We were picked up punctually at the hotel for a 3-hour drive to Cai Be. The guide Dong explained that we would stop for a break after about an hour and a half out of the city. On the way, he pointed out local features and some history of Vietnam and HCMC, which was interesting. The rest stop consists of a food court and a little supermarket with clean toilet facilities. We had a very cold refreshing coconut drink and time to stretch our legs. Next stop is a pier in Cai Be to embark on a boat which is our transport for the rest of the day cruising along the Mekong River. The river market is not the same as those you see in Bangkok. There are a few boats anchored individually along the river or by the side of the river selling fruits or as a mini-supermarket. As our group is small, only two of us, we were allowed to step into the fruit market boat and sat amongst coconuts, durians, jackfruits, milk fruits, bananas etc. Interesting experience. Next, we cruised to an island where we were treated to honey tea, watch the making of rice bubble with different flavours, coconut candy, rice paper etc. Not exactly interesting but you can appreciate the hard work put into these little treat treats that we take for granted. We then cruised to another island for a bicycle ride around a fruit and flower farm before lunch. The day was very warm and we opted to skip the bicycle ride and had a rest instead before lunch. The lunch consists of grilled fish and prawns, a chicken stew and rice. Although it is supposed to be a fruit farm, we were not served any fruits. They were able to cater for food preferences with advance notice. Beer is available at additional cost and it is reasonable. There is ample time for a snooze after lunch. Deck chairs and the ubiquitous hammocks are available for use. As we did not wish to snooze, we opted to return earlier to Cai Be and transport back to HCMC. This was a good decision as we arrived at HCMC at about 4.30 pm, avoiding the evening traffic jams that is typical after 5 pm. Thanks to Dong and a good driver, we had a great day out in nature and fresh air.
Very enjoyable, jam packed tour.
Includes a relaxing cruise down Mekong delta, visits to local craft workshops, local musicians performance, cycle around the village and kayaking(optional) and large Vietnamese meal.
Our guide Yen gave us lots of information , a good fun tour with many photo ops.
We booked the 50EUR trip to the Cai Be floating market as it was advertised as a great attraction of the Mekong Delta second only to Can Tho. Instead, after 3h driving, we were presented with one boat only and no market whatsoever. Yet we were told that that was the market and that it was normal that there were not many boats, apparently due to the season. First time i heard that a market would stop in a certain time frame especially while the one in Can Tho was surely ongoing.
Our guide, Yen, was nice but didn't seem particularly interested in us! Always sat at different tables, playing with his phone and a bit rushed and vague in his explanations.
Needless to say that overall the area is beautiful but together with the disappointing market the day was a stop- and -tip-tour where we were invited to tip anyone that was giving us the service we thought we had paid for! Also some activities in the local factories were not even performed but explained by the guide. The paddling in the canal was very nice but its romance lasted 5mins until the motor was turned on! Technically the tour has potentials because it is a very nice area but it was totally rushed and clearly confusing money wise especially because we learnt that not every body paid the same price!
Very well organised tour, even though we realised we were not meant to do group tour.
The highlight of the day for us was at the end, going slowly through the canals on small local boats, wow!
Even if there is a touristic pushing if you only have one day we definitly recommand this tour, the Mekong is a must see!