Tao Dan Park: a green lung of Ho Chi Minh City

Tao Dan Park is on the top list of the biggest parks in Ho Chi Minh City. The park in District 1 has about 10 hectares wide with more than 1,000 trees so it is like a green lung in the heart of the dusty and busy city Saigon. This place attracts a lot of urban residents to exercise, walk, or have fun in the early morning and late afternoon.

Tao Dan Park

Address: Truong Dinh, Ben Thanh ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Opening hours in Tao Dan Garden: 5:00 am – 10:00 pm,
The best time to come here is 5:30 am – 8:00 am. Take a walk around the park and watch locals playing sports and practising Tai Chi.

Highlights in Tao Dan Park

With a lot of plants creating shade, all day the park is a popular destination for the locals and tourists to enjoy the quiet and fresh space and escape from the hot heat in Saigon. You can sit on the benches to chat with friends or organize a picnic on the wide grass in the garden.

There are some highlights in this park that you can notice:

1. Hung Temple

Tao Dan Park
In front of Hung Temple in Tao Dan Park | ©pham van/flickr

Hung Temple was built in 1992 and restored in late 2011. This is a small building but beautiful with traditional architecture, under the shade of green trees. The temple has the three-way door which is popular in the Vietnamese temples. The main hall consisting of three rooms: the middle part is the place to worship Hung Vuong King; the left is worshiping Au Co Mother, and the right space worships President Ho Chi Minh.

With great spiritual values and beautiful scenery, Hung Vuong Temple in Tao Dan is very significant for the spiritual life in Ho Chi Minh City.

2. Ancient tomb

In the Tao Dan campus, about 35 m from Tuong Dinh Street, near the headquarters of the Green Park Company, there is a well-cared tomb, but very few people have information about the owner of the tomb.

The tomb was built in a duplex structure, the popular architecture in the tomb construction in Vietnam from the 15th to the early 20th century. This area is 11m long and 7m wide, including the graves, lobby, and altar.

In particular, the tomb has only 1.4 m high gate to enter. Perhaps the builders had intent to who coming to the graves must bow their heads to the death, as the ancestors.

According to some documents, this is the tomb of Mr. Lam Tam Lang, who died in 1795, his wife is Mrs. Mai Thi Xa. Mr. Lam, originally from Guangdong, followed the Chinese people to Vietnam after the Qing Dynasty overthrew the Ming Dynasty and married a native speaker (Mai is a Vietnamese surname). However, the tomb was built in 1895.

On 10.4.2014, the ancient tomb of Mr. Lam became as a historical monument at the city.

The overall architecture is preserved intact. This is one of the compound tombs with a large area and beautiful architecture remaining in Ho Chi Minh City. The existence of ancient tombs of Mr. Lam’s family contributes significantly to archeology and scientific research on the type of ancient tombs of Vietnam.

The City People’s Committee decided

3. Cham Temple

Cham Temple in Tao Dan
Cham Temple in Tao Dan | @saigon.photography

A Cham Temple appears in the park as one of the highlights. In fact, this is not an original Cham tower of Champa kingdom, only a copy from the prototype of the project that is the main tower in the famous Po Nagar temple in Nha Trang.

Compared to the original structure, the tower in Tao Dan Park is much smaller. The details decorated on the wall are also greatly reduced. However, the building still exudes the quiet and mysterious appearance inherent to a Cham tower.

The appearance of the tower has created a unique highlight for Tao Dan. The work is also a valuable reference model for those who cannot afford to visit ancient Cham towers.

4. Tao Dan children’s play area

Tao Dan children’s play area has an area of ​​about 300m2, located on the side of Truong Dinh street with 8 games for children to play. The play area is designed with a variety of outdoor sports games, continuous home system, slide, swing, …. comfortable for children to run and play. Especially the free play area with no time limit, so your children can enjoy playing any game they want.

This playing area aims to help increase the movement of children, stimulate them closer to nature for comprehensive development. 

The whole family can also join the flow of people walking or exercising at the machines available at the park. If you come here on the Tet holiday, your family will be immersed in the “Tao Dan Spring Flower Festival” with unique artworks that will surely make your children excited.

What to do in the Tao Dan park

1. Train exercise in the park

Tao Dan Park is considered the green lung of Ho Chi Minh City. Every morning and late afternoon, a lot of people come here to exercise and enjoy the fresh air.

exercise in Tao Dan Park
exercise in Tao Dan Park | @meipikapi

At Tao Dan, there are dozens of machines, exercise equipment, and many dance classes such as aerobic dance, dance, modern dance … help people practice and improve their health.

