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Museum Guide for Ho Chi Minh City

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Ho Chi Minh City — or Saigon as the locals call it — is known for its fast growth, international business atmosphere, and urban vibe. Yet at its heart still remain the historical and cultural traces of the city, as well as the nation. This list encompasses all important attractions, and a few hidden gems, that are sure to offer rewarding experiences to those who wish to chronicle Vietnam's journey towards the modern day.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Like a Local

11 Places

5 City Tips

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Map

11 Places

The Independence Palace

Government Buildings, Historic Sites, Architectural Buildings

Southern Women's Museum

History Museums

Museum of Vietnamese History

History Museums

Ton Duc Thang Museum

History Museums

FITO Museum

Speciality Museums

Museum of Ho Chi Minh City

History Museums

War Remnants Museum

History Museums

Fine Arts Museum

Art Museums

Ho Chi Minh City Museum

Speciality Museums

Cu Chi Tunnels

Points of Interest & Landmarks

Cu Chi Wildlife Rescue Station

Zoos

LanlediemT's City Tips

  • The rainy season starts around the end of May, and lasts until November; while the hottest months in Saigon are between March and May, with April as its peak. Stay hydrated and protected from the sun.
  • Gratuity is not compulsory, but is always greatly appreciated if the service rendered is good.
  • Most museums are located within the city center, and the walking distance between them ranges from five minutes to almost half an hour.
  • Depending on the distance, it's best to get around by taxi, which is not expensive. Don't forget to check if it has a proper taxi meter before you set off!
  • It could be fun to sign up for a motorbike tour or rent one yourself (this latter option is only recommended for those who have good motorbike skills, and the ability to flow along with the city's mad traffic).
  • The Independence Palace
    Government Buildings, Historic Sites, Architectural Buildings
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    Being the palace of South Vietnam's former President, and the symbol that marked the end of the Vietnam War, Reunification Palace is an interesting spot for both history buffs and architecture enthusiasts. The highlight is the Palace's basement — a time machine that transports visitors straight back to the 60s.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The palace is open from 7.30am to 11am, and again from 1pm to 4pm every day (including weekends and holidays.)
    • The 30-4 Park — right outside the front of the Palace — is a perfect place to observe the daily life of Saigon locals of all ages.
    • Unless you already have a guide book packed with information, it's recommended to visit with a guide in order to learn more about the history of the palace.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #19 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Your HCM trip won’t be completed without a visit here! 21/09/2022
    • Must see in Ho Chi minh 18/09/2022
    • The Independence Palace
    Address:
    106 Nguyen Du
    District 1
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 80 85037
    Price range:
    US$0 - US$0
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 am - 4:00 pm
    Other:
  • Southern Women's Museum
    History Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    This lesser-known museum deserves some attention due to its unique dedication to the women of southern Vietnam. A great part of the exhibitions are devoted to portraying their lives and war efforts throughout the turbulent history of the country, while others demonstrate the modern lifestyles and diversity of southern Vietnamese women.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Entrance to the museum is free of charge.
    • Daily opening hours: 8am to 11.30am, and 1.30pm to 5.30pm.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #74 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Undergoing a revamp 28/02/2020
    • interesting, but not exiting 11/01/2020
    • Southern Women's Museum
    Address:
    200-202 Vo Thi Sau St Ward 7, Dist. 3
    Ho Chi Minh City
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    84-8 9325519
    Other:
  • Museum of Vietnamese History
    History Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    With tens of thousands of valuable artifacts that represent the lives of the Vietnamese people since the birth of the country, this museum deserves a spot on the itinerary of every visitor to Saigon. Initially designed by a French architect, and followed by an expansion overseen by a Vietnamese designer, the building itself is an interesting attraction in its own right.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Don't miss the water puppet show!
    • Visitors have to pay a little extra to take photos inside the museum.
    • Lying within the same area is the city's zoo and botanical gardens.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #28 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Eye opening experience 17/08/2022
    • Boring 27/07/2022
    • Museum of Vietnamese History
    Address:
    2 Nguyen Binh Khiem Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1
    Ho Chi Minh City 70000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 8 829 8146
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • Ton Duc Thang Museum
    History Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    For those who are deeply interested in Vietnam's history, this museum makes for a worthy detour. As one of the only two museums dedicated to a leader whose achievements contributed to the establishment and success of the Communist Party, this museum houses a wealth of information about the life of Ton Duc Thang — the president who took over from President Ho Chi Minh in 1969.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Entrance to the museum is free of charge.
    • Daily opening hours: 7.30am to 11.30am, and 1.30pm to 5.00pm.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #96 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Good place 03/12/2020
    • Much nicer than a riverside walk.... 30/12/2018
    • Ton Duc Thang Museum
    Address:
    5 Ton Duc Thang St, Dist 1
    Ho Chi Minh City
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 8 3829 7542
    Hours:
    Tue - Sun
    7:30 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • FITO Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    Inspired to do something different? Then trace the history of Vietnam back to the Stone Age from a totally unique perspective: medicine. As the first museum in Vietnam dedicated to the country's traditional medicine, FITO Museum is a must-see attraction, even for know-it-all locals. Quaint and fascinating, it will satisfy any visitors' thirst for knowledge.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Trendsetter
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • Location: Situated a bit away from the center, in District 10.
    • Taking a museum tour is recommended, these last around 45 minutes and are free of charge.
    • If you have the chance to meet the owner, he's a friendly local who's more fluent in Russian than English, and has a huge passion for (as well as a great collection of) alcohol miniatures!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • real gem ! 31/12/2020
