in Vietnam. Check out these flower markets in Saigon to see awe-inspiring displays that welcome in the Year of the Pig.
Nguyen Hue Flower Festival
Nguyen Hue Walking Street, D1
From 2 February to 8 February (7pm to 10pm each day) | FREE
The Nguyen Hue Flower Festival will be opened to the public starting at 7:00pm on 2 February until 10:00pm on 8 February. Locals, expats and tourists in Saigon can expect to see spectacular displays of giant pigs and beautiful colorful flowers decorating the entire length of Nguyen Hue Walking Street. Grab the chance for various photo opportunities with flower displays created by organizations from neighboring provinces. This is the largest and most famous Tet Holiday display in Ho Chi Minh City, so expect large crowds all day and night.
Image source: petrotimes.vn
Phu My Hung Flower Festival
Crescent Mall, 101 Ton Dat Tien, D7
28 January to February 4 | FREE
Don’t live near to District 1? You’re in for a treat this Tet if you happen to stick around District 7!. The Phu My Hung Flower Festival takes place along the banks of Crescent Lake behind Crescent Mall in Phu My Hung area. The festival will feature four main display areas. At the entrance, Spring Road is where you can enjoy replicas of the most renowned areas in Vietnam associated with flowers as well as statues representing the Year of the Pig. This year, the Spring Wharf area will be decorated as a floating flower market with an area for festival goers to release their well-wishing lotus lanterns into the lake. With traditional performances, flower market, competitions, and an assortment of food vendors, there’s sure to be something to please everyone in the family.
Image source: tienphong.vn
Tao Dan Flower Festival
Tao Dan Park, Truong Dinh, D1
1 January to 10 February | 4:00am - 11:00pm | VND30,000
If you’d like to enjoy the flower displays for the Year of the Pig in Saigon with slightly smaller crowds, head to Tao Dan Park. Since the beginning of January, the Tao Dan Flower Festival has boasted various types of displays ranging from flowers, ornamental plants to hand-cut bonsai. Purchase flowers from local growers or simply wander around in all the splendor of nature. Other exhibitions, workshops, and activities are also available all day.
Image source: tin247.com
Tet Flower Markets
Flower markets are abound all over Saigon in almost every major neighborhood. These markets will not have performances or many large displays, but you’ll be able to purchase special yellow or orange colored flowers and enjoy the beauty of the flowers without large crowds. Some of the most notable ones are set up at Gia Dinh Park in Phu Nhuan District and also Le Van Tam Park and 23/9 Park in District 1. Another option is to visit District 7 to see the floating flower market along the Te Canal, where boats from the Mekong Delta arrive with the freshest blossoms. In District 2, head to the large lot around Imperia Apartments in An Phu to pick up some colorful flowers to inaugurate the debut of the Year of the Pig.
Image source: scootersaigontour.com
ENJOY DELICIOUS TET FOOD
Another integral part of Tet celebrations is food! It is always best to experience the holiday traditions with a Vietnamese family, and if you’re invited, do take advantage of this special honour. If that’s not possible, you can also head to these places to enjoy Tet feast delicacies.
Happy Lunar New Year 2019 at Chill Dining
Chill Dining is offering a special Tet Reunion Dinner and a la carte menu for Lunar New Year 2019. Executive Chef Dannet D’Souza has curated five gourmet menus, giving a luxurious twist on traditional favorites by including world-class ingredients. As an added bonus to your special Tet feast, book a table on 4 February and stay late to view the Lunar New Year fireworks display from one of the tallest perches in Saigon.
Image source: facebook.com/chilldining.saigon
Spring on Sky Lunar New Year 2019
EON51 Restaurant & Lounge, Level 51, Bitexco Financial Tower, 2 Hai Trieu, D1
4 February | 6:00pm - 12:00am | VND1,650,000
Facebook; +84 28 6291 8751
EON51 Restaurant & Lounge invites you to celebrate the Year of the Pig 2019 atop the infamous Bitexco Financial Tower. This year, they have decided to fuse Vietnamese tradition with Western style for a special set menu. With luxurious ingredients such as Wagyu beef, lobster, and foie gras, this multi-course menu will impress the most discriminating palettes. Enjoy your Tet feast to the soundtrack of a live classical string duo. End your meal with an unobstructed view of the Lunar New Year fireworks show.
Image source: facebook.com/EON51.Restaurant.Lounge
Spring into a Prosperous New Year
For the Year of the Pig 2019, Hotel Nikko Saigon welcomes families and friends all over Ho Chi Minh City to enjoy a reunion meal this Tet Holiday. The chefs will be offering three lunch or dinner options featuring many Tet favorites. The Longevity set lunch or dinner is a vegetarian meal served between 4 to 7 February for VND700,000 per person. If you prefer to dine with a larger group, Hotel Nikko Saigon has the Good Fortune Table Set lunch and dinner at VND10,000,000 for a table of 10, also available from 4 to 7 February. Alternatively, on Lunar New Year Day, 5 February, they are offering the Prosperity Dim Sum Brunch. This special meal is only available from 11am to 2:30pm at VND650,000 per person for the buffet. Whatever your choice may be, it is advisable to call or email for reservations.
Be aware that during the Tet holiday period, many local restaurants may be closed between 4 to 6 February. Nonetheless, most western food restaurants, grocery stores and convenience stores will remain open. If you want to know where you can eat out during Tet, check out our handy list of Tet 2019 opening hours for restaurants in Saigon.
