A Vietnamese city with French sophistication
Ho Chi Minh, formerly known as Saigon, is the largest city in Vietnam, situated on the banks of the Saigon River. Visitors come to this historical city to shop, eat and explore the ancient heritage. Take a tour of Ho Chi Minh’s sights of architectural importance such as the People's Court, City Hall and the Reunification Palace. Explore the districts to see the comparison between magnificent French colonial structures and the skyscrapers of the business area. Established in the 18th century visit the Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral and climb the towers. Watch the eyes of the Virgin Mary statue positioned in front of the church, reported by worshippers to have shed real tears. The Revolutionary Museum and Museum of Vietnamese History are two of the most popular attractions in the city; the Ho Chi Minh City Museum and Fine Arts Museum are home to a large collection of paintings and sculpture.
Travel to Ho Chi Minh to marvel at the mix of architectural styles; a remarkable history of dynasty rule and French colonial influences are evident in the buildings, streets and monuments. Tour Vietnamese attractions and learn about Ho Chi Minh’s turbulent past in the museums and exhibitions.
When To Go?
Ho Chi Minh like most of Vietnam is affected by a Tropical climate with distinctive wet and dry seasons. A high humidity makes hard work of any active pursuits during the months of April and May with average temperatures reaching 39°C. The rainy season begins at the end of May through to November with showers and thunderstorms appearing frequently. The dry season runs from January and is considered the best time to visit with average daily temperatures exceeding 28°C.
How To Get There?
Ho Chi Minh City is served by Tan Son Nhat International Airport (SGN) also known as Ho Chi Minh City Airport, located 6km (approximately 4 miles) from the city centre. Indirect flights are available with one and two stops from London Heathrow with Air China and Korean Air. Stop-over destinations include Paris, Hong Kong and Shanghai. A taxi desk can be found inside the terminal, passengers can opt for a coach service into the city.
Dating from 1865, the Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens is one of oldest in the world and a must-see for a first-time visit to Ho Chi Minh. Stroll through the park to see a variety of animals and join in on a scheduled petting session to learn more about exotic birds and mammals. Ben Thanh Market is one of the city’s most historic structures and a great place to get an authentic feel for Ho Chi Minh. Families, couples and groups of young people browse the stalls and shops of this large market. Pick up a trinket or sample Vietnamese snacks from one of several vendors.