Located in central of Ho Chi Minh city, Ben Thanh market has long been a symbol of Saigon. Over 100 years, this market is not only a purchasing place but also a historic witness of the city’s ups and downs. It is also an economic appearance reflecting the economic development of the biggest commercial city in Vietnam and an invisible string connecting Saigon past and now.
Recently, Ben Thanh market becomes an indispensable destination of any tour to Ho Chi Minh city. Tourists come here not only for purchasing goods or souvenir but also finding themselves the image of Saigon daily activities clearly mirrored in a big market.
Established before the French invasion, the market was formerly located near the bank of Ben Nghe river and Gia Dinh citadel, hence it had name Ben Thanh. In 1911, French colonial administration decided to change its location as now. The market was begun to work in 1912 and completed in late March, 1914 for continuous operation so far.
Ben Thanh market is considered the biggest wholesale market in Vietnam with all sorts of good, at this place, from affordable price to high cost, especially most selective food. There is no lack of anything, from onions, chilies, bunch of vegetables, fish, all kinds of seasonable fruit to candy, clothing, shoes, bags, electrical appliances, electronics, souvenirs, etc.
Ben Thanh market has total area of 13,056 square meters, welcomes 10,000 tourists everyday. The market has 1, 437 kiosks, 6,000 small business, 11 enterprises, 4 main entrances and 12 side doors distributing 4 directions.
Another must-visit place in Ben Thanh market is the cuisine area with traditional cuisine from all parts of country. On January, 2012, Ben Thanh market was chosen as one of top ten attractive street food destination by Food and Wine Magazine.
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