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Ho Chi Minh City's local festivals are not only a guaranteed great time, but also offer an interesting insight into various aspects of Vietnamese culture and provide the perfect opportunity to rub shoulders with the local population.
Below are some of the main festivals and annual events in Ho Chi Minh City.
Annual events in Ho Chi Minh City
Tet Festival (January/February)
The Tet Festival, or the Lunar New Year, is the most celebrated event in Vietnam. It falls between late January and early February each year and lasts a whole week. A series of events are held to grandly celebrate the occasion, including massive fireworks displays and street processions. Locals make a huge effort to dress in their finest clothing and visit family and friends at this time of year.
Buddha’s Birthday Festival (May)
The festival held to mark the birthday of Buddha falls on the 15th day of the fourth lunar month. In Ho Chi Minh City, major celebrations are held at the Nghia An Hoi Quan Pagoda. This Buddhist temple is beautifully decorated with colourful lanterns in celebration, and Buddhist monks can be seen leading prayer processions along the streets throughout the city.
Ho Chi Minh’s Birthday (May)
Each year on 19 May, events are held in Ho Chi Minh City to celebrate the birthday of Vietnam’s former president, who was a key figure in helping gain freedom for the people of Vietnam. He is a national hero and is still highly honoured by the Vietnamese, especially in the city that was named after him.
Tet Nguyen Tieu (September)
Each September, the skies above Ho Chi Minh City are filled with colour and light as the residents release lanterns. This breathtaking sight is not to be missed. There are also a number of street processions held to mark the occasion.
Ho Chi Minh City International Food Fair
A perfect opportunity to get a taste of home and other far-off places, the food fair brings together the best cuisine from all around the world. Foodies will be in seventh heaven here, and everyone is sure to find something that tickles their taste buds.