Nightlife of ho chi minh


As the intense heat & fierce solar rays of the day disappear a new side lớn Ho bỏ ra Minh thành phố emerges. The coolness of the night brings locals & tourist alike out for rest, relaxation & even for a bit of excitement. Don’t expect to lớn have your mind blown by the nightlife in Ho bỏ ra Minh thành phố but rest assured you won’t be bored.

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This guide will help you discover some of the coolest things to do in Ho chi Minh thành phố at night. It’ll also introduce some fun things to do at night on a motorbike and a few lesser-known places of interest.

Popular Night Time Activities in Saigon

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Wander Down Nguyen Hue Boulevard

(Source: Nguyen Hue St and the restaurants and cafes nearby are a great spot to chill out after a big day.

Nguyen Hue is the beating heart and centre of Ho đưa ra Minh City. While it is fairly quiet during daylight hours it becomes a hive of activity by night and is a great place khổng lồ take a walk or simply just people watch. 

Local youth come here to hang out & keen street performers và dancers are often seen showing off their talents. Despite its central location and popularity it still remains a great place khổng lồ come & ignore the hustle & bustle.

Aside from the street kích hoạt the area also has some great places to eat & drink. At number 42 Nguyen Hue you’ll find some of the street’s oldest residential buildings, which in recent years have been turned into some of the cities coolest cafes & boutique stores.

Take an XO Motorbike Tour

(Source: Xo tours are all-female led motorbike tours that showcase some of Ho bỏ ra Minh City’s best food & street life.

Sometimes Ho chi Minh thành phố can be a little overwhelming for visitors khổng lồ the city. There’s so much lớn eat & so many motorbikes lớn navigate through. As they say, “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em”. The best way to vày that is lớn take an XO tour that highlights the local nightlife & food culture. 

XO’s Saigon by Night scooter tours will take you far away from the typical tourist traps and to districts that most travellers rarely get to lớn see. These fun guided trips will give you insight into the rapid progress this thành phố has faced & the determined resilience of the friendly locals. The tours also include some tasty local food for dinner. 

XO’s world-acclaimed Foodie Tour focuses entirely on the city’s scrumptious street food & ‘nhau culture’. Prepare your taste buds to be exposed khổng lồ flavours from across the entire nation of Vietnam during the evening. Guides will outline và discuss the culinary culture & customs và provide context lớn what you’re eating. We recommend joining this tour at the beginning of your Vietnam trip if possible as it will surely xuất hiện up your mind (and taste-buds!) in regard lớn the variety of street food that is available in Vietnam!

View the city from the Saigon Skyline

(Source: tập đoàn bitexco Financial Tower is a truly iconic building & a great place khổng lồ view the city from.

The streets are where the Ho đưa ra Minh City’s nightlife is. However, sometimes it’s good lớn be able to lớn look at the world from a different perspective. Two of the Saigon’s tallest buildings house viewing decks but also cafe’s, bars and restaurants.

Landmark 81 isn’t far from downtown và at 462m is Vietnam’s tallest building. It has a public observation deck but at US$35 it’s fairly pricey compared khổng lồ other attractions. It’s better to have dinner at the Oriental Pearl restaurant to lớn see Ho đưa ra Minh city at night from this perspective. 

Bitexco Tower is easily the better option. While it’s not as tall as Landmark 81 it is more centrally located & much better value. Aside from the viewing deck, bitexco also has a bar và a cafe where you can admire the view for free. After buying a drink of course! 

Take a Dinner Cruise 

(Source: A dinner cruise is a great way to lớn cool down & see the city from a different perspective.

A popular way to lớn enjoy the city lights is from the breezy decks of an iconic Saigon River dinner cruise. Several companies run cruises from Nha Rong wharf in District 4. It’s only a short distance from Nguyen Hue St but all trips must be booked in advance. Booking on the same day you wish to lớn cruise is usually fine.

Dinner is several courses & from a choice of mix menus that showcase some of Vietnam’s best dishes. It should be noted that portions are quite small on these cruises. Nevertheless, the astounding view of the colourful lights and tall buildings of downtown Saigon makes up for it. 

Live bands are on most boats & play traditional music for the guests onboard. All ships sail a similar phối route for about two hours before the ship docks and the evening ends.

