Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Getting Around

Most hotels will provide a free tourist map of District 1 (main tourist destination in Ho Chi Minh City) although these vary in quality and tend to be advertising based. Bookazine located at 28 Dong Khoi (between Ngo Duc Ke and Ho Huan Nghiep) in District 1 have large city maps if you plan to venture beyond the district. The one published by Du Lich & Giao Thong has a street index on the back. Fahasa Books also carry a full range of available maps. They have two large stores in District 1 at 185 Dong Khoi (near Le Thanh Ton) and 40 Nguyen Hue (near Mac Thi Buoi).
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Street in Ho Chi Minh City by Ngo Trung

By Speedboat
Getting to Vung Tau by hydrofoil is a great way to see the maritime areas as the boats runs through the Saigon River to the sea. Depart at Bach Dang Pier (not far from the Majestic Hotel) in Ho Chi Minh City. The journey takes about an hour and arrives at Cau Da Port in Vung Tau. There are 3 lines along this route including the Petro Express, Greenlines and Vina Express. A one-way ticket price is  USD10 for adults and USD5 for children (6-11 years and below 1.4 metres).

Saigon River Express offers VIP boat tours to the Cu Chi Tunnels, Mekong Delta and jungle canals. They use new speedboats and provide a 5-star service. A sunset tour around the city involves exploring narrow jungle canals with a village made of bamboo and thatch as well as visiting a floating temple. The Saigon River Express office is located at Me Linh Point Tower at No. 2 Ngo Duc Ke in District 1 (next to the Renaissance Riverside Hotel).

Saigon River by Tore Sætre

By Cyclo
A ride on a cyclo (pedicab tricycle with the passenger sitting in a front seat and driver at the back) is a great way to see Ho Chi Minh City the way the locals do. The sights, sounds and smells are a large part of the excitement of this city, and are best experienced from the relaxed pace of a cyclo. At around 36,000 dong an hour and because they are so slow, they can be a good choice for enjoying the sights of the city. However, for many reasons, this form of transportation is gradually disappearing.

Be sure to bargain hard with the cyclo driver beforehand. Some cyclo riders have been known to attempt to change the agreed price after completing the journey, whilst another trick may include the driver taking you to places which benefit his wallet. To avoid these problems, make sure you are clear on the price and destination upon departing. A word of warning, be careful with your camera, bag, purses and etc. while  riding as these items are easily stolen by thieves on motorbikes.

Guide to
Ho Chi Minh City
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