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“Good day out but not really a river cruise”

Mekong River Cruise
Certificate of Excellence
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Fee: Yes
Owner description: Mekong Delta is the southernmost region of Vietnam. It is often referred to as the rice bowl of Vietnam as it produces three harvests per year. The fertile Mekong Delta is also famous for its tropical fruits and flowers
Reviewed February 18, 2013

We took a coach for a long drive out of the city to what was simply a tourist experience. First a boat took us a little way across the river to some islands. After that it was all walking. There we could taste all kinds of fruit that grows in Vietnam and listened to traditional Vietnamese songs. Then off to a place where they made toffees from coconut milk in different flavours. A third stop was tasting (and purchasing spices with the added attraction of being photo graphed handling a python. Finally we did get into a small boat and were rowed around mangrove swamps ("Keep your hands in the boat to avoid the alligators" - an unlikely story) Then back on the bigger boat to the small harbour. An very interesting day out but definitely not a river cruise.

Thank djpend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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143 - 147 of 179 reviews

Reviewed January 22, 2013 via mobile

My friend told me:  “ If you want to know about the riverside life you should visit Mekong delta in Vietnam. And there is a town like little Vernice with numerous narrow canals” It made me curious. So when I had free time I came there. It was so exciting to experience the little “Vernice” – Sa Dec town. I also had good chance to see the coconut factory, wrapped the delicious coconut candy in other town but I don’t remember name. It is too difficult to remember Vietnamese name. People living along the riverside were so warm and nice. They all smiled and waved our group whenever they realized us there. One more unforgettable thing was touching the big python and tasting snake meat with 7 ways of cooking. Yummy!
I was so lucky to travel with this travel agent`s support. (Mekong-delta-tours.com ). I like the organization way, very professional, promptly reacted to my require and very safe to pay online. Recommendable!

4  Thank HarryMichael83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2013

It takes about 2 hours to get from HCMC to Mekong river. Before getting into the boat, there are some people selling hats. Recommend getting a hat as it got hot in the afternoon as certain parts were not shaded. Along the course of the trip, we were taken to see many different experience on how the people along Mekong river lived and what they did to sustain their lives there.
Among what was see were: how the spring roll rice paper was made, honey farm, fruit orchard - where we tried different types of local fruits, coconut stall where like toffee, drinks, deserts were produced. Lunch was somewhere in a restaurant along the river.
There was even a horse cart ride! Part of the trip had a rowed boat that took us along the narrower parts of Mekong.

1  Thank eYeLeNe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 12, 2013

Our guide took us from Saigon to the delta. the car trip took about 2 hours. She arranged a Mekong Delta guide for us and a boat, all for our selves, so my hubby and I were the only tourists on board. It is affordable and relaxed. At the first island we visited we could taste all kinds of fruit that grows there. we got tea with it and listened to traditional Vietnamese songs, song by musicians. Our guide translated what the songs meant. Very endearing. On the second island they made toffees from coconut milk in different flavours.The process of making was shown and They were delicious, because you could try them, just freshly made :D. We could try making rice paper, but of course that was no success by our inexperienced hands. Handeling the snake went much better. On the third island we had the best Vietnamese lunch ever, with many dishes to try, in the middle of the bush. After lunch went on a pony cart and finished in a small boat that rowed us around the island. That peaceful and green tour was charming. On the bigger boat back to the small harbour while we got coconut milk from a coconut.

2  Thank Sas B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 12, 2012

Firstly, note that Saigon (HCMC) is far from the Mekong river. The river passing HCMC is the Saigon river, not the great Mekong. So, be prepared to take a bus ride of more than 2hrs to reach the jetty.

The agency I took (AP Travels) uses a boat of capacity 30pax. They put chairs on the deck, not fixed seats. (It is easier to move around, but I wonder if it will topple overboard in case of high waves. No life vest in sight).

The Mekong is the biggest river in South-east Asia. It runs from Tibet though Burma, Thailand and Cambodia before reaching the sea in Vietnam. So they also have cruises going to Siem Reap and Phnom Phen in Cambodia.

The water doesn't look clean, with a lot of floating vegetation. (Apparently this is the water they clean and supply to cities). Busy river, with a lot of boats passing around, sand mining barges, and houses on stilts, A floating market where where the locals live on boats and sell things and dry their clothes; and dog, cats and kids running around on the deck. Interesting, if you haven't seen it in Thailand or Cambodia.

This particular cruise passes through a narrow branch of the river, dense with floating plants, and jungle tree branches hanging over the river with wild fruits. Should be interesting sight for Westerners new to tropical flora. Didn't see any wild animals though. (Maybe due to too many humans around).

The tour may include a shore trip to a village to see tropical plants and fruits, plus cottage industries making titbits, honey bee breading........and snakewine. (Apparently they soak a cobra in a bottle of rice wine for 6mths. Good for the "male strenght", it seems. Certainly have a very strong taste.)

Generally, it should be interesting for nature travellers new to the tropics. For a Malaysian like me though, it looks just like home. Except for the shot of snake wine, of course.....

Thank Morgan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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