I had found out about XO tours on Trip Advisor and other media outlet weeks before my trip. For me this was a must do and one of the highlights of my time in Ho Chi Minh City. I could not decide between “The Sights” tour ($42 USD) and “The Foodie” tour ($72 USD) so I opted for both. These tours are quite pricey compared to other tours offered but are totally worth it.
XO Tours is an all-female motorbike tour company. These girls take you zooming around the city like a local and help you experience different districts that I would not have seen by simply walking around. For me, the tour guides made the tour. The girls are lovely, fun, and energetic, eager to answer any questions I threw their way.
The Sights Tour started at 8:00am and we got picked up at our hotel from two bubbly girls on scooters. We were then instructed on how to ride on the back of the bike safely. If you have ever been to Ho Chi Minh City you can understand how hectic and stressful riding a scooter around the city can be!
Our first stop we met our awesome tour guide and got to see the Nortre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post Office. Sitting between streams of traffic these two landmarks are in the middle of Saigon’s chaotic District 1. Around the red brick of the church we saw teams of photographers taking pictures of wedding couples. In Vietnam it is normal to get wedding photos taken months before the actual wedding date.
Our second stop was the Reunification Palace also known as the Independent Palace. Associated with the fall of the city in 1975, this building is most famously known for the dramatic scene of the tank crashing through the iron gates that was recorded by photographers and shown around the world.
The next stop was the Tan Dinh Market. You can find almost anything in this market, from fresh produce and meats to clothes and other commodities. We stopped at a little stand and tried homemade yogurt and flan with coffee on top.
Next we went to the Thich Quang Duc Memorial. This memorial is dedicated to Thich Quang Duc, the Vietnamese Buddhist monk who burned himself to death in 1963. He was protesting the persecution of Buddhists by the government.
After that, we spent the next twenty minutes zooming through Ho Thi Ky Flower Market, China Town and The Binh Tay Market as we sipped on some fresh sugar cane juice.
Our last stop was the beautiful Thien Hau Pagoda. This temple is dedicated to the goddess Thien Hau. It is believed that Thien Hau can travel over the oceans and ride the clouds in the sky to save people on the high seas who are in trouble.
After this we said goodbye to our guide and got dropped off back at the hotel by the girls. This tour was awesome and we shared so many laughs and learned a ton of things about Ho Chi Minh City.
If you are in Ho Chi Minh City I highly recommend this tour! Check out XO Tour – The Sights and you definitely will not be disappointed!