Top Attractions along the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Top Attractions Along The Mekong Delta

 

Recently I completed a three day tour along the Mekong Delta in the southern most region of Vietnam.  Unlike our city tour of Saigon, this particular tour was somewhat of an exercise in futility, as I’ve honestly never seen such inefficiency in an itinerary in my entire travels. We literally were spending hours on end traveling by bus, waiting for passengers and backtracking for various reasons. I could write an entire essay on this subject; however, my lovely girlfriend Audrey recently penned a fantastic summary of our Mekong delta misadventures on her blog. Although the tour itself was less than stellar, we did capture some great footage and certain fragments of the journey (when added up as a whole rather than considered as distinct parts) wasn’t as bad as the tour overall. The following is a list of activities to consider doing when doing a tour of the Mekong Delta which we recommend wholeheartedly you consider doing independently:

1) Paddle Down The Mekong Delta

Whether you jump in a rowboat all by yourself or have a local Vietnamese wearing a conical hat act as skipper, paddling down the Mekong Delta was one of our favorite experiences on our three day tour.

2) Visiting A Floating Market

The hectic parade of activity that’s also know as the local floating markets is a fascinating spectacle to behold that reminded me of the Uros from Lake Titicaca. From pineapple tossing to fishing the market is as lively as they come. What’s fascinating is that all of this takes place on the water where you have an opportunity to experience all of it for a couple of hours.

3) Mingle With Friendly Locals At A Cham Island Settlment

The opportunity to visit with local minority Cham villages was probably my favorite experience. As a visible minority group (Islamic in their beliefs) the Cham villagers are radiant warm people who will smile and pose for photos while waving at you. Their distinct clothing and headdress is quite impressive.

4) Feed Catfish at a Fish Farm

Throwing pellets of fish food into a tiny open space of water and watching a plethora of catfish fight over the scraps wasn’t one of the highlights of my journey but it’s likely a stop along the way if you’re on a tour. If going it alone we’d recommend skipping this.

5)  Listen To Traditional Vietnamese Music

Listening to a traditional Vietnamese music and singing performance is something we relished after spending hours out on the boat. The soothing and distinct sound of the music along with fruit refreshments and tea helped us to cool down and recharge for the rest of the afternoon.

6) Climb Cave Pagoda

Finally, for those who make it all the way to Chau Doc (nearby the Vietnamese – Cambodian border) make sure to climb all the way up to Cave Pagoda for some breathtaking views of rice fields, stilt villages and greenery. With a Buddha decked out in sunglasses it’s just the kind of quirky place we recommend highly.

Top Attractions along the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen) May 9, 2013 at 6:06 am

I’m gonna hop over and read Audrey’s account of the misadventure right now! Justin and I did a Mekong Delta tour in February and although I found it really, really touristy, I couldn’t help but marvel at the beauty. For me it is just amazing being in a place like that that I have heard of for so long. Glad you guys pulled some positives out of it!

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:29 am

It sure is a beautiful region Ellen. Looking back in hindsight the tour doesn’t seem so bad now ;)

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Peter Lee May 9, 2013 at 1:11 pm

All your activities sounds interesting. I like the #4 most. Feeding a fish is my favorite past time. Spending time with local is good thing. With this activity a traveler easily get to know about real facts of particular location. Sometime they told you interesting stories about a particular place which you can not find via Internet or books. This is the real travel.

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:37 am

Thanks Peter, I agree with your concept of real travel – getting out there and interacting with locals.

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Douglas Santiago May 16, 2013 at 11:35 am

I never knew there was so many things to do in Mekong. I really would love to go there but I am afraid that something bad may happen on that area. Did you at any time feel that your life was in danger? I would value your response very much. Thanks for sharing this.

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:39 am

Hey Douglas,

I found the tour was very safe. It’s really a much bigger region that what I initially expected!

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Jackie May 17, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Nice list. Sounds like a lot of fun activities.

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:40 am

Thanks Jackie!

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Tim May 18, 2013 at 9:16 am

What a happy, and chill, Buddha. Was it the pagoda temple crowded at all?

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:42 am

Hey Tim,

It really wasn’t at all! Which made the experience more special.

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Kelly Cartwright May 18, 2013 at 12:49 pm

Vietnam is beautiful! It’s incredible natural scenery and climate attracts so many tourists from all over the world. Thanks for the wonderful share!

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:43 am

Thanks Kelly! I certainly agree with you. Vietnam is so stunning and diverse.

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Arti May 19, 2013 at 3:08 pm

The floating market looks so very interesting!! There are so many attractions to keep one occupied. Thanks for sharing Sam :)

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Samuel Jeffery June 18, 2013 at 1:30 am

Thanks Arti! There is a lot to do in the Mekong!

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Jeanette Todd May 26, 2013 at 5:31 pm

Judging from the looks in the picture, I would say that you did had a great time out there but I heard some bad rumor about a bad tour guide company in their.

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Huawei Ascend P6 GPS May 27, 2013 at 3:31 am

Vietnam is one of the most culture rich countries in the South East Asia. It offers nothing but the best when it comes to food, scenic spots, people and amenities. I would love to visit this site soon.

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chitra May 29, 2013 at 8:56 am

I liked the floating market which lies in the Tien river in vietnam.

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John Cena May 30, 2013 at 4:37 am

Mekong Delta in Vietnam is a wonderful place. It seems that you enjoyed your trip. Thanks for sharing your amazing experiences with us.
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Walter Bailey May 30, 2013 at 4:58 am

So many things to do in Mekong! I would love to visit the place at least in my lifetime. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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Samuel June 2, 2013 at 3:36 am

You’re most welcome! I sure hope you get the chance to visit soon :)

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Nicole @ Green Global Travel June 17, 2013 at 1:04 pm

Great article. Any post that finished with “Buddha decked out in sunglasses ” needs some love. We’re trying to get to SE Asia sometime early next year and Vietnam is high on the list. Thanks for some recommendations.

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laura June 25, 2013 at 3:47 am

The picture is so beautiful. See the picture that I like to live in that scene. Thank you for the pictures. But really I see my country is beautiful. Please visit the website you will see what I say is true I

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Dan @ A Cruising Couple August 12, 2013 at 9:47 am

We just started our cycling trip from Hanoi to Saigon at I am super impressed with Vietnam so far. We are hoping to get to the South with enough time to explore the Mekong delta! Thanks for the tips! We’ll have to give some of these a try:-)

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