HO CHI MINH/SAIGON,
VIETNAM

Area Code 08, $1=16,415D, July 3, 2007

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 Dry Season : Oct-Apr  Wet Season : May-Sep
 Tourist Peak: Dec-Jan Sep-Aug

Most everyone in Vietnam still knows and calls this city "Saigon". It was the capital of South Vietnam until reunification of the north and south in 1975, when it was renamed Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). It's the largest city in the country, with perhaps seven million people and growing fast. You'll see it in the traffic, the crowded streets, the changes. It's the most westernized city in Vietnam, but it hasn't changed nearly as much as other Asian cities. There are still no skyscrapers, and few grand hotels. Business is still done on the sidewalk, as are many meals.

The legacy of French colonialism, American interference, and a short, subsidized autonomy leaves many political and military sights in HCMC. Half of the sights here seem to deal with the war in some respect. To the Vietnamese people, it's history, but they realize that the tourists want to see it. Spend time talking with the people; many know English, and will want to meet you. Venture outside the main district and see what life is like here.

Photo: Spiral incense at Temple

Arriving:
By Plane: Take a city bus #
#28 to Bin Thanh bus station.
By Train: Phan Ngu Lao area is 2km away to SE. Either you walk or take a taxi
By Bus: From all bus station, you can come to the center by a city bus. Take one to "Bin Thanh" See bus station section for more details.
By Tourist Bus: Including from Phnom Penh, all tourist buses arrive to Phan Ngu Lao area. Very convenient.

Photo Gallery : Abe Gallery
Poto Gallery : Snapshots in Saigon
Photo Gallery : Train Travel

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Research Period: 96.12.29, 98.3.25, 2000.8.20, 2003.3,