Bui Vien Walking Street: Perfect Place for Saigon Night Life

Bui Vien Walking Street in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) is known as the "Western Street" (Vietnamese: Phố Tây or Phố Tây Ba Lô - Backpacker's Streets) because of its Western culture-oriented features. This Night Walking Street is always crowded (like Nguyen Hue Walking Street) with young locals and backpackers who come here to have fun, try local cuisines, and explore new places during their trip to Saigon. This is also a perfect place for Nightlife Activities in Ho Chi Minh City of Vietnam.

  • Location: Bui Vien Street, Pham Ngu Lao Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Walking area: Bui Vien, De Tham, Do Quan Dau, Tran Hung Dao, Pham Ngu Lao Streets.
  • Opening Hours: 7:00 pm – 2:00 am (on Saturday and Sunday)

Bui Vien Walking Street

Bui Vien Night Walking Street is located on three main streets of Bui Vien, De Tham, and Pham Ngu Lao, which is known as the "Backpacker District" by locals, which refers to the large number of western backpackers who visit this area of Ho Chi Minh City. If Hanoi has Ta Hien Street, then Saigon has Bui Vien. The western backpackers often compare the Bui Vien Street to the Khao San Walking Street in Thailand (Bangkok's tourist street) and sometimes call it Khao San in Saigon. It is not an exaggeration to say that this walking street has long been a hot spot for many tourists from Asia, Europe, Africa, and so on.

1. Where is Bui Vien Walking Street in Saigon Located?

Bui Vien Walking Street, located in the heart of District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City, is stretching about 1.4 km long. This area is well-known as the backpacker district with many local and western food restaurants, coffee shops, hotels, pubs, and bars. Besides, the area is now equipped with public Wi-Fi, restrooms, and information desks to serve visitors better.

Saigon Walking Street

This walking street comprises 5 streets and you can get here by any means of transportation, including public buses and private vehicles. Besides, the walking street is only a 10-15-minute walk away from Ben Thanh Market. Locals call this Red Light Street as it is very colorful at night time.

No vehicles are permitted on Bui Vien Walking Street from 7 pm to 2 am following day on the weekends. Therefore, various amusement activities can be set up on the streets such as playing Vietnamese folk games, exploring the bustling and lively Saigonese nightlife, indulging in foods and beverages, and treating yourself to a massage service.

2. History of Bui Vien Night Walking Street in Saigon:

It was hard to imagine Bui Vien Walking street off Vietnam as such a busy and bustling area as we see today, even for its local residents. Before 1975, journalists and artists referred to this spot as the International Intersection, referring to the five streets surrounding the Nguyen Van Hao cinema ( it is now called Ho Chi Minh City Drama Theater). The name was popular among many journalists and writers because the area used to be densely packed with printing shops and newsrooms.

Bui Vien Walking Street

After 1975, the quarter became a popular tourist attraction, especially for backpackers, explaining its alternate name, the Western Street. At the time, most visitors to Bui Vien Street in Ho Chi Minh came from the United States, the United Kingdom, and France. In 2009, the area became more and more crowded, attracting an increasing number of Vietnamese and foreign traders who came to do business.

On 15th July 2017, the street was first opened to the pedestrians only. On 20th August 2017, Bui Vien Walking Street was officially designated as a walking street in Ho Chi Minh City. It is the second walking street in the City, following Nguyen Hue Flower Walking Street. It is today become one of the most crowded streets in Ho Chi Minh City.

3. What Activities to Do & Things to See in Bui Vien Street?

Despite being narrower and shorter than Nguyen Hue Flower Walking Street, Bui Vien still attracts many foreign visitors and local people, especially young boys and girls to come for drinks, relaxation and photography. And here are some of the best activities to do in Bui Vien:

3.1. Take a Walking in Bui Vien walking street:

Bui Vien Walking Street is a very popular nighttime destination for foreign visitors and young Saigonese people, making it a crowded multicultural street with tourists from all over the world. There will be street art performances, traditional and contemporary music shows, and other activities to meet the needs of the public while also facilitating interactions with non-Vietnamese friends and cultural integration.

Today, the streets and alleys surrounding Bui Vien area have become a backpacker district, with many restaurants, cafes, hotels, hostels, bars, and pubs. Even if you dislike the craziness and loudness of parties, visiting Bui Vien walking street is still recommended because you can go to a restaurant or cafe to quietly enjoy Bui Vien's nightlife.

3.2. Chill at Bui Vien Local Coffee Shops:

As a popular cultural intersection, Bui Vien Street is home to both branded coffee chains and many local specialty coffee boutiques. If you are looking for convenience, you can't go wrong with some of the Starbucks, Bobby Brown, Trung Nguyen, or Phuc Long.

On the other hand, if Saigon's hidden gems attract you, go off the beaten path to the tranquil midst of Hanoi Corner, Nha Co 3 Lau, and Ut Lanh Cafe. Each location exudes a distinct vintage, nostalgia, and serenity vibe. Still, you can completely escape the hustle and bustle of the never-ending crowd by sipping a fine egg coffee or Bac Xiu (Vietnamese white coffee).

