Operated by the Vietnamese government, an earlier version of this museum opened on September 4, 1975, as the Exhibition House for US and Puppet Crimes (Vietnamese: Nhà trưng bày tội ác Mỹ-ngụy). It was located in the former the United States Information Agency building.
The exhibition was not the first of its kind for the North Vietnamese side, but rather followed a tradition of such exhibitions exposing war crimes, first those of the French and then those of the Americans, who had operated in the country as early as 1954.
In 1990, the name was changed to Exhibition House for Crimes of War and Aggression (Nhà trưng bày tội ác chiến tranh xâm lược), dropping both “U.S.” and “Puppet.”
In 1995, following the normalization of diplomatic relations with the United States and end of the US embargo a year before, the references to “war crimes” and “aggression” were dropped from the museum’s title as well; it became the War Remnants Museum.
Situated in the city center, the War Remnants Museum is consistently popular with Western tourists in Ho Chi Minh City. Going to the museum to ascertain and understand the historical truths and the war in Vietnam.
Located at No.28 Vo Van Tan Street, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City, War Remnants Museum is one of the cultural tourism spots attracting a large number of tourists to the city, especially international tourists and honorably welcomes numerous government’s leaders.
The museum is currently one of the top 10 Vietnamese museums attracting most tourists. War Remnants Museum ranked 5th in the poll of 25 Asia’s most attractive museums implemented by TripAdvisor.com in 2013.
War Remnants Museum is also one of few museums in Vietnam retaining the largest number of artifacts. It is home to more than 20,000 documents, exhibits, and films, in which more than 1,500 documentaries and artifacts have been applied to introduce in 8 thematic exhibitions frequently, namely Historical truths; Look back on – image gallery of American aggression in Vietnam; Agent Orange during the Vietnam War; Aggressive war crimes; World supporting Vietnam in war, and Outdoor exhibition areas…
A large number of the artifacts are on display in outdoor exhibits due to their size and the demand of the space for tourists to be able to explore and ascertain. Among the artifacts, it can be named Collection of aircrafts Collection of cannons Collection of tanks; or Collection of bombs… These are unique and precious collections turn the museum into the appealing attraction in Ho Chi Minh City.
Vietnamese Wars possibly the only thing in the mind of foreigners before coming to the nation. Though the country has changed itself and the prejudice has somehow been replaced by a new modern developing image, it is crucial for tourists to look at the war from a different perspective.
Coming to the museum, tourists can easily find evidence accusing war crimes of colonialism and imperialism from the guillotine, bombs, tanks, aircraft, and vehicles carrying toxic chemicals to the sewer segments served as the shelter of victims threatened massacre, or “tiger cage” – solitary confinement of revolutionaries…
In addition, a photo collection of domestic and foreign journalists portraying war crimes and portraits of the Agent Orange’s victims, along with the documentary films saying consequences of the war have become vivid memories, which numerous tourists have chosen to contemplate most forages in Ho Chi Minh City.
Although only a small place partly stores historical slices, the War Remnants Museum is actually the rendezvous where the humans’ hearts could not be indifferent. All of the artifacts, photographs exhibited here have stored their own stories, hidden extremely touching fates.
Each stuck the war at a certain angle. Many preceding tourists have failed to hold their tears in front of the artifacts here. Tourists will find themselves closer to the war to understand how the war crimes were and to much more love the peace.
Currently, the Museum annually attracts around 500,000 tourists, gradually becoming one of the “must-see” spots in Ho Chi Minh City travel. Besides the daily activities, the museum regularly organizes activities with diverse themes such as culture, cuisine… The attractive culinary programs will introduce casual dishes in the wartime such as cassava, rice warmly wrapped, “Banh tet” (earth cakes), sesame…
Additionally, the cultural program on the theme of love in the war also attracts numerous tourists. Along with meaningful activities, artifacts on display are the most vivid witnesses and received much attention from both domestic and foreign tourists.
They come to witness, ascertain, and contemplate on the past and consequences that the next generations must suffer, simultaneously, to understand and love the country and Vietnamese people. War Remnants Museum is not only simply a museum but also the bridge connecting the past and the present.
The bridge also heals those who are enemies on two fronts becoming friends of each other in empathy and sharing.
Thanks to its tremendous contributions and historical significances, the War Remnants Museum is one of the fascinating attractions in Ho Chi Minh City, contributing to promoting the heroic history of the Vietnamese people to international friends.