Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City as it is termed today may be the veritable cliche -A shopper's paradise. The principle feature of shopping within the main city of Vietnam is that it is tourist oriented, just about everything on offer is intended for consumption from the hordes of visiting tourists. Having no less than a simple knowledge of bargaining would benefit you here as there are several eye catching items displayed, in the usual touristy fare to elegant antiques and souvenirs.
The businesses in Ho Chi Minh City or anywhere else in Vietnam are faraway from being drab; they are a riot of colour from extensive decorative make an effort to the colorful knick knacks displayed, along with is surely an enticing prospect for tourists. The streets in the city are lined with small outlets selling indigenously produced toys, souvenirs and clothing most of which are extremely cost-effective. Shopping in Vietnam is really a combination of small vendors peddling locally made handicrafts to large western style department stores selling considerably more up market fare.
The principle open air markets in Ho Chi Minh are Ben Thanh Market, the evening Market and also the War surplus market. The greatest with the lot is the Ben Thanh Market, which can be instantly identified by the big clock tower nearby the traffic circle. It is a large old school open air market with a huge selection of narrow alleyways which have store fronts. As a result of regular patronage by tourists industry has now morphed in to a tourist attraction, many stalls now sell Vietnam t-shits and counterfeit branded jeans, caps and souvenirs.
A night Information mill located almost right next to the Ben Thanh Information mill usually open after 5.00 pm. Forex also features a few food stalls where tourists may feel some local cuisine and attempt a local drink. However, probably the most interesting market of all is the War Surplus Market; the forex market may also be called the American Market or "Cho Cu". Many military items left over in the bloody American campaign contrary to the Viet Cong rebels, that ended with large losses of life on sides is visible here. American war gear including old military uniforms, GI helmets, US Marine t-shirts and old army knives can be purchased here. This might be an interesting spot to visit for collectors and Vietnam War veterans, although the authenticity from the ware can't be verified.
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