By the time the Mekong reaches Vietnam, it has travelled from its source high in the Tibetan Plateau, through China, skirted Burma, flowed along the Laos-Thai border and cut through Cambodia. The mighty body of water splits into nine tributaries, crisscrossing over the fertile plain and supplying the delta with alluvial rich sediment. Known as the Rice Bowl of Asia, the delta provides about 40 percent of the country's annual food crop.
Life in Vietnam's agrarian heartland continues today as it has for centuries, giving visitors authentic insights into Vietnamese communities and rural life. As you explore the area here, you will catch glimpses into everyday customs, from the conical-hatted farmers cultivating their paddy fields to the fruit farmers tending to their tropical orchards. Make sure to sample these exotic fruits as you pass and take a scenic stroll through the riverside dwellings, winding through shady narrow village roads lined by bamboo hedges.
Gliding down the river to witness a traditional floating market in action is sure to be a highlight of your stay in this area. Join the hundreds of boats laden with colourful fresh fruit, vegetables and fish and witness the lively jostle for trade. You will be welcomed by the cries of the sellers advertising their wares, which hang gracefully among other produce from long poles at the front of their boats. From aboard your cruise, you will also have the chance to admire the timeless floating villages and precarious monkey bridges which link the opposite banks of the river as you go.
The Mekong Delta and its calm waterways offers a picturesque and distinctive spot, which comes as a welcome relief from the hustle and bustle of built-up city life. We recommend visiting on a tailor-made tour as soon as possible while these atmospheric floating markets still exist.
Features in the following itineraries
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
- Leslie Siben, India
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
- Jaime Benitez, South India
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
- Mr David Wallace, North India
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India