Tourists and locals alike love to shop at the range of stores and markets found throughout Vietnam. From huge, modern shopping malls, to historic markets, there are plenty of options for finding that perfect item. Choose between local hand-crafted souvenirs and gifts, or go with the latest designer fashions.
A great way to get a taste of authentic Mekong Delta culture is by visiting one of the best floating markets in Vietnam. The southern part of the country is where the Mekong River is, and the delta region has many unique customs and traditions. Floating markets have been an important way to shop for …
Where and What to Shop for in Vietnam
Vietnam’s largest cities host a number of shopping centers, often located on the first several floors of towering skyscrapers. While credit cards are fine here, you’ll want to bring your cash (dong) to the myriad of markets found in towns of all sizes. Whether you’re looking for a local food staple or want to get a custom tailored suit, here’s a look where to do your shopping, and additional items to buy.
Vietnam’s capital city, Hanoi, has the best markets offering something for everybody. Shop day and night…
Hanoi is known for its multi-cultural community and abundance of historical landmarks. In recent years, however,…
Guide to Shopping Sites in Vietnam
Shopping in Vietnam can be a fun, productive, and social activity in all parts of the country. The options might seem overwhelming at first, but tourists can quickly discover great places to buy goods ranging from market stands to large commercial venues.
No matter which city you’re visiting, be sure to ask locals for some great spots to peruse the types of things you’re looking for and sample authentic Vietnamese retail culture.
Unlike countries such as the United States and many places in Europe, Vietnam doesn’t have the same demand for credit cards. You might be able to use plastic in some stores, but it’s essential to always carry cash on you for most purchases. The Vietnamese Dong is king, especially for smaller items like snacks and trinkets, and will make your transactions seamless and uncomplicated.
Especially in places like outdoor markets and souvenir stands, you might get a better deal by attempting to haggle the cost down. It isn’t uncommon for foreigners to be given higher prices for goods at first, sometimes even up to twice (or more) what it would be for a local.
If you’re interested in a particular item, offer the lower price (usually half of what they say) and see if the seller accepts. If not, walk away, and in many cases, that often will prompt the vendor to lower the cost even more. Like buying a car from the dealership, if they let you walk away, you might’ve reached their final price.
Many places in markets and tourist areas have many similar items. If the particular seller you’re trying to get a good deal from won’t budge, there’s a good possibility you will see the same thing at another stand nearby.
Day and Night Markets
Vietnam has a lot of day and night markets, each with their own personality and flair. Marketplaces can also be wonderful locations for socializing, grabbing a bite to eat, enjoying drinks, and window shopping.
Night markets can often have some entertainment happening amidst the busy streets, making for an exciting time while strolling the pathways. The best fresh produce can be found in the morning markets and has an entirely different sort of crowd.
Floating Markets are prevalent in the delta regions, including the most famous Mekong River Delta in southern Vietnam, and northern Vietnam’s Red River Delta. They most active in the early mornings. A variety of products, including fish, snacks, and souvenirs, can be found in this unique style of shopping area. Tours of the floating markets are excellent for experiencing some genuine local culture, too.
Vietnam’s shopping centers highly resemble typical American malls, loaded with stores of every kind, places to eat, and usually equipped with entertainment venues like a movie theater. These vibrant indoor spaces are often multi-story and have more modern storefronts than you’d find in any bustling markets.
Visitors would go to a shopping center for branded items like clothing and electronics, which are just as popular with tourists as with locals. Many five-star luxury hotels and resorts are located close to a shopping center, offering easy access to travelers.
Some of the most popular locations for this type of shopping include the Vincom Plazas located in many cities, Saigon’s Takashimaya Vietnam, and the Nha Trang Center. Take a look at Hanoi’s shopping centers or Ho Chi Minh’s malls for coverage of Vietnam’s two largest cities.
What’s a vacation without souvenirs? Luckily, Vietnam is a country that caters to its visitors with plenty of places to grab some fun or intriguing things to bring home. Many souvenirs can be found in markets or attraction stores. You will be able to find typical items and gifts like keychains and t-shirts at several locations, but Vietnam also has various cultural-specific things to buy.
Hanoi Old Quarter Shopping
One of the most exciting places to shop in Vietnam is Hanoi’s Old Quarter, which has been home to many vendors for centuries. Dating back to the year 1010 and known by natives as the “36 streets,” this area has a road named for each featured craft. Although this section of town has evolved, traces of its history can be found while browsing the stores. Even if you’re not big into buying things, going for a stroll through this unique shopping area is a must-do activity.
Browsing stores and markets in Vietnam can be fun while opening your eyes to a new way of making purchases and items. The liveliness of the country’s shopping areas offers so much to look at and can be an excellent hub for socializing and getting some of the best deals around.