A significant landmark in Ho Chi Minh City, the Reunification Palace has undergone various resurrections and name changes since its initial wooden construction in 1863. It has survived a major bombing and switched political and national affiliations, before earning its final claim to fame: the site where North Vietnamese tanks crashed through, signaling the end of the Vietnam War. In addition to the historical sites of Ho Chi Minh, the city of Haiphong, located south of Ho Chi Minh, present an intriguing world of culture that also urge exploration. The “City of Red Flamboyants” as Haiphong is also known, presents a fine range of hotels in Vietnam to host a business or leisure visit. In particular, the Harbour View Hotel Haiphong Vietnam affords a stellar option for a quality hotel Haiphong has to offer its visitors. Savour the best attractions of Haiphong and then venture north to Ho Chi Minh City, home to such impressive edifices as the Reunification Palace, which has survived numerous government administrations, an assassination attempt and now poses as the site where a major war was brought to an end. Initially functioning as a landmark that marked the French invasion of Vietnam in 1867, the site was claimed by the Japanese during its invasion of the country in WW2, then returning to the hands of the French upon Japan’s surrender to the allied forces later on. When the country established its own government, the Viet Minh, France surrendered to it in 1954 and the palace was handed over to the state prime minister, Ngo Dinh Diem, who later renamed it Independence Palace upon becoming president of the country. After surviving an assassination attempt, Diem ordered the reconstruction of a new palace, as the old was heavily damaged. Renowned architect Ngo Viet Thu transformed the structure into an architectural marvel, which boasts subtle Indochinese influences, such as the balcony on the main façade resembling the Vietnamese character for “prosperity” and the T-shape of the entire building evoking the character meaning “good destiny”. The palace was later named “Reunification Hall” by the communist government after it took power. It is a spectacular landmark that provides a fascinating glimpse into the country’s past and is well worth a visit the next time your travels take you to Ho Chi Minh City.
Angela Fernando is an impassioned travel writer who composes pieces under the pen name Sumaira Narayan. She loves writing about new and exciting places around the world and intends to visit them all someday.