|ABOVE| Hipknoties dress (c/o) // Dolce Vita sandals // TOMS sunglasses // Scala hat found at TJMaxx // bag and jewelry via Sapa artisans

My final stop in intensely touring the entire country of Vietnam was Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon. It was a snap back to reality of my city life back in Brooklyn, as this is definitely the most globalized and populated city of Vietnam.

Unless we were in the tourist areas, crossing the street was by far the scariest experience—with Typhoon landslides being a close second. The motorbikes come from every direction and there are more of them than you can imagine. The good news is they’re usually going pretty slowly because of the congestion, but it makes it even more difficult when there are too many to get through. Shopping through the night market, I nearly got run over by a few weaving around pedestrians.

After 16 days of dressing somewhat conservatively because we were visiting temples and in more traditional regions, I was ready to beat the heat with less layers. This garment from Hipknoties that I wore for most of the trip as a scarf, I finally was able to make into a dress and feel like I wasn’t offending anyone.

There was definitely a more Western influence on fashion in this city with boutiques carrying H&M and Zara in them, as well as a Louis Vuitton and Christian Louboutin in the wealthier part of the city. Still, most women on motorbikes kept covered from head to toe to avoid sun exposure. Pale white skin is coveted as an ideal there, so I can see why. I wasn’t quite as adjusted to that heat like they were and ducked into coffee shops to cool off with some iced coffee during the days. After 3 hot days of exploring here, we were ready for an 18 hour flight home to recover.