Sunday, June 25th, 2017

Water Puppets in Saigon


Water Puppetry didn’t have the greatest reputation among my friends at Hanoi Backpackers. And though the art itself comes from Hanoi, I didn’t get around to seeing a show there.

But I did make it to see the water puppet show in Saigon!

And I was shocked – while the reviews I had heard from my friends in Hanoi were lukewarm at best, I was positively delighted by the water puppets show! And so were all my friends!

The stage is set on water, and puppeteers behind the stage control the puppets.  The show lasts about 45 minutes and features more than a dozen short sketches.  Traditional music is performed by an orchestra on either side of the stage.

Above is the scene of the legend of Hoan Kiem Lake in Hanoi — yes, the tortoise steals the sword!

Check out this video: these puppets are fairies!

In this video, the golden dragon vanquishes the other dragons — with FIRE!


Is water puppetry worth seeing?  Absolutely.  I loved it.

But even if this isn’t your usual sort of thing, it’s such a short show, at such a great price ($6), it’s hard to think of a reason not to go see it!

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9 Responses to “Water Puppets in Saigon”
  1. Apropos to nothing, I totally had a dream last night in which I was traveling with you through Costa Rica. Only, Costa Rica was in Africa and we were fighting off tigers, 10-feet-long pythons and the like…in a swimming pool. I promise I didn’t take LSD before going to sleep either.

  2. How cute! The video makes me giggle – were you thinking of Team America the whole time, or is that just me?!

  3. vira says:

    I did enjoy the waterpuppet show, and the one I saw was in HCMC.
    I thought the show was cute, and it’s amazing how the puppeteers do it all with bodies half soaked! Talk about dedication..

  4. Victoriana says:

    Here I thought i knew everything and then there’s Water Puppets… Ok, i didn’t really think I knew everything, but water puppets are new to me. It looks like so much fun! Yet another item on my list of things to see and do when I start wandering around Asia.

  5. Leah says:

    Oh my goodness, I’m just loving this. I think I went to the same water puppet theater in Ho Chi Minh! I loved the shows, even if they were kind of kooky. I’d absolutely recommend it!

  6. Sarah Von says:

    I had the exact same experience! Lackluster reviews from friends, fantastic experience. $6! Puppeteers submerged in water! What’s not to love?!

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