Saigon Central Post Office is a magnificent building from the late 19th Century located in the centre of Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.
Saigon Central Post Office
The post office is open from 07:00 to 19:00 every day and admission is free.
About Saigon Central Post Office
Saigon Central Office was opened in 1891 during the period when Vietnam was under the control of the French colonial authorities. The building was designed by French architect Alfred Foulhoux and has a classic European design with Renaissance and Gothic architectural features.
Inside Saigon Central Post Office
Although a functional post office, Saigon Central Post Office is also a major tourist attraction. The building has been beautifully preserved and has lots of period items inside.
Counters at Saigon Central Post Office
The exterior of the building is bright yellow with a distinctive late 19th Century clock, similar to the antique clocks you find in European railway stations, over the main entrance door. The interior has a similarly distinctive and 19th Century feel to it. The main hall in the post office has high vaulted ceiling and an elaborate patterned marble floor. The service counters and supporting pillars above look pretty much as they would have done when the post office opened in 1891.
Old fashioned telephone booths
On the right hand side as you enter the post office there is a bank of old fashioned wooden telephone booths.
1892 map of telegraph lines in Vietnam and Cambodia
Another feature to look out for when you visit Saigon Central Post Office is the two frescoes on the walls above the telephone booths. Both date back to 1892 and one is of Saigon and the surrounding area and the other is of the telegraph lines in Southern Vietnam and Cambodia, both territories within France’s Indochina Empire.
1892 map of Saigon in the Central Post Office
There have been two major changes to the post office since the 19th Century. The first is the addition of artwork relating to the Communist government of Vietnam. A large painting of Ho Chi Minh has been hung on the back wall of the main hall in the post office in a prominent position looking across to the main entrance. There are also a number of bronze statues which have been installed in front of the post office depicting heroic figures from the struggle for independence in Vietnam.
Souvenir shops in the wings of Saigon Central Post Office
A second, and much less artistic, modern addition to the post office is the souvenir shops which occupy both wings of the post office building. The intended market for these shops are the large groups of people on organised tours around Saigon, as Saigon Post Central Office is one of the stops on most tour group itineraries. The installation of these souvenir shop was in our view a mistake, and a missed opportunity to do something more creative with the space as they are in fact of little interest to the vast majority of people who visit Saigon Central Post Office.