Party Hard On Bui Vien Street 

(Source: Bui Vien is a lively place come nightfall although not exactly family-friendly.

Bui Vien St is a hard partying centre for backpackers in Ho đưa ra Minh City and known for its street life, cheap bars & street snacks. It’s a fairly quiet place during the day but at night it transforms with crowds, street performers và loud music.

It’s the place to lớn be in Ho chi Minh đô thị if you want lớn experience Vietnam’s ‘bia hoi’ culture. At night crowds of locals and travellers pull up small plastic chairs & sit beside the busy street together. There are also dozens of bars located that help keep the area lively & partying till dawn. 

The Bui Vien nightlife attracts large crowds on weekend evenings as the street becomes closed to traffic around 7 pm. This is the latest addition lớn a growing number of Saigon’s walking streets. Some of the more unusual sights disappear but it becomes a much safer & more enjoyable place.

Go Shopping at a Night Market 

(Source: Shopping at night can be much more comfortable without the heat of the sun. It also saves more time for sightseeing!

Shopping at night in Ho bỏ ra Minh đô thị offers something a little different. Each night after Ben Thanh Market shuts a night market is swiftly erected on the streets outside. These stalls offer a range of goods và souvenirs for those who prefer to shop when it’s cooler. 

Not far from here is Saigon Square 1. It’s open all day but is more popular at night time. The clothing & products on offer there are usually of a higher quality than other markets & prices won’t be as marked up. In our experience, the vendors at Saigon Square will generally not discount their prices more than 20%.

Running west from District 1 is Nguyen Trai Street. Lượt thích Ben Thanh’s night market it also comes lớn life at night. Aside from the brick-and-mortar shops, makeshift stalls và racks turn the pavements into semi-illegal storefronts. This open-air street market area is a popular spot for locals to cửa hàng for all types of clothes, hats, shoes, and bags.

Visit a Bar in Saigon

(Source: Ho đưa ra Minh thành phố has some of the best rooftop bars in southeast Asia.

Ho bỏ ra Minh City’s bar scene has grown exponentially over the last few years. Drinkers are spoilt for choice with countless bars lớn indulge in your favourite cocktail and watch the thành phố go by. 

There are dozens of cheap bars in Ho đưa ra Minh City. They offer good beers and fun environments. However, rooftops are the most popular place for visitors khổng lồ Saigon khổng lồ unwind. The cool breeze và interesting perspectives of thành phố life are worth the slightly higher drink prices. Saigon Saigon, Chill, Broma, Not a Bar & The View are some of the Ho chi Minh City’s most popular rooftop bars. 

“… rooftop’s are the most popular place for Saigon visitors lớn unwind.”

If you like beer you’re probably going khổng lồ pretty happy in Vietnam. It’s cheap, cold & readily found. However, if you want something a little tastier than basic lagers you’re going lớn want to lớn visit a craft beer pub.

While the industry is in its infancy here, there are a few noteworthy venues for good beer in Saigon. East-West Brewery, Pasteur Street Brewery và Heart of Darkness can be pricey but serve a wide variety of tasty brews.

Check Out Some Live Music

(Source: Ho chi Minh city has some excellent live music venues. Some can get pretty crowded but for music fans are worth visiting.

Vietnamese love listening khổng lồ good music and there are several decent venues for live music in Ho bỏ ra Minh City. Yoko Bar is one of the city’s most popular venues for live music. The cosy cafe-come-bar has plenty of seating and attracts a wide variety of artists from around the world. Their line-up is always changing so best to check with them lớn see what’s on.

Acoustic Bar và Rock fan Club have huge cult followings with Ho đưa ra Minh City’s rock lovers. They’re super popular venues and host some of the most talented local rock artists. House bands are usually seen on centre stage but they also host some touring groups from time lớn time. A word of warning that they can both get crowded, loud và pretty smoky. Very rock và roll!

Sax ‘n Art is a centrally located jazz lounge. It attracts some amazing musicians và is reputedly the best place for jazz in Vietnam. It never gets overcrowded here và the cover-charge và the drinks are reasonably priced.

Check Out a Vietnamese Night Club 

(Source: Vietnam has some excellent clubs to enjoy a drink and dance the night away.

