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What To Do In HCMC For An Afternoon + Question on Chu Chi Tunnels

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Oct 11th, 2010, 09:28 AM
  #1
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What To Do In HCMC For An Afternoon + Question on Chu Chi Tunnels

I will be arriving in HCMC at my hotel around Noon. The following afternoon my tour begins, but I will have a free afternoon so I would like to see the city. I was thinking of taking a taxi to the BT market, then onto Le Loi Street and probably dinner by myself. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

Also, any restaurant recommendations? I love Vietnamese food and don't mind spending money on a good dinner, but I will be alone, so that is a factor for me. I hate when people stare at you when you are eating dinner alone. They make you feel pathetic.

Another question I booked a 1/2 day tour of the Chi Chu tunnels, but I have been reading that the tunnels have bats and are very claustrophic (sp). I do have a little claustrophobia and hate bats so I'm wondering if I should forget about this tour and do something else, or should I "buck up" and just to do it. Normally I am the adventerous type, but bats? Yikes!!

Thanks
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Oct 11th, 2010, 09:39 AM
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flgirl, read my OAT Inside Vietnam trip report. Near the end I mention a number of HCMC restaurants. I know what you mean about dining alone -- not to mention that with Asian food I like sharing several dishes -- but with one person, one dish is usually enough food. But I never felt "pathetic" from people staring at me. I think you need to get over that.

And another person on my tour talks a bit about the tunnels including the bat situation. I did not go on that tour.
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Oct 11th, 2010, 10:03 AM
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I thought the tunnels were an interesting side trip though I did not go underground since I too am claustrophobic. There is still a lot to see there and it was worth the time to go for us.

My friend did go briefly underground but saw no bats.
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Oct 11th, 2010, 10:17 AM
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NeoPatrick - Thank you for the advice. I wrote down the restaurants that you suggested. I have friends that took a similar OAT Vietnam tour, but it was a longer tour. I would have taken this tour, but I cannot be away for 17 days. I heard it was fabulous. As for eating alone - I know I have to get over it.

Moremiles - I think I will see the tunnels. Worst comes to worst I can chicken out at the last minute and wait to see if other people see the bats. As for my claustrophobia, I will try to deal with it. Thanks - you made up my mind for me to go to the tunnels.
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Oct 11th, 2010, 10:43 AM
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You absolutely do not have to go down the tunnels, it's still an interesting trip.
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Oct 11th, 2010, 05:05 PM
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No bats on our trip. The tunnels start relatively wide and get narrower the further you go. There are periodic exits if you get too claustrophobic. Our tour was about 10 persons with a guide in the front and a guide in the rear (both with flashlights). I could only take it to the 3rd exit point.
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Oct 11th, 2010, 05:22 PM
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Since there are exit points, I will definitely give it a try until my claustophobia kicks in. However, I will be on the look out for bats. Thanks for the info, deptrai
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Oct 12th, 2010, 06:54 AM
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For good food and people watching, we like cafe terrace, please see http://travel.nytimes.com/travel/gui...nt-detail.html. To see the terrace, you have to google cafe terrace saigon and click on image. Get a table on the terrace facing the street, try as many fruit juice as you like, the usual suspects like spring rolls are really good. It's pricy for Vietnam but worth it.
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Oct 12th, 2010, 08:22 AM
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Thank you so much for the article - it had great info and I just printed it to take with me.
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Oct 12th, 2010, 10:04 AM
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Here a two great Vietnamese restaruants, right next to each other in District 1: Quan An Ngon and Bunta.

The Cu Chi tunnels are very interesting. They have increased the size of many of the tunnels to allow tourists to get in. We did not have a bat problem, they just hang from the ceiling sleeping.
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Oct 12th, 2010, 01:39 PM
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<<>>

That's still a bat "problem" to me
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Oct 12th, 2010, 03:17 PM
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It's a bat problem to me too, but I'll try my best with the tunnels. A friend of mine was in one of the tunnels and a bat flew right over her head just missing her hair - yikes! As long as I have a way of getting out of the tunnels, then I hope I will be fine.

As for my first day in Saigon, at least I have a couple of restaurant dinner choices and I think I will sightsee in that area. I think, the War Memorial is in the same area?? Not sure, if it is then that will be on my list, if not, then I can go the following day.

Anymore, suggestions???

Thanks.
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Jan 12th, 2011, 02:36 AM
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I would also recommend going to the Cu Chi tunnels. They are very interesting, especially if you don't know a lot about the American (Vietnam) war from the Vietnamese perspective. You do not have to go underground. I did and did not see any bats. While it is not going to help you if you don't like them, the bats will avoid you.
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Jan 12th, 2011, 04:50 AM
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Amy
 
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It's been quite a long time now since I was in Vietnam, but I do recommend Cu Chi tunnels. I am fairly claustrophobic and didn't have a problem, although, well, they are a bit close and you had to crouch to go through, for the most part. But it's an astounding piece of history.

I didn't have any problems with people staring at me eating alone, but I'm afraid my restaurant rec's would be quite out of date. Here's my trip report, though, if you'd like a longer account of the tunnels (and a link to the pictures): http://www.fodors.com/community/asia...d-far-away.cfm
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Jan 12th, 2011, 09:25 AM
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a visit to the presidental palace museum is worth a couple of hours... couple that with a visit to one of the big markets...
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Jan 12th, 2011, 12:00 PM
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and get a massage...
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Jun 29th, 2013, 02:33 PM
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I am 300 #s .... how small are the tunnels?
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Jun 29th, 2013, 03:29 PM
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Too small for you.
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Jun 29th, 2013, 06:51 PM
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I am about to go to Vietnam in 3 weeks. The sole reason to go there was to see the Cu Chi tunnels. I don't plan on going inside them. I think I would be too claustrophobic.

I found a travel company, Awesome Vietnam Travel, on trip advisor with great reviews and they have a "food on foot" tour in Hanoi. They don't list one for HCMC but maybe they could do a personal one for you. I am a scardy cat when it comes to food but hubby loves eating anything so he'll enjoy it I am sure.

http://vietnamawesometravel.com/trav...tour-hanoi-25/

See you in HCMC!!!!
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Jun 30th, 2013, 02:11 AM
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We went inside the tunnels and they are quite hot and claustrophobic. I'm not tall ( 5'4") and I had the crawl on my knees ( obviously) the BF wasn't keen and we came out at the first available exit.... Glad we went in though.....
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