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Local Temperature
01:52
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Saigon

SOUTHERN CITY OF
BOLD CONTRASTS

Destination guide

Get the scoop on this splashy southern city

From hip shopping to craft cocktail sipping, fusion restaurants to retro-chic coffeehouses, Saigon sparks something special for everyone. Including you.

Eat + Drink

Cafés + Bars

Saigon’s coffee and craft beer scene crackles with tip-top tipples. Sip a latte in retro-chic interiors at Okkio Caffe, or enjoy a farm-to-cup pourover from one of many La Viet locations (our favorite is at 16 Bà Huyện Thanh, District 3). One of Saigon’s first specialty coffee bars – The Workshop – is a treat. Baristas show off their skills at the central bar counter of this District 1 original.

Looking for something stronger? Summer Experiment from the team at Layla’s has introduced a garden craft cocktail concept. Or sip Yakuza-inspired cocktails at Irusu. Too gangster? Don’t worry, the Cathedral’s next-door.

When you’re ready to click the ‘chill’ button, Bam Bam’s Bali-inspired interiors are just what you need. House, techno, cocktails. Clink.

Street Food

Sidewalk cuisine = a Saigon speciality. Miến gà Kỳ Đồng in hip-and-happening District 3 was featured on Netflix’s Street Food series. Consider this your local pho factory. Slurp. As the name suggests, Bún Thịt Nướng Kiều Bảo specializes in rice noodles with BBQ pork and nuoc mam dressing. Be sure to try the Dalat speciality: rice paper loaded with goodness and grilled to perfection. It’s available from mobile stalls across Saigon, but the best is at Cô Mập – Bánh Tráng Nướng. Finally, Ốc Chị Em has elevated street food – literally – with rooftop seafood served a short walk from the Cathedral. Nom-nom.

RESTAURANTS

From fusion with flair to tasteful + traditional, the only thing you’ll hunger for is… more. The fourth-generation Cordon Bleu-trained chef at Ngoc Suong Seafood & Bar has updated the menu with a modern take on the classics. Anan is another pioneer, elevating market-sourced street food with fine ingredients and French culinary techniques. Quince’s open kitchen serves Australian-style BBQ with a kiss of fire. Meanwhile, Renkon, in the legendary ‘Manufacture d’Opium’ courtyard boasts Japanese design, counter seating, bumping hip hop and brilliant cocktails + sake.

SHOPPING

SHOPPING STREETS

In high-end Dong Khoi (formerly Rue Catinat), classic concept store-cafés like L’Usine greet cool newcomers like Godmother Bake and Brunch. Equally upmarket, Nguyen Trai boasts designer staples alongside trendy Vietnamese brands like Ananas footwear. Step into the sidestreets for cocktail therapy at Gin House and other swanky bars.

Xuan Thuy in Thao Dien neighborhood (District 2) is a laid-back expat enclave with hipster coffee shops, craft beer bars and chocolatiers on the sidelines. Bui Vien Walking Street has two modes: daytime = cool souvenir shops and café culture; nighttime = streetside bars packed with tourists and locals. Pedestrians only after dark. Quá chất!

HANDICRAFTS

Leaving the city without an elegant silk pouch, a buzzworthy bit of jewelry or a scarf with flair is not allowed! Find what you need – and lots that you never knew you needed – in the city’s artisan shops.

Tombo is a local legend, carefully curating souvenirs since 1998. Stop in for handicrafts, homewares and more. Hidden down an alley in District 2, TuHu Ceramics is perfect for inexpensive + cool gifts.

For something a bit more high-end, Hanoia is Vietnam’s leading haute-lacquer house. Their contemporary lacquerware is one-of-a-kind. Better make room in your suitcase.

LOCAL MARKETS

Saigon’s oh-so-many historic markets are live, local + authentic. Between Districts 5 and 6, Binh Tay Market features food, footwear, souvenirs and more – all under one roof. For noodle shops, endless souvenirs + knock-off brands, Ben Thanh Market is still the tourist go-to. Better bargains found elsewhere, but worth it for the buzz. Far from traditional, The New Playground is an underground hall of edgy upstart labels loved by Saigon’s young creatives and fashionistas. And if you’re in town Saturday or Sunday, the funky, friendly Hello Weekend Market is small enough for a quick visit. Pop in for snacks and fun fashion.

Architecture

At one end of Nguyen Hue Walking Street, Saigon City Hall is dramatically lit up at night. Another highlight is the General Science Library – designed in the 60s by Nguyen Huu Thien and Bui Quang Hanh. Tan Dinh’s Pink Church (Nhà thờ Tân Định) is a modern icon with a bit of flair and a stream of pious Instagrammers queuing daily. Click, snap! For more photo ops, the spiral paths at Turtle Lake (Cong Truong Quoc Te) lead to a giant concrete lotus sprouting at the centre. Visit at dusk for the pop-up food market.

Art + Design

From openings to studio visits, a fresh and exciting art + design scene awaits in Saigon. Next to Wink Hotel Saigon Centre, Galerie Quynh nurtures local artists with an experimental mindset. Craig Thomas also features local artists, but with an edgy, fine-arts emphasis.

For performance arts, The Factory Contemporary Arts Center stages cleverly curated shows together (and often simultaneously) in one cavernous venue. Dinner and drinks are a short walk away at MAD House or The Deck.

SEE + DO

LOCAL LIFE

Peek between vintage houses to find women peeling fantastical fruits, friends engaged in cheerful chatter over steaming nâu nóng and more. 

Charter a gondola ride on the Nhieu Loc-Thi Nghe Canal. Drift through District 3’s famous canalways, twisting past groups of locals exercising and packed oc restaurants.  This is one of Saigon’s most surprising excursions, and it’s a great way to soak up the local atmosphere.

For local life as it’s really lived, visit Saigon’s parks. Tao Dan Park – with its seasonal markets, evening exercisers and synchronized aerobics – is a good place to start.

After sunset, it’s time to turn up the action. Head to Vinh Khanh Street for a mix of roadside karaoke, buskers + seafood barbecue. Quẩy lên nào!

STAY

Feeling inspired? Come chatter, sip and stay
with us at Wink. See Vietnam with fresh eyes.

HOTEL 01 / 01

Wink Hotel Saigon Centre

Centrally located. Districtly prime. Wink Hotel Saigon Centre shares the neighborhood with new beer pubs, fusion restaurants, boutique shops and hip coffeehouses. Downtown District 1 is right outside. And we’re steps from District 3, voted one of the coolest neighborhoods in the world.

WINK
GUIDES

Online + IRL. Get to know your destination.

MY VAN
A true Saigonese. Find My Van partying at Acoustic Bar or munching bánh tráng nướng around Turtle Lake.
MY VAN
MY VAN
A true Saigonese. Find My Van partying at Acoustic Bar or munching bánh tráng nướng around Turtle Lake.
MINA LAM
Street food–lover, face around the neighborhood, Mina’s an insightful city guide.
MINA LAM
MINA LAM
Street food–lover, face around the neighborhood, Mina’s an insightful city guide.
TRACEY TRAN
Not local, but almost, with 30 years discovering Saigon’s best bún bò Huế and chic coffeeshops.
TRACEY TRAN
TRACEY TRAN
Not local, but almost, with 30 years discovering Saigon’s best bún bò Huế and chic coffeeshops.