Vietnam’s Mekong Delta
Vietnam’s Mekong Delta is one of the country’s most peculiar yet defining destinations. Sitting just a few hours west of Ho Chi Minh, the delta is comprised of an endless maze of interconnecting canals, waterways and tributaries feeding from the Mekong River into the ocean. Despite being largely rural, the Mekong Delta is one of the country’s most densely population regions, and is home to one of Vietnam’s busiest cities (Can Tho), placing a vibrant, urban hub in the heart of this tropical waterworld.
Beyond the sprawl of Can Tho, cities such as Chau Doc (Vietnam’s border town with Cambodia), Vinh Long and My Tho also paint an urban spread across the region’s face. Outside these bustling hubs, however, the true beauty of the Mekong arises through its range of waterside villages. Stilted homes are built up along the banks of the waterways, remaining protected by floodwaters while allowing easy access to the life-giving canals.
Thanks to the region’s tropical climate and lush soils, the delta is also a heartland for agriculture. Fields of sugarcane and rice reach as far as the eyes can see, and vibrant orchards provide the country with some of its most delicious fruits. One of the most unique aspects of the delta, however, is how this produce gets from field to consumer.
The Mekong Delta is home to a number of ‘floating markets’ where locals come in from all over to both buy and sell specific items. From steaming bowls of pho and strong glasses of Vietnamese coffee to fresh fruit and vegetables, vendors sell their specific items from the comfort of their own boats! Displaying what’s for sale with a long pole at the front of their vessel, vendors sail through the waters selling their offerings to people both on land and on the water. An extremely unique and iconic way of life on the water, a visit to a floating market in the Mekong is essential for any visit.
Whether cruising from destination to destination or taking the more conventional land route, transport around the Delta region is both efficient and reliable. With endless offerings and unique destinations to explore, a visit to this landmark region of the country is a truly rewarding experience.