it is in Ho Chi Minh where one can really immerse one self to its diverse culture and history even on a short weekend trip. it is best to explore it backpacking style. here's to run down twelve things i'll never forget about this city. many Vietnamese hardly understand English. this was something i didn't expect when we went to Vietnam. before our trip, i thought that they highly understand English since the Americans somehow occupied the country. so when you're there, a bit of sign language will help. without the language barrier i should say that they are as jolly and friendly as most of the Filipinos. the red shirt with a yellow star. definitely one of the most popular souvenirs for tourists in Vietnam. other popular items would be Vietcong military caps, small Vietnamese keychains, Vietnam coffee, and the famous conical hats. but my favorite souvenir are the Vietnam stamps sold outside the post office. usually sold as a set or in a booklet.
 the towering long and narrow buildings are such a surprise sight. they call this the tube or rocket buildings which are noticeable even when you look it from Google Earth. majority of the structures in Ho Chi Minh are of this type. the lower ground floor are usually shops.
 the french factor is still evident. mostly on structures like Notre Dame church and the central post office. but beyond these are the tasty Banh mi sold along small streets and alleyways within the city. with options of choosing condiments and the usual ingredients are tomatoes, lettuces varying by its condiments and main ingredient which can either be thin sliced pork, meat or fried egg. c'est si bon! great bargain begins at night in Ho Chi Minh and many items can be dirt cheap when one is really good at haggling. Ben Thanh market is the shopping center for these cheap items which is walking distance from the backpacker's district of De Tham, such a great combination.
 De Tham and Pham Ngu Lao street comprises the city's backpacker's district with hotels that can just cost to about 7US dollars per head per night for a room with its own toilet, air-conditioned and clean bed sheets. that means you really need not a big budget for a trip to Ho Chi Minh. if you thought that there's not much to see in Ho Chi Minh by night other than shopping in Ben Than well think again. some of the most important structures in Vietnam are best seen by night. the city hall of Ho Chi Minh and Vietnam Opera house are among the most elegant.  i highly recommend exploring the many Pagodas with a motorcycle. the number of pagodas around Ho Chi Minh can closely be the same number of churches in Manila. it is in Vietnam where one would refer to pagoda as the tower and temple combined. other countries would refer pagoda as just the tiered-structure. the chance of able to walk up the long step up these pagodas is a great experience.  remains of what used to be a war thorn city are among the most visited sites in Ho Chi Minh. the Cu Chi tunnel system is a highlight to most of the tours in this city with an option to duck-walk inside these long narrow and small man-made earth tubes. made by the Vietcongs in defense to the many high-powered opposing forces. another popular site is the War Remnants museum which is just within the city. crossing the main wide streets of Ho Chi Minh on a regular day requires determination. take note that there's almost no overpass in this city which means on most instances, you'll have to cross the road with all those motorbikes coming from almost every direction. it is quite odd though that somehow these motorbikes in one way adds charm to the city. in Ho Chi Minh, walking around the city is such a great activity. most of the notable tourist spots are almost just a block away from the other. you just really have to plan out in advance the spots that you wanted to visit and download a map to create the route. but taking the taxi is not a bad idea, it's still cheap.  enter an alley, take a seat on a kid-size plastic chair and pick your Pho! that's how you do it there, the street style. but whether you're on the streets or inside small food shops and restaurants you get to taste authentic Vietnamese noodle soups at a price so cheap. Saigon, now Ho Chi Minh, is a city best for street walk, food tripping and bargain shopping. Chyng and Nina shares their own reason of what they will never forget about Ho Chi Minh.
"Vietnam will always be memorable kasi first country where i traveled solo. learning about the highly skilled Vietnamese, specially the Cu Chi tunnel, the asset of Ho Chi Minh" - Chyng of No Spam, No Virus, No Kidding
"Food! super memorable is the food tried in Ngon! in terms of landmark, my favorite is the post office. for experience naman, crossing the streets." - Nina of Just Wandering