Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mekong Delta

After only two plus days in Sai Gon, I was ready to go. Luckily we were on a tight schedule and booked a three-day Mekong Delta tour.  It's been said to be a "must do" in Viet Nam.I'm goin to take you flying through our trip.
Bus to My Tho. We saw tropical fruit plants, tried local honey, and hear traditional music. Then took a small boat.

To see coconut candy made.  It's really good.  Very coconutty and not too sweet. We went on to Ben Tre for a night at a homestay, which was a series of bungalows outside a family house. We made spring rolls with our very animated host.
 He showed us how the local people clean the water (it's very dirty as you can see above, but not polluted) and walked through the market in the morning. The next day was a ride through the market with the village people - the group of eight from our original tour who had stayed at the homestay instead of the hotel.
Using cute kids as salesmen didn't work on us
That afternoon was boats and buses to see a crocodile farm then the worlds fastest trip through a temple.  The bus stopped and we had fifteen minutes to walk around.  I could add some temple photos  like the one below but instead I have this other photo:
It's a penguin trashcan.  This was a theme in Vietnam.  I saw penguin and orca trash bins in a cave on Ha Long Bay. I saw them at the Zoo in Sai Gon.  I'd see them again and again.  I don't understand but kept an eye out anyway.  We headed into Can Tho for night number two on the tour. Can Tho was generally unremarkable.  We found more Bia Hoi and got two liters for less than a dollar.  Here is the jug being filled.

The next morning was a boat trip to see a fish farm, then the floating villages and a Cham village.  The Cham are an ethnic minority group who are Muslim. 
The border crossing into Cambodia was one of the easiest customs/visa incidents I've had.  We stopped on the river, had lunch, the guide came back out with our visas in passports.  Then five minutes more up the river to a stamping station where we had to walk through ourselves.  An hour plus to get upriver to our landing location in Cambodia!!!  Hurray!  We pulled the tarps to see

a green pasture with water buffaloes in the mud.  Welcome to Cambodia.

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