Saigon Travel diaries

Saigon photo diary

There are actually a couple of things one can do when visiting Saigon. History buffs would appreciate visiting the many old buildings with Western influences, the War Remnants Museum (though arguably one-sided, very interesting I was told) and the Cu Chi tunnels. Nature lovers would love a getting on a boat ride to the Mekong Delta. Shoppers would love getting their suits and shirts tailored within a day and the goods they can get from the famous markets in Saigon.
Tania and I, unprepared, only ate and drank coffee for the one extra day we had in Saigon. If I return to Saigon, I’d definitely do it differently, but here’s a recap of what we did on that day:

Walked on the main roads, after lunch at that sushi place. We were looking for a salon to wash our hair. Around the shopping district you’ll find Parkson and a few other malls. Malls are pretty okay, they’ve got most international brands around but none of them seem to have a salon inside.

Crossing the road, I learned, is a challenge. People like to honk most of the time (not as bad as the Philippines), change lanes frequently, seemed not to care if they’re on the wrong side of the road. Cross with courage!

See this video to understand the craziness.

One of the oldest hotels around, Hotel Continental is located at the central of the city. A beautiful building, but be cautious before booking a room – apparently since its so old, the floor creaks when people walk, it’s noisy at night and the rooms may be too old fashioned.

A small Louboutin shop along Dong Khoi St.

More shops at Dong Khoi St.

Concept Coiffure, a popular salon among the expatriates in District 2 owned by a French who’s been living in Saigon for some time. Highly rated, professional and affordable (even compared to the city). Did a good job with Tania’s hair the day before so we went there to wash our hair. Lazy tourists, we were. Booking in advance is needed if you’re interested.

How ‘gerai tepi jalan’ is like in Saigon. these guys were sitting there, chilling and surfing.

Owners of the gerai. See how they run the shop! When asked whether it’s okay to take photos, lady responded “Take all you want”. Very friendly and warm people.

Another stall at the end of the road.

This is probably popular in Saigon. I’ve seen a couple of shops selling handmade miniature ships already.

Ben Thanh Market. Massive market selling all kinds of goods and produce. This is where most of our colleagues were most of the time in Saigon. Went there for the sake of going and met our colleague, the dinner emcee and professional bargainer, Harun. Spent about 10 minutes or so and didn’t get anything, but nice to note that the people there are much nicer than the sellers in Beijing.

Camera-shy mangosteen seller outside of Ben Thanh.

At one of the A&EM Hotel branches. Went to the washroom and hung out at the Austin Powers themed lounge to surf the net (even when we weren’t guests of the hotel, the staff didn’t seem to mind and even helped us out!) and look out for a place we should head to next. By that time the museums were almost closed.

Highlands Coffee is like Saigon’s very own Starbucks. Vietnam is the second largest coffee beans producer, so there were ample of similar cafes around. For halal food, tourists can go to the restaurants located at the Saigon Mosque, but since this place was just a few minutes away from the hotel, we ordered sandwiches and prawn rolls for dinner.

That wraps up my day in Saigon!

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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Flower
    May 11, 2012 at 5:18 PM

    Nice pics. Yang paling terpikat, gambar manggis tu. I just bought 10 biji of manggis from Coles (Perth). On special today, sebiji AU$1. Usual price AU$2.00 sebiji.

    • Reply
      Miasuraya
      May 14, 2012 at 7:05 PM

      That’s nice. AU$1 can probably get you a bag of manggisin Saigon!

  • Reply
    Flower
    May 11, 2012 at 5:18 PM

    Nice pics. Yang paling terpikat, gambar manggis tu. I just bought 10 biji of manggis from Coles (Perth). On special today, sebiji AU$1. Usual price AU$2.00 sebiji.

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    May 11, 2012 at 11:39 PM

    It eveything halal at there? / easy to get halal food? 🙂

    • Reply
      Miasuraya
      May 14, 2012 at 7:06 PM

      Not really. That’s why I only ate spring rolls for dinner, the rest were mostly noodles with meat or pork broth. But there are a couple of halal restaurants near the Saigon mosque. It’s located near to the city center.

  • Reply
    aishah zain
    May 12, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    nice hair ya.

  • Reply
    Fatin Fairuz
    May 12, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    thanks for sharing the information dear =)

  • Reply
    Mei
    October 30, 2014 at 10:46 PM

    Which language you used to communicate with the Vietnamese, English.?

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