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Ultimate Guide for Shopping in Vietnam

Welcome to Vietnam, the new paradise for shopping. If you look at the surface, you will be disappointed by the large number of mass produced and many times low quality items in just any cities. If you dare to search, you will be caught in a complete surprise: Vietnam has every shopping scene that can match popular names such as SoHo in Manhattan, Kensington Market in Toronto, Chapel Street in Melbourne and Chatuchak in Bangkok.

5 Pocket tips for shopping in Vietnam

Here are a few tips before you begin your exploration:

1. Bargaining

Yes, unfortunately, you will have to bargain most of the time to get the price right. Unless you plan to go to shopping mall or supermarket where price is printed on the product. It is not an intimidating task like it seems, and once you will get used to it, you will miss the bargaining scene found in Vietnam and in most of Asia. 

Tips: Look around and check with your guide to have the idea of what you are going to buy. You can check the 7 tips for bargaining in Vietnam for more detail

2. Sale / Discount

Vietnam does not have a sale culture like many other countries. What are on sale are usually products that can no longer be attractive enough, or they might have many defects. Here and there in big cities you will catch sight of a local crowd surrounding a sign “Đại Hạ Giá” but don’t bother to join unless you want to sweat or to give your bag some pickpockets. In shopping malls, there are price marked down but do not expect it to go below 30%. The good news is, most items are affordable even without sale. 

3. Have it tailored

You are in Vietnam, and why bother looking for Nike and Louis Vuitton? You can have your clothes, shoes and apparels made to your size and preferred colors and styles at significantly lower costs. What you will have is unique, and it’s time to show off your special taste as well. Hoi An is a great place to start for tailor-made clothing items. In Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, you will have to go out of your way, but the quality is worth all the effort.  

4. Price matters

Do not buy things just because it is cheap. There are inexpensive items that will catch your eyes and cost you a dollar. And the next thing you know it is out of order. This mostly applies to garment products in green markets or electronic goods at certain stores in big cities. On the other hand, expensive does not equal top quality, since you might be ripped off or they are just not worth a cent. It is good to start with recommended places and you will develop an instinct how shopping works in Vietnam.

5. Don’t overload

You have only so much space in your luggage. Unless you want to send some home over post, try to avoid heavy and massive items. Many stores offer free shipping service so check for your convenience.

Shopping in Vietnam is a culture, a ritual and a lot of fun. It is rewarding for those who really take it more seriously than just getting some souvenirs off the shelf. Whatever reason you come to Vietnam for, make sure shopping is one of the bullet points in your travel agenda.

7 tips for haggling in Vietnam

You can read at many backpackers’ blogs that you need to haggle every time you buy something in Vietnam (and Southeast Asia).

Yes, it is true…

… but not enough!

One of the fun facts about Vietnam is that everybody is millionaire. But the 1 million Vietnam Dong is just about $43. 

The average take-home salary of a Vietnamese worker is around USD 150 a month, and often less for Vietnamese who live outside the country’s urban sprawls.

The real fact you should be aware is that most of the people selling fruits on the street is struggled to earn their living and support their families

From your side, do not try too hard to bargain to save some few dollars (yes, just few dollars) as most of the items you tend to buy are the small gifts or souvenirs. Your small save can feed a family for a day.

But of course, avoid paying too high for what you need.

Our advice is to look around, check with your guide, or receptionist at the hotel, they will give you the idea of how much you need to pay for the things you want.

Here are our 7 tips for haggling in Vietnam

1. Don’t become too attached.

Many shops often sell the same things. If you can’t get the price you’re after, be willing to walk away and find it at a neighboring shop instead.

2. Practice your poker face.

The trick is to look interested, but not too interested. If it appears you have your heart set on something, the seller will know they can get a higher price. Try to point out superfluous flaws in the product, even if imaginary, to try and disguise your interest.

3. Have fun with it.

The old saying ‘you win more flies with honey than vinegar’ rings true when haggling. Make jokes, lay down some flattery and don’t forget to smile. Nobody wants to give a good deal to a sourpuss.

4. Learn the language.

Vietnamese can be a difficult language to master, so while the locals won’t expect you to be able to haggle in numbers (that’s what calculators are for), a simple ‘hello’ (xin chào) and ‘thank you’ (cảm ơn) will go a long way. If all else fails, a well-placed ‘Oi gioi oi’ (‘Oh my Buddha’) can work wonders.

