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Ho Chi Minh City


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  • 2 weeks later...

went to vietnam and cambodia last week. share ko lang coz u myt be interested on this getaway. :) departed mnl to saigon via cebupac flt 5j751 around 11pm and arrive ho chi minh city (saigon) 12mn (vietnam time), we are ahead of 1hr sa present time nila dun. stayed first at departure area of the airport coz wil get the 1st bust trip to phnom penh, kingdom of cambodia ng 6am, terminals opened at 5am. kung bakit sa departure area kami kz its much cheaper ang cab fare compare dun sa arrival area. 7$ ang bayad sa taxi from the airport and would take 20-30mins to the city. conversion ng USD to vietnam dong is 1$ = 17400 dong. its better to change ur money sa airport and use the dong kesa sa dollar kasi mas makakamura ka though USD e tanggap na tanggap nila. at around 6am, we boarded Sapaco Bus, its the most recommended bus line na nagtatravel from saigon to phnom penh, fare is 12USD. it would take 2hrs from saigon to the border of cambodia. wala nga lang sistema yung immigration ng vietnam dun so approx mga 1hr kami sa border bago na process at dumiretso na sa immigration ng cambodia. mas maayos dun kaya while waiting for the passport eh tuloy na stop over to take our lunch. just in case di mo magustuhan ang foods kasi mejo maaalat at maaanghang yung nga luto nila its better to bring foods na gusto niyo sa trip. its better pa din to change ur money to cambodian riel (1$ = 4000 riel), dun sa border pwede naman magpalit. from the border it would take 4 -5hrs more before makarating sa phnom penh. sa phnom penh madali maghanap ng hotel, ung budget hotel nila, my hot & cold bath, ac, and other service would cost around 15$ -20$. dun kami nagstay sa town view hotel, single room is 15$ per day, clean, nice and secure yung place. dami mapupuntahan sa city like the royal palace, mag casino sa nagaworld, kumain ng streetfoods sa downtown, bumili ng souvenirs sa russian market.. hotels could recommend naman ng mapupuntahan, mejo nga lang mahirap makipag usap ng ingles kasi para silang ngongo mag ingles.

afetr 3 days at cambodia e we went back to vietnam. from pangulaw street, kung san kami ibinaba ng bus eh dun matatagpuan ang sandamukal na hotel sa saigon. rate are from 10$ -100$ depende sa trip. saigon is a nice city, sarap makipagbaratan sa ben thanh market, kumain ng street foods at gumala. ingat lang sa pagtawid kasi sa dami ng motor dun eh baka ma side sweep. they have this bad traffic rules kasi motorcycles there are like snakes, singit lang ng singit. we avail ng tours nila, kadalasan kasi ng mga hotels dun e they have tour packages like the cu chi tunnel, mekong delta river, floating market.. rates are from 5$ to as much as 25$ depende sa trip. daming turista sa saigon kala ko nga europe eh.

if you guys are planning on this kind of trip, pm me. myt giv u more tips. this is also the same post that i made sa cambodia.

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  • 3 years later...

Ho Chi Minh City is everything I imagined it to be, or maybe even better. This bustling capital is packed with interesting characters and fascinating sights.

I stayed at Lan Lan Hotel 1, which is right across the Reunification Palace and a few blocks away from Ben Thanh Market and Rong Vang Theatre – Home of the Water Puppet Show. The Notre Dame de Saigon and the Central Post Office are also nearby. By the way, there's a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf fronting Notre Dame. It's a good spot to put your feet up and people watch.

At night, the vibe changes from chill to sexy. There's just something about nights in Saigon that excites me. So vibrant and so full of life clad in flamboyant neon lights.

 

I guess the heat is really on in Saigon. I'd go back in a heartbeat.

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we went here last december... stayed at a&em hotel which is near the ben tahn area. we were able to visit most of the tourist spot. best part ng stay namin ay yung night market street food sa ben tahn. sarap mag food trip dun.. =)

 

sana next na balik sa ho chi minh, ako na lang mag isa, dami pwede dun.. halos lahat chinita and petite..hahaha

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  • 2 weeks later...

i was here last week, stayed at Park Royal hotel near the airport. Saigon is a busy place just like Manila. last month i was in Nha Trang province, great resorts, esp. VINPEARL. nice beach walk along the city. Not so much nightlife but the beach is superb. Now i am at Vung Tau province, lots of nightlife ^_^

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  • 4 months later...

