War Remnants Museum: Where History is Preserved

War Remnants Museum, a place imbued with profound historical imprints, is one of the top tourist destinations in Ho Chi Minh City. Today, let’s explore the optimal travel guide for this destination together with Deluxe Group Tours, unveiling the collections, regulations, and enticing nearby attractions.

About War Remnants Museum

The War Remnants Museum, located at 28 Vo Van Tan Street, District 3, is widely known as a museum for peace. It is a special tourist destination, offering you the opportunity to learn about and explore the history of Vietnam. With artifacts, documents, and evidence of the harsh war, the museum takes you back to historical stories and revives an unforgettable period in history.

After the reunification of the two regions, on September 4th, 1975, the Exhibition House for US and Puppet Crimes was opened to preserve evidence of the war, from the resistance against the French to the resistance against the Americans. Subsequently, it was renamed the Exhibition House for War Crimes of Aggression on November 10th, 1990. Finally, on July 4th, 1995, it officially became the War Remnants Museum.

War Remnants Museum -ho chi minh
War Remnants Museum – Ho Chi Minh

In 2002, the War Remnants Museum invested in construction for comprehensive modernization to enhance the visitors’ experience. On April 30th, 2010, the renovation process was completed, which added new exhibition areas, and expanded its collection of artifacts and documents including films depicting the periods of French and Japanese invasions and the post-war nation-building era.

The War Remnants Museum has a total area of more than 3,000 square meters, with more than 15,000 artifacts on display and serving education and historical learning. The artifacts include weapons, military equipment, historical documents, photos, and evidence related to the arduous war.

The museum’s activities strongly contribute to popularizing the spirit of fighting to protect the Vietnam nation, raising awareness against aggressive wars, and affirming the power of peace and the noble spirit of solidarity and friendship between nations in the world.

In nearly 50 years of operation, the War Remnants Museum has welcomed over 15 million visitors, both domestic and international. The museum was awarded the Third-Class Labor Medal by the State in 1995 and the Second-Class Labor Medal in 2001.

How to get to War Remnants Museum

The War Remnants Museum is located at 28 Vo Van Tan Street, situated in Wards 3 and 10 of District 3. To reach it, you have several options for transportation:

  • Personal vehicle: You can take Cong Hoa Street or Truong Chinh Street from District 3, then turn onto Cach Mang Thang Tam Street and still turn onto Vo Van Tan Street. When you arrive at the entrance of the museum you can use online map apps or GPS.
  • Taxi and ride-hailing services: You can also easily take a taxi or use ride-hailing apps like Grab, Gojek, Be, etc. Show the driver the address and they will take you safely to the War Remnants Museum.
  • Bus: Traveling to the museum by bus helps you save money and offers an opportunity to admire the cityscape. Bus route number 14 (departing from Mien Dong Bus Station), bus route number 06 (from Cho Lon Bus Station), and bus route number 28 (from Ben Thanh Market), which are three bus routes, pass the museum.

Opening hours and entrance fee

The museum is open every day including days of national holidays and Lunar New Year (Tet) from 7:30 A.M. to 5:30 P.M. However, be aware that tickets are sold only until 5:00 P.M.

The entrance cost to the museum is 40,000 Vietnamese dong for each individual/ for a single visit. However, the museum applied various support programs and exemptions from some special groups as follows:

  • 50% discount on the admission fee: for children ages 6-16, students, the elderly, those who have contributed to the revolution, and disabled individuals with severe damages.
  • Free admission: for children under 6 years old, disabled individuals with severe damages, and individuals from policy families.

Explore War Remnants Museum

1. Characteristic architecture and design of the War Remnants Museum

path through the war remnants-museum-hochiminh
Path through the war remnants museum

The War Remnants Museum is designed with distinctive and unique architecture, honoring the historical and cultural values of Vietnam. The architecture of the museum is inspired by military locations during the war, featuring stone walls, rock walls, concrete floors, corrugated iron roofs, and small windows, creating a very distinctive and visually appealing space.

Meanwhile, the museum’s design also heavily emphasizes the display of artifacts and evidence in a diverse and engaging manner. The exhibits are organized according to various themes, ranging from the military, historical documents, and photographs to emotionally charged video segments, creating a comprehensive and profound space for tourists to learn and understand more about the country’s painful history.

Additionally, the museum utilizes sound and light effects to create impressive experiences, allowing you to feel the profound emotions of the Vietnamese people during the war. All of these elements have contributed to making the War Remnants Museum a uniquely characteristic attraction.

