Ho Chi Minh

Our last stop in Vietnam, was Ho Chi Minh City, former Saigon and named after the Country's former leader.

Much warmer and more modern than the capital, Hanoi, with wider streets but still near impossible to cross the road! We stayed at Vietnam Backpackers Hostel, who have a chain of hostels throughout Vietnam. We wouldn't necessarily recommend it but it was in a good location. They have that irritating wristband system for paying for things and the rooms were not the ones in the pictures!!

Anyway, it didn't hamper our stay. We got in to Ho Chi Minh about 7am, from our early flight from Nha Trang (a beachside resort which we felt was not worth writing home about. Flooded with new developments and Russian tourists!).

We decided to set off early and start our own walking tour visiting the beautiful Post Office (likened to Grand Central in New York), we took a walk through the large park 'Cong Vien tao Dan' on route to the Independence Palace and then visited the War Remnants Museum which provides graphic and in depth (if a little one sided) view on the Vietnam war and the atrocities committed during it. If you are interested in history, then this is a must and it only costs 40,000 VND (£1.30) each.

After all this walking we took a well earned nap and finished the day at the underground Asiana Food Town - we were abit disappointed by the food here but we did find some cracking the places next day. Finishing the day, we took advantage of the free drink at the rooftop bar in the hostel (the only good thing it did!) And then for more drinks along the vibrant walking street Bui Vien.

The next day and our last in Vietnam, we got up early and made our way straight to the Ho Chi Minh City Museum. A similar price to the Remnant Museum, it gives a broader perspective on the development of Vietnam, it's history and culture as well as a slightly different and less one sided view on the American war.

An absolute must is the Walking street near the opera house, the Bitexco Tower and the Apartment Cafes. They are all located in the same area and make you head there just before sunset.

We went up the Bitexco Tower for panoramic views of the city and managed to make a very expensive (for our very cheap budget!) Coca Cola and chips last 1 hour 30mins, so we could enjoy it as a little cost as possible. Starving, we then headed to the cool apartment cafes. They wouldn't look out of place on a trendy street in Brixton, this apartment block has been turned to niche little restaurants, bars and coffee shops. Even if you just grab a traditional Vietnamese coffee it is worth heading up there. We treated ourselves to Bun Cha (Sarah would take this opportunity to warn you on the chilli sauce). The food and coffee was amazing and so cheap as well, definitely recommend!

We finished our last evening in Vietnam at the Benh Tanh food market, which is an eclectic mix of food and drink vendors, with a dabble of live music. We also had the best spring rolls we've ever tasted in there, followed by 50 cent beers. A great and fitting way to finish off our favourite country so far!

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