Leading international travel guide publisher Lonely Planet includes Vietnam's southern metropolis in a list of top ten places to visit in Asia.
The city that teems with skyscrapers, French colonial buildings and war relics is third on the list of the best 10 places to go in Asia in 2018.
With more than 3.83 million foreign tourist arrivals in the first half of this year, the city’s popularity continues to soar as it seduces globetrotters with its local music scene, craft beer parlors, street food and nightlife.
“Aging apartment blocks are being colonized by vintage clothes stores and independent coffee shops, innovative breweries….and it appears this buzzing Asian megalopolis is in no danger of going out of style,” the Lonely Planet says.
Among the places recommended by the Lonely Planet is the War Remnant Museum in District 3, a 15-minute ride from the Ben Thanh Market in the heart of Saigon.
The museum, home to more than 20,000 artifacts, images and documentaries relating to the Vietnam War, is a graphic record of the atrocities, including war crimes, perpetrated by colonial and imperial forces, as also consequences that continue to impact the lives of millions of Vietnamese citizens to this day.
The city’s popularity is making tourism a spearhead economic sector.
International visitors to HCMC spent US$145 a day on average and stayed for 5.21 days last year, according to a survey on the city’s tourism market carried out by the city’s Tourism Department and the General Statistics Office.
On top of the latest Lonely Planet list is the Republic of Korea's city of Busan, followed by Uzbekistan.
Nagasaki in Japan, Thailand’s Chiang Mai, Nepal’s Lumbini and Sichuan in China are also in the top ten list.
Last April, the prestigious UK-based travel site, Rough Guides, included Ho Chi Minh City in its list of eight best places to experience nightlife in Southeast Asia.