Top 7 biggest Mekong Delta Floating Markets.
A floating market is simply one whereby goods are sold from boats. Although their origins date back to a time where water transport was so common, most floating markets today serve mainly as a tourist attraction, with a majority of them in Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam.
The Mekong Delta floating markets are found in Southwestern Vietnam where the Mekong River empties into the South East China Sea through a network of distributaries. The delta has several floating markets with Cai Rang as the most popular one. Others include Phong Dien, Cai Be, Nga Nam, among others.
Floating markets in the region have existed for a long time and provide a way for locals to trade while tourists enjoy the spectacular view of bustling activities. For easier visibility from far, traders hang their products on long bamboo poles. Alongside the goods and items, you can also stop by the sampans that also double up as coffee shops and food joints. Of course, the best time to visit these floating markets would be at sunrise when there is vigorous energy.
Here are a few floating markets on the Mekong Delta that you should consider checking out.
Cai Rang Floating Market
Cai Rang is the biggest floating market on the Mekong Delta and usually starts at around 5 a.m. to about 12 p.m. While a variety of goods are traded, you will certainly see a lot of agricultural products ranging from . What’s more, you can enjoy some of the unique Vietnamese foods while on the sampans at the market. The locals will certainly awe you with their swift skills as they move goods from one boat to another. The atmosphere around the market is lively
Cai Be Floating Market
This floating market is also quite huge and is located on the Tien River. Just like in the Cai Rang market, traders hung up their produce on poles making it unnecessary to yell out what they are selling. It is usually opened all day although the best time to visit the market would be at sunrise. The market is divided into two distinguished parts, buying places and selling places.
A bonus for visiting the Cai Be floating market is that you could join the locals and learn one or two about how they catch their fish. The locals spend their lives in the water and tend to use the boats as their mobile houses. A trip down to Cai Be would be perfect for a lovely rain-free day.
Tra On Floating Market
Tra On Floating market is located at the intersection of the Hau river and the Mang Thit river. Although the market starts up earlier than the other two above, (at around 2 a.m) you can arrive at around 5 a.m when the energy is vigorous. Like the other markets, the main goods in Tra On market are fresh fruits and agricultural produce from the neighboring districts.Tra On may not be as busy as the rest, but it is still worthwhile. You could enjoy a little chat up with the locals as you sip some iced tea on the sampans. Be sure to try some of the special pomelos that Tra On is famous for.
Nga Nam Floating Market
Nga Nam floating market is unique from the others in that it is situated at the convergent of five rivers, all flowing into different directions. There is almost everything on this market ranging from fruits and other foodstuffs to even some electronics. Of course, you would best visit the market at dawn when activities are at their peak. The boats have become part of the locals’ lives, and they use them for transportation as well as transactions. An experience at this market will offer you the opportunity to enjoy the special Mekong Delta fruit.
Nga Bay Floating market
This market is also known as the Phung Hiep Floating market. It is just another floating market but the vibrant colors and variety of goods will instantaneously catch your eye. Along with the usual fruits and other foodstuffs, you can also get some handicraft goods and aquatic products from the region. what’s more, you can also get some snakes, birds, and iguanas throughout the whole year.
Phong Dien Floating Market
The Phong Dien Market is a bit further off the Cai rang Market. However, unlike the Cai Rang market, which mainly deals with agricultural produce, Phog Dien has a variety of commodities. You can find household tools as well as working tools of just about any kind. What’s more, a variety of traditional Vietnamese foods are served at the market. Phong Dien has that extra bit in the fact that there are oil-charging stations surfacing the river. What better way to ensure convenient travel?
Long Xuyen Floating Market
Located on the Hau river, Long Xuyen market is a center where the locals live and trade throughout the year. There are so many boats moored closely on the river. The main goods sold here are vegetables and fruits although you can also get some of the famous snacks such as fish noodles and pigskin cakes.
It is no doubt that the Mekong Delta region is a sight to behold for any tourist. The region’s beauty and diversity will certainly be a breathtaking experience. The Mekong Delta floating markets are quite a charming sight and you could get to do a lot while there. Simply chat up with the locals or enjoy some exquisite Vietnamese cuisine while paddling through the rivers. You can plan your visit to the Mekong Delta floating markets for any time of the year, be it the dry or rainy season, as you can be sure each will be a different experience. Just remember that the best time to visit the markets would be dawn. Trust me, the sight of all those bustling activities coupled with the beautiful sunrise will surely make you fall in love with Vietnam.