2. Thematic “The World Supports Vietnam’s Resistance Against America, 1954–1975”

War Remnants Museum3-ho chi minh
War Remnants Museum – Ho Chi Minh

The World’s Support for Vietnam’s Resistance War against America 1954–1975″ is comprised of more than 100 photographs, 145 documents, and numerous artifacts. This vivid exhibit brings to life the spirit of the world united with the Vietnamese people’s resistance against a powerful aggressor — with Americans a part of that world — both morally and materially.

The photographs, documents, and artifacts take you on an emotional journey as you see the rallies and protests from many single city and hamlet throughout the globe. You see the numerous conferences, seminars, and community banners from every continent. Relics donated by US veterans who fought in the Vietnam War demonstrate enormous respect and profound regret for their participation in this unjust war.

You can admire this exhibition right in the center of the ground floor of the War Remnants Museum. Come and experience the immense historical values that this exhibition offers.

3. Thematic “Remembrance”

War Remnants Museum interior – Ho Chi Minh

The project was completed by two British photojournalists, Tim Page and Horst Faas, at the Vietnam News Agency. They created an original photo archive consisting of 275 photos that captured moments of the war. What makes this theme unique is that the photos were captured by 134 journalists from 11 different countries who voluntarily accepted assignments on the battlefield in Indochina.

Each of these photos tells the genuine stories of the war, its effects, and the images of sacrifice that journalists painted. This exhibit is not only a monument to the soldiers and civilians who lost their lives in the war; it’s also a message of gratitude to the 134 journalists who have risked everything to deliver a news service of quality and memory.

This exhibition is displayed straight away to the left of the staircase from the 1st floor to the 2nd floor, an unmissable spot to explore the Vietnam War and to pay tribute to individuals who sacrificed for peace.

4. Thematic “Vietnam – War and Peace”

The “Vietnam – War and Peace” display is a unique artistic creation by Japanese photographer Ishikawa Bunyo. In 1998, he held several exhibitions in major Japanese cities under the title “War and Peace – Vietnam 35 Years”, featuring a total of 260 documentary photos about Vietnam.

War Remnants Museum interior - ho chi minh 2
War Remnants Museum interior – Ho Chi Minh

Specifically, in 1998, Mr. Ishikawa Bunyo chose to donate 123 of his photographic pieces to the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City. The photos in the exhibit not only portray the facets of war but also concentrate on the theme of peace, capturing instances of life after the war.

Located properly subsequent to the Remembrance exhibition, “Vietnam – War and Peace” is a special exhibition at the War Remnants Museum, taking you on an emotional adventure through the Vietnam War.

5. Thematic “War Crimes of Aggression”

War Remnants Museum-ho chi minh - War Crimes of Aggression
War Remnants Museum – War Crimes of Aggression

War Crimes of Aggre­ssion” is an emotionally charged collection at the­ War Remnants Museum in Saigon. It comprises 125 photographs, 22 docume­nts, and 243 artifacts. This chilling evidence de­tails crimes and consequence­s of the invasion war on Vietnam and its people­.

The photographs, docume­nts, and artifacts here are re­markable evidence­ of war’s suffering. This poignant exhibit reminds us of pe­ace’s import, humanity’s call – a world sans invasion, with freedom and pe­ace for all.

Settled in a big location throughout from the staircase on the first floor, this exhibition will tell you of a tragic tale—the tale of a country ravaged by way of warfare, of people enduring losses and pain that in no way appear to fade away.

6. Thematic “Effects of Agent Orange During the War in Vietnam”

This collection focuse­s on the impact of Agent Orange in the­ Vietnam War. It has 42 photos by Japanese photographe­r Goro Nakamura documenting this.

War Remnants Museum-Effects of Agent Orange During the War in Vietnam
War Remnants Museum- Effects of Agent Orange During the War in Vietnam Room

The photographs he­re show more than the Vie­tnam War. They reveal the­ tragedy of Agent Orange. The­ US military used this chemical weapon, bringing te­rrible suffering to the Vie­tnamese. The image­s capture the aftermath – the­ ongoing pain these weapons still cause­ the people.

You can go to this exhibition on the second floor of the War Remnants Museum, across from the staircase leading from the first floor. Witnessing haunting pictures of Agent Orange victims with congenital disabilities, extreme ailments, and challenging lives will make you understand the value of life.

7. Thematic “Consequences of Agent Orange”

Consequences of Agent Orange room of War Remnants Museum in ho chi minh
Consequences of Agent Orange room of War Remnants Museum in ho chi minh

The muse­um’s “Consequences of Age­nt Orange” exhibit is esse­ntial for raising awareness. This collection of 100 photographs, 10 docume­nts, and 20 artifacts represents Age­nt Orange’s impact on Vietnamese­ life. It reveals the­ war’s sad humanitarian and ecological consequence­s – the difficulties faced by the­ people and the environme­nt’s damage. Though brief, the e­xhibit insightfully conveys the suffering cause­d, analyzing its lingering effects.

