Did you know that Ben Thanh Market is one of the oldest and most famous markets in Ho Chi Minh City? Join BDATrip to discover the interesting things about this place in the following article!
Located on Le Loi Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City, Ben Thanh Market is a must-visit destination. This bustling shopping center covers an area of 13,056 m², surrounded by Phan Boi Chau, Phan Chu Trinh, Le Thanh Ton streets, and Quach Thi Trang square. The market faces the Ben Thanh subway station, previously known as the Quach Thi Trang construction site.
Visitors to this market can choose various flexible transportation options such as bus, motorcycle, taxi, Grab service, bicycle, or even walking. From Tan Son Nhat Airport, you can take bus lines 109, 152, 49, or 119 to reach the market. If departing from Saigon station, it's only about a 15-minute walk, or you can take bus number 1. For those coming from Mien Dong bus station, bus lines 14 or 28 are suitable choices.
Ben Thanh Market is not just an ordinary market but also a historical and cultural relic of Saigon. The market originated in the 17th century, located along the Ben Nghe River, near a river wharf close to Gia Dinh citadel. This wharf, once a landing point for visitors and soldiers entering the city, was named Ben Thanh, hence the market was also named after it.
After several relocations, the market was rebuilt at its current location in 1912 in the French architectural style. The current market architecture is square, with four entrances on each side, each topped with a large clock. The main entrance facing south has the words “Ben Thanh Market” written in both the Latin and Chinese scripts. This entrance is seen as the unofficial symbol of Ho Chi Minh City.
Over more than 100 years of existence and development, the market has witnessed many historical and social changes in Saigon. This place has also become an inseparable part of the life and soul of the local people and preserves and promotes the traditional cultural values of the Vietnamese, such as hospitality, creativity, dynamism, and friendliness.
Ben Thanh Market is surrounded by four entrances, each facing a different direction, not only unique but also making it more convenient for visitors to enter and exit. The main southern entrance is not only the main entryway but also displays a sophisticated oil painting depicting the bustling evening scene of the market. Opposite, the north entrance is usually less crowded, leading to other areas of the city.
If the eastern entrance welcomes guests from the busy adjacent streets, the western entrance opens towards Quach Thi Trang square, equally lively and bustling. Each entrance of the market is adorned with a large clock at the top, along with the market's name in both the Latin and Chinese scripts, representing a blend of tradition and modernity.
Located in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, Ben Thanh Market is easily accessible by various means of transport:
- Bus: An economical and environmentally friendly choice. Bus lines 01, 03, 05, 07, 09, 14, 19, 23, 27, 28, 32, 36, 40, 45, 49, 53, 56, 65, 68, 93, 109, 119, 120, 139, 141, 145, 152... are some of the many lines that pass through the market.
- Motorcycle: The most flexible means of transport in Vietnam. Available for rent at airports, stations, bus terminals, hotels, etc., with prices ranging from 80,000 to 150,000 VND per day. A valid driving license and compliance with traffic regulations are required.
- Taxi/Grab: Convenient and quick. Fares range from 10,000 - 20,000 VND per kilometer. Recommended to use reputable taxi companies like Mai Linh, Vinasun.
- Bicycle: An interesting way to explore Saigon. Available for rent from hotels, parks, etc., with prices ranging from 20,000 - 50,000 VND per hour.
- Walking: Ideal for enjoying the atmosphere of Saigon. Possible starting points include the City Theater, Notre Dame Cathedral, or join walking tours.
Ben Thanh Market is a symbol of the harmonious combination of French and Vietnamese architecture, opening up a unique world of art and culture. As you step through the entrances, pay attention to the intricate and sophisticated decorative details on the domes, pillars, and walls of the market. Especially, the main entrance with its prominent clock and the oil painting depicting the market's night scene is an ideal spot for memorable photos.
Inside the market, don't miss the flower stall area. Here, you'll be captivated by the diversity and colors of flowers like roses, orchids, lilies, chrysanthemums, and lotuses. Each flower is not only beautiful in color but also emits a pleasant fragrance, bringing a sense of relaxation and closeness to nature. Visiting this area, you'll appreciate the delicacy in each stall, showcasing the essence of traditional Vietnamese flower arranging art.
At Ben Thanh Market, a rich shopping world awaits you with a variety of goods from traditional to modern. Explore colorful stalls offering food, beverages, household utensils, electronic devices, and a multitude of choices in clothing, shoes, bags, jewelry, and souvenirs.
