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District 1 in Ho Chi Minh City


District 1 is Ho Chi Minh City’s downtown where you often see a lot of office buildings, luxury hotels, and fancy restaurants, along with many most visited attractions where you can learn about the lifestyle, culture, and history of the city. When night comes, it is also the time the district is most lively and crowded with people, especially the youth.

Map of District 1's Attractions:

District 1 Overview

district 1 hcm overview

View of the iconic Bitexco Tower in District 1

District 1 is at the heart of Ho Chi Minh City with a total area of 7.7 square km. The 5 districts sharing its borders are Binh Thanh District and District 3, District 2, District 5, and District 4. There are 10 wards in District 1, including Tan Dinh, Da Kao, Ben Nghe, Ben Thanh, Nguyen Thai Binh, Pham Ngu Lao, Cau Ong Lanh, Co Giang, Nguyen Cu Trinh, and Cau Kho. Even though District 1 is not the largest district in Ho Chi Minh City, it is the busiest with trading and entertainment activities occur days and nights.

How to Get to District 1

District 1 is 8 km from Tan Son Nhat International Airport (SGN), so it would take about 30 minutes to drive there. If you use the taxis at the airport, it would cost about VND 100,000 - 150,000. You can also find the bus at the airport that will drop you off in District 1 at Notre Dame Cathedral, Municipal Theatre, Ben Thanh Market, and some hotels or streets in the district. For more details, read How to take shuttle buses from Tan Son Nhat International Airport to Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) Center.

Get your bus ticket online:

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Attractions in District 1

In District 1, there are many famous Saigon attractions, most of which are from the 19th century. If you are a budget traveler, you can find many free entrance fee sites in the district as well.

district 1 hcm central post office

Saigon Central Post Office in District 1

Name Entrance fee Address Category
 Saigon Central Post Office  Free  2 Cong Xa Paris Historical attraction
 Independence Palace

 VND 40,000

 VND 20,000
(groups of more than 20 people)

 There might be extra fees for exhibitions at the palace 

 135 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia  Historical attraction
 Notre Dame Cathedral  Free  1 Cong Xa Paris  Religious site
 Huyen Sy Cathedral  Free  1 Ton That Tung Religious site
 Jade Emperor Pagoda  Free  73 Mai Thi Luu  Religious site
 Mosque Musulman  Free  66 Dong Du  Religious site
 Tran Hung Dao Memorial Temple  Free  36 Vo Thi Sau  Religious site
 Mariamman Hindu Temple  Free  45 Truong Dinh  Religious site
 Ho Chi Minh City Museum of Fine Art  VND 30,000  97 Pho Duc Chinh  Museum
 Vietnam History Museum  VND 30,000  2 Nguyen Binh Khiem  Museum
 Museum of Ho Chi Minh City/Gia Long Palace  VND 30,000  65 Ly Tu Trong  Museum
 Municipal Theatre  Free  7 Cong Truong Lam Son  Opera House
 Municipal Hall  Free  86 Le Thanh Ton  Historical attraction
 Nguyen Hue Walking Street  Free  From Le Thanh Ton and Ton Duc Thang Street  Public site
 Nguyen Van Binh Book Street  Free  From Cong Xa Paris and Hai Ba Trung Street  Public site
 Saigon Zoo and Botanical Garden  VND 50,000  2 Nguyen Binh Khiem  Zoo, garden
 30/4 Park  Free  In the block of
Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, Han Thuyen, Pham Ngoc Thach, and 
Alexandre de Rhodes Street
 Public park
 23/9 Park  Free  In the block of
Tran Hung Dao, Le Lai, and Nguyen Thi Nghia Street
 Public park
 Bach Tung Diep Park  Free

 In the corner of
Nam Ky Khoi Nghia and Ly Tu Trong Street

 Public park


To have fun trips in Ho Chi Minh City, check out our authentic motorbike tours with professional local guides!


