Cho Lon’s Scents, Sights and Sounds
Cho Lon’s Scents,
Sights and Sounds
Mapped as one of the most happening places in vibrant Ho Chi Minh City, hues of Chinese heritage
engulf Cho Lon. From commerce to devotion, the city’s Chinatown is a dazzling example of
how traditions remain cherished in a forward-thinking metropolis.
WHY THIS TOUR?
It is hard to imagine that something is even more vibrant and alive than downtown Ho Chi Minh City, but Cho Lon is just that kind of place. With its distinctly Chinese character, the sounds, sights and smells of Saigon’s Chinatown are home to the Minh Huong (Chinese origin) and are worth half a day of exploration.
This morning tour will take you to the heart that it is so traditional Cho Lon and learn more about the values, cultural differences and religious practices that define this part of Ho Chi Minh City.
08:00 - 13:00
We will pick you up from your hotel in Ho Chi Ming City at around 8 am. Known as Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown, Cho Lon is where visitors will explore the various sights and sounds of Vietnam’s tight connection with Chinese heritage. Home of landmarks such as the Thien Hau Pagoda and the bustling Binh Tay Market, Cho Lon lies in the heart of the city and just west of the Saigon River. Often crowded and brimming with life, it is here where back-alley exploration and looking for authenticity comes to life.
Our tour commences with a walk through colourful merchant streets and markets in Cho Lon to learn how the Minh Huong community has been integrating into Vietnamese life. The overwhelming atmosphere will give each visitor immediately the feeling that they are in something really special. It takes almost half of one of Ho Chi Minh’s main districts! During our walk, we visit the Francis Xavier Church, built for Chinese Christians which witnessed the last prayer of President Ngo Dinh Diem and his brother on the fatal morning of his passing.
In the heart of Cho Lon, you can find the Thien Hau Pagoda. It was built by Cantonese in the 19th century and dedicated to Thien Hau – the Goddess of the Sea -, who was known for saving people who run into trouble when travelling over water. Recorded as one of the oldest temples in the city, the Thien Hau Pagoda is known to be a popular meeting point for the Chinese community, both for paying respect and meeting friends and family. Mingle beneath the large coils of suspended incense in Chinese Assembly hall, this temple certainly will bring forward some Instagrammable moments. The decorative ceramic figurine, the altars and worshipping objects will reveal untold stories, such as the arrival of Marco Polo or legends of Yue Lao ”God of Marriage”.
Before we drive back to your downtown hotel at around 1 pm, a selection of Chinese delicacies and the use of local means of transportation will complete your tasty immersion.