Notre Dame Cathedral, Ho Chi Minh City

3.5 out of 5 stars 74 Reviews

Dong Khoi, District 1

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  • dlytle's Profile Photo

    The Notre Dame Cathedral - Impressive!

    by dlytle Written Apr 18, 2004
    The Cathedral of Notre Dame in HCMC - Saigon

    To me, this neo-Romanesque cathedral almost looks out of place in Saigon. It is much too European to be sitting in such a prominent position in this teeming city. Regardless, here it is standing in the middle of town just to the end of Dong Khoi Street. Built between 1877 and 1883, allegedly on the site of an old Chinese Pagoda, this is one of the best examples of classical French colonial architecture in the city. Remarkably every stone used in its creation was shipped from France to Vietnam. The bricks used to build the structure were all shipped from Marseilles. And French artisans from Lorin Company (Chartres, France) were commissioned to create the stained glass windows. The Cathedral cost 2.5 million francs to construct, a fortune both then and now. Structurally, the church is composed of two main central bays with two sidereal corridors, with tall pillars and light coming in through sets of high windows, and a semi-circular shrine. In 1962, the Vatican gave the cathedral the title Basilique.

    Her two imposing 130 feet (40 m) tall towers, topped with iron spires use to dominate the city’s skyline but now there are a number of high-rise buildings that are much taller. However, in earlier years it was THE landmark that passengers looked for during their arrival aboard passenger liners traveling the winding Saigon River.

    On the square in front of the cathedral, there is a statue of the Virgin Mary made of white marble, symbolizing peace.

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  • TomorrowsAngel's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by TomorrowsAngel Written Dec 31, 2003

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    notre dame cathedral

    The cathedral was built by the French late in the 19th century. The 40m-high twin towers tipped with iron spires atop the neo-Romanesque cathedral faces a small square which still has a large statue of the Virgin Mary.
    Unusually, this cathedral has no stained glass windows: the glass was a casualty of World War II.
    A number of foreign tourists worship here, and the priests are allowed to add a short sermon in English or French to their longer presentations in Vietnamese.

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  • SirRichard's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by SirRichard Written Oct 13, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The main facade

    What I found most interesting in this main church was climbing up the belfry, from where you have a very nice view of the city.
    Pay atention to the times, as it is usually open only very early (4-9 am) or in the afternoons (14-18).
    It is not really outstanding compared with european churches, but it makes a nice change after so many pagodas and temples?
    There are masses on sunday mornings (9:30 I think).

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  • lavender23's Profile Photo

    NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL

    by lavender23 Written Sep 2, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It was built from 10/1877 – 4/1880 with the approval of the Vatican and costed 2.5 million French Francs . Notre Dame is a a biulding with neo- Romanesque architecture and 2 40m-high square towers tipped with iron spires. Located on Han Thuyen St facing down Dong Khoi St
    In the front is the statue of Virgin Mary , maybe because the statue has been exposed for a long time and hasn’t got a good care so it looks a bit fading . On its right is the Municipal Post Office and also the biggest one in HCMC
    The Church opens for visiters
    from 8am – 10:30 am
    and 3pm – 4 pm
    For those u wanna attend the Sunday Mass there is one Mass in English held at 9:30am on Sun

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  • paradisedreamer's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral.

    by paradisedreamer Written May 28, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The cathedral was built by the French late in the 19th century. The twin towered neo-Romanesque facade faces a small square which still has a large statue of the Virgin Mary. You'll note that all the windows of the cathedral, including the rose window, are plain glass. The stained glass was a casualty of World War II and has never been replaced.

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  • 34N118W's Profile Photo

    Notredame Cathedral

    by 34N118W Written Feb 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Notredame Cathedral in Saigon

    A good percentage of Vietnamese people are Catholic, which is represented here by Notredame Cathedral. It's a centerpiece to the city, located in the heart of downtown Saigon. Sunday mass is standing-room only.

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  • sunnywong's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral (Nha Tho Duc Ba)

    by sunnywong Written Feb 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Built between 1877 and 1880, is a big architectura contruction of city. Its neo-Romanesque form and two 40 metre high square towers, tipped with iron spires, dominate the city's skyline. In front of the cathedral (in the centre of the square) is a statue of the Virgin Mary. The cathedral is closed to visitors except during Sunday services, which are in Vietnamese and English.

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  • deeper_blue's Profile Photo

    Church of Our Lady

    by deeper_blue Written Feb 24, 2012

    You can find some great French architecture in HCMC, none better than this basilica. The colours and facade are strikingly European in contrast with Vietnamese streetlife around it.

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  • chengcheng's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by chengcheng Updated Jul 12, 2009

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Holy Place
    2 more images

    1. 1877 completed.
    2. All the bricks and tiles were transported from French
    3. There are many beautiful colorful glass-paintings. It would look better if it is well-lighted.

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  • kenningst's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by kenningst Written Aug 26, 2008

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    I was lucky when I got here and found that is was open to public and took a stroll inside. It was pretty interesting and is one of the significant landmarks in Saigon.

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  • bsfreeloader's Profile Photo

    Experience Vietnam's Catholic Side

    by bsfreeloader Written May 9, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    1 more image

    Constructed between 1877 and 1883, the Gothic-style Notre Dame Cathedral stands testament to the fact that Vietnam has the second largest Catholic population in Asia behind the Philippines.

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  • Smallprawn's Profile Photo

    The cathedral

    by Smallprawn Written Sep 24, 2006

    A French-built Catholic cathedral in the city centre (Dong Khoi, district 1) next to the Post Office. Free entry.

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  • yuet29's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by yuet29 Updated Apr 1, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    You can walk to this buiding from Pham Ngu Lao. It is in red in color and you can recognise it easily.

    The location of this building is opposite the main post office.

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  • dinhyen's Profile Photo

    Notre Dame Cathedral

    by dinhyen Written Apr 8, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    While a predominantly Buddhist country, Vietnam has a sizeable Catholic population. This is one of the country's most well-known Catholic landmarks.

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