4 little foreign towns in the heart of Saigon

Amid a large Saigon, these 4 little towns not only attracts the curiosity of visitors but also diversifies the city’s culture.

Once you arrive in these little towns, you will surely feel the unique features that the places give you.

Little Japan Town in Saigon

Little Japan Town Saigon
Little Japan Town Saigon | @t.thao95

Do you know there is a “Little Japan Town” in Saigon yet? Nestled in the area around Le Thanh Ton and Thai Van Lung streets in the center of Saigon. There are more than 70 restaurants, spas, and business activities of the Japanese community. This site is attracting not only residents but also tourists who want to explore Japanese culinary culture.

One of the biggest differences in Little Japan Town compared to other foreign neighborhoods is that there is no lively image or noisy atmosphere. In Little Japan of Saigon, you can feel the warmth imbued with Japanese culture.

All shops have closed wooden doors and hang curtains and lanterns with red – black – white tones. Quiet space makes this place more attractive, especially at night.

This location is more noticeable by a graffiti alley at 15B Le Thanh Ton as a new virtual-living location for young people and visitors to take pictures. In particular, there is a map showing the entrance to the alleys and instructions for people to park.

No noise and no waste are also a highlight of this corner. You can enjoy any Japanese food in small alleys such as sushi, ramen noodles, udon, and cakes to satisfy your taste. Please see more details about the Little Japan Town!

China Town in Ho Chi Minh City

China Town in Saigon
China Town in Saigon | @vitconinsta

Saigon people often talk about the Cho Lon area, also known as China Town. The Chinese town covers District 5, District 6, and District 11, but the focus is mainly District 5.

Originating in 1778, Cho Lon is a gathering place for the largest Chinese community living and trading in Vietnam. Until now, it is also a popular tourist destination in Saigon for exploring the typical culture.

Today, the cultural, architectural, and religious values of the Chinese ​​have created and still lived over the years. You can find tiled roofs, temples, and assemblies. All come along with the typical architectural style combining with the classic beauty.

Besides the value of the ancient architecture, Cho Lon Market is also a busy trading center, providing sources of goods for all districts of Ho Chi Minh City. If you pay a little attention, you can easily recognize each section of the road or the market selling its own items, such as traditional medicine on Hai Thuong Lan Ong Street, Soai Kinh Lam Cloth Market, the gold-silver street on Nhieu Tam – Nghia Thuc Streets, and Dai Quang Minh materials-accessories market.

Another highlight makes you more hungry here. Chinese cuisine is rich and tasty, such as dimsum, Chinese-origin tea, and noodles. Everywhere around the market, you can see a lot of these dishes from the sidewalk diner to the luxurious restaurant.

Western Town in District 1

Western Town Bui Vien
Western Town Bui Vien | @duongoanh_311

Western Quarter, also called Tourist backpacker area or Bui Vien area, is located on Pham Ngu Lao, Bui Vien and De Tham streets in the heart of District 1, HCMC. This town is the place where most of the foreign tourists come when they visit Saigon.

The lively and vibrant atmosphere with many different languages ​​is the first thing visitors feel when coming to this Western Quarter.

This area is called the sleepless town in Saigon, mostly serving foreign tourists. Therefore, this place also concentrates on many hotels, restaurants, travel companies, bars, and souvenir shops. Besides, motorbike and bicycle rental services at reasonable prices create many options for travelers who like to explore the small alleys of Saigon.

And obviously, you should not forget tasting the diverse cuisine from Vietnamese food to Asian – European dishes in bars, restaurants in the Western Quarter.

Little Korea Town in District 7

District 7 HCMC
The View of District 7 HCMC | @29.thang02

The Korean community lives and works in Vietnam as much as the Chinese and Japanese communities.

Instead of focusing on an area like the others, the Korean groups distribute in the roads near the airport, such as around the Super Bowl, K300, or Pham Van Hai street in Tan Binh district. But, the most crowded Korean people are still in the Phu My Hung area (District 7).

The Korean town is not very prominent compared to other foreign areas. But, when entering its site, you can easily recognize it by both Korean and Vietnamese signboards.

District 7 has many shops selling all kinds of food brought from Korea and also includes Korean restaurants, hair salons and beauty salons, convenience stores, etc.

You even see some shuttle buses recording all Korean letters, and some schools have opened to teach Korean children.


Ho Chi Minh City is a melting-pot culture where covers the lifestyle and food of different regions in Vietnam as well as other countries. Typically, foreign communities in Saigon contribute to enriching the local culture in this city. Visiting these Little Foreign Town makes us know more diverse life in Ho Chi Minh City.


About the author

The editorial staff of Vietnamdrive is a team of travel experts managed by Mr. Thom who has worked in tourism for 14 years. Trusted by thousands of tourists from all over the world.