I liked visiting the Cu chi Tunnels near Ho Chi Minh City. I tried going down one of those tunnels but immediately turned back because I got claustrophobic. I admire the way the Vietnamese guerrilas used their ingenuity in fighting the Americans. I also admire Ho Chi Minh who rejected the examples set by Mao Tse Tung, Stalin, and Pol Pot. Unlike these mass murderers, Ho Chi Minh did not murder his own people. As a matter of fact, he refused to live in the lavish presidential palace in Hanoi but preferred to live on a simple house built on stilts because he wanted to be one with his people.

 

Unfortunately for him, he was a very heavy smoker. There are photos of him holding a cigarette while awarding something to a young girl. Many of his photos show him holding a cigarette.

 

He passed away in 1969 from lung cancer.

 

Too bad he didn't live to see the day his country would be unified.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 4 weeks later...

Lots of people there ride motorcycles...even the ladies. The Viet ladies in Saigon are hot! Lots of people up late at night at Ben Thanh market.

 

I think the main means of transportation in Vietnam is the motorcycle. It's so difficult just crossing the road. There are just too many. Parang walang government control. There also doesn't seem to be any type or form of traffic enforcement. There doesn't seem to be any traffic rules there. But the amazing this is not once did I see a single accident!!

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  • 1 month later...

Experienced being a millionaire there...

 

$100 = VD1.7M

My brother gave his wife 10,000 Vietnamese Dong and told her to go on a shopping spree. His wife, exclaimed "ang generous naman ng asawa ko", not realizing that 10,000 dong is the equivalent of only a few pesos.

 

When I first arrived in Vietnam, an old woman on the street was begging and I gave her 2,000 dong. She just looked at the money and smiled at me sarcastically. Ewan ko siguro parang P2 lang ata yung halaga noon.

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sobra mura dito mga tours, get the all-in tours, including guide, transpo, hotels, transfers, meals, sightseeing entrance tickets etc etc...4 of us rode an Mercedes Benz Sprinter Van w/ guide during our whole stay...yun nga lang ang INIT!!!!

Visited Vietnam late last year. Manila - Ho Chi Minh - Hanoi. We caught our connecting flight from Hanoi at Ho Chi Minh. We had to cross over from the international terminal to the domestic terminal with our luggage on street level (where taxis were). Despite being in late December, we were sweating because of the heat. When we arrived in Hanoi, it was so cold.

 

The weather discrepancy between the two main cities of Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh in South Vietnam and Hanoi in North Vietnam) is so great. It's like going from Manila during the summer season to Baguio during the cold season. Flight from Ho Chi Minh to Hanoi is 1 hour 45 minutes or like going from Manila to Hong Kong.

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Any reco kung saan my happy ending dito? How much? Tips?

 

marami d2. sa saigon plng solve ka na. madami mps na with es. meron din naman na spakol lng. sakay ka lng sa motorbike tapos sabihin mo gus2 mo ng BOOM BOOM! alam na nung driver yun. average rate: 500,000-700,000 VD

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very nationalistic mga Vietnamese, proud sila na natalo nila mga 'kano nung Vietnam War, tapos ngayon asensado na sila (no thanks to PHL importing so much rice from Vietnam), at par o overtaken na ang pinas sa yaman at development...sana iexport nalang natin mga pulitiko natin

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  • 4 weeks later...

very nationalistic mga Vietnamese, proud sila na natalo nila mga 'kano nung Vietnam War, tapos ngayon asensado na sila (no thanks to PHL importing so much rice from Vietnam), at par o overtaken na ang pinas sa yaman at development...sana iexport nalang natin mga pulitiko natin

I don't know about that. I think lamang pa ang Pilipinas but Vietnam is quickly catching up. Sa airport lang, lamang na sila.

