Today, the city's core is still adorned with wide elegant boulevards and historic French colonial buildings. The most prominent structures in the city center are Reunification Palace , City Hall , the Municipal Theatre also known as the Opera House), City Post Office State Bank Office City People's Court and Notre-Dame Cathedral . Some of the historic hotels are the Hotel Majestic, dating from the French colonial era, and the Rex Hotel, Caravelle hotel some former hangouts for American officers and war correspondents in the 1960s and 1970s.
The city has various museums, such as the Ho Chi Minh City Museum, Museum of Vietnamese History, the Revolutionary Museum, the Museum of Southeastern Armed Forces, the War Remnants Museum, the Museum of Southern Women, the Museum of Fine Art, the Nha Rong Memorial House, and the Ben Duoc Relic of Underground Tunnels. The Cu tri tunnels are northwest of the city in Củ Chi district. The Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens, in District 1, dates from 1865.
Besides the Municipal Theatre, there are other places of entertainment such as: the Ben Thanh and Hoa BInh Theaters and the Lan Anh Music Stage. The Dam Sen Tourist and Cultural Park, Suoi Tien Amusement and Culture Park, and the Can Gio Eco beach resort are three recreational sites inside the city which are popular with tourists. Ho Chi Minh City is home to hundreds of cinemas and theatres, with cinema and dramatic ticketing revenue accounting for 60–70% of Vietnam’s total revenue in this industry.[clarification needed] Unlike other dramatic teams in Vietnam’s provinces and municipalities, those in Ho Chi Minh City live on their own income and keep their theaters active everyday, and are not subsidized by the Vietnamese government. The city is home to most of the private movie companies in Vietnam. Like many of Vietnam's smaller cities, the city boasts a multitude of restaurants serving typical Vietnamese dishes such as pho or rice vermicelli. Backpacking travelers most often frequent the "Western Quarter" on Pham Ngu Lao street in District 1.