Travel . Lifestyle . Dining


Vietnam Ho Chi Minh City 3 Day 2 Night Itinerary + Downloadable Itinerary PDF

Every year, H & I will visit Bangkok and revisit our favourite street food and restaurant. This year, we decide to go for a change. Instead of Bangkok, we decided to visit Ho Chi Minh City. A foodie at heart, this trip was H’s third visit. Thanks to him, I get to visit many hidden gems! Who knew HCMC is a food haven too! Sadly, a lot of my family and friends disagree with this sentence. Nonetheless, I hope that you get to explore and enjoy the food as much as We did! Together with 2 other friends, H & I set off for a 3D2N food trip to Ho Chi Minh City!

Day 1: Airport – Check in Hotel – Co Ba Vung Tau Restaurant – Supermarket @ Coop - Vieteetera Café – Bến Thành Market - Banh mi 37 – Huynh Hoa
Day 2: Bun Thit Nuong Chi Tuyen – Bánh cuốn Hải Nam – The Café Apartment – Cathedral - Post Office – Reunification Palace Museum/Independence Palace – Shopping at The New Playground - Cộng cà phê - Shopping at 26 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé- Dinner at Yakitori Shindo Air 360 Sky Lounge
Day 3: Banh Mi Hoa MaBinh Tay Market – Takashimaya Departmental Store– Cơm tấm Ba Ghiền-  Phu-vuong Pho – HCMC International Airport

Day 1: Airport – Check in Hotel – Co Ba Vung Tau Restaurant – Supermarket @ Coop - Vieteetera Café – Bến Thành Market - Banh mi 37 – Huynh Hoa

Co Ba Vung Tau Restaurant
After checking in, we visited Co Ba Vung Tau Restaurant to meet up with T for lunch. T introduced Co Ba Vung Tau Restaurant. Pancake was Vung Tau Specialty and what the restaurant is famous for – Banh Khot aka pancake. Thus, we ordered a couple of mini pancakes as well as the huge one (Vietnamese Crepe)!

We ordered the pancake comes with mince pork and shrimps on top. Unlike the ones I usually had, the pancake has a very crispy skin. Plus, having it with the sauce makes it even better! The filling in the crepe is the same as the pancake. Personally, I prefer the pancake over the crepe because of the skin. 

Bánh khọt Cô Ba Vũng Tàu
Daily, 40B Trần Cao Vân, Phường 6, Quận 3, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
0700h – 2230 h

Supermarket @ Co.opmart
Co.opmart is HCMC supermarket chain where the locals would patron. There are a few super market in the city and the one we went was huge! We got there around 3 pm on a Saturday night and it was packed! I think they have everything except dried food. We bought some snacks to munch while we explore the city!

Vieteetera Café
After walking around, we decide to find a café to relax. Vieteetera Café was at the top of the list so it got to be one. Ambience was great but the drinks isn’t. Both the coffee and Tea were overly sweet. Honestly, I was disappointed because I was looking forward to the coffee in Vietnam. Traditional or not, I thought it’s supposed to be better than the neighboring countries?

Suddenly, it poured heavily and we were stuck. Thankfully, the ambience really made up for it.

Vieteetera Café
 Daily 290 Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai, Phường 5, Ho Chi Minh City, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
0800 – 1900h

Bến Thành Market
With nowhere else to go at this weather, we decide to visit Bến Thành Market. The market is a tourist market and you can find all the Vietnamese souvenirs, bags and even food there! If you are planning to purchase things from the market, be prepared to bargain. Personally, I didn’t enjoy my visit there because there were touts everywhere. We rejected them nicely and got out of the market less than 20 mins. 

Bến Thành Market
Chợ, Lê Lợi, Phường Bến Thành, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 700000, Vietnam
Daily , 0700h – 1900h

Banh mi 37 (17K)
There are many Banh Mi style in Vietnam and this got to be my favorite. Freshly grilled pork patty with lots of vegetables wrap in the bread! Plus, the bread was crispy and warm! Definitely the best Banh Mi I had. Although the opening hour stated until 9pm, be there early! We manage to secure the last Banh Mi around 7-8pm!

Bánh Mì 37 Nguyễn Trãi
37 Nguyễn Trãi, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Every day except Sunday ,1600h – 2100h

Huynh Hoa (38k)
A few streets down the road is the popular Banh Mi Shop - Huynh Hoa. The queue was very long but efficient. Within minutes, we got our Banh Mi. Unlike the one at Banh Mi 37, Huynh Hoa Banh Mi is filled with Tuna paste, mixed meat and lots of vegetables. The Banh Mi is flavorful but sadly, cold. Probably, the last time here since I’m not a fan of Tuna.