This exhibition is located in the right corner as you enter the first floor of the museum.

Additionally, you can visit the exhibition “The Consequences of Agent Orange through Children’s Paintings,” located right next to the entrance on the first floor of the museum. The stories of war and peace are depicted through the paintings and writings of children carrying the effects of Agent Orange. The innocent drawings and pure writings contribute to vividly portraying the cruelty of war as well as the value of peace.

8. Thematic “Historical Truths”

War Remnants Museum-ho chi minh - Historical Truths Room
War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh – Historical Truths Room

The “Historical Truths” display at the War Remnants Museum offers a glimpse into a crucial segment of Vietnam’s past through its collection of 66 photos, 20 documents, and 153 artifacts.

After nearly 90 years of struggle, on the 2nd of September, 1945, President Ho Chi Minh declared the independence and solemnity of which Vietnam had the right to have independence and freedom. Nevertheless, the US maintains collaboration with France and later comes in, resulting in a more cruel war with heavy casualties on both sides. At the same time, on April 30, 1975, the Vietnamese people finally won a total victory. Former US Secretary of Defense McNamara admitted grave errors and the devastating consequences left behind.

Currently, this exhibition is being displayed on the second floor next to the White Dove, Children’s Education Chamber, adjoining the staircase leading from the first ground to the second floor. It serves as an important historical teaching, highlighting the affection for the motherland and the power of solidarity under Vietnam’s red flag with a yellow star.

9. Thematic “Prison Regime During the War of Aggression in Vietnam”

War Remnants Museum-ho chi minh - Prison Regime

The exhibition “Prison Regime During the War of Aggression in Vietnam” is located in the outdoor area. It reveals what happened in the terrifying prison camp system during the period of invasion in Vietnam. This theme includes 40 photographs, 14 excerpts, maps, and 21 artifacts.

This is an opportunity to find out about the system of over 200 prisons constructed by the America army and the Saigon government to suppress and control patriotic Vietnamese humans. More specifically, this exhibition highlights some infamous prisons regarded for cruelty, regularly known as earthly hells, including Con Dao, Phu Quoc, Chi Hoa, Tan Hiep, and others.

Prominent in the exhibition is the reconstruction of the “tiger cages” model within the Con Dao prison, along with numerous artifacts and images. This place was once considered an “earthly hell,” the prison of many prisoners from the French colonial period until the reunification of the country. Each prison cell is only about 5 square meters wide, enclosed with fetters, and devoid of beds or windows.

In this specialized area, various forms of torture, along with accompanying artifacts, are fully introduced. For example, there is a 4.5-meter-tall guillotine with a 50 kg blade, brought to Vietnam by the French in the early 20th century to suppress revolutionary movements.

10. Weapons and Military Equipment Collection

War Remnants Museum-ho chi minh -Military Equipment Collection

The War Remnants Museum possesses a diverse collection of weapons and military equipment related to the Vietnam War.

In the outdoor display area are dozens of military vehicles, weapons, and bombs that used to be used in wars. In particular, the CH-47 aircraft was utilized by the US military in 1965. This is a heavy transport helicopter used to transport troops, guns, and logistics materials.

The two sides of the museum display many types of bombs and ammunition of all types and sizes. Notably, the seismic bomb has a height of 3.35 m and weighs 5.7 tons. It was dropped from a C.130 aircraft. When it explodes, it causes a strong shock within a diameter of 100 m. It has been used in Vietnam since 1970.

In addition, you can find 155 mm cannons, 175 mm cannon mounted on chain-driven M107 tanks, or cannon on LVT A6 armored vehicles, and many other war equipment such as M.48 tanks, M41 tanks, D7 bulldozers, AD6 aircraft, CH-47 aircraft, seismic bombs, and 250 LBS bombs with the designation MK81 MOD 1 in this weapons and military equipment collection.

This collection is a chance you can behold with your very own eyes the real battle system and gain a deeper knowledge of the military weapons used by the Vietnamese people in protecting their nation through information furnished on panels in front of each artifact.

Essential Tips for Visiting War Remnants Museum

As this is a site that preserves important and historically significant documents, you are required to adhere to the regulations of the museum to prevent any damage to the images and documents on display here.

  • Dress appropriately and behave courteously when visiting the museum.
  • Park your vehicle in designated areas; maintain order and cleanliness.
  • Queue up when purchasing tickets, wear the provided logo sticker on your attire, and present your ticket to the staff for inspection before entering
  • Leave bulky luggage (if any) at the reception and personally safeguard your money and belonging
  • Follow the guidance of staff and instructional signs during the visit.
  • Do not bring weapons, toxic substances, prohibited substances, or flammable/explosive materials into the museum.
  • No smoking within the exhibition premises; refrain from writing or drawing on exhibits.
  • Any recording activities, themed recordings, or organization of other activities must have permission from the museum.
  • Contact staff for assistance if you need to register for guided tours, have questions to be answered, or require other assistance.
  • Take responsibility for compensation if any damage is caused to the museum.

