When in Vietnam, eating pho is a must. The good news is that there is a multitude of pho options everywhere in the country, especially in major tourist centers like Ho Chi Minh City. Some establishments offer classic southern pho that’s sweet and bold, while others cook up the northern variety with wider noodles and clearer broth. The dizzying variety can be overwhelming if it’s your first time in the city. Don’t fret; we’ve got you. Here are five of the best pho restaurants in Ho Chi Minh that you need to try when you’re in town.
A local favorite in Ho Chi Minh City is Pho Le, which has been serving authentic Southern-style pho since 1950. The clean and spacious restaurant features an extensive pho menu, giving beef lovers plenty of tasty options, from rare beef to beef brisket to beef tendon (and many more). Expect a crowd, especially if you’re dropping by during mealtimes. There’s another Pho Le branch in District 3.
Address: 413-415 Nguyen Trai Street, Ward 7, District 5, Ho Chi Minh City
Pho Hoa Pasteur
Another heritage restaurant in the city is Pho Hoa Pasteur, which is also very popular among tourists. The 50-year-old establishment is known for its generous servings of Southern pho filled with plenty of noodles, vegetables, herbs, and sprouts. Every table has a serving of deep-fried churros that you can dip in your delicious broth for an extra treat.
Address: 260C Pasteur Street, Ward 8, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
Pho Tau Bay
Originally opened in 1954, Pho Tau Bay is an authentic noodle shop that’s often frequented by locals in Ho Chi Minh. It’s famous for simple and delicate Northern pho with plenty of beef and noodles. For a long time, the restaurant eschewed garnishes like vegetables and bean sprouts—they wanted the focus to be entirely on the flavors of the soup.
Address: 433-435 Ly Thai To Street, Ward 9, District 10, Ho Chi Minh City
Locals hail Pho Dau for its authentic Northern-style pho that’s clear and flavorful. The restaurant has been for half a century; to this day, diners can still enjoy the original Hanoian recipe without herbs, sprouts, and black sauce that are used in Southern pho. Instead, the pho is packed with beef. Keep in mind that Pho Dau is only open in the morning—closing time is at 11 AM—so wake up early if you’re planning to savor a bowl at the restaurant.
Address: 288 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Street, Ward 8, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City
Pho Chay Nhu
If you don’t eat meat, then Pho Chay Nhu is the place for you. The restaurant is renowned for serving the best vegetarian pho in Ho Chi Minh City. Vegans and vegetarians will delight in the extensive menu of meat-free pho dishes; instead of beef, ingredients include mushrooms, tofu, and all sorts of vegetables. Pho Chay Nhu also offers vegetarian versions of traditional Vietnamese food.
Address: 54 Truong Quyen, Ward 6, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City
Exploring Ho Chi Minh City? Make your way to the KKday website for more ideas on things to do, see, and eat in Saigon.
*Featured photo via Trang Pham on Pixabay