Foods and Drinks in District 1

If you love local foods, you are in for luck. District 1 has a little bit of everything from traditional dishes to cuisines of countries all over the world. It is also where you can find fancy restaurants as well as mid-range eateries and street food stalls.

Category Location
 Street eats  Ben Thanh Street Food Market, Nguyen Van Chiem Street, Bach Tung Diep Park
 Cafe and restaurants  Dong Khoi, Le Thanh Ton, Le Loi, and Hai Ba Trung Street
 Vietnamese foods  Co Giang, Nguyen Thi Minh Khai, Tran Hung Dao, and Nguyen Trai Street
 Beer clubs and bars  Backpacker Districts (Do Quang Dau, Bui Vien, De Tham and Pham Ngu Lao Street)
 Eateries in old apartments  26 Ly Tu Trong, 42 Nguyen Hue, 14 Ton That Dam, 95 Pasteur, 42 Ton That Thiep

 International: Starbucks, KFC, Lotte, McDonald, and Coffee Beans

 Local: Trung Nguyen, Highlands, and Phuc Long


Shopping in District 1

ben thanh market main gate district 1 hcm

Ben Thanh Market - the most prominent shopping site for tourists

The downtown of Ho Chi Minh City is also a shopping paradise with grand shopping malls, stylish shops, and bustling local markets.

Category Address What to Buy
 Shopping malls

 Diamond - 34 Le Duan

 Vincom - 72 Le Thanh Ton

 Takashimaya - 92-94 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia

 Parkson - 35-45 Le Thanh Ton

 Clothes, accessories, cosmetics

 Coffee and tea

 Local markets

 Ben Thanh Market - Quach Thi Trang Roundabout, Le Loi Street

 Sense Market - Basement of 23-9 Park, 4 Pham Ngu Lao

 Clothes, accessories, cosmetics

 Conical hats

 Ao dai garment

 Dried foods

 Coffee and tea

 Old apartments

 26 Ly Tu Trong

 42 Nguyen Hue

 42 Ton That Thiep

 60 Nguyen Trai

 Clothes, accessories, cosmetics



Nightlife in District 1

District 1 is the most lively and vibrant at night. The lights go on, and people hang out after a long day of work or study.

district 1 hcm nguyen hue street

Nguyen Hue Boulevard

nguyen hue pedestrian street night

The street becomes dazzling when the night comes

district 1 hcm nightlife bar

A rooftop bar in District 1

district 1 hcm bui vien

The most fun one can have at night in District 1 is at Bui Vien Street

district 1 hcm night scene

District 1's night scene

Summary of District 1 in Ho Chi Minh City

As one of the central districts and downtown of Ho Chi Minh City, District 1 is always the top choice for visitors when traveling to Ho Chi Minh City. The elegant beauty of daytime and exciting vibe at night will please any one’s need with its diverse activities and attractions reflecting Vietnamese culture, history, and lifestyle.

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At i Tour Vietnam, we provide private motorbike tours around Ho Chi Minh City, including District 1 like the Day Adventure, Night Adventure, I Love Food, and Saigon’s Other Side. Check them out and contact us when you are ready to go on an adventure.


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Guest - Tracy Claire on Friday, 21 February 2020 15:55

I had an amazing tour around this area, so many attractions to see and many things to do. I will make sure I join your guys' night tour next time in back in Ho Chi Minh City. I had a wonderful time, your tour guide Kim was the best

I had an amazing tour around this area, so many attractions to see and many things to do. I will make sure I join your guys' night tour next time in back in Ho Chi Minh City. I had a wonderful time, your tour guide Kim was the best
Guest - Grayson Mars on Saturday, 04 January 2020 13:44

such a bustling area with lots of shops and entertainment

such a bustling area with lots of shops and entertainment
Guest - Cameron on Tuesday, 01 October 2019 19:17

Thanks for the much needed information.

Thanks for the much needed information.
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Wednesday, 31 May 2023

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