Ho Chi Minh City is the largest city in Vietnam and was the last place we visited before crossing the border into Cambodia. We had started in the second largest city and capital, Hanoi and absolutely loved it. HCMC had big boots to fill.
The first big difference we noticed was that HCMC had a McDonald’s and Hanoi did not. The moment I took a bite of my first taste of ‘normal’ food for a month (aka a cheeseburger), HCMC had won in my heart and mind. Then, as the overfull Maccas regret came, I reassessed – the two cities can’t be compared, they are both so different and unique.
There are many things to do in or around HCMC – we recommend The War Remnants Museum and the Cu Chi Tunnels – but for many, HCMC is all about the night life. We went to two different sky bars at night to look down on all the craziness from above. A lot of the sky bars do not love the whole ‘scruffy backpacker’ look, so we had to ‘dress up’ as much as we could (this entailed me putting on a skirt and some mascara and Tim putting on trousers). We were worried we wouldn’t be allowed in to the second bar we went to, but we passed the dress code test and happily sipped on ‘happy hour cocktails’ with HCMC twinkling in front of us.
You won’t believe the motorbike craziness of HCMC until you see it for yourself. Witnessing it on the ground is a great experience, but there is something lovely and romantic when you can see it all from above without the fear of being run over at any moment.