5. Use the translation apps.

If you have no time to learn those simple phrases, you can use Google Translate by speech or Google Translate Image, which surely help in most of the case

6. Gauge your audience.

Are you in a tiny market outside Hanoi or a warehouse sale in Ho Chi Minh City? Larger commercial markets have more fat built into their prices for tourists, while smaller markets have less. Look around and compare prices to get a sense of just how much of a discount you should ask for.

7. Decide on a fair price.

Haggling is a lot of fun once you get used to it, but never lose sight of the fact that this is someone’s livelihood. When shopping at markets, be prepared to ask for big discounts (between 40-50%) and then settle on a final price closer to 65-75% of the asking price.

Useful words and phrases for Vietnam shopping

Following the haggling tip number 4, you should learn the local language to better understand the sellers. Do not worry if you are not fluent with the language. The sellers tend to give some more discount if they see that you are trying to learn their language.

Here are some important shopping words and phrases for you:

  • How much? = Bao nhieu? (Baow nyew)
  • Too expensive = Mac Qua (Mac wa) / Dat Qua (Dawt wa)
  • Can you reduce the price? = Giam gia duoc khong? (zam za duoc khom)
  • Do you want to sell? = co ban khong? ( cor ban kohm?)
  • I want to buy = toi muon mua (Toi mu-on mua)
  • One size larger = mot size lon hon (Mot size lunh hunh)
  • One size smaller = mot size nho hon (Mot size nyunh hunh)
  • What do you do? = Ban lam gi? (Ban lahm zi?)
  • *You are very beautiful = Em dep qua (Em dep wah)
  • *You are very handsome = Anh dep trai qua (Anh dep wah)

*One of the most cheeky but effective tips to have best the price is to ask how they are and compliment them. Vietnamese love visitors to compliment them, so if you say something like “you are beautiful”, they often provide more affordable prices.

You can check the below Youtube video to learn some basic shopping phrases in Vietnam

Top 10 things to buy in Vietnam

Now you have learned some simple words and phrases for shopping, it is time to see what you can buy in Vietnam

1. Vietnamese Coffee

Coffee is one of the most popular and high-quality products in Vietnam, selling almost everywhere. However, if you want to avoid the slight chance of scam and cheaper price, it is possible to buy great coffee in Hanoi, Da Lat or Tay Nguyen (Vietnam Central Highlands). Otherwise, you can find this type of souvenir in any big cities without much trouble. Just ask the local or your tour guide for the trusting providers.

2. Ao Dai (Long dress)

Ao Dai (long dress) is perhaps extremely well-known over all the world as the traditional clothes of Vietnam. Its elegant and beauty are loved by plenty fashionable tourists and obviously Vietnamese woman. Nonetheless, be sure to look up at different types of Ao Dai such as trendy Ao Dai, hippy Ao Dai, or mini Ao Dai. Moreover, tailors also need about 24 hours to complete an Ao Dai. However, this will both be a nice present for your friends, family member or simply kept as a memento.

3. Conical Hat

For 10 or so years ago, the conical hat (or straw hat) was a familiar garment to Vietnamese. It provides not only a protection from the heat but also added to the charm of the wearer. Today, it is usually used as decorations and presents. The conical hat may have few differences between regions, yet all the basic features are the same. This souvenir can be found in many parts of Vietnam at a reasonable price. So, the conical hat is one of the special gifts that you should add it on your Things to buy in Vietnam list.

4. Silk (Silk Products)

Vietnam was once very famous for silk as one of the main trading product in South East Asia. The lightness and durability are the main features that make Vietnamese silk attractive. A great number of places offers raw silk for sale, namely Van Phuc Silk Village in Hanoi, Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh and so on. Beautiful products made from silk are available, especially the hand embroidery paintings. This is considered an art in modern Vietnam and few even cost a fortune.

5. Brocade

Besides silk, brocade in Vietnam is also very popular in Vietnam with a wide range of items made from that material. You can easily buy one of them on the misty town of Sapa or markets in Lao Cai, Dong Van, Ha Giang. There are bags, clothes, scarves in various shapes, sizes, colors, and decorations. Brocade products will certainly amazing enough to win the heart of all collectors in the world

6. Pottery/Ceramic

Several countries are selling Vietnamese traditional pottery which shows the great influence of the once pottery center in Asia. A huge number of stores offer this type of product since pottery is still being used in the everyday life of Vietnamese people. Nevertheless, if you travel to Hanoi, it is advised to get to Bat Trang traditional village in which the art has been passed down for a thousand years. In the South of Vietnam, high-quality ceramic is available in Ho Chi Minh shops or Binh Duong province.

