VIDEO| Virtual Vacation: Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

VIDEO| Virtual Vacation: Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

by Takahiro Takiguchi
Stripes Guam

Whether you’re working from home, sheltering in place or just staying home, if you’re like us, you’re probably dreaming of open skies, sandy beaches, tall mountains, or perfect powdery slopes. Our travel plans may be on hold, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dream up where we’ll go next.

Welcome to virtual vacation video series where we can explore destinations from the comfort of our homes.

Join us as we take a short virtual journey to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam.

The great thing about this destination is that it is easily accessible from almost anywhere in the Pacific theater and getting there can be relatively inexpensive thanks to many budget airline options in the region.

Under French occupation for 80 years, Vietnam’s architecture is one of the many imports from France. Ho Chi Minh, the largest city in Vietnam, has many of these French colonial buildings and its food and culture express these Western and Eastern influences. This is a great place for a quick getaway.

Some of the must-see spots in Ho Chi Minh include:

  • Dong Khoi Street and French-colonial buildings – Overshadowed by newly built skyscrapers nearby, Dong khoi Street is home to a lot of old beautiful French-colonial buildings, such as Saigon Cathedral, Opera House, Central Post Office and City Hall. Often called “Petit Paris,” the street offers stylish shops, cafes and restaurants, as well. It’s a nice district for enjoying a good walk and some souvenir shopping.

  • Chua Vinh Nghiem – Considered a symbol of Ho Chi Minh, Chua Vinh Nghiem is one of the largest and most important Buddhist temples within the city and throughout the nation, with over 40 majestic buildings and towers. In the large temple hall, you’ll find a shining golden Big Buddha, many monks in traditional patched-cotton robes and followers chanting sutras for the statue.

  • Mekong River Cruises – At My Tho Town, a 90-minute bus ride from Ho Chi Minh, you can enjoy a popular jungle cruise on the Mekong River, the longest river in Southeast Asia. Part of the cruise includes hopping onto a small wooden boat for four which involves rowing and an unforgettable adventure along the river.

While you're there, don't forget to sample banh mi, a Vietnamese sandwich with meat, paté, vegetables and herbs flavored with fish sauce served on a French baguette. This tasty crossover sandwich is popular overseas, too! End your meal with a sweet and rich Vietnamese coffee brewed with a traditional French-style metal filter.

I hope you enjoyed our virtual visit to an enchanting town of Ho Chi Minh and that perhaps it's inspired your next trip. Stay safe and get ready to travel with us in our next video. Thanks for watching!

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