December 23rd, 2008 – by: rintjez
Chaucy and I
A couple of weeks before I arrived in HCMC/Saigon, Iâ€™d been exchanging messages with moshixkon aka Chaucy, a Vietnamese girl who helped me a bit with guesthouse information. Both of us agreed to meet when I were there. Today is the DAY! Chaucy came to my hostel and picked me up since she promised me to take me around the city. YAY! Eventhough it was our first day to meet each other, we felt like weâ€™ve been knowning each other for years!
Chaucy took me to the downtown with her motorcycle! It was a fun ride and I felt completely safe with her! But we didnâ€™t wanna caught in the heavy traffic of Saigon, so we decided to park the motorcycle somewhere and walked around the city.
We visited couple of famous MUST-SEE places around Saigon. First place to visit was the Saigon Opera House which was built in 1897 by French architect. It was under construction when I was there but it looked good from the outside. Then we went to The Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica which was established by French colonists and was constructed between 863 and 1880. Both of us went inside to check out the interior inside and it was amazingly well-preserved. Then we crossed the street to The Saigon Central Post Office which features Gothic architecture styles and was designed to be in harmony with the surrounding ward. We took some pictures and I bought some nice postcards for my friends. We continued walking through a nice garden where mostly local students hanging out to go to The Reunification Palace. But we only found out that the place was CLOSED for couple of days. BUMMER. So we went to different direction and made our ways to The War Remnants Museum. It is a war museum that was inaugurated in 1975 and back then it was called â€śThe house for Displaying War Crimes of American Imperialism and the puppet Government of South Vietnamâ€ť. This museum basically displays anything that related with Vietnam War. I couldnâ€™t really say anything about what I saw. My heart sank. I hate WAR. It doesnâ€™t do anything GOOD for both parties.
Saigon Notre-Dame Basilica
I thought the sadness made us hungry so from there we went to a nice Vietnamese restaurant called Rat Hue.
The food was great and the place was nice. I will write a review about this restaurant later :) Then.. SHOPPING TIME! We went to Ben Thanh Market and looked for some souvenirs for my friends and my family. It was such a big marketplace! They do have different section for local cuisine, souvenirs, handicrafts, clothes, bags, clothes and even the famous Viatnemese dress called Ao Dai! It was nice to have Chaucy around because sheâ€™s a local so I got cheaper price!!
Ben Thanh Market
After shopping, we headed back to Pham Ngu Lao area to look for a nice place for Saigon Christmas Meet Up! We walked around the area and finally found a nice place that we thought would be fit for the meet up. After made the reservation, we had to say good bye since it was already late and we both exhausted after walking for about 15K for hours! Haha! But we said it with big smiles because we were going to see each other again at the meet up!
Chaucy, thank you so much! Youâ€™re the BEST!! Miss ya!