Just look at a country’s public artwork, you can see multitudes about the nation, like the way Ho Chi Minh City‘s statues and sculptures provide a fascinating insight into Vietnam’s history. Let’s take a look at the best monuments to see in Ho Chi Minh City or also called Saigon.

1. Statue of the Virgin Mary outside Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica

Statue of the Virgin Mary outside Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica
Statue of the Virgin Mary outside Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica

The first stop station is the Saigon Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica, a 19th-century Roman Catholic church, with two 58-metre-tall (190ft) bell towers. There is a granite statue of the Virgin Mary outside, which was once flooded by visitors when it allegedly shed a tear in 2005. This iconic statue is the place both local and foreign people pray and bless every morning.

2. President Ho Chi Minh – Ho Chi Minh City Hall

Ho Chi Minh City Hall
Ho Chi Minh City Hall

From the post office, head to Ho Chi Minh City Hall where you’ll be greeted by a seven-metre (24ft) statue of President Ho Chi Minh. The striking bronze figure is a recent addition to the city, unveiled in only 2015 and replacing another statue of the president from 1990. This is a must-come accommodation when expats visit the city. More than a statue, it’s a symbol and the soul of Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh city in particular.

3. Saigon Opera House

Just walking a few minutes to the Saigon Opera House to see a stone sculpture of a mother and child, set within a fountain. Then, head east towards Saigon River to discover a statue of Tran Hung Dao, a 13th-century Supreme Commander in Vietnam who successfully repelled three Mongol invasions. Alternatively, stroll north to see the Victory Monument, or visit Saigon Zoo and Botanic Gardens where you’ll find an elephant sculpture donated to the park by Thailand.

Saigon Opera House
Saigon Opera House

4. Saigon Central Post Office

Saigon Central Post Office
Saigon Central Post Office

A short walk from the cathedral is Saigon Central Post Office, you will catch a 19th-century building with Gothic and French Renaissance inspired architecture. Here, you will find two statues added in 1998 for the 300th anniversary of Saigon, built in honour of the hard work of the post office staff.

5. Venerable Thich Quang Duc Memorial

Venerable Thich Quang Duc Memorial
Venerable Thich Quang Duc Memorial

District 3 is home to the Venerable Thich Quang Duc Memorial, where a monument is dedicated to the Buddhist monk who set himself on fire in protest at this intersection not far from the Presidential Palace (today’s Reunification Palace) in 1963. The district also boasts an unusual sculpture in the centre of Ngã Bảy roundabout and a statue of Lê Quý Đôn, an 18th-century philosopher.

6. Statue of army leader and Vienamese military leaders

Statue of Phan Đình Phùng
Statue of Phan Đình Phùng

Elsewhere, District 5 has a statue of Phan Đình Phùng, a 19th-century rebel army leader, while a statue of the Trưng Sisters, female Vietnamese military leaders who rebelled against the Chinese in 40 AD, can be found inside the Trưng Vương Emergency Hospital in District 10.

7. Ho Chi Minh City’s Fine Arts Museum and Tao Dan Sculpture Park

Tao Dan Sculpture Park
Tao Dan Sculpture Park

Finally, if you’d prefer an alternative stop station, Ho Chi Minh City’s Fine Arts Museum and Tao Dan Sculpture Park both have a number of traditional and modern sculptures.