 

The people in Vietnam are ok. Hinde sila aggressive like they are in Shanghai, China, for instance. Though it's a communist state, you don't feel like you're in a communist country. Parang walang batas pa nga as people over there drive like crazy. Cutting corners, going against the flow of traffic, etc. Walang sinabi yung mga driver natin na walang disiplina. The drivers there make Filipino drivers seem extremely disciplined.

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  • 1 month later...

First time I visited Ho Chi Minh(Saigon) was 2008 and the exchange rate is 160000 Dong to a dollar. My last visit was this May and the rate was 200000 Dong to a dollar. You can say it has depreciated but the city center is more interesting than even Makati. There are more new buildings which replaced the old ones for commercial or shopping purposes. Lots of hotels to choose and expect each one to be clean even a three star. As a foreigner, you may feel safer there than in Manila. My guide tells me that authorities are always looking over foreigner not to have problems.

Try to get hold of a bottle of wine/whisky na ang nakababad ay cobra and arranged biting the tail of the scorpion although it is combined with ginseng and ginger, I think. The size of the cobra and scorpion depends on the size of the bottle. According to my tour guide/driver, the home made is more better. In Laos, not scorpions or cobras are in the bottle, even armadillo and tiger are soaked.

Food is good to taste and enjoy. Maanghang ang karamihan. Vegetable is fresh even having them on ordinary restaurant. Still I think food there is quite cheaper than in Manila considering also the quality of the ingredient. I tried sauted snake, I don't know if its really a snake or an eel on my way to our destination, the tunnel. Hard to communicate sometimes with the locals.

Nightlife is everywhere and if you need to a have the girl you prefer, just have to tell the driver and most likely you'll end up in a mini-hotel then girls would come for your choosing. Girls are also available in karaoke bars but you have to add other expenses. Girls outside the hotel offer room service as massage and maybe you may like the girl and have a nice ending. Just have to arrange with the reception. A 100 dollar is all that is needed in the mini-hotel or room service. Girls are quite small but nice skin but I would say Filipina girls are more prettier.

Spas are available but it's better to try the legitimate ones or in hotel to fully enjoy the service.

The airport really has a big impact to foreigners coming in and going out which makes NAIA........

 

Are there still many girls who pick up customers on their motorcyles/scooters? Way back in 2001 I encountered many pick up girls who literally try to pick you up on their motorcycles. They usually hang out near 4 or 5 star hotels where there are a lot of tourists.

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  • 7 months later...

sir we have planinng to take vacation in vietnan and cambodia this may 14 total of 5 person can u give me tips and ano hotel pwd sa 5 person, thank

 

 

 

Cambodia: A visit to Angkor Wat in Siem Reap is a must. Lots of modern hotels near this 900 year old ancient city. In Phnom Penh, make sure to visit the Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng, also known as S-21 which was a school converted into a prison where Khmer people were tortured and later executed by the Khmer Rouge. And make sure to visit the Russian market. In the Killing Fields, you will be able to actually see bone fragments all around and the temptation to bring home a piece as a souvenir may enter your mind. But remember, these were bones once belonged to human beings so out of respect for the dead, try to resist the urge to bring home a piece of bone. BTW you can drive from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap in about 7 hours. Driving will give you an idea of what the Cambodian countryside looks like.

 

Vietnam: If you plan to visit South Vietnam, make sure to visit the War Museum in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly called Saigon) which will give you the history of the Vietnam war from the Vietnamese point of view. Also visit the Cu Chi tunnels about an hour's drive from Saigon. This is where the Vietcong hid underground to evade detection by American forces. They slept, ate, studied, made weapons, etc. in these underground tunnels. You will also see how the Vietcong made booby traps.

 

In North Vietnam, if you visit Hanoi, you can visit the Hoa Lo Prison, dubbed the "Hanoi Hilton" by Americans who were incarcerated there. Lots of war museums featuring American aircraft shot down by the Vietnamese. Visit the tomb of Ho Chi Minh (Uncle Ho) (no photographs allowed).