7. Watercolor Painting

For those who love paintings, even though they may visit the national museum in the country to contemplate the unique watercolor paintings, it is possible to buy a work of art showing the magnificent scene in Vietnam. This is one of the main products in souvenir shops resulting in easy trade for tourists. The price is reasonable ranging from 10$ to 20$ with lots of topics and styles.

8. T-shirts

Budget travelers probably think this kind of souvenir much more appealing than other options on this list because of the cheap price and availability. You can keep and pack them easily or even wear them immediately after buying. There is a wide variety of unique designs and decorations about Vietnam for visitors to choose. If you are worried about the size, then a good selection of souvenir shops offers western size in their stocks as well.

9. Sedge Products

In the modern day, you will be surprised at the huge number of traditional sedge tools in every household. They are extremely cheap, durable and have multiple uses for Vietnamese people. Tourists may not particularly find them helpful, but sedge products are definitely the most iconic items in this South East Asia country. Furthermore, the creativity of local has given birth to the special sedge souvenir like vases, baskets, and animals. For the best place to buy, try to visit Kim Son Sedge village in Ninh Binh.

10. Wooden Puppet

The water puppet show has been the greatest art in Vietnam for several centuries. If you love the authentic wooden puppet after participating in one of the shows in the theater, you can purchase some to bring home. It is pretty hard to locate which mainly sold stores around Hanoi Old Quarter and Van Mieu. However, this rare kind of souvenir will obviously worth your time and money anyway - one of the best things to buy back from Hanoi.

35 Best Shopping places in Vietnam

We have collected the list of some exciting shopping places for tourist. Let's check out below.

Hanoi shopping

1. Hang Gai Street (Silk Street)

Hang Gai Street is the best place in Hanoi to shop for high quality, fashionable silk materials, traditional Vietnamese apparel, and home furnishings. Also known as Silk Street, the entirety of this 300-meter-long street is lined with fashion boutiques and local tailor shops that have been operating for decades, where you can also order personally tailored suits and dresses that are made to measure. 

2. Hang Bac Street (Silver Street)

Hang Bac Street is one of the oldest streets in Vietnam and has its roots in silver making dating back to the 13th century when silver casters where brought here from rural villages by request of Le Thang Tong. Silver goods are still produced here today with most of the work being completely original made by secret methods that have been passed down for generations. This is a charming street to explore, rich in history and culture in addition to jewelers selling beautiful Vietnamese pieces.

3. Nha Tho Street (Church Street)

Nha Tho Street is a 110-meter long street in Hanoi lined with trendy boutique stores selling top quality items that you won’t find anywhere else in Hanoi. This street is a popular shopping destination for Hanoi’s sophisticated middleclass and foreign expat community due to the quality of goods sold here. 

4. Hang Da Market

Hang Da Market, located in the heart of Hanoi’s central business district, is a three-storey shopping mall that houses an eclectic array of stalls. Smaller than Dong Xuan and offering a more selected product range, this is the place to come for imported wine, flowers, second-hand clothes and fabrics.

5. Hang Dau Street

Shoe shoppers will be in retail heaven with hundreds of shoe sellers lining Hang Dau Street. Western men may not find much over size nine but there is plenty of choice in women’s shoes. Most of the footwear consists of brand names made at Vietnamese factories that have been rejected as seconds, making them a great purchase with usually only a small imperfection. There are also plenty of fake reproduction bags where Hang Dau Street meets Lo Su.

Halong Shopping

6. Halong market

This is one of the most attractive places in the city for both locals and tourists coming for shopping in Halong. Situated in the center area of Halong city, the market is reckoned as the largest market of this city. The products displayed and sold here are very various, ranging from normal to luxurious goods with pretty competitive prices. Guests coming here could easily find anything they want, such as clothes, electrical devices, and accessories. Besides, the drinks and food here are sold out in restaurants inside the market.

7. Halong night market

Halong Night Market is another destination for tourists who want to enjoy diversifying experience of shopping in Halong Bay. The market is a big group of hundreds of stalls selling various kinds of products, including handmade accessories, handicrafts, clothes and other dispensable stuff like lotion, hat, or swimwear. 
Visitors tend to come to this market for buying unique products of the coastal city such as necklaces made from seashells, and wooden small boats, snails, or T-shirt with beautiful images of Halong Bay painted on. 
The great thing about this night market is that sellers here are very friendly and could speak English rather well, so tourists will be able to bargain easily. Even, you could have a nice chat with vendors about the city and its features.

