Aquarium Street in Saigon

Though this is no attraction, nor is it usually considered to be one, I was actually introduced and bought here by my buddy Xiang on our day to Cholon.
Revered to be the "Aquarium Street", you'll never miss this street as you can see aquarium shops everywhere.
I did some research and reading after that, and it is known as
Lưu Xuân Tín Street, tucked in district 5

We pulled up in a section in the alley and this place is truly a culture shock to me. I love how this is a perfect example of a hidden gem, because who would have thought of coming all the way to Saigon just to see fish shops?
But it is really different here compared to Singapore, or rather it is so different here that I think it is a pretty unique sight itself.

Aquarium Street Ho Chi Minh City District 3

Two rows of fish/aquarium shops, most of them even without signages or names. And tanks, arranged everywhere as if the player is a Tetris expert.
The light tubes glow strongly right above each and every one of the tank and bubbles blew through its filtration system. Due to the light and blue, and the glass color of the tank, the whole street seems to have glow subtly in a soft tinge of blue.

Once you started walking down, you may have noticed the trickle of water which flows down from one of the shops, forming small random mini puddles amounts the uneven pavement.
The sound of the bubbles is really distinct due to the number of shops on both sides of the street.
And all of them seem to have synchronized perfection. You could imagine these bubbles while you close your eyes.
You can also hear the sound of the water flowing loudly as the water was being poured into the tank.
It is, bizarrely intense.

Saigon Aquarium Street Nguyen Thong

There is an enormous array of fishes, enormous.
A huge array, fishes of all kinds.
From the long nose fishes to LuoHan fishes with bumps that are as big as it's own body.
We then went aquarium hopping, as every tank blew me away.
You might think this is like any aquarium shops but nope.
The array of species that I'd spotted is likely comparable to that of an aquarium. (Or maybe I just get satisfied too easily and I don't know much about breeds)

Locals conversed in Vietnamese, as you can already feel embedded into the culture while you avoid the puddles. Some of them, like kids, are actually shocked to spot a foreigner wandering along the street, while others wave and smile. One of the aunties even held out her baby arm to mimic a wave to me. Very adorable.
I smiled and waved back, doing a funny face to her baby while half closing my eyes as the sun was shining into my eyes.
I was actually looking forward to spotting an Axolotl, my dream aquatic pet.
And also because they have seen it a while back, so I was hoping to catch a glimpse of this mythical beast on real life instead of admiring it on YouTube.
The sheer amount of tanks and fishes in there are crazy.
I'll share some photos, but it is very common to see the tanks being "overcrowded".
Seems like these shop owners aren't keeping for passion/interest, instead are keeping it just for financial gains.

Saigon-aquarium-street-overcrowding
I felt a tinge of sympathy as I glanced at the tank with an overwhelming number of the "Parrot Fish". (not sure about the exact breed)
As they couldn't even swim in circles.
The school of them just staying still in the tank, using their fins to keep them afloat, momentarily gliding as a whole unit in the tank.
It happened for most tanks, and even the likes of koi fishes and Arowana are squeezed into one tank as well but are given a little more breathing space.

Saigon Aquarium Street Arowana
Saigon Aquarium Street Koi Fish

I even spotted a blue lobster/crayfish.
They're so miniature, just the size of your thumb, as they play wrestle each other to climb on the rocks.
Turtles of various size and "ages" separated in different tanks.
The beta fishes segregated in small cube tanks almost as big as your fist, as if Pokemon in their Pokeballs, waiting for their owners to set them free.
There are even stingrays, no kidding. Of various colors crammed together like floating CDs (I don't know why, but yeah, floating CDs).
Before I know it, we have hit our last store and we have to finally make a move before heading to Cholon.
This place, though very much undiscovered, was one of the many highlights of Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City. And now District 5 would have something unique and prominent for me to "relate" to whenever I think back.
The aquarium street of Lưu Xuân Tín Street is one of the places that are usually visited by the locals, to get fishes, aquatic pets and their relevant supplies.
This is their street and culture in their most "organic" and uncommercialized form.
And I hope, more travelers could come to uncover and experience this hidden gem.

*Big thank you to NgocAnh who actually pointed out to me the exact location of this "Aquarium Street in Saigon".

*
Details
Name: Aquarium Street
Address: Lưu Xuân Tín Phường 10, Quận 5, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam.
(Luu Xuan Tin Street, Ward 10, District 5)

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2 comments

Scott

Maddie is an idiot liberal trash

Maddie

This is the worst street
I have ever seen in my life animal cruelty

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