The Mekong Delta is the land where many different types of tourism are found, ranging from ecotourism, cultural tourism, historical tourism to festival tourism and orchard tourism. The most outstanding kind among them is orchard tourism, and the best places to experience it are Bến Tre Province and Mỹ Tho City. The following is a complete travel guide to those travel destinations.
Where are Bến Tre Province and Mỹ Tho City?
Mỹ Tho is the capital city of Tiền Giang Province and a concentration of economic development of the Mekong Delta. Mỹ Tho, together with Bến Tre Province, is labeled as the entrance to the Delta and the heart of orchard tourism.
On the border between Tiền Giang and Bến Tre Provinces is the river Tiền, where there are unique islets as well as famous travel destinations of the Mekong Delta. The islets are exactly the habitats of lush orchards and traditional villages retaining exquisite cultural features and customs you never find elsewhere. One interesting thing is that Bến Tre Province is called the kingdom of coconuts, so it’s indeed the land of various items and specialties made from this kind of tree.
How to get to Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre?
Mỹ Tho City is just 70km from Ho Chi Minh City, so it’s easily accessible by bus/coach, car or bike. It takes about 1.5 hours to get to the city center from Ho Chi Minh City. Just take National Route 1 to Bến Lức – Tân An – Tân Hương – Mỹ Tho City. From the heart of Mỹ Tho, there are two ways to reach Bến Tre: one is departing by boat at the pier of 30-4, or the other is crossing Rạch Miễu Bridge.
Because of the favorable location of Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre, not far from Ho Chi Minh City – the biggest center of Vietnam, most travel agents and tour operations choose these places for their travel programs. Going on one Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre tour, you just need to spend only one or two days exploring all the greatest things there. Additionally, if you travel independently, it’s easy to catch a bus/coach at Miền Tây Bus Station or the backpacker streets (Bùi Viện – Đề Thám) – Ho Chi Minh City.
Where to stay in Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre?
Picking out the best accommodation is surely an important thing for a trip to explore Mỹ Tho Bến Tre, the Mekong Delta. There is a wide selection of accommodations with included add-ons in the heart of Mỹ Tho City, which are not too far from common tourist attractions. Nevertheless, Bến Tre is not convenient as it’s quite hard to have a hotel near the places for sightseeing.
In Mỹ Tho, it’s easy to book in advance a room at hotels along Lê Thị Hồng Gấm Street, 30-4 Street, Tết Mậu Thân Street, Trương Định Street, Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Street. The best websites for booking consist of Agoda.com, Booking.com, and Chudu24. Although hotels are ubiquitous in Mỹ Tho, you should keep in mind that all of them may be full up during the peak season. That’s why you are advised to pick out an all-inclusive tour from a tour operation and they will book you a room in advance and take you to the most rewarding attractions.
What to eat in Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre?
To enjoy the most attractive food is an indispensable part of an excursion to Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre. What you must give the first try is hủ tíu Mỹ Tho – rice noodle soup of Mỹ Tho, which is known as a familiar dish of people in the Mekong Delta. Bánh bèo – a kind of steamed rice buns at Hàng Bông Market is the next one you shouldn’t miss out. The other recommendations are bún gỏi gà – chicken salad with wet rice noodles, bánh cống – fried prawn cakes, green beans and snake porridge. Here are highly recommended restaurants and stalls:
Stall 80: located on Trần Hưng Đạo Street. Minh Nhật Stall on National Route 1A. These stalls serve green beans and snake porridge.
Hủ Tíu Bò Viên Stall on Lê Đại Hành Street, near a big shopping mall.
Tư Lùn Stall (Hủ tíu Mỹ Tho) on Đinh Bộ Lĩnh Street.
8 Lài & A.Hòa on Đinh Bộ Lĩnh Street
Hủ tíu satế Stall at 246 Nam Kì Khởi Nghĩa Street
Pho on Đồng Thanh Street – Lý Thường Kiệt Street
Broken Rice on Giòng Dứa Street
Cây Bồ Đề (vegan rice noodle soup)– at the end of Nam Kì Khởi Nghĩa Street – Lê Thị Hồng Gấm Street
Thượng Uyển on Ấp Bắc Street
An unnamed stall on Huyện Toại Street – clams, oysters, edible snails, balut.
