The best time to travel to Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is located in the tropical monsoon region, so there are the rainy and dry seasons. Saigon’s temperature fluctuates around 25 to 35 degrees Celsius, not much difference, always hot.

The rainy season here usually lasts from May to November. And the dry season from December to April next year. Every season in Saigon has its own beauty that attracts visitors when coming here.

Many interesting tourist places in HCMC despite the weather, so visitors will surely have unforgettable experiences in this beautiful city.

Therefore, you can choose any time of the year to travel in Saigon. But the suggestion for visitors is the occasion after Tet, from February to April, so that you can join the biggest full moon festival of the first lunar month in Chinatown, and the Nguyen Tieu lantern festival on the Saigon River.

Saigon at night
Saigon at night | © nguyentrinhthienkim/ pixabay

1. Traveling to Saigon in the rainy season (from May to November)

Saigon into the rainy season, like a young cute girl, is always unpredictable with mixing of happiness and sadness. Sometimes it rains all day and all night, the rain is pouring water, like anger, but ocassionally it just rains for a short time, just making the streets wet.

If you choose to travel to Ho Chi Minh in the rainy season from May to November, then you will still enjoy the exciting trip. It is because Saigon has a lot of fun spots, museums, busy shopping and commercial centers.

1.A. Place to come in the rainy season

She Shop is the right type of cafe for women. With such scenery on rainy days, sitting at She Cafe will find strange peace. She Café at the 1st Floor, 158D Pasteur Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, HCMC.

Mockingbird is considered the most beautiful place to watch rain in Saigon, because sitting here you can zoom in through the large windows to see the bank building with Western-style architecture. When it suddenly rains, this site ensure a romantic view. Mockingbird at the 4th floor of apartment number 14 Ton That Dam Street, District 1, HCMC.

The Laban Cafe is actually a small paradise with a very nice homestay and cafe corner. It seems that in the heart of Saigon, you will not find any wind, rain of Da Lat. But at The Laban Café, it is like somewhere very Da Lat. The Laban Cafe at 23 Bui Thi Xuan Street, Ben Thanh, Ho Chi Minh.

>>> You can like to see more Saigon cafes.

If you do not want to sit at coffee shops any more, you can come to some shopping centers.

There are many big shoppping center you can find in this city, such as Aeon Mall Tan Phu, Parkson, Saigon Square, Diamond Plaza, Zen Plaza, Vincom Center …. At the shopping center, you not only go shopping for various goods but also can find entertainment activities with modern gaming machines or bowling, skating.

Or you can visit some famous tourist destinations in Saigon such as:

Vietnam History Museum: Opening hours: 8:00 am – 11:30 am; afternoon 13h30 – 16h30 (Tuesday – Sunday); Address: No. 2, Nguyen Binh Khiem Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1 (next to the Zoo and Botanical Gardens)

Independence Palace: This site is a special national monument, preserving many imprints of history. You will learn about history, see valuable artifacts during the Vietnam war. Address: 135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, P. Ben Nghe, District 1; Opening hours: 7:30 am – 11:00 am, 13:00 – 16:00 pm (daily).

Nha Rong Wharf or also known as the Ho Chi Minh Museum, this is where Uncle Ho went to find a way to save the country in 1911.

3D Painting Museum: Address: 02 – 04 Street 9, Him Lam New Urban Area, Tan Hung Ward, District 7, Ho Chi Minh City. Opening hours: 9:00 – 22:00 (21:00 ticket is out of sales).

1.B. Food to eat durng rainy season

During the rainy days, there is nothing better than enjoying hot and warm dishes.

Pho: For a long time, Pho has been a traditional dish of Vietnamese people. Not only in the country, but around the world, the taste of Vietnamese Pho has become a typical culture. And nothing is more wonderful to taste a hot noodle bowl during a rainy day.

Suggested address:

  • Pho Hoa – 260C Pasteur, Ward 8, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City,
  • Pho Tau Bay restaurant: 433-435 Ly Thai To, P9, Q10, HCMC,
  • Pho Le 303-305 Vo Van Tan, Ward 5, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City.

Crab Soup: has yellow color, including crab meat, chicken, quail eggs, sliced ​​mushrooms, cilantro, pepper and chili. All make a charming aroma. In the afternoon, when rain is melting, hot crab soup will make the body feel much better.

Suggested address:

  • Bong crab soup at 59C Mac Dinh Chi, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City;
  • Crab Soup at Cho Thiet at 166 Pho Co Dieu, District 11, Ho Chi Minh City,
  • Crab Soup and Fish Bubble at 239 Luong Nhu Hoc, District 5, Ho Chi Minh City.

Hot taufo: is a sweet soup, that is is easy to taste because of soft feelings, hot flavor of ginger, sweet taste.

Suggested address: You can visit the hot tofu on Tran Hung Dao street, opposite Xa Tay market. Although located on the side of the road, this address has existed for 30 years in Saigon.

2. Traveling to Saigon in the dry season from December to April next year.

You may choose time to travel to Saigon in the dry season if you want to explore the bustling central streets, admire the ancient French architecture, experience exciting and adventurous games, or take pictures.

The period from December to April next year is an ideal time for you to visit Saigon. You do not worry about the pouring rains that interrupt the travel schedule.

It is comfortable if you have prepared lovely, fashionable hats/ umbrellas, and sun cream when going out.

