Hire guide to see real Saigon!

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Street Portrait Photography

If you’re like me, want to see real city of Vietnam, hire a local guide to reach-out to the right places and people. During my recent visit to Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), I pushed my street photography not to the tourist places but to the inner areas of Saigon where I can capture the life as-it-is. Saigon streets are vibrant and full of life.

If you don’t know the language, not sure about people behavior or culture, you have no clue on how to navigate streets — hire a local guide. Else, you’ll struggle.

The local guide in Saigon takes you to the places where tourists are not visiting and can’t even get to know. The guide helps you with the language if you want to interact with them.

Saigon people are hardworking and proud of their language and culture. Despite several struggles in the past, I’m not deep-diving into the history though, they’re able to protect the culture, language and preferences. So, to connect with them a local person would be handy.

Two weeks before my visit, I started researching about how to connect with these people. I found these guys on TripAdvisor – hop on to their scooters to see the vibrancy of Saigon.

You know, right, that Vietnam is nation of bikes. Ride a scooter to get through the traffic. The guide takes you in the narrow streets and less known areas of HCM city on the scooter – convenient than hiring a car or a taxi. Did I tell you that it is cost effective too. Well, if I didn’t I’m telling you now that a car/ taxi would cost you twice. Plus, you need to walk a lot because cars can’t fit into those narrow streets.

I don’t have enough words to thank my guide Trang – she is extremely professional, excellent English proficiency, good connection with locals, aware of every streets and very flexible.

Would love to repeat my tours – I’m sure Saigon has much more to offer! There’s no dearth of opportunity for street photographers. Go. Explore. Hire someone. Worthy every penny.

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