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24 HOURS IN Ho Chi Minh CITY

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Ho Chi Minh City, or Saigon as some people know it as, is the most populated city in Vietnam. 

However, fun fact, it’s not the capital. Hanoi is. 

Ho Chi Minh has a lot of cool stuff to check out, but many of these attractions are more accurately day trips outside the city centre. 

So what to do if you only have 24 hours in this bustling city? 

Let me show you!

Table of Contents:


Built by the French during its occupation of the country, and the oldest Catholic cathedral still standing in Vietnam; Notre Dame is a must visit. 

The cathedral is still in operation today where you can attend mass or walk in for a tour. Unfortunately, Notre Dame was closed for renovations while I was there. 

central post office

Just adjacent to the cathedral is the central post office, another post card worthy shot you need to snap! 

In fact, why not buy a few post cards there and send them out right away. 

The post office was built in 1886 – 1891 during French occupation, and its claim to fame is its designer, Gustave Eiffle. The guy who also designed the Eiffle tower in Paris. 

grab a coffee

If you only have 24 hours in HCMC, then there’s a few gastronomical experiences you must try.  

One being Vietnamese iced coffee. 

There’s a bunch of cafes nearby the central post office you can pop in and enjoy authentic Vietnamese iced coffee to beat the humid heat. 

book street

There’s a alleyway full to the brim with bookstores and cafes called book street. It’s a fun cozy little place to go visit and browse through books. Many are in Vietnamese (obviously), but you can also find English titles in a few places. 


You’re in noodle soup country. You HAVE TO have noodle soup, and the most iconic has got to be pho. 

Pho is a rice noodle soup dish with its focus on the slow simmered broth made commonly with pork, beef or chicken. The rice noodles are topped with meat, served with crunchy veggies, a wedge of lime and some sauce! 

If you like pho at your local Vietnamese restaurant, you’re going to LOVE pho in the country that invented it! 

Bonus TIP

Like most tourist attractions, it is always full of tourists trying to take a good photo…without much luck. 

So why not get night views of these iconic places instead. Most landmarks are lit up with beautiful lights with not a single person in sight. 

Take as many photos as you want with no one in the background! 

Janice Fung

Janice Fung

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