Ho Chi Minh City Museum

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Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Ho Chi Minh City Overview

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum documents the city's growth through various artefacts, photographs, ceramics, and war materials. Built in 1885, the museum features impressive neoclassical architecture with unique motifs and a lovely flower garden. There is also a network of tunnels underneath the building, used by President Diem in the coup of 63.

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum or the Gia Long Palace, is a historical museum, symbolic of Vietnam's many triumphs and tribulations over the years. The grand neoclassical building has a beautiful and rich collection of artefacts, especially pertaining to Vietnam's independence struggle.

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Ho Chi Minh City Museum
Ho Chi Minh City Museum
Ho Chi Minh City Museum
Ho Chi Minh City Museum

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Ho Chi Minh City Museum History

Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Gia Long Palace in 1966
Ho Chi Minh City Museum was Built in 1885, Serving the French, Japanese, British and Vietnamese (Source)

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum was completed in the late 1800s, initially meant to be the Museum of Commercial Trade and then serving as the residence of the Governor of Cochinchina, under French occupancy of the country during the early 20th century. During the Second World War, following the toppling of the French regime by the Japanese, it was transferred to the Japanese Lieutenant, before becoming the headquarters of the Allied Forces. The museum once again fell into French hands after France reconquered Vietnam, becoming the residence of the premier of the provisional government of the State of Vietnam. Following the bombing of the Independence Palace, it served as the residence of the Prime Minister Ngo Din Diem, when it was named the Gia Long Palace. From 1966 to 1975, the Supreme Court was housed in the palace. After the unification of Vietnam, the palace was named as the Ho Chi Minh Revolutionary Museum until 1999, when it finally became the current day Ho Chi Minh City Museum.

How to Reach Ho Chi Minh City Museum

Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Gia Long Palace, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh City Museum is Located in District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam (Source)

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum is located in District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City, on the Ly Tu Trong Road. Local taxis and cars are a good form of transport, as are the local buses such as bus numbers 4, 18, 31, 36, 42, 52, 90, 109 and 152, getting off at the Ly Tu Trong station, which is a mere 50 meters from the museum. A well-connected area, the Ho Chi Minh City Museum is close to other major landmarks of the city, such as the Reunification Palace, Ben Thanh MarketSaigon Central Post Office and other popular tourist sites.

Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Gia Long Palace, Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh City Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (Source)

The Ho Chi Minh City museum is a relic of Vietnam's rich and tumultuous history and occupies a special place in the country. It houses the memories of Vietnam's independence struggles, taking you back in time to the country's colonial past. It remains a tourist favourite and continues to draw large crowds with its enigmatic and nostalgic collection of artefacts.

Ho Chi Minh City Museum Highlights

August Revolution of Saigon 1945, Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Gia Long Palace
Ho Chi Minh City Museum has Various Exhibitions Dedicated to Vietnam's History of Struggle and War (Source)

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum has a rich collection of artefacts and has something to interest every person who visits it. Some of the rare collections and highlights of the museum include Resistance sketches, war weaponry, old flags, artefacts related to historical figures, XVII century zinc coins and other silver bullions, folk worship statues and other traditional artefacts.

Ho Chi Minh City Museum Architecture

Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Gia Long Palace
The Architecture of Ho Chi Minh City Museum is Inspired by Baroque, European and Oriental Style (Source)

Ho Chi Minh City Museum was built by the French in the late 19th century, designed by the French architect Alfred Foulhoux. It displays the classical Baroque style, with inspiration was drawn from European and Oriental influence. There are many interesting motifs adorning the palace walls, such as grotesques on the roof, Greek mythological symbols,  different tropical birds and animals. The museum is surrounded by a beautiful trapezoid shaped garden.

Tunnel in Ho Chi Minh City Museum
Tunnels were Used at the Gia Long Palace During the Vietnam War (Source

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum also preserves a series of tunnels and the bunker used by former president Ngo Dinh Diem, which was built to protect him during the coup of 1963.

Ho Chi Minh City Exhibits

Outdoor Exhibits at Ho Chi Minh City Museum
The Outdoor Exhibition of the Ho Chi Minh City Museum Displays Fighter Planes, Tanks and Vintage Cars (Source)

The Ho Chi Minh City Museum has a variety of exhibitions and displays. The outdoor exhibition includes a collection of fighter planes and jets from the wars - such as A.37 Fighter, F.5 Fighter, as well as cannons, M41 tanks and vintage cars.

Vietnamese Traditions Portrayed at Ho Chi Minh City Museum
Ho Chi Minh City Museum Displays Various Aspects of Vietnamese Culture and Traditions (Source)

The indoor exhibitions at the Ho Chi Minh City Museum include artefacts and relics from the Vietnamese revolutions of the 1930s and 1950s, archaeological relics, and a section dedicated to traditional handicrafts such as pottery, jewellery and wood carvings. A section dedicated to souvenirs of war resistance including sketches, resistance badges and other personal items of the soldiers. Other items of interest in the museum include ancient Vietnamese currency and other Vietnamese cultural artefacts. The museum also hosts many special exhibitions throughout the years on various themes like revolutionary uprisings, modern political events and others. Some of the special exhibitions worth checking out include Gong music of the Central Highlands, Vietnamese ceramics, and 45 years of the Mau Than Thet Offensive 1968.

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