Chí Thành next to a canal on Ấp Bắc Street
Vườn Xoài at the intersection of Trung Lương.
Tâm Từ (vegan rice noodle soup): near the intersection of Trung Lương and 150m from Mỹ Thuận.
Tourist Attractions in Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre
Thới Sơn Islet
Known as one of the largest islets on the river Tiền flowing through Tiền Giang and Bến Tre, Thới Sơn is obviously reached by boat, and it takes a while to get there from the center of Mỹ Tho City. Locals on the islet mainly do agriculture and tourism for a living. What captivates you the most is lush orchards, traditional villages, and delicious tropical fruits. While having a sip of honey tea as a warm welcome from locals, you are also offered an interesting Vietnamese folk music performance – a beautiful cultural and spiritual feature of the local life.
An Khánh Tourist Attraction
Upon arrival at An Khánh Tourist Attraction, you will take a chance to explore lush orchards, ramble around for leisure, enjoy honey tea, eat coconut fudge, and cycle along rural paths full of shadows of tall trees. Furthermore, culinary tourism is also an exciting point here; you can taste special food, such as deep fried giant gourami, fried spring rolls, sweet and sour soup, braised fish, and grilled shrimps. In terms of activities, An Khánh Tourist Attraction is quite the same to Thới Sơn Islet, but scenes and orchards of those places are totally different. The place is absolutely ideal for an excursion of families and groups of friends.
Vĩnh Tràng Pagoda
Vĩnh Tràng is one of the most interesting attractions in Mỹ Tho in particular and the Mekong Delta in general. The pagoda, a perfect combination of Oriental and Occidental architecture, huge statues of the Buddha placed in the solemn atmosphere, together with its historical significance makes itself recognized as a national historic relic. That’s why it shouldn’t be put off your list of attractions to experience in a Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre tour.
Đồng Tâm Snake Farm
Situated 10 km from the heart of Mỹ Tho City, Đồng Tâm is referred to as the biggest snake farm in the Mekong Delta. The farm has kept and bred hundreds of snake species and other reptiles and birds. It’s known that the farm is where venom is produced for local use or export. Inside the farm has a center specializing in treating snakebites. A trip to Đồng Tâm enables you to learn more about venomous snakes, how to give first aid for a snakebite and the process of producing snake venom antiserum.
Phoenix Islet belongs to Châu Thành District, Bến Tre Province, and quite similar to other islets in the region, Phoenix is the land of lush orchards, bee farms, and coconut fudge business. The most exciting activity you are entitled to experience when on a visit there is to know more about the Coconut Religion as well as the Coconut Monk – the unusual belief together with special religious practices. Understanding more the history of that religion and its practices certainly enhances the value of your exploration of Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre, the Mekong Delta.
Cái Mơn Flower Village
This is one of the largest flower villages in the Mekong Delta and a hotspot of a Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre excursion especially for young people. Cái Mơn is the largest provider of flowers for the South, the Middle, and the North. While sightseeing around or taking photos of mighty scenes, you will be introduced to methods of cultivating flowers by locals whereby you get valuable knowledge about agriculture in the region. If you get an opportunity to visit Vietnam during Tết Holiday, don’t forget a trip to Cái Mơn since the landscapes by that time will never fail to please your eyes.
This complete Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre Travel Guide entitles you to look into what, how and where to experience in Mỹ Tho – the capital city of Tiền Giang and Bến Tre Province – a part of the Mekong Delta. Normally, when arriving in Ho Chi Minh City – the metropolitan area of Vietnam, you are surely advised to enjoy an excursion to the Delta, the land rich in culture, history, and orchard tourism. Then, pick out Mỹ Tho – Bến Tre first since it’s not far from Ho Chi Minh City, and it doesn’t take too much time to have a full experience there.