Located in historic Cholon, Binh Tay Market has been a constant presence in Ho Chi Minh City’s Chinatown Since its inception in the 1880s, it has developed a strong reputation with Cholon’s locals and is one of the largest markets in the whole city.
Sitting in the heart of Cholon, this food market serves as the locals’ one-stop-shop for fresh ingredients and authentic Chinese and Vietnamese delicacies.
The original Binh Tay Market was founded and majorly funded, by a Chinese businessman named Quach Dam (1863-1927). Dam was a serial investor who had made his fortune by founding several businesses and lived an archetypal ‘rags-to-riches’ life. Eager for space where merchants could freely sell their goods, Dam envisioned a large market in the center of Cholon.
The dream began to realize in the 1920s when the Binh Tay Market’s cornerstone was first laid down. However, Quach Dam never would see the completed market as he passed away during its construction. After completion, the first merchants moved into Binh Tay Market in 1930.
A statue of Quach Dam was promptly erected outside the market in commemoration, however, it was removed and only the surrounding bronze lions and dragons remain today. A stone altar can also be found in the market’s courtyard.
Binh Tay Market offers a wide array of goods and is seen as a major hub for local businesses. Much like other Vietnamese markets, household items and textile works can also be found at a fraction of their retail price.
Being in Cholon, the market’s architectural style is unmistakably Chinese and features a grand, tapering exterior resembling a grand pagoda. The market’s bustling nature is apparent straight away as, upon entry, dozens of stalls can be found lining the Binh Tay’s hallways and corners.
Locals are often seen shopping here and browsing the eclectic range of foods on display. A popular breakfast spot in Cholon, the market boasts some of the freshest, most delicious ingredients in Ho Chi Minh City. Despite its small size, Binh Tay Market has become a culinary powerhouse in the city. Chinese and Vietnamese dishes are readily available, reflecting the diversity of Cholon.
Household items, handicrafts, and textiles are other popular items, but keep in mind that these products are often sold in bulk. Binh Tay Market is less touristy than other Saigon Markets, so the range of these products is often not as wide. However, if you’re curious about the lives and diets of Cholon’s locals, then shopping at Binh Tay will give you tremendous insight.
Binh Tay Market is located in Cholon – the Chinatown in the District 6 area of Saigon. It’s located around 15 minutes from the city center and is easily accessible by public transport or by foot. The best time to visit the market is in the early morning as you will not only be able to enjoy a delicious breakfast but also get an immersive insight into everyday life in Cholon.
Address: 57A Thap Moui, District 6, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Hours: 8 AM – 5 PM
First Opened: 1930