Vietnam is home to some of the world’s most unique shopping experiences in its floating markets. For those looking to explore the culture and traditions of the Southeast Asian country, a visit to one of these markets should be top of the list.
This guide will provide you with all the information you need about famous floating markets in Vietnam – from their locations, opening times, goods sold and tips on how to get around. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to make the most out of your shopping experience in Vietnam’s unique floating markets.
What are Floating Markets and What Makes Them Special in Vietnam?
Floating markets are a unique and traditional shopping experience in Vietnam. These markets are held on the banks of rivers or canals, and vendors sell their goods from boats. All of these making them an interesting sight to behold.
This unique form of market has been around for centuries. That’s why coming here tourists can feel the authentic western Vietnamese experience. Not only do they provide a unique shopping experience, but they also serve as a reminder of the country’s rich culture and history.
The traditional floating markets of Vietnam are full of vibrant colors, sounds, smells and flavors. They create a must-visit destination for anyone looking to explore the culture of this beautiful country. From fresh fruits, vegetables to handmade souvenirs, these markets offer a variety of products that can be found nowhere else in the world. So come explore the floating markets of Vietnam for an unforgettable shopping experience!
Best Floating Markets in Vietnam
Vietnam is home to some of the most amazing floating markets in the world. These markets are located in the Mekong Delta region and are a great way to experience local culture and cuisine and offer a unique shopping experience.
Cai Rang Floating Market
When you visit the Cai Rang floating market in Can Tho, you’ll be astounded by how crowded and active it is. The river turns into a maze of hundreds of boats loaded with fruit like pineapple, papaya, mango, and bananas as well as illicit items like cigarettes.
To serve market-goers and guests, small boats offer beer, wine, and soft beverages weave in and out of the other boats. Every boat is packed with seasonal items from fresh fruits to vegetables. Visitors can learn more about the culture of Vietnamese people in western while participating in market activities.
Phong Dien Floating Market
We would like to advise you to visit Phong Dien Floating Market if you are not a huge fan of touristy regions. It’s located 20 kilometers southwest of Can Tho. To get to the floating market, you can take by boat or sampan. People here mostly sell fish, veggies, and coconuts and fresh fruits. You can know what they have in stock by spotting what is hanging from the poles. When entering this market, you can see floating markets little canals, a factory that makes rice noodles, sweets stuffs, etc. This market is smaller than Cai Rang Floating Market but more genuine, and it’s a stunning place to take pictures because the morning light is so gorgeous.
Tips: The best time to visit is from 5:00 to 6:30 in the morning. It’s the busiest time of the market so you can one side enjoy the sunrise and ones experience the real daily life of locals.
Nga Nam Floating Market
Nga Nam Floating Market is located at the intersection of five rivers going to Ca Mau, Vinh Quoi, Long My, Thanh Tri, and Phung Hiep. Unlike Cai Rang market, which specializes in wholesale agricultural products, Nga Nam market retails agricultural products. Instead of hanging what they sell from a wood pole vertically like other floating markets, Nga Nam market are placed horizontally, so all kinds of colorful fruits look very eye-catching.
Tips: The market opens in the early morning (3am-4am) to 8am, so for convenience, you should spend the night at Nga Nam.
Discovering the Different Types of Goods & Product Sold At Floating Markets
A trip to the Mekong River Delta means sampling local products like coconut candy and honey, paddling through winding river canals, and visiting one of Vietnam’s famous floating markets. The floating markets in Vietnam are filled with local crafts, hand-made products, and unique souvenirs. It would be a fascinating experience to try fresh fruits, delicious snacks, and desserts on the boat.
Tips for Navigating & Bargaining at a Floating Market
Bargaining at a floating market in Vietnam can be intimidating for many travelers. However, with these right tips and tricks, you can ensure that your shopping experience is not only enjoyable but also cost-effective. Make sure you bargain your way down from the price that was initially offered to you for an item but watch out for going too far. Locals benefit from bartering to keep prices steady, but excessive haggling may be regarded as an attempt to mislead a vendor out of $1 that may be worth far more to them than it does to you. Find the proper balance, make use of your guide’s assistance, and enjoy yourself!
The Essential Must-Try Foods When Exploring Vietnam’s Floating Markets
Exploring Vietnam’s floating markets is a unique experience. The sights, smells and sounds of these bustling markets are sure to be an unforgettable experience. However, the real highlight of these markets is the food! Banh xeo, banh cong and xoi ga are must-try dishes that you should definitely sample when exploring Vietnam’s floating markets.
Banh xeo is a savory crepe made with rice flour, turmeric and filled with pork, shrimp and bean sprouts. Banh cong is a crispy snack made from shrimp paste wrapped in sesame dough. Xoi ga is a sticky rice dish served with chicken or pork and topped with fried shallots for added flavor. These delicious dishes represent the best of Vietnamese cuisine and will leave you wanting more!
If you want to have a lifetime experience by exploring floating markets, here are our highly recommended Mekong Delta tours:
>>> Authentic Mekong Delta Tour 4 Days