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Five Hours to Kill at SGN (airport)

pilinut Sep 23, 2009 06:55 PM

On New Year's Day, enroute from Manila to Siem Reap, it looks like we have several hours in the mid-afternoon to spend sitting at SGN. Though we will be spending a couple of days in Saigon on the way back, I would hate to waste any opportunity for a good Vietnamese meal (or at least a couple of good local snacks.) Am I hoping for too much (or risking a missed flight) if I leave the airport in search of real sustenance? Are there any good places in or near SGN that are feasible feasting options on Jan. 1?

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  1. Sam Fujisaka RE: pilinut Oct 7, 2009 11:11 AM

    Hey, nut! It takes about a half hour at most to get into town for any number of great eats. Although the airport can be a bit of a zoo - it is usually efficient coming and going. There is not much right around the airport.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Sam Fujisaka
      pilinut RE: Sam Fujisaka Oct 8, 2009 10:16 AM

      Hi, Sam--and thank you! So it seems possible to get into town and have a good meal and make it back in around 3 hours. . . Any suggestions for those great eats you mentioned?

      (BTW, I'm in Manila right now, and will think of you when I next dine on tinapa and sinangag. [smoked fish and garlic fried rice] And I'll bring back some extra tinapang bangus, to share with nice people ;-))

      1. re: pilinut
        Sam Fujisaka RE: pilinut Oct 8, 2009 10:48 AM

        Tinapa!!! MMMmmm.

        I don't remember the names of the closest places, but there are many. We always just directed our "driver" or our professional colleagues would select a place. Shoul be no problem.

        1. re: pilinut
          klyeoh RE: pilinut Oct 8, 2009 07:56 PM

          pilinut, try not to venture into HCMC if there're rains - the traffic can be killing. As Tan Son Nhat Airport is in Tan Binh district, try & Google for restaurants there. 2 years back, I was on a business trip visiting our airfreight office near the airport - there are a few family-style restaurants popular amongst locals nearby.
          If you're looking for pho, try Pho 24 - branch nearest airport is at 107 Tran Quoc Hoan St., Tan Binh Dist., HCMC, Tel: (08) 3914 2424 - but they may only speak Vietnamese). Also good cha gio & goi cuon.

          1. re: klyeoh
            pilinut RE: klyeoh Oct 10, 2009 08:33 AM

            Many thanks, klyeoh! The devil is in details like traffic caused by rain. Coming from Manila, I know how 10km can turn into 2 hours.

            On the other hand, your Pho 24 sounds like the ideal thing in the ideal place. Thanks, indeed!

      2. anthonyrza RE: pilinut Oct 14, 2009 09:19 PM

        'BUN CHA VAN AN'

        on the corner of TRUONG SON ST and SONG DAY.
        TRUONG SON is the main street leading to the airport. SONG DAY street is less than 1 kilometer from the 'port.

        Excellent northern style 'bun cha' [grilled pork with rice noodles and veggies] and crab-filled fried spring rolls 'cha gio cua'. Delicious. 20.000 VND. Beats the souless pho 24 chain hands down. A few pennies cheaper, too boot.

        1 Reply
        1. re: anthonyrza
          pilinut RE: anthonyrza Oct 15, 2009 08:31 AM

          You may have just made my New Year's Day. Thank you very much! The details re on in my organizer.

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