Ho Chi Minh City or Saigon is the largest city in Vietnam – Part 1

Ho Chi Minh City earlier named Saigon is the largest city in Vietnam.

Overview of Ho Chi Minh City

• When it was known Saigon, it was the capital of the French colony of Cochin-china.
• Later, it was the independent republic of South Vietnam.
• This was from 1955–75.
• The city center is situated on the banks of the Saigon River.
• It is about 60 kilometers (37 mi) from the South China Sea.
• It is about 1,760 kilometers (1,090 mi) to the south of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam.

The metropolitan area consists of:
• Ho Chi Minh City metropolitan area
• Thu Dau Mot
• Di An
• Bien Hoa
• Surrounding towns
• It is the most populous metropolitan area in Vietnam.
• The greater Ho Chi Minh City metropolitan area is a metropolitan area.
This covers:
– Most parts of Dong Nam Bo
– Tien Giang
– Long An provinces
• This has an area of 30,000 square kilometers.
• Ho Chi Minh City is ranked 132 on the list of world’s most expensive cities.
The majority of the population is:
– Ethnic Vietnamese (Kinh) at about 93.52%
– Largest minority ethnic group are the Chinese (Hoa) with 5.78%
– Khmer 0.34%
– Cham 0.1%
• The inhabitants of Ho Chi Minh City are usually known as “Saigonese”.
• The Hoa speak:
– Vietnamese
– Cantonese
– Teochew
– Hokkien
– Hainanese
– Hakka dialects of Chinese
– Mandarin Chinese
– A varying degree of English is spoken for tourism and commerce sectors.

Religious makeup of Ho Chi Minh City is:
• Buddhism 80%
• Roman Catholic 11%
• Other groups 2%
• No religion/unknown 7%
The most prominent structures in the city center are:
• Reunification Palace
• City Hall
• The Municipal Theater or the Opera House
• City Post Office
• State Bank Office
• City People’s Court
• Notre-Dame Cathedral

Some of the historic hotels are:
• Hotel Majestic
• Rex and Caravelle
• A tour guide demonstrates a secret entrance at the C? Chi tunnels.

The city has various museums. They are such as:
• The Ho Chi Minh City Museum
• Museum of Vietnamese History
• The Revolutionary Museum
• The Museum of Southeastern Armed Forces
• The War Remnants Museum
• The Museum of Southern Women
• The Museum of Fine Art
• The Nha Rong Memorial House
• The Ben Duoc Relic of Underground Tunnels
• The Cu Chi tunnels
• The Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens

Places of entertainment are such as:
• Municipal Theater
• Ben Thanh
• Hoa Binh Theatres
• Lan Anh Music Stage

Three recreational sites inside the city are:
• The Dam Sen Tourist and Cultural Park
• Suoi Tien Amusement and Culture Park
• Can Gios Eco beach resort

Historical Sites and Places to See in Ho Chi Minh City

The tank that ended the war, outside the Reunification Palace
Reunification Palace
• Enter at 135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street.
• ? +84 8 9693272
• Opens daily from 7:30AM-11:00AM, 1PM-4PM
• It is also known as Independence Palace.
Check out
• The impressively kitschy recreation room
• A circular sofa
• The eerie basement
• Full of vintage 1960s phones
• Radios
• Office equipment
• A photo gallery
• A propaganda film
• Tours are available and are free
• There is a nice outdoor cafe
• Entry 30,000 dong

Best time to visit / climate

• The city has a tropical climate.
• The year is divided into two distinct seasons.
• The rainy season, with an average rainfall of about 1,800 millimetres .
• It usually begins in May and ends in late November.
• The dry season lasts from December to April.
• The average temperature is 28 °C (82 °F).
• The highest temperature sometimes reaches 39 °C.
• This is around noon in late April.
• The lowest may fall below 16 °C in the early mornings of late December into early January.

Location on Google Maps

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How to To reach there?

1. By Air
• The city is served by Tan Son Nhat International Airport.
• This is the largest airport in Vietnam.
• Long Thanh Airport serves international flights.
• Tan Son Nhat Airport serves domestic flights.

2. By Rail
• Ho Chi Minh City is also a terminal for many Vietnam Railways routes.
• The Reunification Express runs from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi.
• This runs from Saigon Railway Station in District 3.
• The two main stations are Song Than and Sai Gon.
• There are several small stations.
They are:
– Di An
– Thu Duc
– Binh Trieu
– Go Vap

3. By Water
• The city’s location is on the Saigon River.
• This makes it a commercial and passenger port.
• There is a constant stream of cargo ships and passenger boats.
• Traffic between Ho Chi Minh City and Vietnam’s southern provinces has increased.
• The Doi and Te Canals are the main routes to the Mekong Delta.
• They receive 100,000 waterway vehicles annually.
• They operate regularly between Ho Chi Minh City and various destinations in Southern Vietnam and Cambodia.
These include:
– Vung Tau
– Can Tho
– Mekong Delta
– Phnom Pen

4. By Coach bus
• Ho Chi Minh City has a number of coach houses.
• There are coach buses to and from several areas in Vietnam.
• The largest coach station is the Mien Dong Coach Station which is in the Binh Thanh District.

Some Travel Books on Vietnam

Vietnam (Country Travel Guide) DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Vietnam and Angkor Wat To Vietnam With Love

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at tripadvisor.com
Hotels at booking.com
Hotels at agoda.com

Blogs/Sites about Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam

blogs at wikipedia.org
blogs at lonelyplanet.com
blogs at tripadvisor.com
blogs and reviews at travelblog.org

Images and photos of Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam

images at google.com
images at wikipedia.org
images at lonelyplanet.com
images at tripadvisor.com

Videos of Ho Chi Minh City – Vietnam

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