History Lovers, Here Are Top Historical Cafes To Explore In Saigon

Admin_Mar - April 12, 2021

Every object displayed in the coffee shop is preserved since wartime and they are still working. (Credit: Thanhnien.vn)

In Vietnam, there is a unique coffee culture where the simplicity and pleasure of life are spending every breakfast next to an iced milk coffee enjoying the breeze. People come to cafes not only for drinking coffee but also for drinking other refreshments such as tea while hanging out with friends. However, there are regular cafes and there are historical cafes. Walking into these cafes is like taking a step back in time. Long, everlasting history leaving its imprint, with the marks of the Vietnam War and the era of the 1970s-1980s in every nook and cranny. If you are a devoted historical scholar, you will fall in love during your visits.

Do Phu Cafe – South Korean Broken Rice (113A Dang Dung Street, Tan Dinh Ward, District 1)

A café takes visitors down a unique memory lane as a living museum to the Vietnam War. Do Phu Cafe is located at 113A Dang Dung Street, Tan Dinh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. Besides this address, there is another Do Phu Cafe at 287/72 Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street, Ward 5, District 3 under the name Do Phu Cafe – Bao Tang Biet Dong Sai Gon.

This is one of many old houses prepared by the special forces soldier and hero of the People’s Armed Forces, Tran Van Lai to prepare for the 1968 Spring Maoism and General Uprising.

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In addition to a reminiscent atmosphere of Saigon back in time, visitors of the cafe also get an opportunity to see uniquely-built bunkers of the special forces soldiers. (Credit: Thanhnien.vn)

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Behind this wall is a bunker that is between the walls of the house. Standing above or next to it, people cannot recognize anything that is “suspicious.” (Credit: Thanhnien.vn)

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Every object displayed in the coffee shop is preserved since wartime and they are still working. (Credit: Thanhnien.vn)

On November 16, 1988, the “Remains of the Armory of the Saigon Rangers Tet Independence Palace 1968” was recognized as a national monument of culture.

Tong Ky Tea Shop (13 Phan Chau Trinh, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1)

Located on the west gate of Ben Thanh Market and has existed for more than 100 years, O Tong Ky Tea Shop has been established for more than 100 years since 1913.

Owned by Ms. Kha Quyen, the tea shop, which has been closed for several years, still retains its historical view with every tool preserved exactly the same.

The 50s and 70s must be said to be the golden age of the shop. In addition to selling tea, it also sells Western wine, moon cakes, jam …. At the time of the most success, products were overflowing the house to satisfy the purchasing needs of customers.

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At the height of popularity, the tea of the shop was contained in these small tins with the picture of the founder printed outside. These tins are still kept until this day (Credit: Vnexpress.net)

The tea shop still holds tea-making methods of historical value until now.

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Ms. Kha Quyen, now in her 80s, is the second owner of the once-famous O Tong Ky tea shop. (Credit: Vnexpress.net)

Looking at the bustling streets, luxurious buildings in the center of Saigon, Ms. Quyen hopes that the tea shop can become a place to remember forever so that people nostalgic for history can stop by for a cup of tea, review some old stories together.

Lua Cafe (140B Nguyen Van Troi, Ward 8, Phu Nhuan District)

In the bustling town, finding a space to reminisce the past is not easy even though nostalgic cafes are not uncommon. A visit to Lua Café located at 140B Nguyen Van Troi, Phu Nhuan District will allow you to immerse in that satisfaction.

Here, thousands of items used around the time before 1975 in daily life were searched and collected by the owner of the shop, Huynh Minh Hiep. With the desire to preserve and introduce to the public the characteristics of life in the past, the artifacts collected by him are mostly intact after many events of history.

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A projector from the year 1960 which was used to display movies for children (Credit: Phunuonline.com)

The layout of the café somewhat makes visitors feel like they are sitting on a time machine shifting through the decades with various objects displayed from different periods of time.

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According to Hiep, “My wish is to introduce the youth to the Saigon of old, with precious things of value that will last forever with time, helping them to understand about Saigon with its trademark culture.” (Credit: Phunuonline.com)

Written by: Như Ý + Liên Lê

Image Sources: Google

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