What to eat near the War Remnants Museum

District 3 not only has famous tourist attractions such as Turtle Lake, Le Van Tam Park, War Remnants Museum, and Tan Dinh Church… but also is filled with the bustling atmosphere of urban areas, colorful lighting landscapes, and numerous restaurants offering delicious and enticing dishes. Let Deluxe Group Tours lead you to the top delicious dishes in District 3.

1. Hoa Ma Bread Stall

This stall has been open since 1958 and is one of the oldest bread stalls in Saigon. Innitially, Hoa Ma Bread Stall is located at 511 Phan Dinh Phung, District 3, with a small cabinet. But just two years later, Hoa Ma bread left the alley at 53 Cao Thang, District 3, until today.

This was one of the first places to sell pan-fried bread in Saigon. The small, steaming pan is eye-catching with the brown color of cold meat, the pink color of burnt sausages, the yellow color of fried eggs… Next to it is a large, round, hot, and crispy bread, served with a plate of sliced pickles. . All mixed with the signature sauce, served with a little onion, and served with hot, crispy bread.

The distinctive feature of Hoa Ma Bread is a small plate of picked vegetables, an unlacked side dish. In particular, the pickles here are not shredded as usual but cut into large slices. The flavors of white radish, cucumber, and carrot have a faint scent of ginger mixed together.

Hoa Ma Bread Stall is open from 6 o’clock to 11 o’clock in the morning; however, sometimes this stall can close earlier as it runs out. The prices here are also affordable, ranging from 32,000 to 52,000 VND per portion.

2. Canh bun Nam Ky Khoi Nghia (Vietnamese rice noodle soup)

The reason for its name is because this is not a luxury restaurant, but the owner is a street vendor located on Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City.

Even though it’s just a street vendor, without luxury tables and chairs, no roof, just a stall with a small cart, the fragrant pot of canh bun here is enough to hold you back.

A delicious, rich bowl of canh bun, especially the broth, is also added with Hue fine shrimp paste to create an unforgettable flavor. A few pieces of crispy tofu, a stick of fatty cinnamon rolls, a spoon of sweet snail meat, and a pinch of thinly sliced water spinach… Those simple ingredients create a delicious 15,000 VND bowl of canh bun.

Open from 08:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., this rustic street vendor always wins the hearts of diners who have visited here.

3. Hien Khanh sweet soup

Located in an old house on Nguyen Dinh Chieu Street, District 3, Hien Khanh sweet soup has been involved in the profession for more than half a century. Saigon residents, every time they pass through this neighborhood, are always attracted by signs with classic handwriting.

This sweet soup eatery’s menu features nearly 20 items, with each dessert reasonably priced. However, the most special dish remains the white agar sweet soup, which has made Hien Khanh’s reputation. To this day, the eatery still offers this type of sweet soup, placing it at the top of the menu. This sweet soup is not elaborate, just simply strands of chewy agar mixed with boiled sugar water infused with fragrant jasmine flowers, yet it carries a portion of memories from long-time customers.

Furthermore, a distinctive feature that perhaps few sweet soup eateries have is the presence of rustic cakes always on the table: green bean cakes, peanuts, su see cake (a typical traditional cake of Vietnam on wedding day, also known as husband and wife cake), sticky rice cakes,…

Hien Khanh Sweet Soup only opens during specific hours, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 2:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., with affordable prices of around 20,000 VND.

Despite having passed more than half a century, this sweet soup eatery still maintains its old-fashioned decor, evoking nostalgia for many people.

Recommend nearby attractions

In District 3, there are numerous attractions beside the War Remnants Museum. Therefore, you can refer to some of the following destinations to combine in your War Remnants Museum trip:

  • The Ho Chi Minh Museum displays the life and care­er of the founder and le­ader of Vietnam’s revolution. Artifacts, mate­rials, and documents detail his journey.
  • Blending styles, the Saigon Centre Post Office allows one­ to explore the postal and telecommunications history of the country. You can also buy souvenirs or se­nd mail.
  • Built in the 19th century, the intricate­ Notre Dame Cathedral re­mains a popular destination for those intere­sted in religion, architecture­, and history.

The War Remnants Museum is not only a place to showcase artifacts and materials associated with the Vietnam War but also a place, where to honor soldiers and warfare victims. Through my personal experiences, I want to share another version of this museum. It’s not just a place to preserve history but also a destination to provoke thoughts and raise awareness about the consequences of war in each person who used to come here. And finally, have a meaningful trip here!