History Museum

Top choice museum in Ho Chi Minh City

Built in 1929 by the Société des Études Indochinoises, this notable Sino-French museum houses a rewarding collection of artefacts illustrating the evolution of the cultures of Vietnam, from the Bronze Age Dong Son civilisation (which emerged in 2000 BC) and the Funan civilisation (1st to 6th centuries AD), to the Cham, Khmer and Vietnamese. The museum is just inside the main gate to the city’s botanic gardens and zoo.

Highlights include valuable relics taken from Cambodia’s Angkor Wat; a fine collection of Buddha statues; the perfectly preserved mummy of a local woman who died in 1869, excavated from Xom Cai in District 5; and some exquisite stylised mother-of-pearl Chinese characters inlaid into panels.