At night you’ll usually find most locals enjoying life at the cafes and bars that line the city’s streets. Increasingly, however, many young Vietnamese also enjoy a quality style nightclub that can only be described as “Vietnamese.” For those who have have some extra cash, this has become the ultimate way khổng lồ parade their new status. Luckily there are some cool clubs in Ho bỏ ra Minh city that xuất hiện till the wee morning hours. 

Lush nightclub is probably the most popular và well-known club in Saigon. They run special nights & discounts throughout the week và regularly hosts international DJ’s. 

Apocalypse Now has been around for years and is an icon of the local club scene. It’s mainly frequented by tourists & expats and has impressive & very locally-themed decor. Republic, Evy và Gossip clubs are also particularly noteworthy for their energy & atmosphere. 

For a truly local twist on clubbing head lớn one Ho chi Minh City’s many beer clubs. Beer clubs are often fronted by a DJ blasting out local & foreign dance tunes. Punters take their seats at a table and share a beer tower with their friends. Those who wish to, simply stand up & dance near their tables. Beer clubs have a more casual environment & mixed clientele compared with traditional night clubs.

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Sing Karaoke

(Source: Singing in Vietnam is about sharing yourself & your time and with others.

No trip lớn Vietnam or serious list about nightlife in Ho bỏ ra Minh thành phố is complete without Karaoke. Most venues have large lists of foreign và particularly western songs. If you’re a little shy don’t worry. 

The Karaoke rooms are private, there is no stage and the audio is tuned khổng lồ make you sound even better. Additionally, you also get a dedicated waiter to keep refreshments flowing. We recommend checking with each venue individually if you want to karaoke throughout the night because closing times vary & rooms are usually charged on an hourly basis.

Other Interesting Areas in HCMC 

Japan Town, District 1

(Source: Blink & you may just miss one of the few entrances into Ho đưa ra Minh City’s lively nhật bản Town.

As night falls, the narrow và photographic alleys in Ho đưa ra Minh City’s Japanese precinct come to life. This small area is not far from downtown Saigon & the city’s more touristy areas but blink & you’ll miss it. The only hint is several Japanese restaurants on Le Thanh Ton Street and some lanterns hanging above a gateway. 

This area spreads inside a hidden network of alleys và is home to the best sushi và udon restaurants in Ho đưa ra Minh City. Many members of the city’s large Japanese expat community come here lớn relax và socialize after work. This area is also known for its friendly pubs and girly bars. 

Cho Lon, District 5

(Source: cho Lon is the beating heart of Ho đưa ra Minh City’s Chinese culture and cuisine. If you can visit here when there is a special holiday on, vì it!

Cho Lon is also known as Ho đưa ra Minh City’s Chinatown và is a popular area for tourists lớn explore out during the day. The ancient pagodas và markets shut in the evenings, apart from special holidays, but there are other attractions here after dark. Mang đến Lon isn’t about clubs and bars but street life, food và unique historical architecture. 

The streets và shops are decorated differently và hawkers and street stalls offer something different. The cuisine here is a set of Chinese & Vietnamese flavours using alternative herbs and cooking methods.

Cho Lon is famous to lớn locals for its Peking Duck which you’ll see hanging in windows everywhere. Make sure you also save room for congee & wonton noodle soup! 

This district is also known for its old architecture which is highly decorative và unique lớn this quarter. It’s easier to lớn see these structures during the day but at night there is more atmosphere as families have returned home.

Thao Dien, District 2

(Source: Thao Dien has some nifty hidden precincts for eating.

Thao Dien is a ward of District 2 of Ho đưa ra Minh đô thị known for its large expat community. Located beside the Hanoi Highway it’s easy khổng lồ access & about a 20-minute xe taxi ride from the centre of town. 

It’s hard khổng lồ look past this area if you’re looking for somewhere different to lớn spend an evening. There are dozens of unique restaurants serving international và Vietnamese cuisine. Some are large and devoid of atmosphere while others are small và cosy. Prices here also have a wide range so best to bởi specific research online first.

As one might imagine, this area is also trang chủ to loads of foreign styled bars. Beer choices are pretty similar lớn other parts of the đô thị but music, sports on TV và atmosphere in this pub is very western. Bars here also serve a good range of western food from gastro style khổng lồ classic pub-grub. 

