Escaping The Chaos – Sunland Hotel Rooftop Bar – Saigon, Vietnam

In such a crowded city, you need to take advantage of all the real estate you can, even the roofs. Saigon is full of awesome rooftop bars, making it easy to take a break from the motorcycles and chaos on the street while giving you a birds eye view of the bustling city down below. A quick 2 minute walk up the street from where we’re staying is the Sunland Hotel, which has a small rooftop bar on the 15th floor. We’re staying away from the tourist-packed part of the city (read: we’re the only non-Vietnamese people on the block), and because of that this place is usually empty, so we’ve made it our go-to hangout spot for the remainder of our stay.

It was at this bar where Christine finally started to appreciate the city. To be honest, she hasn’t had the easiest time adjusting to Vietnam. There’s a bit of culture shock – not with the people, who have been extremely friendly, but with the dirtiness of the city. The streets are lined with trash, and we’ve seen more rats and cockroaches in 4 days than we’ve seen in our whole lives. The sides of the streets also double as bathrooms – don’t step in any puddles, it might not be water! However, looking at the city from above gives a different perspective, one that’s less microscopic. From above, it’s much easier to see the beauty and potential of the city with the buildings lit up, the reflection of their lights dancing in the river. You can still hear the 20 million motorcycles and their horns, but the noise quickly fades into the background.