Reunification Palace (Independence Palace)
Vietnam has a long history of conflict and visiting the Reunification Palace is essential for understanding of the modern-day country. As such, it’s a staple of most sightseeing tours of the city. There, visit the war-command room, the F5E fighter plane that bombed the building in 1975, and the tank that rolled through the gates as Saigon fell. For a comprehensive overview of the war, combine a city tour and the Reunification Palace with a guided visit to the nearby Cu Chi Tunnels.
Things to Know Before You Go
Reunification Palace is a must-visit for history buffs and first time visitors.
The structure is a working government building, but it’s also a museum of the historical events that happened there.
Rooms in the labyrinthine basement screen videos about the palace history in several languages.
Visitors may be asked to pass through a security check before entering the building.
Photography is allowed inside the palace.
The palace is accessible for wheelchair users, with the exception of the rooftop terrace.
How to Get There
Reunification Palace is situated in the heart of District 1, a short walk from Ben Thanh market. Follow Le Loi away from the market circle and turn left on Nam Ky Khoi Nghia to arrive. Alternatively, visit as part of a guided city tour.
When to Get There
Reunification Palace is open to the public daily, as long as there are no official receptions or events taking place. Check in advance to avoid disappointment on the day and visit early to beat the crowds.
Designed for a President
The Reunification Palace was originally redesigned as the presidential palace for Ngo Dingh, the president of South Vietnam, after his own air force bombed his old palace. He was quite unpopular. The building has a bomb shelter in the basement, a movie theater, game room, disco, and rooftop helipad. Unfortunately, the president never moved in, as he was killed by his own troops three years before it was completed.
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