Phum O Mekong Travel Guide

  • Premium Real-Estate - a waterfront view
    Premium Real-Estate - a waterfront view
    by Martialsk
  • Cai Rang Floating Market
    Cai Rang Floating Market
    by Martialsk
  • 'Taking the kids to shopping...want anything?'
    'Taking the kids to shopping...want...
    by Martialsk

Phum O Mekong Highlights

  • Pro
    Mel&Mike profile photo

    Mel&Mike says…

     Beautiful smiling people 

  • Con
    Mel&Mike profile photo

    Mel&Mike says…

     Some tourist traps 

  • In a nutshell
    Mel&Mike profile photo

    Mel&Mike says…

     Another corner of the world that is worth visiting 

Phum O Mekong Things to Do

  • Overnight Mekong boat tour

    Our group took a guided tour on the Mekong River to see the floating market at Cai Be. Here we went aboard a local boat selling pineapples and bartered with the sellers for goods. The tour gave us a good chance to see how the local people live and work on their houseboats. We also visited local family houses to see how coconut candies, popcorn and...

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  • Cai Rang floating market.

    I loved this couple of hours on the water, getting up early to be out there and watching the sights.

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  • Cruising down the Mekong.

    This was a great thing to do . Four days cruising down from Chau Doc to Cai Be, stopping off here and there to visit and also using the bikes on board to venture further away from the river to the villages too far to reach on foot and don't even have a name!!

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  • Visit the brick and floor tile factory...

    This was an interesting visit of the factory along the riverside, following the making of the tiles from the moulding, sizing and cutting to the baking and finally loading onto barges to go up to HCMC. Most of this work is done by women for about 2 dollars per day.

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  • Sadec II

    Sadec is also the place , if you are arriving from Cambodia, where you will first run into the famous "papillons blancs"or white butterflies. "Papillons blancs" is the term used by the Vietnamese to describe the teenage college girls that wear the pure silk "Ao Dai" national costume. When you see them on their bikes with the wind blowing you can...

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  • Visit Sadec.

    Sadec is a place to be recommended, a nice laid-back provincial town that has a lot going for it. The same friendly people you find everywhere but without any hassle whatsoever. This is the town Marguerite Duras lived and where the book and consequently the film "L'amant" is based. You can visit the school where Duras' mother taught and also visit...

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  • Close up to the people.

    I really enjoy the contact with the people. The Vietnamese are very similar to the Cambodians in that they have a very happy and welcoming character.

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  • Phu Hiep.

    This is a small village built almost entirely on stilts and inhabited exclusively by Muslims, about 200 Cham families. No problem to go walkabout although it is becoming more touristy, so inevitably more begging from the kids.

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  • Lazy River - at least for passengers!

    A part of our package involved a floating village tour where you saw where fish were bred, shopping boats, and just daily life.

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Phum O Mekong Tourist Traps

  • Mel&Mike's Profile Photo
    Bamboo bridge 2 more images

    by Mel&Mike Written Oct 29, 2006

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Yes the whole package from Saigon to Phnom Penh is a bit of tourist trap with its stops in a coconut candy factory, a rice krispy factory or the dinner in an authentic restaurant. However, the stop in the 'minority village' is over the top. They drop you off the boats and you walk around this small section -thankfully it is fairly small and you hope the people that live a little further away have a more normal existence. Its been set up with lots of souveniers and snacks that little girls desperately try to sell along with the echos of 'give me money'. A shame really - its one of those sad places that has been spoilt by tourism.

    Unique Suggestions: Take a walk past through the village and up to the main road - here you will find the 'real' village and see a mosque as well as what life really looks like.

    Fun Alternatives: Most packages seem stop in one of them, both the two day and three day trip had it listed.

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Phum O Mekong Off The Beaten Path

  • pfsmalo's Profile Photo
    Some of the girls at work. 4 more images

    by pfsmalo Updated Aug 24, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    A side trip from Cai Be is the village of Binh Hoa Phuoc (or villages) as they are so close to one another , you can't tell the difference, is a superb day. Taking a sampan along the canals we first came to a small factory where the girls sit and work emptying the Mekong cockles. A good hour was spent with our guide chatting and laughing over who wanted her photo taken, who was shy etc. They earn about 1 dollar for a kilo of cockles, and believe me there is a lot of cockles(emptied) in a kilo. Gives them between 2 and 3 dollars a day.After this we had lunch in an old house, chinese of origin, that doubles as a restaurant and had a fish called "elephants ear". Delicious !! After a siesta in the garden, got back on the sampan and ended up at another house with a large garden with small open sided huts on stilts where we were to sleep for the night. From there we hired bikes and went for a ride and met some lovely people on the way. Unfortunately none of these places have names and it was only through our guide that we saw what turned out to be a real highlight of our trip. A real backroads experience.

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