Your friendly and knowledgeable guide and driver will meet you at your hotel in Ho Chi Minh City and take you by private vehicle to see the highlights of former Saigon. Depending on which sightseeing tour you select (see descriptions below), you’ll be introduced to a mix of French colonial architecture and Chinese influences as you visit temples, markets, museums and other landmarks.
Enjoy a complimentary lunch or dinner of delicious Vietnamese cuisine, with your choice of pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) or banh xeo (Vietnamese pancake). After your half-day tour, your guide will deliver you back to your hotel.
Option 1: Morning Tour (Chinatown: Binh Tay Market, Thien Hau Temple and War Remnants Museum)
After hotel pickup, your private guide will take you to District 5 to immerse you in the bustling life of Chinatown. Experience the vibrant rhythm of one of Ho Chi Minh City’s busiest and most colorful areas — Binh Tay Market. At this major hub for local merchants, watch Vietnamese farmers barter for goods.
Next is Thien Hau Temple, built in the early 19th century. The temple is dedicated to Thien Hau, the goddess of seafarers, for her protection during Chinese migration to Vietnam. Visit the pagoda’s shrines and shops in the center of Chinatown, where the Hoa (Chinese minority) reside.
The last stop on your private tour is the War Remnants Museum, which relates to the American phase of the Vietnam War. See displays of old military equipment and other related objects as well as larger exhibits including an F5A fighter and a UH1-Huey helicopter.
After lunch, you’ll be dropped off at your hotel by private vehicle.
Option 2: Afternoon Tour (French Quarter: Reunification Palace, Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica, Central Post Office and Ben Thanh Market)
After hotel pickup, your private tour begins at the century-old Reunification Palace, which witnessed the growth of Ho Chi Minh City during peacetime and throughout the Vietnam War until its end in 1975.
Continue to the nearby French colonial area, including a stop at the impressive Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica, a famous cathedral located in Paris Square. Discover the magnificent neo-Romanesque architecture as you take in the tranquil atmosphere inside.
At the opposite Central Post Office, one of the oldest buildings in Ho Chi Minh City, learn about this significant landmark — the busiest post office in Vietnam. Admire the neoclassical-style of the post office interior as your guide points out the painted maps of former Saigon, once the capital of South Vietnam.
Take a look at the embroidery workshop of XQ Vietnam Company before a visit to Ben Thanh Market, a lively market in District 1, where your guide can help you barter for goods.
After dinner, you’ll be dropped off at your hotel by private vehicle in the early evening.