8. Halong Floating Market

This market could be found nearby wharf, cruise ships, and in makeshift areas in which sellers lash their boats together. The waterborne convenience stores here carry most traditional fare, and fresh seafood.  The most noticeable goods sold here is fruits.  This floating market sells most fruits available in Halong city. The market will surprise most visitors for its interesting form. While it might cost more to purchase traditional stuff from this type of shop, the unique experience is usually worth the additional cost for every tourist.

Hue Shopping

9. Dong Ba Market

Dong Ba Market is the oldest of its kind in Hue, with hundreds of stalls selling household items, handicrafts, clothing and fresh produce at affordable prices. Located on Tran Hung Dao Street, it occupies a large grey building along the northern bank of Perfume River. 

Look out for the large red signage that says ‘Cho Dong Ba’ (which means Dong Ba Market in Vietnamese). The market opens as early as 03:00 to cater to local marketgoers looking to purchase fresh seafood, fruit, and vegetables.

10. Gia Huy Silk Hue

Gia Huy Silk Hue is a tailor shop on Pham Ngu Lao Street that’s renowned for its efficient tailoring services and extensive collection of textiles. The staff are very patient and takes their craft seriously, making sure that you get exactly what you want in terms of style, size and material. 

You’ll find a variety of local silk, cotton, cashmere and wool that aren’t available in most tailor shops in Hue. Price may vary according to length and design, but still reasonable as you get to enjoy personalised service and free alterations until you’re happy with the end results. 

11. Healing the Wounded Heart Hue

Healing the Wounded Heart Shop is a humanitarian organization in Hue, Vietnam. It sells handicrafts made by disabled artisans using recycled materials. It has a great variety of interesting items: such as bags made from recycled soda cans and noodle wrappers. It's a wonderful place to shop for souvenirs because it gives back to the community and helps to promote a sustainable livelihood for disabled artists.

All proceeds go towards fair salaries and health insurance for the disabled employees, and funding heart surgeries for poor children in the Hue area through the Office of Genetic Counseling and Disabled Children, Hue College of Medicine and Pharmacy. The shop is a project of the SPIRAL Foundation, a registered non-profit in the US. Located at 23 Vo Thi Sau Street, across from Why Not Bar.

12. New Space Art Foundation Hue

New Space Art Foundation Hue is an independent art gallery by brothers Le Duc Hai and Le Ngoc Thanh, exhibiting their collection of unique folk paintings. Located on Pham Ngu Lao Street, the gallery occupies a two-story venue that’s fitted with a garden courtyard, lacquer and photography studios. In efforts of expanding the local art scene, New Space Art Foundation Hue also frequently hosts dinner events, communal cooking, and art exhibitions for upcoming artists. One of their previous installations, Bowls and Chopsticks, features 1,945 gilded bowls crossed with red chopsticks in lines on the ground to commemorate two million Vietnamese who have perished from famine between 1944 and 1945.

Da Nang Shopping

13. Han Market

Han Market is a significant landmark in Da Nang, having been in operation since the French occupancy in the 1940s. This local market is set within a two-storey building at the grand intersection of Tran Phu Street, Bach Dang Street, Hung Vuong Street and Tran Hung Dao Street, where you can find hundreds of stalls selling an array of local produce, handicrafts, T-shirts, and accessories. It’s very much like a miniature version of Ben Thanh Market central market in Ho Chi Minh City, and even if you aren’t necessarily looking to buy anything it still offers a fascinating glimpse into local life in Da Nang.

14. Non Nuoc Fine Arts Village

Non Nuoc Fine Arts Village comprises over 500 manufacturers, artisan workshops and retail outlets selling marble goods at affordable prices. Set at the foot of Da Nang’s Marble Mountains, the village dates back to the late 18th century and was founded by Huynh Ba Quat, a craftsman from Thanh Hoa Province.

The ancient village is also recognized as a National Intangible Cultural Heritage due to its cultural significance to Da Nang, where thousands of talented sculptors and craftsmen produce a wide range of statues, household items, and accessories using stones found within the mountain.

15. Con Market

Con Market is a prominent shopping venue in Da Nang City Centre where you can find over 2,000 stalls selling an array of handicrafts, apparel, and accessories at wholesale prices. Also known as Da Nang Commercial Centre, it is widely regarded as the coastal city’s largest and busiest wholesale shopping venue.

Built atop a highland in the city center during the 1940s, Con Market was the focal point for farmers and fishermen from Vietnam’s rural districts such as Que Son, Dai Loc, and Thang Binh looking to sell fresh vegetables, seafood, and poultry. Following a renovation in 1984, it is now set within a three-storey building along Ong Ich Khiem Street.

