Mekong Delta Guide
The Mekong Delta region is one of the must-go destinations in most trips in Vietnam. Departure from Ho Chi Minh City (formerly called Saigon), visitors can easily take a Mekong tour with lots of local experience and impressions.
The Mekong Delta is located in the west of Ho Chi Minh City, roughly forming a triangle stretching from My Tho in the east to Chau Doc and Ha Tien in the northwest, down to Ca Mau and the East Sea at the southernmost tip of Vietnam, and including the island of Phu Quoc. The region includes 7 provinces: Bac Lieu, Tra Vinh, Ben Tre, My Tho, Chau Doc, Long Xuyen and Can Tho.
Best time to visit
Generally, the weather of the Mekong region is warm throughout the year. It is endowed with pleasant tropical climate with two alternate seasons, including dry season and rainy season. The dry season runs from November through April (of the next year) with average temperatures of around 28oC while and the rainy one is from May through October. The rain never lasts too long and the sun is not too hot in Mekong Delta.
The time between November and April is best to visit the Mekong delta region. Nevertheless, accommodations may be harder to find during this time as it’s in peak season. So, if you intend to travel to Mekong delta those times, you should book tours, hotels or resorts in advance in order to have a perfect trip in Southern Vietnam.
On the other hand, some prefer to travel to Mekong delta in rainy season from June to September. Despite it rains so much, the weather never gets cold and hotel rooms are available and even a lot cheaper than during the high season.
How to get
The Mekong delta is easy to access by road because it’s near Ho Chi Minh City and Can Tho, although there is only one main crowded road. Starting from Ho Chi Minh City, you will reach the land of Mekong Delta after a 2.5-hour-drive.
How to discover Mekong and its vicinity
The cheapest and easiest way to get a taste of the Mekong Delta is going on organized Mekong tours offered by travel agent; whereas those who travel on their own will have greater access to areas off the beaten track, with many little-visited places to discover.
Traveling by express minibuses is crowded but cheap, efficient and comfortable. The ultimate way to see the delta, however, is by private car, bicycle or rented motorbike. Two-wheeling around the delta is ideal for you to get lost among the maze of country roads!
Since the opening of the river border crossing between Vietnam and Cambodia at Vinh Xuong (near Chau Doc), more and more travelers are choosing this route over the land border at Moc Bai. Cambodian visas are issued at the border.
Wherever you go in the delta (except for My Tho), be prepared for ferry crossings. Fruit, soft drinks and sticky rice-based snacks are sold in the ferry waiting areas.
Things to do in Mekong Delta
All travelers to the Mekong can join a cruise into the crush of floating markets or visit local fruit orchards and fish farms.
Travelers who wish to escape from the hustle and bustle of Saigon downtown can travel to towns on the eastern edge of the delta, which is notable for having the highest proportion of Khmers in the population despite being the furthest provinces from Cambodia. Foreigners do not often visit the two towns of Tra Vinh and Soc Trang, which are popular as home to several beautiful Khmer pagodas.
For an even more remote experience, travelers can go head to the western jumping-off point of Rach Gia and take a boat trip to a peaceful Phu Quoc Island, one of the most beautiful attractions in Vietnam with deserted beaches and cool fresh water springs.