When we booked our flight to Ho Chi Minh, we immediately asked ourselves – what really can we do there? Honestly, we didn’t expect to have an amazing time in Vietnam as we didn’t have an actual itinerary. We settled for spontaneous and laid back time for our 4 day stay. Not on this list – Mekong Delta, Water Puppet Show, Independence Palace, Cao Dai Temple but defintely check them out. Note: Uber and Grab are available in Ho Chi Minh City and are reliable and much cheaper than regular taxis. 4G Sim cards are being sold at the airport.
1. Drink Vietnamese Coffee – Instagramable Cafe Tour
Vietnam is well known for their coffee that even those people who do not drink coffee will appreciate it. We both don’t drink coffee but Vietnamese Coffee is a game changer and totally worth the try. The cafes in Vietnam has their extra effort with the overall concept and designs of the places. Here are some of the cafes we visited:
Du Mien Garden Cafe
Address: 7 Phan Van Tri Phuong 10, Quan Go Vap, Ho Chi Minh City
Price range: 40,000VND – 100,000 VND
Hours: 7:00AM – 11:00PM
However, L’Uisine is one of the well established name in the cafe industry in Saigon. They offer great food, drinks, and also clothes. It is located in the heart of District 1 surrounded with a variety of restaurants.
Address: 70B Le Loi, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Price range: 40,000VND – 120,000VND
Hours: 7:30AM – 10:30PM
Tam Cam Bistro
Walking distance from Union Square and Ben Thanh Market. This is somewhat of a hidden gem with their mouthwatering food and drinks. The place is small and quiet – perfect for a short break after a whole day of exploring Saigon.
Address: 35 Ly Tu Trong, Ben Nghe, Quan 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Price range: 40,000VND – 100,000VND
Hours: 9:00AM – 10:00PM
2. Try their Noodles and Banh Mi
It was a long journey before we were able to find rice meals in Ho Chi Minh (Rice is life) because most of them serve noodles and banh mi.
Quan An Ngon
Authenticity at its best! Quan An Ngon serves savory dishes and crowd favorite noodles.
Address: 130 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Price range: 40,000VND – 80,000VND
Hours: 7:00AM – 10:00PM
3. Visit the War Remnants Museum
There are war planes and tanks outside and the artifacts and photos displayed inside the museum are quiet chilling. You will surely appreciate independence after witnessing the war aftermath.
Price: 15,000VND per person
Hours: 7:30AM – 6:00PM
4. Shop at Ben Thanh Market
The main go to place to find the cheapest deal in Ho Chi Minh City. The prices can go down to 50% if you know how to play it. They are only open from 7:00AM – 7:00PM, but no need to worry as they have Night Market that starts a 7PM and closes at 11PM.
5. Satisfy your hunger at Ben Thanh Street Food Market
After roaming and haggling with the vendors at Ben Thanh Market, reward yourself with delicious food from this food park style dining place. They have wide selection of food to choose from – Vietnamese, Korean, Indian, Italian, etc. the place is pretty neat and cool with reasonable prices for food and drinks.
Price range: 30,000VND – 90,000VND
Hours: 9:00AM – 11:00PM
6. Escape to the Mui Ne Province
Yes we are still in Vietnam. You can go for an exhilirating ride on an ATV in this fine white sand for 200,000VND per person and also slide your way down like a boss. Perfect for adrenaline junkies!
Red Sand Dunes
Climb your way up and slide down this breathtaking place.
For more photos/info of our Mui Ne trip, you may click on this 1 Day in Mui Ne Province Travel Itinerary.
7. City Tour – Saigon Post Office and Notre Dame Cathedral
8. See Ho Chi Minh City from the 49th floor of Saigon Skydeck – Bitexco Financial Tower
Soar up high and view the whole of Ho Chi Minh City through te Saigon Skydeck in Bitexco Financial Tower. The price is 200,000VND per person – quiet pricey. For those asking if it is worth it, we have mixed opinions – Totally worth it! And Wow Ho Chi Minh is expensive to look at. Bitexco Financial Tower ranks 5th among the tallest buildings of the world.
9. Explore the Cu Chi Tunnels
This place has a very interesting history behind it. The Cu Chi Tunnels have been constructed by the Vietnamese as a means of strategic advantage during the war. You will be able to enter the tunnels and experience them firsthand.
Price: 797PHP (tour price from Klook – Sign up on Klook now for great deals. Click here)
For the budget breakdown, you may download the spreadsheet here