Hoi An Shopping

16. 155 Art Gallery

155 stands out amongst an assortment of galleries that grace Hoi An’s streets. With mostly water and oil based pieces decorating the wall the pictures for sale here are all by local painters. Most revolve around traditional Vietnamese life including nature, people and costumes; many depict a bygone era. There are some outstanding works of art for sale by very talented local artisans.

17. Hoi An Central Market

Sharpen your bargaining skills and head south east to Hoi An Central Market, one of Vietnam’s best, offering an unmissable shopping experience. Rich in the smell of fragrant herbs and spices and the vibrant colours of Vietnamese silk, delve deep and you are guaranteed a bargain. Prices tend to be more inflated at the stalls closest to the entrance so head right in for the best buys.

There is a vast array of foodstuff for sale including spices such as saffron and cinnamon which are superb purchases as are the exotic fresh fruit and vegetables on display. Due to its riverside location there is also a huge selection of fresh fish available. 

The marketplace is renowned for its tailors who have a section of the market all to themselves. Fine silk tailoring is cheaper here than anywhere else in Hoi An with garment makers running up a dress, shirt, jacket or full suit usually within 24 hours. Souvenir and local handicraft hunters will also find plenty to browse through at the Central Market.

18. Hoi An Fine Art Gallery

Hoi An Fine Art Gallery is set within a refurbished colonial building in Hoi An Ancient Town, where quality prints by French photographer Etienne Bossot are displayed for sale. A five-minute walk from Hoi An Central Market, the studio utilizes imported archival photography paper, resulting in high-quality prints of Bossot’s travel photography work. After placing your order, the photographs are printed in Australia, placed in a sturdy PVC tube, and sent to your address within seven working days. As the office of Hoi An Photo Tour & Workshop. Hoi An Fine Art Gallery also hosts art exhibitions by prominent artists and photographers from all over Vietnam.

19. Hoi An Night Market

Hoi An Night Market, occupying Nguyen Hoang Street in the center of town, consists of over 50 local vendors selling a variety of local snacks, trinkets, clothing, jewelry, and accessories. Widely regarded as one of the most popular markets in Vietnam, it occupies a 300-metre-long street that overlooks Thu Bon River and is illuminated by hundreds of colorful lanterns, making a popular spot for photography as well.

Nha Trang Shopping

20. Hoang Yen Tailor

Hoang Yen Tailor is a great place in Nha Trang to purchase custom-made suits and silk dresses. Accessible within a five-minute walk from Tran Phu Beach, patrons can choose from a wide selection of materials and colours, including authentic Vietnamese silk. Great for travellers looking for their very own traditional Vietnamese costumes, friendly staff are more than happy to recommend designs that best suit your style and physique. Orders are also ready within 24 hours, thanks to Hoang Yen Tailor’s team of experienced seamstresses.

21. Vinh Luong Market

Set nearby Nha Trang Port, Vinh Luong Market offers an authentic shopping experience where fishermen sell their catch-of-the-day to the local population and seafood restaurant owners. Surrounded by numerous fishing villages, this renowned street market has the most extensive varieties of freshly-caught fish and shellfish in Nha Trang.

22. XQ Hand Embroidery

Set along Tran Phu Street, XQ Hand Embroidery specialises in silk apparel and hand-embroidered portraiture. More of a craft centre than a souvenir shop, it is built to resemble a Vietnamese village home (complete with a garden courtyard), where you can see locals in traditional clothes working on new pieces around the store. The atmosphere here is similar to a museum, where you can wander and browse through the displayed items at your own pace. In addition to premade embroideries of landscapes, flowers, animals, and famous celebrities, you can also have your portrait embroidered here. 

Mui Ne & Phan Thiet Shopping

23. Mui Ne Handicraft

Mui Ne Handicraft offers a wide selection of beautiful mementos made by disadvantaged locals. Open since 2008, there’s also a humble-looking workshop section where visitors can observe hearing-impaired children learning how to sew and paint while others create handmade clothes, blankets, jewellery, and bags using traditional looms.

You can shop for textiles woven in traditional Cham patterns and have a local tailor produce a custom-made outfit at affordable prices. For something unique, we highly recommend picking up sand paintings or hand-embroideries depicting life in Mui Ne. Best of all, profits from the goods sold at Mui Ne Handicraft are given back to the locals who made them. 

A five-minute drive from Ham Tien Market, this fair-trade shopping venue is also directly connected to Java Restaurant, where visitors can enjoy authentic Vietnamese and Chinese cuisine for lunch as well as fresh seafood and western fare for dinner.