Huynh Hoa
26 Lê Thị Riêng, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 700000, Vietnam
Daily, 1430h - 2300h

Day 2: Bun Thit Nuong Chi Tuyen – Bánh cuốn Hải Nam – The Café Apartment – Cathedral - Post Office – Reunification Palace Museum/Independence Palace – Shopping at The New Playground - Cộng cà phê - Shopping at 26 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé- Dinner at Yakitori Shindo Air 360 Sky Lounge

Bun Thit Nuong Chi Tuyen
Bun Thit Nuong is a type Vietnamese rice-vermicelli noodle top with grilled pork, fried spring roll and fresh vegetables. Usually, the noodle is serve with fish sauce and cold. Bun Thit Nuong is my most-ordered Vietnamese dish back home. Thus, it is on my list to try Bun Thit Nuong in HCMC. H found this local eatery that serves excellent Bun Thit Nuong! The  rice-vermicelli noodles are smooth and silky. Grilled Pork was perfectly cook! Tender and juicy! Together with the fish sauce, the bowl of Bun Thit Nuong is the best I had! Oh and ask for English Menu! They have it!

Side track: Any recommendation for delicious Bun Thit Nuong in Singapore?

Bun Thit Nuong Chi Tuyen
175 Cô Giang, Phường Cô Giang, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, 
Daily 0700 – 2100h

Bánh cuốn Hải Nam
After getting my craving for Bun Thit satisfied, H brought us for Vietnam style Chee Chong Fun aka Bánh cuốn. The skin of the roll is freshly made and goes really well with the minced pork! We saw many reviews online saying that the change is not right and etc. We didn’t experience what the review had said. Nonetheless, do request for menu and note that the napkins are chargeable in Vietnam.

Bánh cuốn Hải Nam
11A Cao Thắng, Phường 2, Quận 3, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 0630h - 2200h

The Café Apartment – Thinker & Dreamer Coffee
The café scene in HCMC is very strong and there are lots of café around. The Café Apartment caught my eye because in this apartment, there are many cafes to choose from. We end up having for drinks at – Thinker & Dreamer Coffee because the others are crowded and this look pretty chill.

Drinks are mediocre and a little too sweet for me. Nonetheless, it is a nice place to relax and wait for the museum to open.

Thinker & Dreamer Coffee
Lầu 4, 42 Nguyễn Huệ, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 0900h – 2300h

Note: There is someone at ground floor collecting fees for using the elevator. If you are healthy, taking the stairs up is probably faster and you can explore the various cafes and shops in the block.

Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica Cathedral
The Cathedral Basilica of Our lady The Immaculate Conception, which is one of the famous symbols of Ho Chi Minh City. It was established during the French Colonist and thus build with French’s architecture style. H mention that it used to be open for public in the past but it is under restoration now If you are planning to go on a tour instead of doing self-walking, you can check out Klook packages here. 

Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica Cathedral
01 Công xã Paris, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Quận 1 Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh City Post Office/ Saigon Central Post Office
Next to the Cathedral is HCMC Post office. The post office’s design is both inspired by the French style.  The rustic interior design definitely remind me of movie – Amelia ( Just that the scene in the movie is a train station and this is post office). You can purchase post card and mail it on the spot.

Reunification Palace Museum/ Independence Palace
Reunification Palace Museum also known as Independence Palace is one of the most popular land mark in Ho Chi Minh City. This palace is the resident and office of the president during Vietnam War. The museum is a walk-through of different room – Bedroom, Office, Hall, dining area , cinema and etc. The most interesting part is probably the basement where it is use as a communication headquarter and there are lots of maps and machines there.

Reunification Palace Museum/ Independence Palace
135 Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa, Phường Bến Thành, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 700000, Vietnam
Daily, 7:30–11AM, 1–4PM
Enterance Ticket: VND 30,000 

Shopping at Vincom Center
Vincom Center has many international brands such as H&M, Zara, Pull & Bear, Coach and etc. We went to check out the price of international brand and it was similar to the ones back home. Thus, no luck with great bargain! Besides the shopping, Vincom Center has a cinema at the top level. We went there to escape the heat from HCMC and found ourselves sitting at one of the restaurants at the top level.

Shopping at The New Playground
Opposite of the Vincom Center is The New Playground. This is the place where you can find local Vietnamese brand at more affordable price. This place is similar to ‘Scape’ or Far East Plaza concept in Singapore. Although I didn’t find anything for myself, I thought the concept is a lot better than the ones in Singapore. Especially the photobooth station at the entrance.

Cộng cà phê
After some shopping and walking, we found ourselves in another café for coffee. Cộng cà phê is a nice cosy place next to the New Playground. There are outdoor sitting for you to people watch. We choose the indoor seats because of the heat in HCMC.

The coconut coffee is really good! Rich taste of coffee with sweetness coming from the coconut! Although the price is a little steep and portion is small, we visited twice and enjoy our time there.

Cộng cà phê
26 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé, Ho Chi Minh City, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 0700- 2300

Shopping at 26 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé

If you are looking for different small boutique shop, try your luck at 26 Lý Tự Trọng, Bến Nghé. I can’t find the exact name for the block but it is above the coffee at Cộng cà phê
 We found this block while having coffee there. There are many shops there! Personally, I find the design at these local boutique more unique. Thus I have bought a few piece there.

