Ho Chi Minh City

by Julia Laporte December. 09, 2018 995 views

We had been “warned” about the motorcycle craze in Ho Chi Minh City, but even picturing an Amsterdam-style bike craze replaced with motorcycles did not prepare us for the volume and chaos of the scooters in the former Saigon. While we were being transferred to our accommodation, which was supposed to be 5 minutes from the check in location, we got completely stuck in 100% scooter traffic. That 5 minute ride took about 20-25 minutes. While I was amused and asking my driver whether this was just a regular rush hour she exclaimed “No, not normal!”, and went on to explain that the crazy traffic was due to the Philippines-Vietnam football game about to start. It was a great welcome to the city.

One of the sites we visited was the Independence Palace also known as the Reunification Palace. It made its name in global history in 1975. A tank belonging to the North Vietnamese Army crashed through its main gate, ending the Vietnam War. I was fascinated by the eerie building and its geometric structure; its shapes, open spaces and intriguing interior.

Later on we went up to the 52nd floor of the Bitexco Financial Tower for a drink during sunset at the EON Heli Bar. We also seem to have found a way around my husband’s fear of heights; getting sufficiently tipsy at a local brewery ahead of time will work wonders and relieve that anxiety threshold before venturing up to great heights.

Busy Bui Vien Road during the Philippines-Vietnam football game

Busy Bui Vien Road during the Philippines-Vietnam football game

Giac Lam Pagoda

Giac Lam Pagoda

Giac Lam Pagoda

Giac Lam Pagoda

The Central Post Office

The Central Post Office

Ho Chi Minh City Hall with scooters

Ho Chi Minh City Hall with scooters

Ben Thanh Main Market, food stalls

Ben Thanh Main Market, food stalls

Ben Thanh Main Market, food stalls

Ben Thanh Main Market, food stalls

Independence Palace

Independence Palace

Tank exhibited in the grounds of the Independence Palace

Tank exhibited in the grounds of the Independence Palace

Independence Palace Interior

Independence Palace Interior

Independence Palace Interior

Independence Palace Interior

School children lining up to enter the Independence Palace

School children lining up to enter the Independence Palace

Independence Palace Interior

Independence Palace Interior

Independence Palace Interior - the game room perfectly set up to play mahjong

Independence Palace Interior - the game room perfectly set up to play mahjong

At the local Pasteur Street Brewing Company

At the local Pasteur Street Brewing Company

At the local Pasteur Street Brewing Company

At the local Pasteur Street Brewing Company

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

View from the EON Heli Bar

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There are 7 comments , add yours!
John D 1 year, 4 months ago

I especially like 19.

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Sanaya Perez 1 year, 4 months ago

Crazy motocycle traffic is kinda an asian thing. Nice storyline by the way

1 year, 4 months ago Edited
Julia Laporte Replied to Sanaya Perez 1 year, 2 months ago

Thanks! smile

1 year, 2 months ago Edited
Adam Nowek 2 years, 5 months ago

I'm glad my brewery suggestion came in handy 😎

2 years, 5 months ago Edited
Julia Laporte Replied to Adam Nowek 2 years, 5 months ago

Very much so! :-) Thanks!

2 years, 5 months ago Edited
Rafael 2 years, 5 months ago

As much as I loved seeing New Zealand again, this has to be my favourite post so far. Thanks for sharing :) 

*Adding Vietnam to travel bucket list*

2 years, 5 months ago Edited
Julia Laporte Replied to Rafael 2 years, 5 months ago

+1

Although we are ticking off some of the places on our bucket list, traveling in fact only makes it longer based on the places you don’t have time to visit and the people you meet with their respective stories and places they have been to which are then added to your list... gotta make the most of it while we are here. :-)

2 years, 5 months ago Edited
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