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Should I Try Fish Massage in Vietnam?


If you book yourself a usual type of massage service, you will expect the staff to either move their hands up and down your bodies with dexterity to release the stresses and strains on your mind and body or use specialized equipment to exfoliate the skin. "Fish massage", however, is a more unconventional and interesting method of Vietnamese massage techniques, and the experience from this service in Vietnam seems to be similar to the novelty of its name.

What Is Fish Massage?

Fish massage, sometimes understood as a fish pedicure, is a seemingly weird massage trend that stirs the curiosity of many tourists, both domestically and internationally. The massage is carried out by Garra Rufa fish, which originates from Turkey and is used exclusively for scrubbing dead skin. 

During the practice, they will nibble away the dead and hardened skin on your feet for around 30 minutes without drawing any blood or injuring any intact skin. All you have to do is immersing your feet in the tank of warm water and enjoying the ticklish feeling from its bites. 

A peculiar attraction...

Even though fish massage in Vietnam has not remained the heat as it used to be several years ago, the peculiar sensation it brings to clients has not been sworn away yet. As soon as you submerge the whole of your feet into the water, their vibration will attract the “doctor fish”. They will gather towards your feet and begin to nibble the dead skin with naturally talented techniques. Since these fish are toothless, they hardly cause any pain for their clients. Many tourists describe the feeling as weird and nice at the same time. It feels like jacuzzi bubbles tickling your toes. So it is actually a pretty pleasurable experience.

After a long day walking around Ho Chi Minh City, imagine when you put your feet under warm water, watch the tiny swarms of hundred fish rippling and nibbling your feet. What a freaky way to get a good laugh!

Health Benefits of Fish Massage

Fish massage has quite a lot of benefits because of its role for dry skin problems and relaxation. The fish will help activate your blood circulation, and a feeling of comfort settles in your body. Here are the three main benefits that fish massage bring to you:

  • Stimulating blood flow and improving circulation
  • Making your skin clear, smooth, and beautiful by removing bacteria and dead skin.
  • Releasing stress and promoting relaxation.  

It is very effective for both mental and physical relaxation, as the thousands of kisses on your skin will alleviate the signs of stress from everyday problems. 

How to Have The Right Experience with Fish Massage in Vietnam?

Bear in mind these three notes before deciding to give fish massage in Vietnam a try. 

First of all, in case you have any open wounds or infectious skin issues, trying fish massage in Vietnam might not be a good idea as it can aggravate your wound. 

Secondly, it must be the exclusive Garra Rufa that serves you instead of other kinds of fish. Garra Rufa or doctor fish is the expert in removing the dead skin without causing any injuries, as they are toothless. Other types of fish, though seemingly harmless, can cause you irritation because of the tiny teeth.

Garra Rufa

This is how a Garra Rufa looks like

Thirdly, choose a reliable spa where you can feel trusted and authentic to avoid scams and unqualified services.

Where to Try Fish Massage in Ho Chi Minh City

Here are the top two spas in Ho Chi Minh City that you can put trust in, which is highly recommended and reviewed by previous clients: 

Oasis Spa

Address: 59/17 Nguyen Du, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1
Opening Hours: 9 AM - 10 PM
Price: VND 115,000

Located in an alley of a central district, this spa is an ideal place for you to relax, rest, and feel a little far away from the hustle and bustle in Ho Chi Minh City. The price here is quite reasonable with top-rated professional services and high satisfaction. 

Oasis Spa

The top-rated spa with good service and reasonable price

If you choose to experience the fish foot massage only, it will cost you VND 115,000 for 20 minutes. For more services requesting, you can pay approximately VND 250,000 - VND 330,000 with the whole body massage.
Please check out here for more reviews and comments: Oasis Spa

Blue Moon Spa

Address: 25 Dong Khoi, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
Opening Hours: 8.30 AM - 11 PM
Price: VND 280,000

Another fish spa in Ho Chi Minh city is known for its excellent services and friendly staffs. It is also located in the center of Ho Chi Minh city, which is convenient for any international tourists to get here. 

blue moon spa

Where you can experience a fish foot spa and arm-shoulder massage at the same time

The price seems to be more expensive with VND 280,000 for both the fish foot massage and arm-shoulder massage. With facial and body massage, you will pay around VND 320,000 - VND 350,000 for 1 hour.
Take a look at the reviews here: Blue Moon Spa 
Check out also Spa Hotels in Ho Chi Minh

Our Summary on Fish Massage in Vietnam

Nowadays, fish massage in Vietnam is not as popular as it was several years ago, but the feeling of relaxation and well-being it brings to you will never fade away. So it is time to have a rest, let your feet congregated with the dead-skin-scrubbing fish and enjoy the feeling brought by hundreds of aquatic kisses. A good laugh from this experience will take your stress away!

Check out our private motorbike tours with professional local guides
for fun and insightful trips in Ho Chi Minh City!

family outing in ho chi minh city motorcycle


© Written by Trang Duy for

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Monday, 25 September 2023

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