3.3. Experience the dynamic nightlife in local bars & pubs:

Bui Vien, which has made a name for itself as a Western street, also has a typical characteristic of the Western world - the vibrant nights out - with a variety of unique and exciting pubs and bars. This street is also known as Saigon's most luxurious "never-sleep" street due to its sparkling lights.

The DJs at the bars are always working hard to create the best remixes of typical Vietnamese EDM music. Although often crowded, the bars on Bui Vien street strive to provide high-quality services.

Some prime-location bars also provide a panoramic, breathtaking view of the city at night. Beverages made by professional bartenders vary, and some are mixed to create new flavors to ensure that customers can always try something fresh. There are also bars where you can play exciting games like billiards and darts.

3.4. Enjoy Local Food at Bui Vien Street:

The later at night, the more crowded Bui Vien Street will be, where most of those present here are foreign tourists. The streets are completely packed with walking tourists, the flavors and smoke from street food vendors, the sound of chatting, loud music,... making it one of the best nightlife destinations in Ho Chi Minh City.

There are many lively and colorful parties with many exciting things for you to see and try. You should come here to see and experience the most charming time of the day in Bui Vien.

3.5. Enjoy Bui Vien Walking Street Massage:

Visitors can find Vietnamese Massage lining up the Bui Vien Walking Street, offering many varied services. One can avail full body, foot massages or manicures & padicures. Prices range from about VND 150,000 (7 USD) for the former, to about VND 20,000 (1USD) for the latter.

4. What is Best Local Food to Eat in Bui Vien walking street:

One reason why the street is so popular among locals and tourists alike is the variety of Saigon's food, which comes from various places in the world, both in and outside of Vietnam. Here's a list of must-try tasty foods in the backpacker district:

  • Try the Coconut sticky rice ice-cream

A snack from Thailand that is gaining fame among young locals and many foreign tourists who visit this place. It is a perfect treat in the hot weather in Saigon.

Because it is from Thailand, this delectable ice cream incorporates coconut syrup and soft coconut, which are the highlights of Thai street food. A glass of coconut sticky rice ice cream comprises coconut milk, sticky rice, peanut, soybean, corn, dried coconut, and coconut jelly. You'd never get bored with the perfect blend of the freshness of ice cream and the softness of sticky rice.

  • Enjoying BBQ Stuffs in Local Restaurants:

Bui Vien street is a must-visit place if you are looking for some BBQ. Unlike what you have in mind, the BBQ is served by street vendors rather than restaurants. The recipe is simple, but some dishes in the skewers always make a great impression for Vietnamese cuisine.

Grilled food and BBQ vendors are selling everything from chicken or seafood to goat and pork for a very cheap price. The dishes here, served with dipping sauces, are delicious and flavorful. The space is airy, with low tables and chairs that create a sense of casualness and intimacy.

  • Taste Tofu Dishes on Street Food Stalls:

Sweet and fresh tofu is a very cheap and popular local dish. A bowl of tofu will usually contain jelly-like tofu, sugar juice, jelly balls, coconut milk, and a few slices of ginger. A bowl of tofu only costs you around 6,000 VND only.

  • Sample Many Local Snail Dishes

Boiled or stir-fried local snail is another popular dish in Bui Vien Street. The most famous local snail shop is at the end of Bui Vien street and offers a variety of delicious boiled and stir-fried snails, crabs and clams dishes.

  • Try Colorful Rolled Pho

Still made from Vietnamese noodles, but the vegetable-based Pho has many different colors this time. The color formula uses sweet gourd, black sesame, mustard green, beetroot, red cabbage, brown rice, and other all-natural ingredients to make Pho look very nice while still retaining the original taste and nutrition value. The rolled Pho is dipped in a light sauce made of Vietnamese fish sauce, vinegar, sugar, garlic, and chili,... and served as an appetizer or main course.

5. Directions and How to Get to Bui Vien Walking Street?

Bui Vien Walking Street is located in City Center of District 1 of Ho Chi Minh City, just about a kilometre away from the central Ben Thanh market. You can easily walk to there, or avail a motorbike or grab taxi. One can also take local bus line 109 from Saigon Airport to September 23rd (23/9) Park. The backpackers' district is located just a few metres away from the bus stop. The public bus ride costs you about VND 20,000 only.

6. Travel Tips before visiting Bui Vien Night Walking Street

  • Bui Vien Walking Street is always busy with people, so keep your belongings, such as cell phones, camera, cash, and wallets safe. There have been a few thefts reported on this walking street.
  • At Bui Vien Walking Street, with alcohol and sometimes smoke in the air, situations might get tense quickly. If provoked, just ignore it and proceed with the crowd and continue on your journey.
  • Most of the local people sit on one side of the street and the expats can sit on the other side. You can make more local friends if you would like to join locals and they will love that!
  • There are two parking lots, one near streets of Do Quang Dau and Pham Ngu Lao and one at the intersection of Nguyen Thai Hoc and Tran Hung Dao streets. You can also park at the 23-9 lot at Sen Hong Theater on Le Lai Street. The parking fee ranges between 15,000 and 20,000 VND.
  • If you enjoy folk singing or watching local performances, you can come to visit the two small stages on Bui Vien street, where the cultural art is exchanged.

Adventure Journey

See Also:

Bui Vien Walking Street: Perfect Place for Saigon Night Life Bui Vien Walking Street: Perfect Place for Saigon Night Life

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