Best shows in Saigon and Hoi An

Palao A wild journey of senses

Cultural shows remain among the draws for visitors to Ho Chi Minh City and Hoi An, bringing delightful moments while getting a deeper sense of a destination’s local heartbeat. These shows offer impressive acrobatic, dance, music performances by talented local artists and traditional Vietnamese musical instruments. What a better way to unwind after a full sightseeing day for your families and friends?

Read on for our guide on live performances and cultural shows in Saigon and Hoi An, some of which can be combined with a city tour if you’re looking to enjoy the vibrant Saigon or peaceful Hoi An as the night falls.


Most of the performances take place at Saigon Opera House, the impressive monuments right in the heart of Ho Chi Minh city. This French-inspired building is the venue for various cultural – entertainment events, staying on top of the must-visit of Ho Chi Minh city.

Teh Dar show – a vivid dream of the highland tribes

The legends of Central Highlands of Vietnam, handed down from generation to generation are brought to life once again in this show. You will enter the realm of the wild animal hunt, moonlit romance, jungle’s tales of death and reincarnation, the world of hypnotizing sound of drums, horns and gongs. The signature of Lune Production is, as usual, stunning bamboo cirque, daring acrobatics and live music from exotic tribal instruments.

  • Time: starting at 18:00, daily except Saturday. For further information, check out their website
  • Place: Saigon Opera House, 07 Cong Truong Lam Son Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 01, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Price: From $30 – $70 depending on the type of seats.

Water puppet show – a lively glimpse into treasures of Vietnam

Water puppet show in Saigon

Water puppet is the most distinctive Vietnamese art tradition. Born out of the life of villagers in Northern Vietnam, this cultural legacy is now more than 1000 years old. The vivid wooden puppets feature different members of a rural village, such as farmers, fishermen, maids, even fish, ducks and dragons, all controlled from behind the bamboo curtain. Meanwhile, the theme still centrals around rural Vietnamese traditions like fishing, rice harvesting, planting and traditional tales and legends.

Charming in its playfulness, the show is uplifting in colors, lighting, and surprises for you. Don’t worry that several dialogs will be in Vietnamese, as the puppet show is mostly about physical performance with a lot of slapstick comedy and folktales.

  • Place: The Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater, 55B Nguyen Thi Minh Khai Street, Ben Thanh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
  • Time: starting at 18:30 and 20:30, each show lasts about 50 minutes
  • Price: From $10
  • Other performance venues: Ngon Restaurant, Thao Dien Village, 189-197, 197/1 Nguyen Van Huong, Thao Dien, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City (Weekends only, free of charge)

A O (Aaahh Ooohh) show

Aaahh Ooohh Show

The name ‘A O’ derives from ‘Lang Pho’, which means ‘village and city’. The show depicts the charming beauty and cultural richness of Vietnamese life in the countryside, in contrast with the nation’s racing urbanization. This is also a visual spectacle of acrobatics, bamboo cirques and contemporary dance, and a vivid sound “party” – from the gentleness of folk instruments to excitement one cannot sit still when the beatbox starts.

  • Time: starting at 18:00 (only in May-Dec 2019)
  • Place: Saigon Opera House, 07 Cong Truong Lam Son Street, Ben Nghe Ward, District 01, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Price: From $30 – $70 depending on the types of seats


Hoi An Memories – A feast for the eyes

Hoi An Memories – A feast for the eyes
The show takes traditional Vietnamese Ao dai as the main language

Taking place on the trip of land on Hoai river, the Memories of Hoi An is a grand spectacle of light, dance, music and theatricals. This show was born to restage the splendours of Hoi An’s golden time – a vibrant Faifo where East met West. With an outstanding combination of the biggest outdoor 25,000-sqm-stage, stage-of-the-art lighting technology, visual arts, music, poetry and more than 500 professional performers on stage, Hoi An Memories is a must when visiting the old Town of Hoi An.

This artistic ship brings culture, history and beauty the golden days of the past back: “Give us four hours, we will hand you back 400 years of Hoi An.”

  • Time: 19:30 – 20:45 daily, except Tuesday
  • Place: 200 Nguyen Tri Phuong street turn left, Hen Island, Cam Nam Ward, Hoi An, Vietnam
  • Price: $21.50 – $34.50, depending on the types of seats

Palao – A wild journey of senses

Debut on November 2018, Palao (the Cham word for ‘letting go’) is a soulful work of art that conveys the spirit and culture of Cham ethnic people. The quest of this tribe is depicted through contemporary stage language and creative mix of exotic musical instruments. With vigorous body movements drenched with intense emotions, Palao is a wild journey of senses that intended to be an exceptional theater experience.

  • Time: starting at 18:00, twice or three times a week. For further information, check out their website
  • Place: Lune Performing Centre Hoi An, Nguyen Phuc Chu Street, Dong Hiep Park, Minh An Ward, Hoi An
  • Price: From $30 – $70 depending on the types of seat

Should you need further information, please contact our travel consultants.
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Author: Candice & Mia

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