Mekong Delta Tour - Cai Be and Vinh Long, 14th January 2008

Vinh Long Travel Blog

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Us on the boat

After a few days of lazing in bed and strolling down to breakfast at a leisurely 9:30/10:00am, our alarm going off at 6:45am was a bit of a shock to the system. We got ourselves together and with sleep still in our eyes, we headed down to breakfast before being hurried off to our tour bus at 7:30am.

After the usual bus delays, we arrived in Cai Be mid-morning where our group hopped on a boat for a tour of the Mekong Delta. The sun was blazing and the water was calm and peaceful. A very short boat ride later we arrived at a floating market where we were able to glimpse at all the locals selling their respective goods, many of whom had roosters on their boats, which we learned were used for illegal cockfighting; charming.

Rice paper making
 We docked not too far from the floating market and roamed through a small village where they make coconut candies, peanut brittle type goodies, rice paper and rice popcorn. We got the impression that the "local village" is far more set up as a tourist attraction than an actual a site of production. Regardless, it was very interesting to see how the products are made and you can be sure we took full advantage of all the samples (altough Steph did get a glare from one local who caught her going back for "seconds").

Back on the boat, we cruised along for a good hour or so before being transferred to very small canoes. After a bit of apprehension on Steph's part, it turned out to be one of the highlights of the tour. It was so serene rowing through the maze of shady canals.

One of the canoes our group took, the Vietnamese woman is the one standing and rowing (they provided conical hats for us all to shield us from the sun)
Although, when we say "rowing", we weren't actually rowing the canoes. On the back of each canoe (seating between three and four passengers) was a small Vietnamese woman who rows the tours between one and four times a day, 30 minutes a trips, for VND10,000. We were told by our guide that in the cases where there is low tide, there is only a trickle of water down the canals and the women literally have to push the canoes. We were also told that although the tour company is well aware of the issue, as they are set up Ho Chi Minh, they are far enough away from the problem that they are not in the least concerned and book tours during those periods without increasing the womens' pay. It was quite shocking. Adam did offer to give the woman a break and let him row for a while, but she declined.
The Mekong Delta

Our destination was a lonagan fruit orchard where we had a very tasty lunch. We were given the option after lunch to either ride around the area on bicycles for an hour, or laze in the hammocks....the sun was so hot that we didn't take long in making our decision and justified the hammock lounging to oursleves. Well fed and rested, we reluctantly got on the bikes and road back to where our boat was docked.

Another calming boatride later and we were at Vinh Long. We only wandered the city for about 15mins before getting back on the bus and heading home to Ho Chi Minh City.

We had initially contemplated doing the two or three day Mekong Delta tour and while we had a great day, in our opinion, one day was plenty and we were happy to be back where there was airconditioning.

Virginiagoodings says:
Ditto darlings! Keen to hear the next installment! Am in Vancouver now and off to Kelowna today (in shallah---loads of snow coming down!)
Much love
Mum xxoo
Posted on: Jan 29, 2008
barrieandann says:
Great to get news of your travel adventures again. Well done Stephanie for getting in a canoe,our boat won't be any problem for you now!
Posted on: Jan 15, 2008
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Us on the boat
Us on the boat
Rice paper making
Rice paper making
One of the canoes our group took, …
One of the canoes our group took,…
The Mekong Delta
The Mekong Delta
The Mekong Delta
The Mekong Delta
Homes along the Mekong Delta
Homes along the Mekong Delta
Vinh Long
photo by: kevt76