Notre Dame Cathedral

On our fourth day, we visited the famous Notre Dame Cathedral, which is situated in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City. It is one of the tallest building in the city and the oldest Catholic churches in Vietnam. It is said that the cathedral is a much smaller than those in France.

A French priest set down the first brick for construction on Oct. 1877 and the last one in April 1880. These two dates are inscribed on a marble placard in the cathedral. The cathedral was built in accordance with specific designs and drawings. They made arrangements with France that the construction work be managed by a French Engineer named Baraud. The total cost of the construction was 2.5 million francs. In 1962, the Vatican gave the cathedral the title Basilique.


There are five chapels. The walls are made of Bien Hoa granite, combined with red tiles from Marseilles, all without coating. Red tiles from France were also used on the roofs, but they were later replaced with tiles of equal quality from Phu Huu.

This bright red-orangey brick edifice with twin spires will certainly attract your attention.

You can visit here anytime except during lunchtime. You can attend a holy mass if you desire and that's we did. We popped in for the English-Vietnamese mass at 9:30 in the morning. The priest speaks first in Vietnamese then translates it into English. Impressive! While the mass was going on, I observed a lot of opportunistic tourists were coming in and out of the church.

In front of the cathedral is the statue of the Virgin Mary made of White marble symbolizing peace.

Outside the cathedral are the local street vendors selling colorful postcards, trinkets and native food delicacies.

A Vietnamese bridal couple preparing for a photo shot all decked out in their wedding finery and I got the chance to sneak in. shhh... :)


You Might Also Like


  1. I didn't enter Notre Dame and glad that you did so and share with us those great pics!

    Hey you also saw couples taking wedding shots there! Me too! Must be a popular spot for wedding photo scenes.



Dear readers, your comment is always appreciated. If you like the blog make sure to follow on our social media. Spam comments will be deleted immediately. Please do not add links to the body of your comments as they will not be published.

AN ASIAN TRAVELER, Exploring Asia!