What to buy in Vietnam
What to buy in Vietnam and where to buy it depends on where you are traveling. For your convenience, Asia Highlights provides the following suggestions for great places to shop when traveling through some of the top destinations in Vietnam.
Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
In the historic Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, opportunities for shopping are abundant. The city is a leader in designer apparel among fashion-conscious metropolises across Southeast Asia.
Those interested in shopping for luxury-brand goods should check out the Vincom Center, the largest mall in Ho Chih Minh City, where you can find exclusive labels like Hermes, Hugo Boss and Ralph Lauren.
There are tons of chic boutique clothing shops across the city; stop by Dong Khoi Street in downtown District 1 as a great starting point. Art-lovers: feel free to pop into some of the many quaint art galleries on this same street.
Great bargains for apparel, shoes and other accessories can be found in the Saigon Square wholesale mall, where shoppers should be prepared to bargain (helpful tip: for a better deal, start with 30% of the original asking price).
Finally, don’t forget to visit the top floor of An Dong Market in District 10 for tons of hand-made crafts, like traditional woodwork and exquisite lacquerware.
The Vietnamese capital Hanoi is often called the Paris of the East. Thousands upon thousands of guests from all over the world enjoy exploring the fascinating landscape and quaint atmosphere of this river city. Stimulating pedestrian streets and vibrant markets provide many great choices for shoppers in Hanoi.
Han Gai Street is a famous spot for high-quality silk fabrics and garments. Similarly, Hang Bac Street is home to dozens of vendors hawking jewelry, particularly silver, at bargain prices. Hang Dau Street is another pedestrian street with hundreds of stalls selling men’s and women’s shoes in a range of styles.
No trip to Hanoi is complete without a visit to the popular weekend night market in the Old Quarter. Taste some traditional snacks and pick up some specialty souvenirs at this bargain-friendly spot.
A stone’s-throw away in the northern part of the Old Quarter is the indoor Dong Xuan market, the largest in the whole city. Experience the daily life of local people by pursuing the markets on the bottom levels, or head upstairs for cheap apparel and quirky souvenirs.
Remember always to look after your personal belongings whenever traveling through busy districts in Vietnam. Being alert and attentive to your surroundings is always a good idea when traveling abroad!
The laid-back vibes of the coastal city Nha Trang makes it one of Vietnam’s most popular destinations for international travelers. While shoppers here won’t find the mega-malls or brand-names that are widely available in big cities, they won’t be disappointed by the diverse, opulent markets that constitute Nha Trang’s shopping scene.
The Nha Trang, or Dam Market, is one of the busiest shopping areas in the city. Hundreds of vendors peddle everything from dried seafood snacks to cut-price clothes and handbags. Guests should be sure to visit this market or the quieter Vinh Luong Market, for a taste of the authentic Vietnamese lifestyle.
The historic port city of Hoi An is an incredible melting pot of Asian and western influence. Shoppers here are in luck, as this charming destination is famous for offering many high-quality tailoring services.
Check out Hoi An Central Market on the banks of the Thu Bon River, for a candid look into daily life, or possibly a few pieces of silk clothing custom-made at an affordable price.
For a more upscale tailoring experience, guests should visit Ababa Hoi An or Hoi An Silk Village.
In the Ancient Town, you will have many opportunities to browse through fair-trade, non-profit shops where your support helps improve the lives of local people.
Lifestart Foundation Workshop and Reaching Out Arts and Crafts are charity-based organizations where shoppers can purchase exquisite handicrafts produced by disadvantaged families in the surrounding community.
Phu Quoc Island
The gorgeous Phu Quoc Island is home to many open-air street markets that should be on any shopper’s list. Visit the Duong Duong Market on Tran Phu Street for a variety of locally-sourced fresh snacks and refreshing juices. There is also a range of packaged goods and cooking ingredients, so you can bring some Vietnamese flavors back home with you.
Visiting Dinh Cau Night Market is a great evening activity because it is pedestrian-friendly and open until very late. Unique souvenirs including pearls, slippers and seashells, are available for purchase at bargain prices.
The stunning Halong Bay is internationally renowned for its distinctive karst mountains, magical grottos, and thrilling water activities. While shopping is not as diverse here as it may be in other destinations, guests have plenty of opportunities to exercise their bargaining skills while learning more about the lifestyle of local people.
Guests will enjoy browsing through the silk dresses, lacquerware goods, tea sets and authentic trinkets at the night market in Bai Chay Town. For a distinctly Vietnamese shopping experience, look out for the floating vendors who row their boats to shore in order to hawk their wares.