Ben Thanh Market

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

The centrally located Ben Thanh Market is the place to go for all your souvenirs. Its jam packed with goods and vendors keen to make a sale. Here you can get tee shirts, silk, an amazing array of fabric (they’ll arrange tailors), food, coffee and even suitcases and locks! The market is a regular stop for me when in Ho Chi Minh City to stock up on all sorts of things from shoes to cashew nuts. It’s quite a compact market but the vendors can be aggressive. I think that the best time to avoid the aggressive behaviour is just after lunch. Vietnamese like to sleep after lunch and it seems to me that any time after 2p.m. the sales pitch is considerably less aggressive. That makes it quite pleasant shopping. Earlier, be warned you’ll be grabbed and hassled. Don’t miss the amazing flower arrangements which are best seen near Le Thanh Ton Street.

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