>>> You may want to check the transportation in Ho Chi Minh City.

2.A. Site to come during the dry season

Saigon enters the dry season with beautiful blue skies, white clouds floating and golden sunbeams.

Here are some famous tourist destinations in Saigon that you can visit:

Notre Dame Cathedral: is not only the main cathedral in Saigon for the rituals and prayers of Catholics, but it is also a great architectural building. Watching the clear blue sky, the peaceful church with pigeons around, you will see how beautiful, friendly and peaceful Saigon is.

  • Address: 1 Cong Xa Paris Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, HCMC
  • Opening hours: Sightseeing: 8:30 am – 10:00 pm, 14:30 pm – 3:30 pm (Monday – Friday)
  • Time of Mass: 5:30 am, 17:00 pm (Mon – Fri), sunday .: 5:30, 6:30, 7:30, 9:30 (for foreigners), 16:00, 17:00, 18:30.

Ben Thanh market: is an old market that preserves traditional cultural features of Vietnam, and it is a symbol of tourism of Saigon. You do not forget to take a stroll around Ben Thanh market to visit and shop for souvenirs.

  • Address: Located between Phan Boi Chau – Phan Chu Trinh – Le Thanh Ton – Quach Thi Trang Square, Ben Thanh Ward – District 1.
  • Opening hours: 7:00 am – 7:00 pm daily.

Nguyen Hue Walking Street: is in the centre of Ho Chi Minh City. On the two sides of the road, there are many hotels, high-end shopping malls. At night, this distance will be a cool place during the dry season to come.

Can Gio eco-tourism area: is one of the great wild eco-tourism destinations that you should not miss when travelling to Saigon. Arriving in Can Gio, you will visit Vam Sat mangrove forest, crocodile farm, bird yard. Spending time with nature, your soul will be better with pristine and rustic beauty here.

Suoi Tien Water Park: is a nice place to swim and escape from the heat in HCMC during the dry season. The park is a good destination if you travel with your children.

Cu Chi Tunnels:This historical place about 70km from HCMC gives you lively stories about the war in Vietnam. You can go down the tunnels to find different feelings when people live underground.

2.B. Food to taste in the dry season

Do not forget to enjoy the cuisine here. Saigon cuisine is extremely diverse, that mixes different regions and cultures of Vietnam. But, its culinary still has a typical flavour that you can hardly find anywhere else.

Broken rice: Rice dish seems simple but can go with Saigon people in every meal of breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The most special version of broken rice is still pork ribs, served with onion fat, pickles and a cup of sweet fish sauce.

Suggested address:

  • Thu Thao broken rice, 461 Le Dai Hanh street, District 11, HCM
  • Ba Ha broken rice, 389 Hung Phu, District 8, HCM,
  • Ba Ghien broken rice, 84 Dang Van Ngu, Ward 10, Phu Nhuan District, TP. Ho Chi Minh,…

Hu Tieu (Saigon noodles): Besides Saigon broken rice, noodle soup is almost the second dish recommended when you set foot in Saigon. Noodles with all kinds of shrimp, chicken, beef …

Suggested address:

  • Noodle Nam Vang Nhan Quan, 72 Nguyen Thuong Hien, Ward 5, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City;
  • Hu Tieu Mi Cat, 62 Truong Dinh, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, HCM

Banh Mi Saigon: Saigon Bread is a popular food in this city. The name “Vietnamese sandwich” is a must-try local dish in Saigon. The bread combines daily ingredients such as meat, pickles, eggs… and delicious sauce. Many places sell bread so it is easy to find at the pavement in many streets.

Saigon mixed rice paper: is a popular food of Saigon people for decades. This dish is a combination of crispy rice paper, dried beef, chilli powder, fried onion and shrimp powder, … served with sweet and sour tamarind sauce.

3. Travel to Saigon on special occasions

On special occasions, Ho Chi Minh City will bring the unique beauty of a modern city. On the traditional New Year days, Saigon seems to be replaced with new clothes with lots of colours. Those are the colorful countless flowers blooming together and beautiful lights arranged and decorated everywhere.

On Christmas holidays, Saigon will have a lot of splendidly decorated streets with dazzling candlelight, unique caves, … All create a dreamlike and impressive scenery.

>> You may want to check: The best time to travel to Vietnam.

4. Notes before travelling to Saigon

When travelling to HCMC, you need to notes the followings:

  • Please bring the necessary identification.
  • Do not worry about clothes and shoes if you do not carry much, these items are cheap in Vietnam, and you can buy them in HCM.
  • Although medicines are also easy to buy at the pharmacy, you cannot find all kinds of medicines. Bring some typical medicines for you if needed.
  • When buying something, you can bargain, especially in the market; but not for a water bottle.
  • When using a taxi, keep an eye on the meter watch.
  • Choose affordable hotels, but be safe. If possible, 4 to 5-star hotels or resorts are recommended.
  • It is because the weather in Saigon suddenly rains, please bring an umbrella, raincoat and suncream.
  • When taking the local bus, be careful of personal belongings to prevent pickpockets. More careful when the bus is crowded.

With the information in the above article, we hope you can consider and choose the ideal time to have fun and explore Saigon on your way. At any time of the year, Saigon has its own beauty to discover. We wish you have a memorable trip and have a lot of interesting experiences in this bustling city of Saigon.