Yakitori Shindo
Yakitori Shindo is H’s favourite Japanese restaurant in hcmc because they serves really authentic Japanese style yakitori sticks at affordable price. Although, it is consider as expensive ( 29,000 to 49,000 per stick )to local but to find a authentic and good yakitori in Singapore is almost impossible. Thus, we visited Yakitori Shindo for dinner to satisfy his craving. My personal favourite is the butabara kimchi and butabara cheese! Also, you must try the Negima Tare! Really good!

Yakitori Shindo
106 Nguyễn Trãi, Phường Phạm Ngũ Lão, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 1:30AM–2:30PM, 6PM–12:59AM

Air 360 Sky Lounge
Since its our last night in HCMC, we decided to visit a bar to call it a day. Air 360 Sky Lounge offers a great view of HCMC and nice place to chill. Drinks price are standard. Choice of music is good but too loud for anybody to have conversation. Nonetheless, we enjoyed our stay there

Dress code: No flipflops.

Air 360 Sky Lounge
136-138 Lê Thị Hồng Gấm, Phường Nguyễn Thái Bìn, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 0530pm – 1 am

Day 3: Banh Mi Hoa MaBinh Tay Market – Takashimaya Departmental Store– Cơm tấm Ba Ghiền-  Phu-vuong Pho – HCMC International Airport
Banh Mi Hoa Ma
Unlike the Banh Mi we had on first day, the Banh Mi here has the “ Big Breakfast” Style. The place is a traditional breakfast area in Ho Chi Minh City. Thus, we were seated at low chairs and tables. You get to choose it as an egg dish or the sandwich. We choose the one with egg dish. It comes with a  plate of egg, ham , fishcake and caramelised onions! The Baguette was crispy on the outside and soft in the inside. We dipped it with runny egg and our breakfast is complete! 52,000 VND for the Banh Mi without coffee. A little pricey but its so good! I wouldn’t mind a second serving!

Banh Mi Hoa Ma
53 Cao Thắng, Phường 3, Quận 3, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 0600 – 1100h

Chinatown Market/ Binh Tay Market

Binh Tay Market also known as the Chinese Market in HCMC is a place filled with lots of gem and bargain. It is less touristy and more authentic. Although it is out of the way, we still went ahead. And i am glad we did!

The market is huge and separated into different part – Wet market, Dried Food, home items and etc. There are many vendors and some just scattered along the streets, selling off tables or mats on the ground. While we were there, we saw many locals carrying basket and was loaded to the brim. The most common scene was local in their motorcycle with stacks of boxes behind them.

After we explore the market, we end up at the food court section. We went up to random stall and had “cai fan” aka vegetables mixed rice in Singapore. The food was mostly home-cook style. It was good but cold.

Takashimaya Vietnam
Takashimaya Vietnam is the new departmental shop in the block. It is similar to the ones in Singapore and Japan so you can find all the luxury brands and the food hall is definitely our to-go place. There are a big range of restaurants and café to choose from. We settled at a Japanese dessert shop to escape the heat. Honestly, the weather in Vietnam is really hot.

We visited the supermarket and bought a few souvenirs back - MAROU! and I’m glad my family and friends love it! Although the price is on the steep side, the quality is assured.

Takashimaya Vietnam
92-94 Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 700000, Vietnam
Daily, 0930h - 2130h

Cơm tấm Ba Ghiền
Before flying back to Singapore, we had our last second stop at Cơm tấm Ba Ghiền. Their specialty is definitely the pork chop with broken rice. (Personally, I would prefer rice that is not broken )  We ordered the set that comes with the pork chop and vegetables at the side. The pork chop is the bomb! Freshly grilled, tender and juicy! Plus, the portion was huge! We finished everything on the plate within minutes. Hygiene aside, this pork chop is really good!

Cơm tấm Ba Ghiền
4 Đặng Văn Ngữ, Phường 10, Phú Nhuận, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 7:30AM–9:30PM

Phu-vuong Pho
H & the rest wouldn’t want to miss out Pho before going back. Thus, we went to Phu-vuong Pho before flying back. H found Phu-vuong Pho, a Pho shop that specializes in beef soup and meat. I don’t take beef so I gave it a missed. According to H, the broth was rich and rice noodle was smooth and silky. Sadly, the special pho comes with intestine and other parts of beef, H didn’t manage to finish it. Luckily, our friend managed to!

Phu-vuong Pho
339 Đường Lê Văn Sỹ, Phường 1, Tân Bình, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Daily, 5:30AM–2PM, 5PM–1:30AM

After writing this Ho Chi Minh City, I realise that we did visit a lot of places even though we didn't go for day trips like Cu Chi tunnel or Mekong River! Nonetheless, I hope this itinerary helps! Bangkok or Vietnam for food trip? I’m lost.  Follow me at Heyjolow for more travel adventures!

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  1. Honestly, such as great food guide to Saigon. I love all of your photos about tasty foods. Wanna eat them all

  2. Thank you! Yes, Saigon food are delicious and i can't wait to be back for more!


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