With two full days left in Vietnam there was no rush get around the Saigon sights, which was nice due the temperature hovering around 35C. This provided an opportunity to have a good look around the Reunification Palace. Prior to the Fall of Saigon in 1975, this place was known as Independence Palace. At the front of the palace grounds are the gates that the tank crashed through 42 years ago on Sunday, as seen in the iconic photo. Inside the building are five floors that provide a fascinating insight for history fans. The palace was built during the 1960’s as South Vietnam’s presidential palace and has been largely untouched since. It certainly appears that way with some garish decorating and plenty of vintage telephones, radios and other artifacts on display. The underground bunker was particularly interesting. Here you’ll find a series of communication equipment, strategy rooms, accommodation and so on.

For most of the day it was difficult not to think about Tranmere’s play-off game versus Aldershot Town. The 1am kickoff (Saigon-time) was reasonably bearable. Rather than risk annoying anyone in the room, I opted for the hostel lobby. Here the WiFi worked perfectly well in order to stream the game. In typical un-Tranmere fashion we scored after three minutes and ended up with a comfortable 3-0 victory. I was so excited that I didn’t fall asleep until after 5am!

The Reunification Palace
Some authentic 1970’s decor
Down in the palace bunker