Holiday Festivities in District 1

A few years ago, 2 days before Christmas, we checked what District 1 looked like during the holiday season, and it was PACKED. So we’ve always made a conscious effort not to get stuck downtown during Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.

 photo 20131231_150103_zps801f8b57.jpg

This year with mom visiting, we wanted to try and see what’s up in District 1 and the fact that we couldn’t see the fireworks from our place at all. We also had a Photo Oi event at the Sheraton last night so hubby had to help out a bit too.

 photo 20131231_150223_zps621b1d1b.jpgAt 3 pm, the streets were still clear and traffic was non-existent.

 photo 20131231_184725_zpsfb4fc848.jpgAt 6:30 PM when we came out for dinner, the huge glowing globe in the middle of Nguyen Hue Street was attracting people like moths.

 photo 20131231_184746_zps7abc0c77.jpgVendors were starting to set up shop at the side of the streets as well.

 photo 20131231_184847_zpsd519373a.jpgPeople like me, my mom, and basically everybody else, just had to stop, stare, and take photos of the beautifully lit up District 1.

 photo 20131231_185148_zpsc033c8cb.jpgThe details and effort put into these structures paid off. Gorgeous!

 photo 20131231_185223_zps8aa39095.jpgThe globe showed what time it is in different parts of the world. It was quite chaotic too in the middle with motorbikes parking right by it.

 photo 20131231_185302_zps66f056ad.jpgI liked the glowing blue facade of Sun Wah. It looked nice too in the morning as it’s like snowy figures.

 photo 20131231_185455_zps64f7d5ab.jpgMore pretty details of Nguyen Hue lights.

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I wanted to take pictures of Dong Khoi Street too but my mom and hubby said no. 😛 There was just too much bikes in this area. photo 20131231_200448_zpsd7924c59.jpgSo I just took a photo of the Esprit building. 😀

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Then we walked up to Sheraton, dropped off hubby and proceeded to Lam Son Square.

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Whether it’s morning or evening, the Saigon Opera House never fails to take my breath away!

 photo 20131231_204622_zps3ee5a904.jpgWe walked back to Nguyen Hue and its teeming with people.

 photo 20131231_205005_zpsa4eee4e0.jpgStill passable though.

 photo 20131231_205009_zpsd2196a68.jpgI crossed the street to take a photo of the huge Lotus flower in front of the People’s Committee Building.

 photo 20131231_205110_zps3c5fcda1.jpgThe Saigon Tax Trade Center has the best Christmas display of all!

 photo 20131231_205146_zps6cb649e3.jpgRex Hotel looked sad across it. Except that Rex sidewalks were all prettily lit up and the revolving crown on top was a nice touch.

 photo 20131231_205153_zpse01c5a4e.jpgMore people.

 photo 20131231_205159_zps9907a1a1.jpgBy 9 pm, Le Loi St. was closed to vehicles.

 photo 1478917_692161674151980_1552816529_n_zps02eb97f0.jpgOccupy Nguyen Hue was in order as well.

 photo 20131231_205720_zps83c8b0c7.jpgThe globe and Bitexco. Along the way we’ve seen vendors selling toys that light up and of course, cotton candy. 🙂

 photo 20131231_210127_zps6719c0ac.jpgWe came back out at 11:30 PM which was a mistake as the best spots to watch the fireworks have been taken.

 photo 20131231_232817_zpsfebb86de.jpgIt was no fun lugging two sleeping kids. 😛

 photo 20131231_234944_zps298f78d3.jpgWe ended up waiting for midnight at the corner of Bitexco. Ham Nghi St. was filled with people and people on motorbikes waiting for the fireworks display. When the fireworks began, we had to run to Nhu Lan so we could watch. We didn’t get the best spot but it was great to see the fireworks in person nonetheless. Our eldest happily watched on hubby’s shoulders.

Here’s part 1. Don’t expect too much! 😛

Here’s part 2. Forgive the shaky video as my arm was about to fall off.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOej6AqLyVY

Chuc mung nam moi!

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