Paul Christiansen

in Ton-sur-Ton

Easybadwork's Free Spirits Are Rooted in Nature and the Underground

A sparrow swooping across a special-edition can of Coca-Cola, the illustrations featured in the artworks of Ngọt's Grammy...

Khôi Phạm

in Music & Arts

The 1st Vietnamese Song With 1bn Views on YouTube Is About Ducks

It’s not Hoàng Thùy Linh’s catchy dance track ‘See Tình’ or the crossover Mekong Delta hit ‘Con gái miền Tây,’ the first Vietnamese song to amass one billion — or bill-ion, if you will — on YouTube is a children’s song about ducks.

Paul Christiansen

in Music & Arts

Get to Know the Dynamic Local Art Scene Alongside 'Saigon Art Journey'

“This is not a tour, remove that word from your minds. This is an interacting and exploring journey,” explained Angeline Gong, an experienced art host known by Saigon’s artists and galleries as Z-Gong.

Paul Christiansen

in Literature

These 5 Vietnamese Poems Pay Homage to the Complexities of Local Fruits

Fruit and poetry: the two things I love most.

Khôi Phạm

in Culture

Xe Trái Cây: If You Can't Find Lovingly Sliced Fruit at Home, Cart-Bought Is Fine

Nature has numerous ways to make itself known: male peacocks fan out their glorious tail made up of iridescent eye-patterned feathers to attract peafowls; blue-ringed octopuses don’t need to invent any dance, just their menacing aquamarine coat is enough to warn predators about a poisonous death should they dare to take a bite; on the chaotic streets of Saigon, xe trái cây flaunt their colorful mosaics of freshly peeled tropical fruits, as plump and juicy as the divine offerings of Zeus’s banquet, to entice heat-stricken riders to stop by for a refreshing respite.

Brian Letwin

in Travel

The Quiet Calm of Hiding From the Heat Under Phan Rang's Grapevines

The punishing mid-day sun dictates the pace of life in the corridor between Phan Rang and Cam Ranh, where locals escape to their living rooms or hammocks, and tourists seek the cooling breeze of the beach, seafood restaurants or resort pools. Perhaps one of the most underrated ways to take refuge from the heat is to duck into one of the nearby grape vineyards where winding vines create a natural oasis.

Paul Christiansen

in Travel

The Curious Case of Quy Hoà Leprosy Colony's Park of Busts

A delightfully bizarre place, Quy Nhơn’s Quy Hoà leprosy colony deserves exploration in full , but clustered in a grove of...

Back Arts & Culture

in Culture

Mùng 5 Tháng 5 – Tet’s Little Brother

Yesterday was Mung 5 Thang 5 (Tet Doan Ngo) - a Vietnamese half-year Tet celebration which takes place on the fifth of lunar May (the fifth day of the fifth lunar month). We take a closer look at this...

Brian Letwin

in Culture

[Interactive Chart] How Vietnamese Consume Media

We can assume a lot about Vietnamese media habits based on our daily observations. Cafés are packed smartphone and tablets users and when walking down a hem at night, nearly every family seems to be s...

Brian Letwin

in Culture

[Video] Things Vietnamese Moms Do

YouTuber, Richie Le, makes videos about the Vietnamese community in California. In one of his more recent videos, he takes on stereotypes of Vietnamese mothers. While it takes place in the US, the vid...

in Culture

American School of Vietnam Teacher Gets a $6,000 Haircut

In a refreshing alternative to stories about crazy things wealthy Vietnamese spend their money on, Michael Barrs, a teacher at The American School of Vietnam, promised his students that if they raised...

in Music & Arts

Zelda Goes to the Gallery: Art Basel Hong Kong

Last week, Art Basel Hong Kong proved itself worthy of its older siblings (Art Basel – Miami and Art Basel – Switzerland) and probably even bested them by becoming the meeting and merging point b...

in Culture

Neighbors - Celebrate Lesbians @ La Fenetre Soleil

From the organizer: Neighbors is a series of events with the purpose to help strengthen the bond and understanding in the LGBT community. Besides, Neighbors aims to transfer the accurate information a...

Brian Letwin

in Music & Arts

[Photos] Vietnamese Photographer Shoots Naomi Campbell for Harper’s Bazaar Cover

Global fashion icon, Naomi Campbell, is front and center on this month’s issue of Harper’s Bazaar Vietnam.

in Culture

Saigon Urban Legends: Haunted Tao Dan Park

Listed in UK travel guidebook Rough Guides as one of the most haunted places in the world, District 1’s Tao Dan Park is said to the home of young man's ghost.

in Culture

4 Traditional Trades That Are Quickly Disappearing in Hanoi

Last week we heard the story of the Saigon Post Office’s last letter writer, a trade that is unlikely to last much longer. But letter writing isn’t the only traditional occupation endangered by Vietna...

Brian Letwin

in Culture

[Photos] The Mud Wrestlers of Yen Vien Village

Every year between the 12th and 14th days of the fourth lunar month (May 10 - 12), the men of Yen Vien Village in Bac Giang Province partake in the a 3 hour “Ball Catching in Mud Festival.”

Brian Letwin

in Culture

15 Unusual Maps That Compare Vietnam and Other Countries

Maps are not only a great way to look back through time, but also to understand the world in its current state. Time-wasting site, Bored Panda, compiled a brilliant collection of maps that reveal some...

Brian Letwin

in Culture

Great Success! Tourist Celebrates After Crossing Saigon Street

Tourists are notoriously freaked out by the prospect of crossing the street in Vietnam, with many comparing it to the 1980s video game “Frogger.”

in Culture

The Cursed, Monk-less Phuc Quang Pagoda

Built in 1734 under the reign of King Long Duc III, Phuc Quang pagoda in Bac Giang Province has been mysteriously monk-less for nearly 300 years.

in Culture

The Last Letter Writer of the Saigon Post Office

As I travel through life, meeting new people, I sometimes get the feeling that some have a story to tell. When I discover such a person, I secretly feel special and cool to be one of the few who perce...

in Culture

Very Superstitious: 3 Popular Vietnamese Superstitions

As is the case in many cultures, superstition plays an important role in our society. It can dictate when to take a vacation, how to do business and even cure bad luck. In this monthly column, we take...

Brian Letwin

in Music & Arts

[Video] Physically-Challenged Mekong Woman Paints with Her Feet

For those of us who possess little to no artistic talent, we know that creating anything more than a stick figure is a daunting task. That makes the work of 36-year-old Huynh Thi Xam incredibly i...

Brian Letwin

in Music & Arts

4 Great Places to Buy Art Supplies in Saigon

Saigon-based design website, dxMAG recently made a great post about where to find art supplies in the city. Here are some shops where you can pick up sometimes hard-to-find tools for illustration, pai...

in Music & Arts

Vietnamese Man Covers his House with Antiques

Obsessed with antiques, a Vinh Tuong man, Nguyen Van Truong, collected 8,000 of them over 30 years and found an ingenious way to show off his collection - using them to coat the walls, gates and garde...

in Film & TV

Documentary on Vietnamese LGBT Singers Screened at French Film Festival

The Last Journey of Madame Phung – a film project from Nguyen Thi Tham that highlights a group of wandering LGBT Vietnamese singers, was recently screened at the 36th Cinéma du Réel Festival in Paris ...

in Culture

Saigon Urban Legends: Spirits, Curses and Sunken Ships at Thuan Kieu Plaza

Located in the heart of Saigon’s busy Chinatown, the three-unit, 33-story tower complex known as Thuan Kieu Plaza was an icon of prosperity when it was completed in 1990. During the day, it looks no d...