Photo: Scenes of everyday life.

A day in Cholon

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Cholon is Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown but it's far more than just a traditionally Chinese settlement.

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For centuries it was a powerhouse that dominated export and import, its industry driving development for the entire region. To this day, the atmospheric neighbourhood has its own distinct characteristics and residents still speak Chinese dialects. A visit is a must, and here is our take on how to spend a day exploring Cholon.

Pace yourself. Photo taken in or around A day in Cholon, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by Cindy Fan.

Pace yourself. Photo: Cindy Fan

Before there was “Ho Chi Minh City” there was Saigon and Cholon, two distinct areas. While the French did their administrative stuff in Saigon, west of the river was where the money was made. Cholon literally translates as “big market”.

The first wave of Chinese immigrants arrived in the late 17th century, with additional waves of immigrations and settlement, Chinese from different provinces fuelling growth throughout the centuries. They were powerful players in Saigon’s world of trade right up until the end of the ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 1,700 words.)

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A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Ho Chi Minh City.

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Ho Chi Minh City? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Vietnam.

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