A Great Night Out in a Glittering Big City – Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
If you are looking for a wild night out in a glittering big city, look no further than Ho Chi Minh City (more commonly referred to by tourists and locals alike as Saigon). While Vietnam might not immediately spring into mind when you think of a spectacular nightlife scene, this sultry Southern city is known for its fun nights out.
Whether you are looking for a backpacker blitz, a hipster hangout or a posh extravaganza, read ahead to learn about the best nights out in Saigon.If you are looking for a wild night out in a glittering big city, look no further than Saigon.Click To Tweet
The Perfect Backpacker Night Out
The Pham Ngu Lao district is the main backpacker ghetto. The budget-conscious young (and not so young) travelers often stay in this area and frequent the bars and cafes along Bui Vien street. With a character similar to the Khao San Road in Bangkok, this riotous neighborhood is cheap and cheerful. It is great for meeting like-minded other backpackers to party with.
That said, the area is not very stylish. If you are looking for authentic local culture, an interesting arts scene or a unique Vietnamese perspective, the Pham Ngu Lao district will disappoint. It is also known as a red light district, so be careful before you purchase a massage! You are unlikely to meet many Vietnamese revelers here, as most of the bars are frequented solely by tourists.
No matter what, this area can be a lot of fun. As long as you know what you are getting into. The most popular bar in Pham Ngu Lao is the Go2 Bar. It is famous for being open all night. Enjoy some drinks on the terrace (ideally located at the busy intersection on Bui Vien street) or head upstairs to the club. Nearby, Crazy Buffalo and Allez Boo attract a similar crowd. Just walk down the streets of this area and you will find plenty of other choices. All of these are filled with backpackers enjoying their night.
Hipster Heaven – An Alternative Night Out
Start your night with a visit to one of Saigon’s many new craft beer bars and pubs. That way you will get to sample some of the continent’s finest hops and suds. Bia Craft and the Pasteur Street Brewing Company both come highly recommended. Swing by the latter for small plates and tasting flights of their locally brewed beer.
Afterward, you might want to stop by a few of the city’s many art galleries on your way to La Fenêtre Soleil. By day, this delightful Indonesian café serves food and coffee, but on the weekends it becomes a ‘chic house party’ with live bands and DJs. Expect to hear music from across the world – Jamaican dancehall, ‘60s psychedelia, and eclectic pop. Finish your night at Observatory, quickly becoming a hub for the Saigon’s alternative crowd. Part gallery, part dance club, part cultural space, the crowd at Observatory parties until the wee hours.
Stepping it up a notch – A night out in luxury
If you have money to burn, Saigon will gladly help you spend heaps of cash. Though very affordable by Western standards, Saigon does have an elite glitterati and many high-end places.
Start your night with a meal at one of Saigon’s finest restaurants. Restaurant Bobby Chinn comes highly recommended. This famous TV chef of Chinese and Egyptian ethnicity was brought up in New Zealand, trained in France. He has traveled throughout the world. His food is a bold journey into Asian, Middle Eastern and Californian flavors.
After you eat some delicious food, you will undoubtedly want to head to Chill Skybar. It is the most exclusive rooftop bar in Saigon. Located on the 26th floor of the AB tower, it is the ideal place to see and be seen in the city. It is perfect for a date or a simple drink. Chill turns into a nightclub on the weekends, with pumping tunes from 11pm – 2am. If you want to continue the party, head to Glow. Another rooftop bar, it offers great music, a lovely design ethos, and a friendly crowd.
No matter where you head on your big night out, one thing is guaranteed in Saigon – you will have a great time!