24. Phan Thiet Central Market

Phan Thiet Central Market is the largest of its kind in Mui Ne, hosting hundreds of stalls selling household items, fresh produce, and local delicacies every day. This outdoor market is at its busiest at dawn, with huge crowds haggling with vendors for an array of fresh fruits, spices, nuts, meat, dried foodstuff, and household supplies.

As Mui Ne is renowned for its traditional fishing villages, you’ll find just about any kind of fresh and cheap seafood here, from shrimps, squids and fishes to snails, clams, and crabs. The market is also a good place to enjoy authentic Vietnamese delicacies at very low prices, including banh xeo (crispy pancake), mi quang (turmeric noodles), and guoi cuon (fresh spring rolls).

Ho Chi Minh / Saigon Shopping

25. Ben Thanh market

Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh City's District 1 is a great place to buy local handicrafts, branded goods, Vietnamese art and other souvenirs. Here, you’ll find eating stalls inside the market where you can get a taste of hawker-style Vietnamese cuisine or simply cool off with a cold drink when the bargaining becomes too much. 

The market is big, difficult to navigate at times and certainly best avoided during the hottest part of the day but all the same it’s well worth a look. When night falls, restaurants around the perimeter of the market open their doors creating a vibrant street side scene filling the air with the scents of wok-fried noodles, barbecued fish and meats. One of Saigon’s oldest landmarks, Ben Thanh offers a great atmosphere that is absolutely authentically Vietnamese.

26. Binh Tay Market (Cholon Chinatown Market)

Binh Tay Market, constructed by the French in the 1880s, is located in the centre of Vietnam’s largest Chinatown district. Unlike Ben Thanh Market in District 1, this market mainly serves the local population with its extensive range of fresh fruits, vegetables, poultry, meat and seafood from regions across Vietnam. 

Also known as Cholon Chinatown Market, Binh Tay Market occupies a two-storey building along Thap Moui Street. Travellers can also find an assortment of handicrafts, lacquerware, and textiles that are sold in bulk, though goods are not varied compared to other (more touristy) markets in downtown Hanoi. Along with the interesting historical and cultural aspect of Cholon, Binh Tay Market is great for experiencing the local lifestyle and sampling unique Vietnamese-Chinese delicacies.

27. An Dong market (Craft Market)

An Dong Market Ho Chi Minh houses a variety of fashion wholesalers and handicrafts stalls. Located in District 5, this indoor market opens daily from 08:00 until 14:00. Divided into four levels, fashion enthusiasts can find an extensive collection of clothing, textiles, shoes, handbags, and accessories on the first two floors. The top floor is dedicated to quality handicrafts and trinkets made by skilled local artisans.

Some of the most popular goods at An Dong Market include woodwork, lacquerware, and knitwear. You can also find jewellery made with gemstones such as amethyst and jade, but it can be hard to confirm its authenticity, so handicrafts are safer options if you’re unsure.

28. Art Galleries on Dong Khoi Street

Ho Chi Minh City’s shopping scene offers more than just boutique outlets and generic shopping malls. Great for experiencing the local culture, traditional street markets are scattered across the city with local vendors selling fresh produce, Vietnamese coffee beans, household supplies, and Vietnamese street food at attractive prices. Must-visits include Ben Thanh Market, Cholon, and An Dong Market. 

For a more unique shopping experience, there are also marketplaces that specialise in niche items such as war memorabilia, quality silks and hand-woven fabrics, as well as authentic woodwork, ceramics and lacquer. If you’re a first-time visitor, make sure you check out our helpful guide on what to buy and where to shop so that you get only the best buys during your Saigon holiday.

Vung Tau & Con Dao Shopping

29. Con Dao Market

Go and visit the Con Dao Market even if you don’t plan to buy anything as it's quite a feast for the eyes. Most vegetables and fruits consumed on the island are sold here. The market starts very early each morning.  

30. Vung Tau Market

This market was built in 1985 and houses many goods from fresh food to household items. It is the place most housewives go to get their fresh ingredients for the day’s meals. Many visitors love exploring the market to shop for local handicrafts as well as to learn more about tropical vegetables and in-season fruits including durian, mangosteen and rambutans.  

Phu Quoc Shopping

31. Dinh Cau Night Market

Dinh Cau Night Market is a must-visit for travellers on Phu Quoc Island, offering a plethora of dining and shopping opportunities until late. Located along Vo Thi Sau Street in Duong Dong, this pedestrian-friendly market is about a five-minute walk from Dinh Cau Rock. This Phu Quoc market caters mainly to tourists but is rather bustling with many people. 

