Ben Thanh Market: Explore the long-standing symbol of Ho Chi Minh City

Ben Thanh Market: Explore the long-standing symbol of Ho Chi Minh City

As one of the most popular markets in Viet Nam, Ben Thanh Market embraces rich culture and a vibrant atmosphere. Read on to find all the information you need to make the most out of your visit to this iconic attraction in Ho Chi Minh City.

Ben Thanh MarketBen Thanh Market is an iconic symbol of Ho Chi Minh City (Source: Collected)

As the bustling heart of Ho Chi Minh City, Ben Thanh Market is a must-visit destination for any traveler. This market boasts a rich blend of history, culture, and commerce that can be discovered through its diverse array of stalls and shops. This article will cover everything you need to know about this vibrant market.

1. Where is Vietnam Ben Thanh Market? Why is it so famous?
Ben Thanh Market address: Le Loi Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Ben Thanh Market opening hours: 4 am – 7 pm
Located in the central area of Ho Chi Minh City, Ben Thanh Market is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the vibrant culture of Vietnam. More than just a place to shop, the market also offers opportunities for cultural and culinary exploration. From early morning until late at night, the market brims with vendors selling fresh vegetables, meat, seafood, and a variety of Vietnamese street food. Visitors can try many authentic dishes such as pho, banh mi, spring rolls, or shop for traditional items such as ao dai, lacquerware, and silk.

After over 100 years since its establishment, Ben Thanh Market has become not only a trading hub but also a witness to the many ups and downs of Saigon. Whether you are looking for a glimpse into the country’s rich heritage, a taste of the local cuisine, or an insight into the daily life of Vietnamese people, the market can meet all your needs.

Ben Thanh MarketBen Thanh Market Vietnam has been an iconic symbol of Saigon for hundreds of years (Source: Collected)

2. The history of Ben Thanh Market Ho Chi Minh City
Ben Thanh Market was originally built in the 17th century near Ben Nghe River to welcome visitors and soldiers into Gia Dinh Citadel. That is also why it was called Ben Thanh, as “ben” means “river wharf” and “thanh” means “citadel.” The market was made from bricks, wood, and thatched roofs. After being used for decades, around 1911, the market became unstable and was in danger of collapse. To avoid this, French imperialists built a new market in Bo Ret area (or Marais Boresse area), which is now the current location of Ben Thanh Market. Construction began in 1912 and was completed in 1914. Since then, the market has undergone many renovations. Still, its exterior structure and clock tower have been preserved.

Ben Thanh MarketBen Thanh Market history dates back to the 17th century (Source: Collected)

3. How many entrances does Ben Thanh Market have?
The market has 4 main entrances and 12 sub-entrances. Each main entrance is located on a different street and displays many popular items for visitors to shop:

Ben Thanh Market – South Entrance: Located on Le Loi Street and facing Quach Thi Trang Park, this entrance is the main gate of the market. It features a famous 3-faced clock tower as the highlight of the market. This entrance attracts many tourists with an array of stalls selling a variety of goods, from colorful fabrics to aromatic dried foods.
Ben Thanh Market – East Entrance: Located on Phan Boi Chau Street, the east entrance is a paradise for cosmetic enthusiasts, with many cosmetic stalls offering a vast range of body, skin, and hair care products.
Ben Thanh Market – West Entrance: Located on Phan Chu Trinh Street, this entrance has many stalls selling shoes, handmade crafts, and souvenirs.
Ben Thanh Market – North Entrance: Located on Le Thanh Tong Street, this entrance offers a variety of fresh flowers and tropical fruits.

Ben Thanh MarketThe main entrance of the market Ben Thanh (Source: Collected)

4. The top 3 things to do at Ben Thanh Market Saigon
Ben Thanh Market Ho Chi Minh Vietnam is known for its rich history, bustling atmosphere, and diverse goods. Below is a list of the top 3 things to do when visiting this market:

4.1. Explore the symbolic architecture of the market
Ben Thanh Market boasts a unique architectural style, which is a blend of Indochinese and French influences. It is a rectangular building with a notable clock tower in the front, a wooden vaulted ceiling, and open sides. Despite the many renovations, the exterior and clock tower of the market are still preserved, inviting visitors to discover a bygone era with every step they take.

Ben Thanh MarketThe exterior architecture of Ben Thanh reflects its long history and cultural significance (Source: Collected)

4.2. Enjoy delectable Ben Thanh Market food
For those who enjoy Vietnamese cuisine, the spacious dining area in Ben Thanh is a must-visit. This culinary destination features a diverse array of dishes from every region of Vietnam, drawing in both domestic and foreign visitors. Some prominent dishes at Ben Thanh Market Saigon include Vietnamese pancakes, avocado ice cream, Vietnamese noodles with grilled pork, grilled spring rolls, vermicelli with snails, and grilled meat skewers, all of which offer a rich explosion of flavors to satisfy your appetite.

Ben Thanh MarketBen Thanh is a paradise for food lovers (Source: Collected)

4.3. Buy Ben Thanh Market souvenirs for your beloved

Apart from Ben Thanh Market food, this market is also a haven for souvenir hunters. With numerous shops selling various souvenirs, visitors can easily find unique items to bring back home as gifts for their loved ones. From traditional Vietnamese hats, silk scarves, clothing to wooden handicrafts, lacquerware, and ceramics, there is an endless array of gift options for you to choose from. If you are a fan of the local culture, don’t miss out on some colorful conical hats or intricately embroidered Ao Dai dresses. Other popular souvenirs here include coffee beans, tea leaves, and various local spices.


Ben Thanh MarketThere are lots of items from Ben Thanh Market that visitors can bring back home (Source: Collected)

5. Ben Thanh Market opening hours
Ben Thanh Market serves as a day and night market from Monday to Sunday with the following operating hours:

Day Market: 6:00 am – 6:00 pm
Night Market: Monday to Sunday: 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
During the day, the market is bustling with vendors selling a wide range of goods, including textiles, souvenirs, handicrafts, fresh produce, seafood, spices, and local delicacies. You can find a variety of traditional Vietnamese items and experience the vibrant atmosphere of a typical Asian market.

In the evening, the market transforms into a night market, offering a different ambiance. The stalls predominantly feature food vendors, where you can enjoy local snacks and drinks. However, you may still find a few shops selling clothes, accessories, and souvenirs.