As Saigon blooms yellow, foreigners join multitudes on its streets

By Phong Vinh   January 30, 2019 | 08:55 pm GMT+7

Visitors from all over the world are joining residents on Saigon streets as artificial and natural yellow bloom in profusion.

As Saigon blooms yellow, foreigners join multitudes on its streets

Towards the end of the last lunar month, the corner of Pham Ngoc Thach - Nguyen Thi Minh Khai streets in District 1 signals the arrival of spring with bright yellow Mai blossoms.

The Ong Do Street is another Tet season hotspot, attracting locals and foreigners for 13 years with its specially created traditional space.

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Dozens of artificial yellow Mai trees with a lot of flowers line the road. Women in particular like to come here in the traditional dress ao dai and have their photographs taken, mostly selfies now.

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Sophie from Belgium, in Vietnam for the first time, said she was very excited to be dressed in traditional Vietnamese clothes. "The atmosphere is very exciting. I feel very happy to be part of it."

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A young woman in an ao dai walks across a street with a pack of red li xi envelopes in hand. On resident of the city’s Tan Binh District said: "Cars and people crowd the place, but I’m happy to see it because it means another Tet is coming."

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This year, the venue is hosting nearly 60 calligraphers who write Tet wishes for buyers in Chinese or Vietnamese script. They wear the ao dai and traditional head bands.

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The installation of Tet decorations at many commercial centers also attracts many people. Since the beginning of January, people have flocked to the Diamond Plaza with families and friends, for shopping and photo shoots.

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Ngoc Anh, a resident of Phu Nhuan District, said that she has come here twice to take photos. "This year’s decorations are elaborately designed and more beautiful than last year. When I came here the first time, there weren’t many people but I decided to come again to be part of the the crowd so I can enjoy the Tet atmosphere," Ngoc Anh told VnExpress.

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At noon, the heat tires many people and they rest in the shade for a while before resuming their photo shoots.

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At another Tet space on Nguyen Thi Minh Khai Street in District 1, women in brightly colored ao dai pose with a calligraphy work along with a young girl.

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This area has nearly 20 photo booths. People can buy several kinds of Tet decorations, order calligraphy wall hangings of words or parallel sentences or more, framed or unframed, ask them to write lucky letters on the lucky envelopes, and pay accordingly.

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Vy from Dong Nai Province has come to the site to have photographs taken at another Tet space near the Lao Dong Cultural Palace in District 1.

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These two tourists from Ukraine were pleasantly surprised by the atmosphere in Saigon. "Before we came here, we did not know this was the time of the Vietnamese Lunar New Year. Wherever we go, we see flowers and colorful decorations," said Markvin (R). The couple bought a pair of parallel sentences from the calligraphers as a souvenir.

 
 
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