The Insider’s Guide to the Best Photography Spots in Ho Chi Minh City

The Insider’s Guide to the Best Photography Spots in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is the quintessential Southeast Asian metropolis. This bustling hub of culture, cuisine and coffee isn’t short on attractions, especially for snap-happy photographers looking to soak up the atmosphere. We’ve rounded up a few key locations that should be on your list if you’re looking to capture the authentic side of this city.

Where to find the best street photography spots in HCMC

The first thing you’ll notice about Saigon are the streets that bristle with endless activity. Stories await around every corner in this city, but where are the best spots to shoot street photography? While District 1 is the hub of tourist activity for good reason, there is so much more to be explored beyond this area. Venture into locales like District 3 and you’ll be rewarded with a rich, unfiltered view of Saigon street life.

From the crowds camped on the street stools, to the swarms of motorbike commuters making their way home, you’re bound to find rich images that paint a picture of everyday life for the locals. Take a morning walk along the Bến Nghé River, stroll through the public parks and discover Ho Chi Minh City’s hidden visual treasures. Walking these streets with a camera is one way to truly immerse yourself in the atmosphere of Ho Chi Minh City.

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Where to find the best vantage point in HCMC

The Saigon skyline is truly impressive, especially when viewed from the Saigon Skydeck at the Bitexco Tower in the heart of District 1. From here, you’ve got 360-degree views of the city, with the Saigon River particularly prominent as it bisects the city. To the north, you have Bình Thạnh; to the east, views of the expat haven that is District 2; westwards you’ll find Districts 3, 5 and 10; and to the south, Districts 4 and 7. The views are especially dramatic at sunset, as the warm glow gives way to an aurora of luminescent city lights.

ho chi minh city photography

The Bitexco Financial Tower, an unmistakable landmark on the Ho Chi Minh City horizon.

Where to find the best creative spaces in HCMC

As a photographer in Saigon, it isn’t all about capturing sweeping cityscapes and everyday street photography, but also about taking time to appreciate the creative spaces that Saigon has to offer. We’re glad to report that there is no shortage of aesthetically pleasing coffee shops where you can find photography inspiration. Kick off your creative pilgrimage by visiting The Workshop; a coffee shop which focuses more on java of an international variety, and less so the local kind.

Here, the vast glass panels and sheer volume make this place feel more communal than closed-off. Once you’ve had your fix at The Workshop, move on to the Phin&Bean outlet in Da Kao; a tastefully decorated space that fuses industrial elements with a touch of greenery. Their double-story cafe is a hotspot for creatives looking to buckle down and graft, or simply enjoy the scrumptious selection of cakes. The final stop on your creative tour of Saigon’s coffee shops should be The Running Bean – an ultramodern minimal space that boasts double-volume ceilings, a contemporary tiled facade and some of the tastiest coffee in the city. The exterior makes for some gorgeous snaps, too!

ho chi minh city photography

The Workshop, 27 Ngô Đức Kế, Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh

Do you have any photo-worthy spots to share in Ho Chi Minh City? Let us know!

About Author

Stuart Hendricks
Stuart Hendricks

Being a street photographer and travel writer, Stuart is always searching for the perfect shot that tells a story. He's got his heart set on adventuring around Asia using South Korea as his base and creates content to help aspiring photographers document their own travels through the continent.


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