Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnamese: Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh pronunciation ) is the largest city in Vietnam and is located near the Mekong Delta. Under the name, Prey Nokor (Khmer: ), it was the main port of Cambodia, before being annexed by the Vietnamese in the 17th century. Under the name Saigon (Vietnamese: Sài Gòn; pronunciation (help·info)), it was the capital of the French colony of Cochinchina, and later of the independent state of South Vietnam from 1954 to 1975. In 1975, Saigon was merged with the surrounding province of Gia Định and renamed Hồ Chí Minh City (although the name Sài Gòn is still commonly used.)
The city center is situated on the banks of the Saigon River, 60 kilometers (37 mi) from the South China Sea and 1,760 kilometers (1,094 mi) south of Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam.
The metropolitan area, which consists of Hồ Chí Minh City metro area, Thủ Dầu Một, Di An, Bien Hoa and surrounding towns, has more than 9 million people, making it the largest metropolitan area in Vietnam and Indochina. The Greater Ho Chi Minh City Metropolitan Area, a metropolitan area covering most part of Dong Nam Bo plus Tien Giang and Long An provinces under planning will have an area of 30,000 square kilometers with a population of 20 million inhabitants by 2020.