Visitors can find distinctive Vietnamese cultural products like traditional Ao Dai, graceful conical hats, multi-colored checkered scarves, artistic clock paintings, exquisite ceramics, and soft silks. In addition, the market also offers modern fashion items like dynamic T-shirts, stylish jeans, trendy sports shoes, luxurious watches, and a variety of sunglasses.
When shopping here, visitors should inquire about prices and consider bargaining, as vendors often quote prices higher than the actual value. Bargaining not only helps you get goods at a reasonable price but also offers an enjoyable experience in the local shopping culture.
Ben Thanh Market opens up a culinary paradise, gathering distinctive flavors of Saigon and other regions of Vietnam. Here, you can enjoy traditional dishes like flavorful Pho, crispy Banh Mi, spicy Bun Bo Hue, golden Banh Xeo, soft Banh Cuon, fragrant Com Tam, fresh Goi Cuon, and colorful Banh Trang Tron.
Don't miss out on trying unique dishes like flavor-rich stir-fried snails, aromatic Bo La Lot, special crab soup Banh Canh, crispy Banh Khot, light Banh Beo, and delicious grilled Banh Trang. Additionally, the market serves a variety of refreshing and attractive drinks like sweet sugarcane juice, cool coconut water, gently sour Dracontomelon juice, fresh orange juice, multi-flavored smoothies, and delicious bubble tea.
Each dish and drink at the market is not just a blend of ingredients but also a combination of tradition and creativity, providing you with a rich and memorable culinary experience.
The Ben Thanh Night Market is a smaller yet equally vibrant version of the Ben Thanh Market. The night market operates from 6 PM to midnight. Located along Phan Boi Chau and Phan Chu Trinh streets, the night market reveals a different aspect of Saigon with a unique shopping and entertainment space.
Here, visitors will find a variety of goods ranging from fashionable clothing, unique accessories, diverse souvenirs, modern electronic devices, to various appealing snacks. The Ben Thanh Night Market is not just a shopping venue but also a meeting point for cultural and entertainment activities. You can enjoy street music, lively art performances, or participate in fun games, offering a different experience from the daytime.
The night market is an ideal destination to experience the bustling, colorful, and vibrant nightlife of Saigon, providing a comprehensive and captivating view of the city's affluent urban life.
Located in the center of Ho Chi Minh City, Ben Thanh Market is conveniently close to several tourist attractions such as:
- City Theater: About 500 meters from the market, with French architecture from 1897, hosting art programs like opera, ballet. Tickets can be purchased at the box office or online. Easily accessible by bus numbers 01, 02, or 03.
- Notre Dame Cathedral: About 700 meters away, with Gothic architecture from 1880, open free from 8 AM to 5 PM. Accessible by walking or bus numbers 01, 02, or 03.
- Independence Palace: About 1.2 km away, with modern architecture from 1966, witnessing important Vietnamese history. Entrance fee 40,000 VND per person. Accessible by bus numbers 01, 02, or 03, or on foot.
If you want to stay near Ben Thanh Market for convenient sightseeing and shopping, you can choose from many hotels in the area such as:
- Silverland Yen Hotel: Only 200 meters from the market. The hotel offers modern and clean rooms with amenities like air conditioning, TV, minibar,... Enjoy a daily free buffet breakfast, and international dishes with prices ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 million VND per night.
- Central Palace Hotel: Approximately 300 meters from the market. The hotel features spacious and comfortable rooms, fully equipped, with prices ranging from 1.2 to 2 million VND per night.
- Nhat Ha 2 Hotel: About 400 meters from the market, offering fully-equipped rooms at prices ranging from 600 thousand to 1 million VND per night.
- Tam Hostel: Approximately 300 meters from the market. The hostel provides clean and cozy rooms with amenities like air conditioning, storage cabinets, and shared bathrooms. It also offers a communal area, kitchen, and laundry service, with prices ranging from 100 to 200 thousand VND per night.
Ben Thanh Market is a distinctive destination when exploring Saigon, not only as a center for shopping and rich cuisine but also as a window into the history, culture, and essence of the city. It also provides opportunities for interactions with both domestic and international tourists, highlighting its role as an indispensable symbol of Saigon. Visit this interesting place today!
Tourist attractions in Saigon:
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