As lively as it is diverse, Binh Thanh District is settled right in the center of Ho Chi Minh City between the downtown area of District 1 and the expat-friendly District 2 just over the Saigon River.
Binh Thanh is just six kilometers from the downtown area and it can take around 15–20 minutes to get to downtown, depending on traffic. It’s larger than District 1 and 3, covering a territory of about 21 square kilometers. It is home to a population of around 470,000 and at roughly 23,000 occupants for each square kilometer.
The once customary Vietnamese shops and structures are presently being swapped out for extravagant apartment buildings and fast-casual dining. While some may not feel content with seeing a significant portion of their way of life vanishing, numerous local people and expats have adapted to these changes in scenery.
Things to Do in Binh Thanh
Binh Quoi Village is an ideal spot for families who’d like to keep away from the sounds of vehicle horns and heat of the city. It’s around a 20-minute taxi ride from D1. It has a Vietnamese small-town feel where you can unwind around the lakes and gardens or enjoy some conventional Vietnamese food at one of the nearby food stalls or cafés. The spring rolls and steamed prawns in coconut milk in particular are a crowd favorite.
Another place to relax is Van Thanh Park, a little oasis of a park near District 1 in the event that you need a few hours of relative peace and quiet. There are cafés, tennis courts and a pool here to escape from the heat. At night, Van Thanh Park “wakes up”, with weddings and parties, creating a lively environment.
Two more options are the Gia Dinh church or the Dieu Phap Pagoda. Taking a walk around one of the numerous rear alleys around these landmarks can be an enjoyable way to find a wide range of stores and street carts.
Where to Eat and Drink in Binh Thanh
The one thing you can be assured of when visiting Binh Thanh is that you’ll never have to worry about being hungry. There’s an enormous selection of food from throughout the world. In the event that you might want to eat traditional Vietnamese food, at that point you should take a look at Van Kiep Street or Ngo Tat To Street, both known for their amazing street food.
Another intriguing spot to visit is Binh Thanh’s newly budding “Japanese town” on Pham Viet Chanh Street. You can find various izakayas concealed down this side road, allowing you to enjoy authentic Japanese food. The individuals here are friendly and on the off chance that you’ve visited here once, they will make certain to recall your name next time you visit.
Where to Shop in Binh Thanh
There’s a decent range of shopping centers and nearby markets to browse in Binh Thanh. For conventional Vietnamese markets, test your haggling skills at Ba Chieu market at the intersection of Bach Dang and Bui Huu Nghia road or Thi Nghe Market on Phan Van Han Street!
For larger, western-esque shopping centers, Landmark 81 within the Vinhomes Central Park apartment complex, or Pearl Plaza at 561 Dien Bien Phu Street are both well-known spots. There’s likewise a great deal of shops that can be spotted around Binh Thanh, where you can purchase practically anything from clothing to household appliances.
Living in Binh Thanh
As mentioned above, Binh Thanh has recently seen a whirlwind of high-end apartments being built. Just being 20 minutes to the air terminal and 5 minutes to downtown, this area is hugely popular due to its convenience and amenities.
Vinhomes Central Park, for example, contains nearly 44 hectares of open-air park and is widely considered the new focal point of Binh Thanh. Everything from an international hospital, school, and shopping mall can be found here.
However, Binh Thanh has accommodations available for all kinds of budgets. From present smaller scale serviced apartments to top-of-the-line luxury condos, there’s something for everybody.