Visitors can find about 100 stalls, more than half of which sell fresh seafood, street snacks, and beverages at affordable prices. Live fish, sea snails, crabs and scallops are kept in large tanks with prices listed on the board in front of every booth. To order, just choose whichever strikes your fancy before taking your seat at the makeshift dining section.

32. Duong Dong Market

Duong Dong Market is Phu Quoc Island’s busiest and largest outdoor market, where travellers can experience the local lifestyle and purchase a wide range of fresh produce during their holiday. Set along Tran Phu Street, Duong Dong Market features a wet zone that’s set close to Duong Dong Port, where you can see throngs of fishing boats drop off freshly-caught seafood such as eel, squid, mackerel, barracuda, and shellfish, to be sold by local vendors. 

Phu Quoc Island is also renowned for its fish sauce, mushrooms, peppers and cashew nuts. We highly recommend making your way to the dry section to pick up a few as souvenirs for loved ones back home. Thanks to its growing popularity among tourists, there’s also a few stalls selling handicrafts and t-shirts, though most carry the same stock.

33. Long Beach Village

Long Beach Village comprises several streets that are lined with mini marts, dive shops, souvenir stalls selling the usual array of local handicrafts and foodstuff. Located off Tran Hung Dao Street, this tourist-friendly area is also known for its array of budget-friendly accommodation options, including budget guesthouses, hostels, and mid-range resorts with easy access to the beach. Due to its close proximity to the main town of Duong Dong, travellers can easily explore prominent landmarks on foot or motorcycle from Long Beach Village.

34. Local Markets

Local markets sell a colourful variety of fruit and vegetables of all shapes and sizes in addition to seafood and other foodstuff. Markets can be busy places but don't let that put you off. Some markets are one or two days a week however the main one in Duong Dong is a permanent fixture, you might want to avoid it when a cruise ship is in port though. 

35. Phu Quoc Pearl Farm

Phu Quoc Pearl Farm was founded in 1998 by a New Zealand-based company called Treasures from the Deep, where visitors can learn about pearl farming and purchase quality jewellery. Locally known as Ngoc Hien Pearl Farm, it spans 6,000 square meters of cultivation pools, a spacious showroom, and retail outlet selling high-end pearl rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets from VND 3,000,000 upwards. Situated along the west coast of Phu Quoc Island, Phu Quoc Pearl Farm is a 10-minute drive from Duong Dong.

Frequently asked questions about shopping in Vietnam

Q. Which is the best place to shop in Vietnam?

A. An Dong Market is a great place to buy souvenirs.

Q. Which is the cheapest place to shop in Vietnam?

A. Saigon Square is one of the cheapest places to shop in Vietnam.

Q. How much does a trip to Vietnam cost?

A. This will depend on your travel style. If you are a backpacker, the budget will start from $30-35/person/day. In the other hand, the cost for a guided tour in Vietnam starts from $90-120/person/day.

Q. Are there any street shops for shopping in Vietnam?

A. Yes, there are many great streets shopping places in Vietnam.

Q. What are the best things to buy in Vietnam?

A. The best things to buy in Vietnam are Vietnamese Coffee, Silk, Brocade and Ao Dai.

Q. What is Vietnam famous for?

A. Vietnam is famous for its natural landscapes, ancient history and vibrant culture.

Q. Is Vietnam safe to visit?

Yes, Vietnam is totally safe in every term. There is nothing to worry if you stay on the line of normal daily life.

Q. Why you should go to Vietnam?

A. You should visit Vietnam to explore the stunning tourist attractions, shop at the streets and to relish the delicious local food.

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We believe you have the right to arm yourselves with as much information as possible before making any decision.

Check below our detailed tips & guide for every places to visit in Vietnam, recommendation regarding the inclusion in each theme you prefer, and what you can do based on the time frame you have.

