Can Tho is the largest and most populous city in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam. It is also the economic, cultural and political center of the region, as well as a popular tourist destination. Can Tho is famous for its floating markets, canals, bridges, pagodas and orchards. In this blog post, we will explore some of the attractions and activities that Can Tho has to offer, as well as some of the history and culture that make it unique.
The Attractions of Can Tho
Can Tho has many attractions that appeal to different types of travelers. Some of the most popular ones include:
- The floating markets: Can Tho is home to several floating markets, where vendors sell fruits, vegetables, flowers, seafood and other goods from their boats on the river. The most famous ones are Cai Rang and Phong Dien, which are open from early morning until noon. Visitors can take a boat tour to see the colorful and lively scenes of the markets, and also buy some fresh and delicious products.
- The canals and bridges: Can Tho has a network of canals and rivers that connect the city with the surrounding countryside. Visitors can take a boat ride or a bike ride along the canals and enjoy the scenic views of the waterways, the rice fields, the coconut palms and the stilt houses. Can Tho also has several bridges that span across the river, such as the Can Tho Bridge, which is the longest cable-stayed bridge in Southeast Asia, and the Ninh Kieu Bridge, which is a pedestrian bridge with a lotus-shaped design.
- The pagodas and temples: Can Tho has many pagodas and temples that reflect the religious diversity and heritage of the city. Some of the most notable ones are Ong Pagoda, which is dedicated to Quan Cong, a Chinese general and deity; Binh Thuy Temple, which is dedicated to Lady Thien Hau, a Chinese goddess of the sea; and Munirangsyaram Pagoda, which is a Khmer Buddhist temple with a distinctive architecture.
- The orchards and gardens: Can Tho is surrounded by lush and fertile land that produces a variety of fruits and vegetables. Visitors can visit some of the orchards and gardens in the outskirts of the city and taste some of the local specialties, such as pomelo, mango, dragon fruit, jackfruit and durian. Some of the orchards and gardens also offer homestay services, where visitors can stay overnight and experience the rural lifestyle.
The Activities in Can Tho
Can Tho has many activities that cater to different interests and preferences. Some of the most popular ones include:
- The food tour: Can Tho has a rich and diverse culinary culture that reflects its geographical location and historical influences. Visitors can join a food tour to sample some of the local delicacies, such as banh xeo (crispy rice pancake with pork and shrimp), hu tieu (rice noodle soup with pork and seafood), banh cong (deep-fried rice cake with mung bean and shrimp), bun rieu (rice vermicelli soup with crab meat and tomato), ca loc nuong trui (grilled snakehead fish wrapped in banana leaves) and che (sweet soup with various ingredients).
- The night market: Can Tho has a vibrant night market that opens from 6 pm to 10 pm every day. Visitors can stroll along the market and browse through the stalls that sell clothes, accessories, souvenirs, handicrafts and street food. The night market also has a stage where local artists perform music, dance and comedy shows.
- The spa and massage: Can Tho has many spa and massage centers that offer relaxing and rejuvenating services for visitors. Visitors can choose from various types of treatments, such as aromatherapy, herbal bath, hot stone massage, foot massage and facial care. Some of the spa and massage centers also use natural ingredients from the Mekong Delta region, such as coconut oil, honey, lemon grass and ginger.
- The cooking class: Can Tho has many cooking classes that teach visitors how to make some of the traditional dishes of the Mekong Delta region. Visitors can learn from experienced chefs who will guide them through the steps of preparing ingredients, cooking methods and presentation skills. Visitors can also enjoy eating their own creations at the end of the class.
The History and Culture of Can Tho
Can Tho has a long and rich history and culture that date back to centuries ago. Some of the highlights of its history and culture include:
- The name: Can Tho derives its name from the phrase “cầm thi giang”, which means “river of poems” in Vietnamese. This refers to the fact that many poets and scholars used to live and work in the city, and also to the poetic beauty of the river and the landscape.
- The festival: Can Tho celebrates many festivals throughout the year, but the most important one is the Tet Nguyen Tieu, which is also known as the Lantern Festival or the First Full Moon Festival. It falls on the 15th day of the first lunar month, which is usually in February or March. It is a time when people pray for peace, prosperity and happiness, and also enjoy various activities such as lantern making, lantern parade, dragon dance, lion dance, fireworks and folk games.
- The museum: Can Tho has a museum that showcases the history, culture and nature of the city and the Mekong Delta region. It has four main sections: the natural section, which displays specimens of animals and plants; the historical section, which displays artifacts and documents from different periods; the cultural section, which displays costumes, instruments and tools of different ethnic groups; and the revolutionary section, which displays weapons, uniforms and photos of the wars.
Can Tho is a charming city in the heart of the Mekong Delta region. It has many attractions and activities that appeal to different types of travelers. It also has a long and rich history and culture that make it unique. Can Tho is more than just a city, it is a destination that offers a memorable and authentic experience.