In addition to the space for adult fitness, lots of children go with their parents to the park to have fun and enjoy the fresh air. 

The natural green color of plants has a great effect on developing eyesight and relaxing eyes. Therefore, this place is great for most people.

2. Experience the bird coffee at the park

On weekend mornings, crowds of people with their birds gather at the coffee shop inside Tao Dan Park, eliminating the noisy and strenuous life to immerse themselves in nature.

From early in the morning, many players bring their favorite birds to meet with friends with similar interests … The bird’s sound is very interesting, full of fun to help people forget daily tiredness.

Although some birds cost millions of Vietnam dong and need a lot of time to take care of, the joy is simply to enjoy the moments when they sing and dance while relaxing and tasting a cup of coffee.

>>> You may want to see the beautiful coffee shops in Saigon.

3. Walk and relax in the park

With the big area and a lot of green trees, you can walk and relax under the shade. Do not forget to carry a little food and drink if you want to spend time here long.

If you have to intend to organize a picnic, the park is also an ideal place for your family, friends, and relatives to have fun and leisure time.

No need to go far, you will have a comfortable moment with nature right in the heart of District 1 in Tao Dan Park, in a 10-hectare area full of green trees.

4. Visit the historical and cultural buildings

Right in the park, the Hung Temple built with traditional style, the Cham temple, and the ancient tomb is the typical buildings where you can study the culture and architecture.

Do not forget to take pictures of them to remember the time when you are in Ho Chi Minh City.

History of Tao Dan Park

Tao Dan Park Map
Tao Dan Park Map

Tao Dan Park can be considered as Central Park of Ho Chi Minh City. Before the French occupied Saigon in 1859, this was the “royal garden” of Gia Dinh, the residence of the family of the Governor Le Van Duyet, known as the Vice-King for ruling over South Vietnam.

The garden was called “Vuon Ong Thuong”, including the Reunification Palace today. In addition to the residence of the Governor-General also had a flower garden and a traditional theater. But after Le Van Duyet died, Vuon Ong Thuong was demolished by King Minh Mang.

After capturing Saigon, a part of Ong Thuong Garden was taken by the French as the location of the Government Palace (built from 1868 to 1871), later named Norodom Palace (then became the Reunification Palace). The rest was built as the Jardin de la Ville (City Park). This was the first public flower garden for Saigon people. Separating these two parts was Poulo Condor road (Con Dao), built in 1869, later renamed Miss Cawell (now Huyen Tran Cong Chua).

From 1922 to 1955, the city park was named after Maurice Long, a former minister and also governor-general of Indochina (1920-1922). Gradually, a large number of areas adjacent to the frontage of Ong Thuong Garden were separated for public works.

After 1954, the French went away, the Government Palace became the Presidential Palace. The south government of Vietnam had also changed a series of street names, gardens, and public buildings. Maurice Long Park changed to Tao Dan Park (the name of the poetry organization of King Le Thanh Ton in the 15th century).

After April 1975, Cong Vien Tao Dan changed its name to City Children’s Park, but then returned to its former name, continuing to be the Tao Dan Cultural Park until now. Since 1985, the park has been the first place to open an outdoor music stage to serve the people in Saigon.

Currently, Cong Vien Tao Dan is a familiar green place for people to go sightseeing, go for a walk, play sports, participate in fine arts and entertainment activities. This site is often chosen for the largest Spring Flower Festival in Ho Chi Minh City every Tet holiday.

Note to know when visiting this place

  1. The people come to Tao Dan Park to train exercise in the early morning more than in the afternoon. Thus, if you want to send and take pictures of the local people’s daily activities, you will come there from 5:30 am – 7:00 am.
  2. Although the park opens until 10:00 pm, Vietnamdrive recommends you do not stay there over 8:00 pm to avoid robbers.
  3. Tao Dan park is really crowded with the people on the morning of Saturday and Sunday.
  4. The parks have two coffee shops, but the café close to the Cach Mang Thang Tam is more interesting if you want to watch and hear the birds.
  5. Although there are café in Tao Dan, you can bring your food and drink when you spend time here.
  6. You can meet some students telling foreigners to practice their English. If you have time, you can help them learn English, too.

Tao Dan Park is an ideal place for relaxing and watching the daily life of the local people. Enjoying a cup of coffee while hearing the birds sing is one of our interesting activities here. Besides visiting famous tourist destinations in Ho Chi Minh City, taking a short break to sit down at Tao Dan park can become a highlight for your holidays in this beautiful city.

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    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.