PLACES TO VISIT IN Vietnam
Hanoi
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Ha Long Bay
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Sapa
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Hoi An
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Hue
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Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
bee-white Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

Vietnam PLANS BY TRAVEL THEME
Must-see
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Check out all the must-see places and things to do & see

Luxury
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Unique experience combined with top-notch services

Honeymoon
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Easy excursions combined with unique experience making the long-lasting romantic memories

Wellness & Leisure
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Easy excursion combined with week-long beach break

Cruise
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The combination of some must-see experience and the cruise tour along the mighty rivers

Family
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The combination of fun and educational activities

Unseen
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Reveal off-the-beatentrack routes, least explored destinations, and unknown tribe groups

Cycling
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Explore every corners of the destination on two wheels

Trek & Hike
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Explore the least visited destinations and unknown experience on foot

Vietnam PLANS BY TIME FRAME
white-icon About 1 week
yellow-icon About 1 week
white-icon About 2 weeks
yellow-icon About 2 weeks
white-icon About 3 weeks
yellow-icon About 3 weeks
white-icon About 4 weeks
yellow-icon About 4 weeks
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SPECIAL Vietnam TIPS & TOURS

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Australian
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United Kingdom
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French
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Vietnam BLOG ARTICLES

On June 7th, 2012, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has eased travel recommendations for more than a hundred countries and territories, including Vietnam and Laos in the list of "safest to travel".

Time to travel now? We do not think so! Let's check more detail below.

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The Hmong New Year celebration is a cultural tradition that takes place annually in select areas where large Hmong communities exist and in a modified form where smaller communities come together. During the New Year's celebration, Hmong dress in traditional clothing and enjoy Hmong traditional foods, dance, music, bull fights, and other forms of entertainment. Hmong New Year celebrations have Hmong ethnic traditions and culture and may also serve to educate those who have an interest in Hmong tradition. Hmong New Year celebrations frequently occur in November and December (traditionally at the end of the harvest season when all work is done), serving as a Thanksgiving holiday for the Hmong people.

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Backpacking Vietnam… If you are seeking epic adventures, unique experiences, mouth watering foods and ancient historical sights; Vietnam is the place for you. Once upon a time, the very mention of Vietnam conjured up images of war-torn destination but now Vietnam is a backpacker haven and travelling in Vietnam is a popular part of many Southeast Asian adventures.

Backpacking Vietnam offers an incredible opportunity to get off the beaten track… Explore dramatic mountains in the North, stop in for some corn wine and a friendly chat with the locals before heading south to party the night away…

Many travelers opt to explore Vietnam by motorcycle. Vietnam is a big country and there are lots of Vietnam backpacking itineraries on offer… The most popular backpacking route is heading from Hanoi to Saigon.

Backpacking in Vietnam is a great choice for backpackers on account of the super cheap cost of living and the plentiful adventures.

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The phrase ‘banana pancakes trail’ is the stuff of legend in Southeast Asia’s backpacker route. Along the banks of the Mekong, across many a dorm room and questionable dive bar, backpackers come to learn the story of the first tourists to travel ‘on the ground’, making a conscious effort to immerse themselves in local life. Decades later, their influence is having transformed the region: tourism here is now the fastest growing on Earth, receiving a quarter of total travelers worldwide. 

When you travel through Southeast Asia these days, it is hard to imagine that tourism was almost non-existent just a half century ago. Here is the story of how hippies, guidebooks and banana pancakes helped to create one of the most famous backpacker routes in the world.
 

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Lantern Festival is celebrated in China and other Asian countries that honors deceased ancestors on the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar (usually falls around mid-February of Gregorian calendar). The Lantern Festival aims to promote reconciliation, peace, and forgiveness. 

Originally, the holiday marks the first full moon of the new lunar year and the end of the Chinese New Year. In some other Asian countries such as Thailand or Laos, the festival is celebrated around late October or early November to mark the end of the Buddhist Lent & the beginning of the festive season.

During the festival, houses are festooned with colorful lanterns, often with riddles written on them; if the riddle is answered correctly, the solver earns a small gift. Festival celebrations also include lion and dragon dances, parades, and fireworks. 

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In Vietnam, nibbling on mooncakes and sipping tea with loved ones is an essential part of the Mid-autumn Festival, or Tết Trung Thu. As long as we can remember, it is tradition to serve bánh nướng and bánh dẻo — golden baked mooncakes and soft sticky rice mooncakes — on the night of the harvest moon. If you are in Vietnam during this festival, you can experience the fun of your own mooncake celebration. Here is all you need to know about Vietnam’s mooncake tradition.

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CHECK OUT OTHER DESTINATIONS
Thailand
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Friendly and food-obsessed, hedonistic and historic, cultured and curious, Thailand tempts visitors with a smile as golden as the country's glittering temples and tropical beaches.
Cambodia
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There's a magic about this charming yet confounding kingdom that casts a spell on visitors. In Cambodia, ancient and modern worlds collide to create an authentic adventure.
Myanmar
bee-white Myanmar
It's a new era for this extraordinary and complex land, where the landscape is scattered with gilded pagodas and the traditional ways of Asia endure.
Laos
bee-white Laos
Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.
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