Hello! It’s our 3rd day in Vietnam and we are still waking up around 6.30am (although a bit tired) to have breakfast before going for our tour to Cai Be & Vinh Long via the Mekong Delta. Above shows the breakfast voucher at Elios Hotel. For photos of Elios Hotel, please do refer to “A Day in Ho Chi Minh City“. Also do check out our 2nd day tour to “Cao Dai Temple & Cu Chi Tunnels“.
My first serving – fried rice, potato wedges, ham, sausages, etc.
My second serving is usually toast (with butter) and a repeat of the food that I find it nice in serving 1. The good thing about the breakfast at Elios Hotel is that the majority of the food (except for toast & drinks) are changed everyday so that you will not feel bored eating the same food for several days. Likely to have a fixed menu which it’s rotated around.
We walk over to TheSinhTourist and boarded the coach. This time round the tour group is rather huge and the majority are non-Asians.
After a while of the coach ride, we stopped at a restaurant for a break where tourists can visit restroom, smoke or just hang around.
After another 1 hour of journey. we were told to alight and then continued by walking for a short distance to have a motorized boat ride.
On the motorized boat ride. Captain checking the head count of the tourists before leaving.
The kind of motorized boat we are taking. 🙂
Mekong Delta – here we come!
Passing by a another smaller boat, it seems to me that the boat is actually their house where they lived, sleep and go on with their everyday things…
Transport boat – passengers together with their bicycles, motorbikes and large items.
Church along Mekong Delta.
Alighted the boat, we didn’t get to see the “Cai Be Floating Market“… not sure why…thought it was in the itinerary…
We were then ushered to a place where we tried free samples of Royal Jelly. If you like it, then you can purchase it.
Showing us the worker bees where the Royal Jelly comes from.
Believe this should be Cai Be (as tour guide didn’t explain) and it’s a very calming area. Walking along a small path to the next destination.
Reached our next destination…what do we have here?
Brewing alcohol? I need a drink!
Yeah, because at the opposite of the brewery, you can see this. Alcohol with snakes, scorpions and herbs… anyone game to try? Well, a couple from my tour group tried and mention that it tastes like sake but much stronger. He also asked me whether I would like to try which I politely declined. 🙂
At another corner, there is a stall selling crackers and also showing how Vietnamese spring roll skin is made.
Next, another area showing how they make coconut candies.
A variety of coconut candies is available and there are free samples available to try. I overheard that there are banana, chocolate, etc flavors too!
Walking on to the next destination. Looks like pasar malam in Singapore?
This area sells lots of clothing.
Another section showing how they make rice crackers, the grains are thrown in the hot wok (with sand) and it pops just like popcorn!
The backyard of the shop.
Durians for sale here too! But I personally find it way too heaty (due to hot weather) to consume any durians but Vietnamese differs as there was a party of 3 who went ahead to eat.
More souvenirs for you to buy back. 🙂
Continuing our journey on the boat to a village to have lunch as well as to see the life of villagers.
Another boat carrying a large pile of of sand passing by our boat.
A house along Mekong Delta, seems to be self-built.
Petrol station for the boats!
Lunch that was packaged together with the tour. Food was quite fine but it was nothing fantastic. It comes with some fruits as well but the drinks is chargeable. I suppose this restaurant is always frequent by tourists so the drinks are slightly more expensive – 1 333 beer and 1 Coke totaled up to VND 34,000.
The restaurant where we are having lunch with our tour group.
After the lunch, we went to take a stroll around the village premises.
Private area to host your guests for lunch or dinner.
Crocodile farm. You can pay a small sum of money to feed them too!
Hammocks are available here and some of our tour members even had a good nap after the lunch!
There is a short singing performance by the locals and you are welcome to part with you money in appreciation.
Continuing the journey on the boat and the reached our next destination – Vinh Long Market.
The sun was extremely hot today and it made walking around really difficult as there wasn’t much of shelter around.
Cho Vinh Long, which is Vinh Long Market in English.
Food stalls at Vinh Long Market, the stall owners are beckoning at us to try, which we politely declined.
My partner bought a small 50g Bioré facial wash (facial-fit expert) at VND 19,000 here. Nostalgia sight!
Vu Trung Discotheque – doesn’t seem to be in operation anymore. We went back to the coach and waited for it to leave for our next destination back to Ho Chi Minh City. A rather unfortunate thing happened halfway during the ride, the air-con in the coach broke down (despite the bus assistant effort to get it working) and we were all trapped in hot air. Opening the window helps a bit but you also get to have free carbon monoxide, dust and sand in your face!
Coach stopped at Mekong Rest Stop. It is a very nice and clean place and I think you can imagine if I tell you the above photo is actually the rest room.
Facade of Mekong Rest Stop.
My partner bought a can of coke here at VND 16,000 and we sat at the table to the right to rest. It was a relief from the hot bus due to the air-con going nuts!
Mandarin Duck relaxing at the pond at Mekong Rest Stop.
Private resting area for big groups.
Somehow, before we board the bus, the air-con was fixed and the rest of journey was rather pleasant. We reached Ho Chi Minh City around 630pm and walk around to find a place to have dinner. Passing by Crazy Buffalo Saigon, a restaurant and bar that is open 24 hours.
Decided to try Sasa Cafe (242 De Tam Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam), which was just along TheSinhTourist office. Internet is available upstairs and you can also eat here too as there are tables looking out over the street.
Delicious spring rolls (10 pieces) at VND 33,000.
Pizza Quattro Stagoni (large) at VND 85,000. Total dinner is at VND 211,000 which included 3 x Saigon Beer (VND 15,000 each) and 2 Heineken (VND 20,000 each). Food was extremely nice and staffs are friendly too! The ambiance is cozy and great for after-dinner drinks!
The next blog post will cover my 1 day Vung Tau Tour as well as walkabout, shopping and french dining in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). 🙂