The Mekong Delta a.k.a the rice bowl of Vietnam is one of the most fascinating places to see in Vietnam. With nothing but river behind you and nothing but the river in front of you, these tours are amazing. It’s pretty easy to book a Mekong Delta day tour from Ho Chi Minh city, usually, you get a bus to the region you choose and from there hop on a boat or a bike and get ready to explore.
The Mekong Delta is the agricultural heartland of Vietnam. Taking a trip along the Mekong Delta is an unforgettable experience that will show you a snapshot of the Mekong people’s lives. There are loads of reasons to put this location on your Vietnam bucket list but here are the top 5.
1. Floating Markets at Mekong Delta
One of the highlights of this tour is making a visit to the floating markets of the Mekong Delta. These markets have been in Vietnam for hundreds of years and are a crucial part of the local life in the Mekong Delta.
The markets are in the centre of the delta and goods are bought and sold directly from the boats. You can buy fruit, vegetables and other local produce from these boats. There are also small boats that are used as mobile cafes! You can hop on board these boats to grab some breakfast, lunch, a cup of iced coffee or soft drinks. The floating markets are truly an example of authentic trading in Vietnam.
The markets are usually booming in the morning time and so you should probably start your tour at sunrise to get the full effect! The most popular markets are in Can Tho but there are also some around Cai Be and Ca Mau. There’s busy markets and quiet markets here and certainly something for everyone. Visiting the Mekong Delta’s floating markets is an unparalleled experience.
Experience the lush beauty of the Mekong Delta when you take a Mekong Delta tour. There are blue skies, bright light and fresh air. The landscapes and waterscapes of the Delta will catch your eye and leave you mesmerised. As you cruise up the river through the swamplands and paddy fields, watching the sun set in the distant trees it is clear to see what a special place the Mekong Delta is.
Leaving from Ho Chi Minh City, the city buzz is soon lost as you travel down the water of the delta. There are small agricultural towns on either side of the river. These towns are the perfect image of Vietnamese culture and life. The tours can finish in a number of spots but one of the prettiest is Rach Gia, a charming harbour town. From there you ferry to Phu Quoc, where you can enjoy the beautiful beaches, cool waters and scenery.
3. The Diversity
The diversity of the Mekong Delta is one of the most magical things about the place. The things you will see are truly unique and cannot be found anywhere else. In one place there are market vendors bartering on boats, in another, you’ll find rice farmers knee deep in a sea of green. There are tourists on boats in awe of the Mekong Delta gazing out children cycling up and down the banks of the delta. You’ll see birds circling in the sky above. There is something for everyone on the Mekong Delta.
The abundance of unique experiences to see along the Mekong Delta that makes it a once in a lifetime tour. But there is also a lot of things to do here! On the tour, you can hop on a tuk-tuk (a Vietnamese carriage) and roam around the waterside towns. Another cool thing to do is climb a coconut tree. The people of the Mekong hop up the coconut tree to collect the fruit, even the local children do it! When on a tour, you can climb up and get a coconut and then crack it open and drink the delicious coconut water. Although this seems like it could be a little scary, this actually is a really fun, and really unique experience.
4. Traditional Vietnamese Food
Another unique thing about the Mekong Delta is the food. For most people experiencing new foods is one of the greatest things about travelling. Sailing along the Mekong Delta is no different to that. People of the Mekong Delta have a special taste for strong flavoured food. On your journey, you will find some interesting and delicious dishes made with fresh ingredients to try.
An example of one of these dishes is Bot Loc Cake, a light and chewy dish. Bot Loc Cake is a starchy cake made with shrimp and pork and wrapped in a banana leaf. It’s tasty with a sweet and sour fish sauce. The Mekong Delta is also famous for its fruit! There is a load of delicious fruits, so if you’re looking for something delicious and organic, this is the spot!
5. The people
The Mekong people are genuine and friendly. They really add to the Mekong Delta tour experience. Even though Vietnam is becoming more and more modernised, the people in the Mekong Delta are still quite traditional and set in their ways. The locals still climb for their coconuts, fish in the river for their food and with limited internet access, they can live peacefully without being exposed to the hectic modern day lifestyle.
If one day is not enough for you to explore the beauty of this land, why don’t you refer to our advice on a 2-day itinerary for Mekong delta?
That’s why when you’re thinking of booking a tour to the Mekong Delta you should book with local tour guides for a more private and more personalised experience. Being local to the area, the guides can show you insider tips and hidden gems in the area! With the help the local insiders, you can immerse yourself in the real Mekong Delta, have an authentic off-the-beaten-path experience and truly see the local vibe. You can customise your tour with your guide to make sure it’s perfect!