Reimagine your Happiness with Singapore Airlines and SilkAir – A day in Ho Chi Minh City

Reimagine Happiness - Ho Chi Minh

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Ho Chi Minh City

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Bánh Mì



There is no better, or more authentic way, to start your morning than by heading to the iconic Ben Thanh market for Vietnam’s world famous bánh mì. A baguette split lengthwise and filled with a variety of savoury fillings, from eggs to pork sausages - perfect with a side of ca phe sua (milk coffee). Also available at this market is another great breakfast option, a piping hot, fragrant bowl of phò. Vietnam’s signature breakfast is a rice noodle dish that comes with either sliced chicken or beef and is served in a bowl of robust, spiced beef broth. Silky smooth noodles, perfectly complemented by crunchy beans sprouts, cilantro, sliced red chillies and a squeeze of lime.
Tour the city on Vespa
Coffee culture
Left: Tour the city on Vespa Right: Coffee culture



Ho Chi Minh City is brimming with hidden hot spots, best discovered on the back of a classic Vespa, which you can easily rent from BikesBooking or Saigon Scooter Centre. Make a pit stop at 14 Tôn That Dam, a dilapidated colonial building known for its vibrant coffee culture and one-of-a-kind boutiques. Next, head to Saigon Outcast, a multi-purpose venue, located on the city’s river banks. It is constantly bustling with a variety of events like live music gigs, indie art exhibitions, flea markets and outdoor cinema screenings. For an evening option, dine under the stars at Secret Garden, a dimly-lit rooftop restaurant perched on a quaint apartment tucked behind an alley. You will have to climb five flights of stairs to get there, but it is well worth the effort to feast on delicious and authentic Vietnamese fare.
Temple of Ten Thousand Buddhas



The Temple of Ten Thousand Buddhas, or the Chùa Vạn Phật, as the name suggests, is home to a breathtaking number of Buddha statues. The four-level pagoda, tucked away in a remote part of the city, is well worth a visit. The largest of these statues is the Ty No Gia Na Buddha, and it can be found at the central altar resting on a lotus flower with a thousand petals. Smaller sculptures sit neatly in small recesses in the walls, filling the entire room from floor to ceiling. Feel the calmness as you marvel at authentic Vietnamese craftsmanship, and get up close to the intricate wood carvings, dragon cast metal sculptures and wall paintings. Entry is free, but donations are appreciated.
Army tank outside Independence Palace
War room in the Independence Palace
Left: Army tank outside Independence Palace Right: War room in the Independence Palace



History buffs are in for a treat when they step inside Independence Palace. Home to the president of South Vietnam during the Vietnam War, the palace made its mark in 1975 when a Vietnamese army tank crashed through its main gates to signify the end of the war. Today, it is a museum that is frozen in time. Two of the original tanks still stand outside while indoors, the rooms are fitted with the original furniture and old-school kitchen appliances. The palace also boasts James Bond-esque interiors; a well-preserved war room in the basement; a helicopter pad; and a stunning casino and movie theatre.
View of the city from Bitexco Financial Tower



Where does one catch the sunset in Ho Chi Minh? Head to Bitexco Financial Tower. At 262 metres, it has earned the reputation for being the city’s second tallest building, and fifth tallest in Vietnam. The glass-encased Saigon Skydeck awaits you on the 49th floor, where you will be rewarded with a spectacular bird’s eye view of the best that Vietnam has to offer. By daylight, you will enjoy the gorgeous skyline of the city’s urban landscape, plus breathtaking views of the Saigon River. As the sun sets, the city will dazzle you with its lights. Use the free binoculars for a closer look or enjoy the magical sight as you enjoy a drink at EON Heli Bar on the 52nd floor.
Pig’s offal congee
Fried insects
Left: Pig’s offal congee Right: Fried insects



Exotic Vietnamese fare is an alternative way to experience Vietnam’s culture. Daredevils can tuck into fried insects — we are talking termites, grasshoppers and ants dunked in hot oil and devoured as a crunchy snack. For the less adventurous, grilled frog legs are a safe and delicious option. Dip them in soy sauce and enjoy with steamed white rice. Cháo lòng or pig’s offal congee is another popular dish prepared with the pig’s intestines, tongue, heart, stomach and kidney. For something milder, yet exotic, try bún bò huẽ — a spicy noodle dish made with vermicelli, sliced beef shank, oxtail chunks and pig’s knuckles. Cubes of congealed pig’s blood are thrown in to give the broth its intense flavour and colour.

Explore the destination


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Shwedagon Pagoda

Kandawgyi Lake

Yangon Central Station

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Illustrative guide is not drawn to scale
1Ben Thanh market

Le Loi, Ben Thanh, District 1, Ho Chi Minh 70000, Vietnam

Daily 06:00 - 18:00

2A Secret Garden

158 Pasteur, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam

Daily 10:00 - 22:00

2B14 Tôn That Dam

14 Tôn That Dam, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam

24 hours

3Chùa Vạn PhẬt

66 Nghia Thuc Street, District 5, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam

Daily 08:00 - 17:00

4Independence Palace

135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam

Daily 07:30 - 11:00; 13:00 - 16:00

5Bitexco Financial Tower

36 Ho Tung Mau Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City 70000, Vietnam

Daily 09:30 - 21:30

6Cháo lòng (Pig’s offal congee)

153 Nguyẽn Thị Minh Khai, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Daily 02:30 - 21:30


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