Inside Asia Tours: Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos

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Tuesday, 23rd September 2014

What's on in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is the thriving cultural epicentre of Vietnam and as such it is top of the list of must-see locations for most people visiting the country.

Vietnam is growing rapidly in popularity among tourists and this will see the nation's cultural options diversify even further in the coming years, but there is already a great mix of things to see and do during a holiday in Vietnam.

Ho Chi Minh City has a wide array of great bars and restaurants to check out and the city is known for being extremely welcoming to visitors, so tourists should have a great time during their stay there.

Vietnam's increasing openness to the west has been notable in the last few years and the announcement that a show produced by Disney Live, Mickey's Magic Show, is set to be performed in the country for the first time soon.

Ho Chi Minh City's Hoa Binh Theater, which is in the south of the city, will be hosting the event from September 24th to 28th and this could open the door for a range of similar family-friendly productions to come to Vietnam in the near future.

According to a report by the Chinese state-run media agency Xinhua, professional illusionist Michael Barron has a role in the show, which also features Disney characters such as Goofy, Belle, Snow White, Donald Duck and Minnie Mouse.

Of the dozen performances that are being put on at the Ho Chi Minh City theatre this week, two of them will be in English with the rest having Vietnamese voice-overs by local singers and artists.

Disney Live's Mickey's Magic Show has already been performed in more than 300 cities all over the world and it is one of Disney's best known live productions.


For those who prefer a local flavour to their entertainment during a holiday in Vietnam, an ongoing exhibition by Bui Tien Tuan, a lecturer at the Ho Chi Minh City Fine Art University in the Silk Painting department, might be worth a look.

Frivolity is a solo exhibition of his new silk paintings and it can be found at Sofitel Saigon Plaza, which is located at 17 Le Duan Boulevard in District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City until September 30th.

Another exhibition wowing the crowds in Ho Chi Minh City right now is Drop, which showcases an array of work by artists such as Tiffany Chung, Ha Manh Thang, Sandrine Llouquet, Nguyen Manh Hung, Tran Van Thao, Truc-Anh and Lien Truong.

Sculptures of paper and metal sit alongside abstract paintings and drawings in what is one of the city's most interesting ongoing exhibitions. It has been at Galerie Quynh at 65 ?? Thám in District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City and will be there until October 18th.

Art aficionados might also wish to head to the Vin Gallery in District 2 of the city for Tom Smith's latest exhibition Nevertheless, which opened earlier in the month and will be running until October 11th. Nevertheless showcases a range of the projects Smith has been working on in recent years.

The organisers said: "Smith creates eclectic mixes very different in look and style to each other; however, within the work are common devices such as hidden motives, symbolism and absurdity. This exhibition demonstrates Smith's wide ranging skills with materials along with his often mischievous approach to the world of 'fine art'.

Live music is also available in Ho Chi Minh City and one of the best known bands to be playing in the city in the coming months is American cult act The Lemonheads, who will be performing in Vietnam for the first ever time on December 2nd at Cargo Bar. They will be supported by The Secret Asians and James and the Van der Beeks with tickets on sale now.

Related news stories:
Hanoi versus Ho Chi Minh City - which Vietnamese heavyweight is the best? (23rd October 2014)
A method to the madness of Saigon, or Ho chi Minh (11th May 2015)
Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City becoming 1 of the most attractive Asian destinations (14th May 2013)
Top tips for taking the Reunification Express (19th February 2015)