Vietnam – a special country in my heart! It is not an affirmation without clues; far more than that, authentic experiences I got could prove it. There are a large number of travel spots pointed out as seemingly perfect recommendations when someone arrives here, but for an Aussie guy with some experience of traveling abroad like me, Mekong Delta is the best if we don’t have much time staying Vietnam. I booked such a tour from Ho Chi Minh City, and it was in more detail Mekong Delta (My Tho-Ben Tre) one day.
We must not wait too long at the agency’s office. About 7:30am, the bus came and picked us up. We were taken through a highway before stopping at a pagoda (I don’t exactly remember its name; maybe Vin Tran Pagoda). To be honest, I was absolutely overwhelmed by enormous Buddhist statues outside the pagoda’s buildings. Never seen such a kind before. Our guide was too knowledgeable as he could explain all questions of people about the pagoda’s history and religious rituals around it.
Leaving the pagoda, we were directed to the ferry. Just stand here about 2 minutes to wait for the guide buying tickets. Get on the boat, and the trip to the water area was indeed initiated. The guide gave us fantastic information about islands we saw while cruising on the river (Unicorn Island, Phoenix, Turtle, and Dragon). It was very stimulating! The breeze, fresh air, and sometimes a few drops of water from river bouncing on my face excited me much more.
The next stop was an island where we went for a walk in the garden, enjoyed free fresh fruit and listened to a kind of strange music that locals called “Vietnamese folk music with simple instruments. The melody was not bad at all. The guide took us to another place also in the island for another activity; we got on the smaller boats (three persons for one boat), and then the locals rowed through narrow and shallow canals. Too difficult for me to express how awesome I felt when above my head was green palm trees, looking like natural vaults from the far distance, making the atmosphere more comfortable. Finishing the boat ride, we visited a small bee farm and saw python. What impressed me much more was to experience in the horse cart, even though it was just within a short distance.
This trip also brought to me the life of river people and their family business. We were led to a coconut workshop where the guide told us how to make coconut fudge via special machines. There was a tiny stall with a variety of products from coconut for sale right inside the workshop. I bought some for my family, and they actually enjoyed those.
Finally, the local restaurant served us with culinary delights. There was the only thing which was inconvenient for me as well as others; it was about using chopsticks to enjoy our meal; but the guide showed us how to do that later. There were up to eight dishes for the meal, and all were supposed to be traditional food of Vietnam. Most of the people loved it. Just take a short break, and we came back to the boat for Ho Chi Minh City.
Just within one day, experiencing lots of things about Mekong Delta was the most wonderful part of my trip in Vietnam, which had ever merely been something in my mind. Would never forget the moments when I met rustic people, learnt about their tranquil life, explored their river culture, and savored the Delta cuisine.
Sightseeing (4/5): destinations deserve to be visited.
Restaurant (4/5): good meal and good services.
Tour guide (5/5): very informative and funny.
Bus and driver (5/5): the bus with A/C is very comfortable and runs smoothly.
Price (5/5): a reasonable price for unforgettable experiences.