Image source: facebook.com/hotelnikkosaigonvn
CHECK OUT THE LUNAR NEW YEAR FIREWORKS
What New Year celebration is complete without fireworks? During the whole Tet Holiday, you may see - and hear - your Vietnamese neighbors popping fireworks and making festive sounds to ward off evil spirits and chauffeuring in prosperity for the new lunar year. But if you’d like to see some fireworks light up the sky, here’s a listing of 6 locations that will showcase stunning Lunar New Year fireworks displays. The fireworks displays usually last 15 minutes and will start at 0000h on 5 February. The best thing is to find a rooftop or elevated position to watch the show, especially if you’re trying to catch the Thu Thiem area display. If you decide to view the fireworks from the ground, be sure to claim a spot early as the crowds will be massive.
Thu Thiem Tunnel Area
Dam Sen Cultural Park, So 3 Hoa Binh, D11
History Ethnic & Cultural Park, No 16, District 9
Hiep Phuoc Industrial Park, No 1, Nha Be District
Sac Forest Square, Can Gio District
Cu Chi Tunnels, Cu Chi District
Image source: lesrivesexperience.com
WATCH THE NFL SUPERBOWL 2019
If you’re a fan of American football, or NFL, you know that it can be hard to catch the game in Saigon because of limited coverage and the huge time zone differences. So it’s not surprise that you’ll have to get up extra early to catch the BIG game this year! On Tet Eve, 4 February, grab some friends and head down to these spots around Saigon for some drinks, ‘breakfast’ and sports fan mania.
Image source: wired.com
Saigon is a city that never sleeps and the party isn’t stopping for Tet! If you’re feeling a little boogie in your feet, these venues have the right vibes for you. Do note that some venues will be closed during the first few days of Tet. It’s best to message or call your favorite venues first before heading out, especially between 4 to 6 February. For the venues listed below, I have included closure details.
Mad Circus - Mundo Loco
Calling all Saigon party freaks! The Mad Circus party series is back for its 3rd edition of all night dance insanity at Arcan Saigon to kick off your Tet holiday. With a special guest DJ from New York, HAVONY, and a killer line up of some of the favorite local DJs in Saigon spinning disco, house, tech-house, and techno, this party just won’t quit. What makes this party really crazy? Dance performances, burlesque atmosphere, glitter face painting by GlitterArty, and of course the never-ending party which will last well beyond sunrise. Don’t forget to dress up in your best Mad Circus attire to get discounts at the door and bar! This is by far my favorite party series in Saigon!
Arcan Saigon will be closed 4 February to 7 February, but is open on weekend nights (through to the morning).
Image source: facebook.com/AnonymousZiggy
Broma: Not A Bar, Rooftop, 41 Nguyen Hue, D1
2 February | 9:00pm - 2:00am | FREE
This monthly event brings DJ Stu Miller to Broma to heat up the decks, providing feel-good vibes from lush deep house beats to soulful disco-inspired treats. Head up to the picturesque rooftop for a chill evening with delicious cocktails from the crazy, sexy, cool Broma staff. Foot-tapping at your table or tearing up the dancefloor - free entry and enjoyment is for everyone all night long!
Image source: facebook.com/bromabar
New Year in White Firework Party
If you want to enjoy the Lunar New Year fireworks without the massive crowds, this may be a great option for you. Tiffany's Penthouse is hosting a white party and firework viewing to celebrate the Year of the Pig in posh fashion. The apartment boasts a magnificent view of the Saigon River, over which you can view the Thu Thiem Bridge fireworks display can be clearly seen. For VND500,000, receive entry plus 2 drinks and 4 balloons. Or, for VND1,000,000, get free flow champagne, red or white wine and free blow balloons! Dress code is all white and reservations are required.
Image source: facebook.com/tiffanyspenthouse
Tet’s Eve Celebration
Tet’s Eve is gonna be lit! Half of the Banana Hustle Crew, G Nomad and the Stinkin’ Bishop, are bringing their signature tropical sounds to the Broma rooftop again. Get ready to shake your hips and burn up the dance floor because these guys will get you moving! Perched on a perfect spot above the Nguyen Hue Walking Street, this is a great spot to watch the Lunar New Year fireworks at midnight, high above the crowds.
Broma will be open nightly throughout the Tet holiday but the Vitamin D party on weekend mornings will restart after Tet.
Image source: facebook.com/bromabar
Tet Pig’s Year Party
If you find yourself near Bui Vien but then realize it’s possibly not the best decision, head to The Lab - Shots & More, just down the road. Away from the chaos, you’ll find a great bar with great shots and a fun theme. The staff, dressed as mad scientists, will shower you with their creative shots. For this event, they’re giving away a free welcome Vodka Bacon Shot! Escape the hustle and bustle for a great evening out.
The Lab - Shots & More will be open as usual the entire Tet holiday, except 5 and 6 February.
Image source: facebook.com/thelabshotsandmore
Tet Rooftop Party
Celebrate the Lunar New Year at The Lighthouse. Come party early on three levels with pumping underground electronic music and banging cocktails. Stay until midnight to watch the fireworks from the rooftop in the heart of District 1. Then stay all the way until sunrise, dancing to welcome in the Year of the Pig.
The Lighthouse will be closed 5 to 7 February but will be open as usual on other dates.
Image source: facebook.com/TheLighthouseSaigon
The Face of Envy
Envy Club hosts ladies night every Tuesday. One of the most expansive and extravagant clubs. They’re also one of the best ladies nights because they provide free flow of long drinks; none of those sugary cocktails! With aerial artists, dancers, and the hottest DJs spinning electronic hip hop, this is a great spot for a night out with the girls.
Envy Club will be closed on 28 January but will be open for the remainder of the Tet holiday.
Image source: facebook.com/envyclubsaigon
Banner Image source: citypassguide.com