Thứ Bảy, 3 tháng 10, 2015
Around Can Tho
Around Can Tho
Arguably the largest drawcard of the delta is its colourful floating markets, which hug the banks of wide stretches of river. Most market folk set out early to avoid the sunlight, so you should visit between 6am and 8am and beat the tourist tide. The real tides, however, are also a factor, as bigger boats must often wait until the water is high enough for them to navigate.
Improved roads and public transport mean that some of the smaller, rural floating markets are disappearing, but many of the larger markets near urban areas are still going rapidly .
Rural areas of Can Tho province, which is famous for their durian, mangosteen and orange orchards, can be easily got from Can Tho by boat or bicycle
Sights & Activities
Cai Rang Floating Market
Cai Rang is just 6km from Can Tho in the direction of Soc Trang, which is the biggest floating market in the Mekong Delta. There is a bridge here that serves as a great vantage point for photography. The market is the most lively before 9am, even though some vendors hang out until noon.
It is quite an experience to watch this in full swing, yet it’s well worth getting up extra early to beat the tour-group crowds or travellers may end up seeing almost as many foreigners as market traders.
Cai Rang can be seen from the road, but reaching here is much more exciting by boat (US$6). From the market area in Can Tho it takes about an hour by river, or visitors can drive to the Cau Dau Sau boat landing (by the Dau Sau Bridge), from where it takes only around 10 minutes to get the market.
Phong Dien Floating Market
Called the Mekong Delta’s best floating market, Phong Dien has fewer motorised craft and more stand-up rowing boats. Less crowded than Cai Rang, Phong Dien has much fewer tourists. It’s at its bustling best from 6am to 8am . The market is 20km southwest of Can Tho; most get here by road.
A boat trip here will require a 3.30am start (return 600,000d), but travellers should arrange it the day before. It is theoretically possible to do a whirlwind boat trip, visiting the small canals on the way and ending back at the Cai Rang floating market. This trip should take around five hours return from Can Tho.
For trips on smaller boats (US$4 per hour), operators can be found along Ð Hai Ba Trung by the river, but inspect boats first; the faster alternative is to take a xe om or taxi and then arrange a boat at the other end.
(admission 20,000d; 5am-6pm) Bang Lang, which is on the road between Can Tho and Long Xuyen, (also called Vuon Co) is a great 1.3-hectare bird sanctuary with amazing views of thousands of resident storks. From a tall viewing platform, visitors can see the storks filling the branches; it’s an absolutely incredible sight (the best times of day are around dawn and dusk).
Bang Lang which is about 15km southeast of Long Xuyen, is in the Thot Not district. Serach for a sign in Thoi An hamlet saying ‘Ap Von Hoa’. Coming from Can Tho the sign is on the west side of the road, right after a small bridge. It is a couple of kilometres off the main highway – can be reached on foot within 30 minutes, or visitors can arrange a motorbike taxi for about 20,000d.
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