 

Whether you're in North Vietnam or South Vietnam, be very careful crossing the street. The main means of transportation there is by motorcycle/scooter and there are millions of them. When crossing, do not hesitate but walk straight. The drivers will go around you. If you hesitate and panic and take a step back, it will result in an accident. So be very careful as there are so many motorcycles which form an endless line. Also be warned that traffic rules virtually do not exist in Vietnam. Since you're 5 best to take an Innova taxi which is more difficult to find than the smaller cabs. Of course having a coaster with a tour guide is the best since the guide can explain things to you from the history of Vietnam, to where to buy your groceries.

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  • 1 month later...

Cambodia: A visit to Angkor Wat in Siem Reap is a must. Lots of modern hotels near this 900 year old ancient city. In Phnom Penh, make sure to visit the Killing Fields and Tuol Sleng, also known as S-21 which was a school converted into a prison where Khmer people were tortured and later executed by the Khmer Rouge. And make sure to visit the Russian market. In the Killing Fields, you will be able to actually see bone fragments all around and the temptation to bring home a piece as a souvenir may enter your mind. But remember, these were bones once belonged to human beings so out of respect for the dead, try to resist the urge to bring home a piece of bone. BTW you can drive from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap in about 7 hours. Driving will give you an idea of what the Cambodian countryside looks like.

 

Vietnam: If you plan to visit South Vietnam, make sure to visit the War Museum in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly called Saigon) which will give you the history of the Vietnam war from the Vietnamese point of view. Also visit the Cu Chi tunnels about an hour's drive from Saigon. This is where the Vietcong hid underground to evade detection by American forces. They slept, ate, studied, made weapons, etc. in these underground tunnels. You will also see how the Vietcong made booby traps.

 

In North Vietnam, if you visit Hanoi, you can visit the Hoa Lo Prison, dubbed the "Hanoi Hilton" by Americans who were incarcerated there. Lots of war museums featuring American aircraft shot down by the Vietnamese. Visit the tomb of Ho Chi Minh (Uncle Ho) (no photographs allowed).

 

Whether you're in North Vietnam or South Vietnam, be very careful crossing the street. The main means of transportation there is by motorcycle/scooter and there are millions of them. When crossing, do not hesitate but walk straight. The drivers will go around you. If you hesitate and panic and take a step back, it will result in an accident. So be very careful as there are so many motorcycles which form an endless line. Also be warned that traffic rules virtually do not exist in Vietnam. Since you're 5 best to take an Innova taxi which is more difficult to find than the smaller cabs. Of course having a coaster with a tour guide is the best since the guide can explain things to you from the history of Vietnam, to where to buy your groceries.

 

Just came back from Saigon, Phnom Penh and Siem Reap last week. Not only are the historical places more well-kept than those in the Philippines, but they also seem to "look up" to Filipinos as people from a richer country. Many Vietnamese shopkeepers, even sidewalk vendors, know a word or two of Tagalog. When haggling, pretend to walk away. They'll say something like "bili na, mura na," or "may tawad pa." Funny because it's a Vietnamese saying it, but also probably because there are so many Filipino tourist dollars to be earned.

 

The night markets in both countries are worth a traipse through. I actually felt more safe walking the streets of Saigon and Siem Reap at night than I would in any part of Metro Manila outside the Fort or Makati. Heck, I don't even feel that safe walking from Makati Avenue to Glorietta at night. Better not go with the packaged tours, Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom and other historical sites are just too huge for an hour or two's sightseeing. Fly to Siem Reap, rent a bike from your hotel, follow the tourist trail to Angkor and other sites. Directions to the sites are easy enough to follow.

 

Re: hospitality, Cambodians are on a par with Filipinos at hospitality. They might not have the English proficiency Pinoys have, but just about everyone I met, even those small shopkeepers, went out of their way to make me feel very welcome, even if I only bought items of very little value. If the Philippines doesn't get its tourism game up, Cambodians might soon overtake us, just as Thailand was behind us in the 1990s but has overtaken us now.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Had a great stay at the Hotel NIkko Saigon. All the staff were so polite, friendly and helpful. Definitely 5 Star! Absolute luxery. Would advise to always stay in a Club Premium room to recieve all the extras. Bit further from the centre of the City, but with cab fares so cheap it really did not matter.

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  • 4 weeks later...

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