The War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City
- on Dec 25, 2019       By: Bảo Ngọc
One place that welcomes a significant number of visitors who particularly appreciate the history is the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City. This museum, which is very different from the others, is a must-see to understand the history of Vietnam and also to remember that war is nothing glorious.
Covering an area of 7,300 m2, the museum exhibits evidence of war in the courtyard and indoors in its three-story building. Founded after the reunification of the country and open to the public from 4/9/1975, it pays tribute to the Vietnamese combatants and inhabitants during the war on the one hand and highlights war crimes aiming to aspire peace for the world whole on the other hand.
Originally called the Gallery of American Atrocities, it was renamed in 1990 the War Crimes Gallery before being named in 1995 its current War Remnants Museum.
An emotional stop
It is clear that there is very rarely in the world a museum which expresses with so much force the brutality and the consequences of the war. Even if we have known the horror of the battles in Vietnam, what you see here with your own eyes is truly unimaginable.
At the entrance, what strikes you is the collection of American armoured vehicles, artillery, bombs, infantry weapons, not to mention the French guillotine against the Viet Minh fighters.
An M41 Walker Bulldog tank
One of the famous tiger cages used at Con Dao, "hell on earth"
Next is a tiger cage reconstructed to be faithful to the famous ones used in the prison on the Con Dao island or Con Son, reputed to be "hell on earth". With a surface area of five square meters, this place is without doubt one of the most horrible in the world.
We meet visitors of all nationalities, who meditate, sometimes with red eyes in front of objects, photos, moving reports. The structure accumulates more than 20,000 documents consisting of objects and photos, 1,500 of which are exhibited in 8 permanent themes.
The famous snapshot of the 1968 massacre that cost the lives of 504 villagers from Son My, Quang Ngai province
The photos show everything, such as the massacre of Son My in 1968, the malformations in new-borns undergoing sequences of the famous orange agent spread by the Americans, the torture of Viet Cong prisoners… It’s a poignant visit and even hard to see for the little ones and the sensitive people.
The museum takes you to immerse yourself in Vietnamese history not only during the anti-American war, but also other successive ones aimed at sabotaging the Vietnamese state after 1975, the Chinese incursion in 1979, the thorny questions linked to the Truong Sa archipelago… All of them will bring a wider perspective for visitor to discover.
On the ground floor are the multifunctional hall and the rest entitled "Support of the world in Vietnam during the resistance".
In the first floor, the consequences of Agent Orange and the atrocities of war are highlighted. Visitors cannot be indifferent to the extremely torture scenes.
In the second floor, the themes focus on historical realities, stories from the memories of 134 reporters from 11 countries who died during the Indochina War, the "White Pigeon" room for raising awareness among children and the "Vietnam, war and peace" space.
A special attraction of Saigon
The museum is several times classified by TripAdvisor in its list of the best museums to visit. It ranks 5th in the list of 25 best museums in Asia in 2013 and is the only Asian honoured among the 10 best museums in the world in 2018.
28 Vo Van Tan Street, Ward 6, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City
Opening: all week including holidays
+ Morning: 7.30 a.m. - 12 p.m.
+ Afternoon: 1.30 p.m. - 6 p.m.
Ticket: 40,000 VND per person
How to get to the War Remnants Museum?
If you are thinking of taking a public way to get there instead of a motorbike or a taxi, some buses are available, namely buses 05, 06, 14 and 120.
Departure from Mien Dong bus station: bus 14
Departure from Ben Thanh market: bus 28
Departure from Cholon bus station: bus 06
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