Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral - French memory in Saigon

Duc Ba Cathedral, better known as Notre Dame Cathedral is considered the spiritual and cultural centre of Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City. This cathedral was supposed to represent the glory of the French colonizing force. Interestingly, it still has a uniquely Eastern aspect in spite of being built in a Western architectural style.
 
The famous central Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral, built between 1863 and 1880 by French colonists, is one of Ho Chi Minh City's architectural marvels. Erected exclusively with materials imported from France, it is one of the most popular things to see in Ho Chi Minh City for tourists, along with Ben Thanh Market and the Reunification Palace. The official name of the church is “Basilica of Our Lady of The Immaculate Conception”.

All the original building materials were imported from France. Tiles have been carved with the words Guichard Carvin, Marseille St André France (perhaps stating the locality where the tiles were produced). Some tiles are carved with the words “Wang-Tai Saigon”. Many tiles have since been made in Ho Chi Minh City to replace the tiles that were damaged by the war. There are 56 glass squares supplied by the Lorin firm of Chartres province in France. The cathedral foundation was designed to bear ten times the weight of the cathedral.
 
A picture of Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral
A picture of Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral
 

The cathedral is wrapped by bustling streets. Many tourists to Ho Chi Minh City head straight to Notre Dame Cathedral as their first stopping point of interest, and with good reason. It is hard to miss the church’s twin towers projecting into the sky some 200 feet.


More things to do in Sai Gon

Duc Ba Cathedral is officially open to visitors between the hours of 8am and 11am in the morning and 3pm and 4pm in the afternoons. There are reports however that this can be a little sporadic. If the front entrance isn’t open, try the door around the left side (facing Reunification Palace). English speaking staff sometimes dispense tourist information from 9-11a.m. The church is free to visit but of course donations are most welcome.
A corner with the vendor near to Duc Ba Church.
A corner with the vendor near to Duc Ba Church.
 

Located in the heart of District 1, Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral is one of the easiest places to focus on for tourists from far away. From here, you can find travel agencies, hotels, famous places, museums, or individual restaurants and cafes.Visitors can also find Notre Dame Cathedral by public transport such as bus, taxi or even motorbike taxi or cyclo.

With a large space and low traffic density, this is also an ideal place for travelers to walk or sip a small cup of coffee. Near Notre Dame Cathedral are famous monuments of Ho Chi Minh City such as Reunification Palace, Ho Con Rua, Museum of Vietnamese History, ...

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