Saigon, or better known as Ho Chi Minh City, is one of Vietnam’s largest city and I was fortunate to go back to the land of tiny people and millions of motorbikes. Having frequent the city in the past, it was my first time in 6 years stepping foot onto Vietnam and how things have changed yet partly look still so sleepy.
In this post, I’d write about our flight over to Saigon, our accommodations, how we get around the city and most importantly – data!
We booked on a return flight from Jetstar quite last minute for around $150ish. which was why our itinerary was quite bad. We flew off late morning from Changi International Airport and departed Ho Chi Minh City from Tan Son Nhat Airport early Monday morning. So we had only 3days and 3 nights to explore the city.
This time round, we stayed in two places. Two nights with Airbnb and one night in Ascott’s Somerset Ho Chi Minh City.
Airnb – Innalley No.2
If you’re one who loves living among the locals and experience the local way of living in another country, Airbnb sure does throw up exotic and sometimes cool accommodations, especially here in Ho Chi Minh City.
As the name of this airbnb suggests, we had to walk a distance from the main road into an alley, into the middle of a local neighbourhood where we arrived at our nest for the weekend. Innalley No.2 is located at Cao Bá Nhạ nearby the popular drinking spot in Saigon. The home’s interior was beautifully designed with two floors and 3 beds. As the toilet ain’t very big, I wouldn’t suggest 6 people cramming into this home (Visuals below). The host Linh was very welcoming and it was great to take in her recommendations and explore the city. Being in the neighbourhood, you’ll be woken in the morning by the local bustles – crowing of roosters, motorbikes along the alley way, neighbours chatter and barking of dogs.
Ascott – Somerset Ho Chi Minh City
Ascott’s Somerset Ho Chi Minh City provides a respite from Saigon’s bustles. We chilled around the pool during our last evening in Saigon. This service apartment offers a resort-style retreat in the city centre with elegant and spacious apartments ranging from one-bedroom to three-bedroom apartments.
The happening places in Ho Chi Minh City ain’t many and the touristy places are mainly around Distrct 1 where you can walk around by foot. We saw that they’re building a MRT soon but don’t expect it to be ready so soon. While we cafe hop around the city, we took either uber or grab because of the convenience. Using both apps, you can avoid the language barrier and get to your destination accurately.
Ride to the airport from town cost us around VND90k (SGD6), while travelling from point to point around Distrct 1 cost us at most VND50k (SGD3).
This time in Vietnam, I tried the portable wifi brand Happifi. You can collect your devices from Somerset where their office is located and what impressed me most was the long hours the device could last. Roughly about 12 hours which is almost a whole day out!
OH yas, if you’re reading this and interested to get Happifi on your travels,
Quote “PMSHAUN” during checkout to get 45% off your bill.
1. Always be aware of your surroundings (Put your backpacks in front of you). Although i find it a relatively safe city, I’ve heard of many who have been robbed on the roads.
2. If you’re looking for experiences in Ho Chi Minh City you can use Kkday.
3. Don’t be afraid to cross the road. Continue walking as the vehicles will know how to avoid you.
4. Wake up early because the city starts early and mostly ends early.
5. If you’re looking to bargain at Ben Thanh Market, start your bidding price 150% lower than their asking price.
6. Try to avoid ice drinks because the ICE is normally not very well handled.
7. In Vietnam you can spend $50/day or even $500/day. It depends on your itinerary.
8. Use Grab or Uber for your rides, I feel that they are safer. Before you head there, find promo codes and you’ll save on transport.
9. Ask for less sugar for your beverages because its always super sweet.
YAS. So now y’all are ready for Ho Chi Minh! Thinking of what to do and eat here? Check back soon on my next post of Saigon.