Meet Lyra (@lyraliza on Twitter) of Hello-Saigon where she blogs her thoughts and experiences as an expat in Saigon. Her posts are very informative; you will learn more about Saigon with them. What I love the most is reading her restaurant reviews! She always takes pictures of all the delightful dishes she has had then I note down so I’d know what to order. What’s more interesting is she’s also a mom, like me.
Read her take below on what things to remember when bringing a baby in this city. I am sure you’ll learn a lot from her post:
- Babywearing is best.
Lots of touristy spots in Saigon is just near each other — so you’ll probably do a lot of walking. If you have a baby with you, it’s best to babywear or use a lightweight umbroller. If you decide to babywear, remember that Saigon is most of the time sunny and humid, so carriers that are made of cotton is best.
- Bring a nursing cover.
If you’re still breastfeeding, best to bring a nursing cover with you. Not a lot of women breastfeed here (at least I don’t see a whole lot). Nursing stations are still uncommon here in Saigon. In fact, I only know of Crescent Mall in District 7 that have comfortable nursing stations complete with rocking chairs. Nursing covers are perfect too to protect your baby on sudden rain showers.
- Aquafina, La Vie, and Sapuwa
If you’re formula feeding or just need water for your children, I recommend Aquafina, La Vie, and Sapuwa. Nope, no Wilkins here or Dr. Edwards’.
- Shopping for kids clothes?
Best places to buy affordable clothes for kids are at Saigon Square 1 (Nguyen Thi Minh Khai St. D1), Saigon Square 2 (Ton Duc Thang St. D1), and Taka Plaza (Nguyen Thi Minh Khai St. D1). BUT all are not conducive to bring kids IN STROLLERS because of the narrow aisles. And yes, there are no elevators/escalators too. So it is better to babywear if you insist on bringing the baby. But my advice? Just don’t bring the kids when shopping! They’ll ruin your shopping experience!
- Dress lightly.
After three years, I have learned that Saigon is a summery city with light to moderate showers towards the end of the year. It’s like 365 days of summer. So dress your kids in appropriate clothing. It can get quite hot! Sunscreen, sunglasses, and flip-flops should be in your must-bring list.
- You will talk to strangers.
Most Vietnamese love kids so don’t be surprised if they suddenly strike a conversation with your kid or coo over your baby. When I was pregnant and I was visiting the market in Cho Lon, a lot of sellers would suddenly stop me, touch my belly and ask about how far along I was and the gender of my baby.
Now that she has shared her tips, feel free to add more below.