Besides enormous fruits orchards, Southern folk songs, and delicious regional food specialties, the Mekong Delta also impresses tourists with its colorful and exciting floating markets. Now, mekongreviews are out there to introduce to you the top floating markets to visit in the Mekong Delta!
Cai Be Floating Market, Tien Giang
Cai Be floating market (Source: Internet)
Located on Tan Phong islet, on the large Tien River, in Cai Be District, Tien Giang Province, Cai Be is a charming small town, where you can visit a lot of picturesque fruit and vegetable gardens, traditional crafts, a French church built in 1935 and a stunning traditional house, and especially Cai Be floating market. Even though the floating market of Cai Be is getting smaller every year, as trade is shifting more and more into modern central markets, this river market is still the principal attraction on a boat tour from Vinh Long.
As one of the most famous floating markets in the Mekong Delta area, Cai Be often starts trading from dawn until late in the afternoon. But, this busy market is at its best around 6 am, though still might comprise only a handful of boats. From 3 AM in the early morning, the waterway does become a maze of uncountable boats and rafts packed with such as pineapple, papaya, mango, bananas, and even cigarettes making this market as lively as a small city on the river. Apart from fresh fruits, there are also hawkers selling Vietnamese breakfast dishes like pho, hu tieu, grocery and even coffee. Imagine sitting comfortably on a boat, enjoying a bowl of noodles or sipping a cup of fragrant Vietnamese coffee while seeing a colorful picture of the river created by these floats flowing across each other. Such an amazing way to begin a new day!
If you are about to go on a Mekong Delta tour, it is customary to board a boat here, visit Cai Rang floating market, explore the islands and moor in Vinh Long before making your way to Can Tho.
Nga Nam floating market, Soc Trang
Nga Nam floating market (Source: Internet)
Each floating market in the Mekong Delta has something to make itself completely different from the rest. When it comes to Nga Nam floating market, which is the oldest and one of the busiest floating market in the South of Vietnam, it is its location at the intersection point of five rivers flowing into five different directions: onto Ca Mau, down from Phung Hien, across from Long My, through to Thanh Tri and in from Vinh Quoi.
However, Nga Nam floating market, which is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Soc Trang province, attracts travelers not only for its critical location but also a chance to explore the local’s way of living with the bustling scene, all of the business activities and life activities taking place on the boats. Though Nga Nam floating market is active with big boats, small boats, boats with five timber pieces loaded up and loaded down of goods from rice, meat, fresh fruits to other staple to TV and electronic goods from 3 am until 8 am, early in the morning, when the sun is crawling up east and many locals are ready for trading, is the best time to visit.
Tra On floating market, Vinh Long
Tra On floating market (Source: Internet)
In Tra On (Vinh Long Province), which is one of the most abundant areas of plants and fruits in Mekong River Delta, there is a relaxed, small floating market attracting tourists not for the busy atmosphere and tourist crowd but for a feeling for the rhythm of how the locals’ daily life there is.
Known as the final floating market on the Hau River, Tra On Floating Market begins a new day at around 2-3 am, when people are in their deep sleep and become busiest from 5-6 am onwards, when various boats full of fruits and seasonal agricultural products gather.
Coming to Tra On floating market, which is located outside the idyllic town at the mouth of a channel, your eyes will be feasted with strange – looking and colorful flowers and the whole exciting and lively scene with small boats served as coffee shops and food stores and your taste will be feasted with a wide range of fruits: the king orange of Tan Thanh, the star apple of Hoa Binh, the durian of Luc Si Thanh, mangoes, longan, rambutan, etc.
These floating markets are where the locals can buy goods while tourists can spread their eyes over the lively panorama around, experience how people exchanging goods, fruit and many other commodities on their vessels.