Living on the Mekong River: Why not?

Thap Muoi, Dong Thap Province

If you feel familiar with the natural beauty of the North with majestic mountains and dreamlike rivers, visiting floating markets in the Mekong Delta to explore the pristine and exciting lifestyles of people on the rivers promises to be an outstanding highlight for your best Vietnam trip

The Mekong Delta, located in the southwest of Vietnam, is the place where the Mekong River approaches and flows into the sea through a network of tributaries consisting of many Vietnam’s southeastern provinces. Moreover, it is famous for the river and canal system interlacing and intertwining like a complicated spider’s web. Therefore, boats become the main means of transport for delivering people to the most remote places in the area and play an important role in developing boat tourism.

Designed with a variety of sizes and facilities and based on the demands, yachts on the Mekong River offer private cabins for tourists to experience the life among nature. During the journey, travelers are carried by small boats and weave their ways into entangled canals and endless rows of coconut trees or pay a visit to populous islands in the middle of the river. In addition, you are warmly welcomed to explore the local lifestyle through a wide range of fascinating activities such as having lunch with a local family, trying regional specialties and fruits, visiting famous floating markets or participating in production tasks (catch fish, pick fruit or take care of orchards)

Waking up in the morning with an unmistakable noise from the machine of boats and canoes and watching local people exchange agricultural products right on the river; or taking an overnight on a boat and enjoying the tranquil scenery with fruitful orchards on both sides of the river are going to become unforgettable memories.

Speaking of the Mekong Delta, your best Vietnam trip can hardly be considered complete without mentioning many celebrated floating markets. Thanks to the benefits from the Mekong River, floating markets are not only an ideal place for buying and purchasing goods and exchanging cultures, but also the meeting place for merchants coming from different areas.  

Cai Rang (Can Tho), Cai Be ( Tien Giang), Nam Can (Ca Mau) are three most well-known and crowded floating markets in Mekong Delta. If you plan to take a tour around these markets, remember to get up early between 5-8am because after this period, the weather becomes hotter and less people gather, which reduce the excitement and characteristic of the markets.

Cai Rang (Can Tho)


A busy market fair at Cai Rang Floating Market (Source: Google)

Cai Rang floating market is “rumored” to be the most anticipated one in the Mekong Delta. One of the impressive characteristic of this market is the “hanging pole”. The things that are hung on the poles indicate the goods that are available on the boats.

Currently, Can Tho has become the center area of the West with a diverse range of goods and products as well as a convenient transport system to other regions. Admiring the gorgeous dawn on the dreamlike river and feeling the awakening of life around the river banks is considered valuable moments of one’s life.

Cai Be ( Tien Giang)


A boat full of fruits at Cai Be Floating Market (Source: Google)

Cai Be Floating Market is another destination that is highly recommended to be included in your list of best Vietnam trip. This is a huge fruit gathering where products are sold at a wholesale price with high quality because they are chosen and purchased right at the orchards.

Tourists will be amazed by the great quantity of different types of fruits loaded on the boats, creating attracting and colorful scenery. Furthermore, it is a must to search for food boats to savor a steaming bowl of “hu tiu” – a special dish favored by the chef of the famous TV show “America Master Chef” when he visited Cai Be market.

Nam Can ( Ca Mau)


“Grocery stores” on the river (Source: Google)

Nam Can floating market, also known as “drifting market”, bears little similarities to others. As its name has mentioned, the market not only floats on the river but also drifts along the current. If you are looking for any type of goods, shouting out loud its name and having it delivered right at your door. All you need is to choose and make purchases without going anywhere far.

A boat is considered a small “grocery store” on the river due to a huge number of goods it produces, from the essential food such as soy sauce, vinegar or salt, to different types of seasonal fruits. In order to adapt to this new culture, tourists are advised to stay at a homestay near the river or live with local people to fully experience the beauty and life on the Mekong River.

These three floating markets mentioned above are expected to bring you the most memorable and best Vietnam trip. Hesitate no more and pack up your things to visit Mekong Delta floating markets for filling your empty stomach with delicious and fresh fruits as well as enjoying a simple but unique life on the river.

Tu Vi



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