    • The tools of traditional Vietnamese medicine are presented. 15/03/2020
    • FITO Museum
    Address:
    41 Hoang Du Khuong
    Ward 12, District 10
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 28 3864 2430
    Price range:
    US$0 - US$0
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:30 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • Museum of Ho Chi Minh City
    History Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    Strategically located right on the bank of Saigon River, this museum is the city's effort to remind and educate others about the life and revolutionary activities of Vietnam's most revered political leader - President Ho Chi Minh, whose name this city inherits.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    Tips
    • This location offers some great views over Saigon River. The surrounding park is also a nice break away from the city.
    • It's better to get an English-speaking guide if you wish to have an in-depth understanding of everything this museum has to offer.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #62 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Inspirational leader 08/03/2020
    • A bit basic compared to other museums 31/01/2020
    • Museum of Ho Chi Minh City
    Address:
    1 Nguyen Tat Thanh, District 4
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 28 3940 1053
    Other:
  • War Remnants Museum
    History Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    As its name indicates, this could be an emotional visit for those who are curious about what a war could do to a country's land, people, and culture. The museum is packed with displays and information about the Vietnam War, along with its terrifying consequences. For anyone visiting Ho Chi Minh City, this museum is a must. Brace yourself and travel back in time to experience the Vietnam War from the Vietnamese point of view.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    Tips
    • Opening hours: 7.30am-12pm, and 1.30pm to 5pm.
    • Warning: A section of the museum showcases some rather graphic photos of war victims.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • history idea 27/09/2022
    • Well Documented the Horrific Wars in Vietnam 21/09/2022
    • War Remnants Museum
    Address:
    28 Vo Van Tan
    Ward 6, District 3
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    +84 8 829 0325
    Other:
  • Fine Arts Museum
    Art Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    Like many other structures that define and remind people of the former 'Pearl of the Orient,' the architecture of the Fine Arts Museum is a harmonious blend of eastern Asia and western Europe. Housing plenty of artwork, including many timeless and highly valuable pieces, this museum is currently the second largest museum of fine arts in the country. Its impressive selection will bring great aesthetic pleasure to all sophisticated visitors.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Included in the admission ticket is a larger collection of artwork by local art students, which is right next door to the museum. Some of them are for sale.
    • Allow yourself to take a break and grab a coffee right on the museum's grounds at Trung Nguyen Café — Vietnam's largest coffee producer and exporter.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #29 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Quiet and many room of Arts. 23/06/2022
    • Open your mind to a new kaleidoscope of styles. 01/06/2022
    • Fine Arts Museum
    Address:
    97A D Pho Duc Chinh
    Ho Chi Minh City 70000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    829 4441
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
  • Ho Chi Minh City Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    Housed within a magnificent colonial building completed in the 19th century is everything you need to know about the largest city in Vietnam: from historical revolutions to local traditions, and from regional archaeology to past monetary systems, to name just a few exhibits. Browse through the relics and uncover the story of Saigon right at its heart.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The building is a very famous spot for wedding photo shoots. You may catch a glimpse of one of these sessions here, especially if you hang around at the entrance.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #51 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • An option but not a must! 25/09/2022
    • an enjoyable few hours 20/09/2022
    • Ho Chi Minh City Museum
    Address:
    65 Ly Tu Trong, Ben Nghe ward, District 1
    Ho Chi Minh City 70000
    Vietnam
    Phone:
    08.8299741
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    7:30 am - 6:00 pm
    Other:
  • Cu Chi Tunnels
    Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    There are many places to visit, yet only a few are truly worthy of dedicating a whole day to. Cu Chi Tunnels is certainly one of these. Having served as the base for several military campaigns during the Vietnam War, they are an immense network of connecting underground tunnels, which belong to an even larger system throughout the country. With such historical importance, no trip to Ho Chi Minh City is complete without zigzagging your way under the ground.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • There are many options for a day-tour from the city center to Cu Chi. Shop around and compare prices.
    • If possible, make the rubber tree forests a part of your trip to Cu Chi and learn how latex is collected. These forests run along the road to the tunnels so no detour is necessary.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 258 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Long live Vietnam 22/09/2022
    • A must see place in Ho Chi Minh City 20/09/2022
    • Cu Chi Tunnels
    Address:
    Phu Hiep TL15 Phu Hiep
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Price range:
    US$6 - US$6
    Hours:
    Sun - Fri
    7:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Sat
    7:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Cu Chi Wildlife Rescue Station
    Zoos
    See more photos
    LanlediemT Says:

    The Cu Chi Wildlife Rescue Station, despite not being an exhibition-filled museum, is still worthy of a spot on your cultural itinerary, due to its informative and educational motives. Learn about the endangered native wildlife and how the center is playing a vital role in raising awareness and educating the locals about environmental preservation and sustainability management. Moreover, the animals here are super-adorable!

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Trendsetter
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Family
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Guided tours last around 1.5 hours.
    • Advance arrangement to enter is necessary. I recommend choosing a tour that includes both the Cu Chi Tunnels and the Wildlife Rescue Station, or contact the center directly yourself at least a day or two before you plan to visit.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #0 of 0 things to do in Ho Chi Minh City
    • Closed to visitors 11/06/2018
    • Update on centre 1.1.2017 02/01/2017
    • Cu Chi Wildlife Rescue Station
    Address:
    50 Road No. 15
    Ho Chi Minh City 700000
    Vietnam
    Price range:
    US$25 - US$25
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    12:00 am - 11:59 pm
    Other:
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