Phu My Hung, District 7

(Source: The Crescent và the Starlight Bridge are well-known attractions that remain off the mainstream tourist radar.

This area of town is one of the more modern parts of the city. Saigon South or “Little Singapore”, as some refer to it, is located in the southern reaches of District 7.

Villas & modern apartment complexes line its wide and relatively quiet streets. Another characteristic of this neighbourhood is the large parks and green areas integrated in the developments.

Crescent Mall and The Crescent area with its fancy restaurants và bars are big attractions for locals. However, it’s the spectacular Starlight Bridge (“Ho Ban Nguyet” for your taxi driver) that remains the jewel in the crown and main drawcard of this complex.

Tips For Staying Safe at Night

(Source: Ho chi Minh đô thị is a relatively safe đô thị yet there still are precautions which one must take lớn ensure they stay out of harm’s way.

As far as big cities go around the globe Ho đưa ra Minh đô thị is a relatively safe city & there’s little violent crime towards locals và tourists. However, there are certain things you should be aware of. Here are some measures you should take lớn avoid danger & crime at night:

Bag and phone snatching

Bag and phone snatchings in Ho bỏ ra Minh city are unfortunately fairly common in the busiest & most central parts of the city. Most people think it won’t happen to them. Even the most seasoned travellers get caught unaware by the swiftness of a passing motorbike. 

The best way to avoid your phone being stolen is lớn leave it at trang chủ unless needed. If you must use a phone don’t use it on the street or make sure you use it in a protected area. 

“Even the most seasoned travellers get caught unaware by the swiftness of a passing motorbike.”

If you must carry a bag with you at night carry then keep it on your front. Avoid shoulder bags as they are the ones that are targeted by thieves. Disregarding your stuff, the injuries from an attempted bag snatching can be horrific. 


(Source: usuda/shutterstock) Avoid pickpockets by leaving unnecessary items và cash at home.

Pick-pockets hang around crowded and noisy areas such as markets, bars và events. They are particularly drawn to lớn tourists as they have cash và are usually distracted from their belongings. 

The best pickpockets out there can easily open zippers or buttons without you noticing. They can also see where your wallet is from the way you keep checking to lớn see if it’s still there!

Locks on bags are a good idea lớn prevent pickpockets in crowds but it’s still better to avoid. The Vietnamese have a saying that if you don’t want to thất bại something then leave it at home.

Alcohol & Fighting

(Source: When under the influence of alcohol even the most minor altercation can rapidly escalate into something more serious.

Everywhere in the world where people are drinking there is a higher risk of arguments or fights. Avoid this anywhere but particularly in Vietnam. The Vietnamese are far from violent people và if someone is going to challenge you it’s probably not the kinda guy (or gal) you want to lớn get involved with.

It’s rare, but if an argument breaks out things can escalate pretty quickly. If you’re a foreigner giving a local a hard time then you may find yourself out-numbered pretty quickly.


(source: Ho bỏ ra Minh City’s traffic is a highlight of the city can also be incredibly dangerous.

One of Ho chi Minh City’s highlights also happens to be one of its biggest dangers. We’d never tell you lớn avoid the street life but care must be taken and particularly so after dark. 

Visibility is more difficult at night for riders and drivers. Although the streets are well-lit there are always dark corners and more blind spots. Cross at lights whenever possible & always wait for a decent break or for the traffic to lớn come to lớn a stop. 

As the night gets later the streets get quieter but still have dangers. Faster speeds và sometimes drunk riders showroom additional concerns. Enjoy the streets but remain aware. Even enjoy being on a motorbike yourself but make sure you’re with a responsible rider.

Keep good company

If going out in Ho chi Minh thành phố at night, particularly after midnight, it’s highly recommended that you don’t go alone. Go with a friend or family member. Not only will you be able to lớn help each other out but there’s always more safety in numbers. Should you insist on flying solo, be sure to check out our safety post for female solo travellers khổng lồ Vietnam.

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Ho đưa ra Minh City’s nightlife & entertainment make it an incredibly fun place to be. It’s unrivalled by any other thành phố in Vietnam. With a variety of different activities khổng lồ suit most desires & budgets, make sure you get out và make the most of Ho bỏ ra Minh thành phố by night. 

For more essential tips about how to stay safe in Vietnam, kiểm tra out our popular posts below.