Cai Be floating market is a unique cultural feature of the Tien Giang province, Mekong Delta, Vietnam. The market is on the river, it is a place to focus on buying and selling, exchanging goods, agricultural products, food… Besides, this floating market is also a meeting place and exchange between local residents, merchants and tourists. As a local travel expert, we would like to update that Cai Be floating market now has only about 10 boats, not hundreds of big & small boats, sampans like the past or old photos.
1. Better to Know as a Tourist
Spend-time: Half an hour (approx)
Parking lot: Yes for boat, coach
Address: Cai Be District, Tien Giang City. About 105 km from HCMC, 70km from Can Tho City.
Added values: It is considered as one of the gems worth discovering for those who are passionate about simplicity and uniqueness and originality of the cultural Mekong river life now and then.
Nearby attractions and hidden gems: Looking for places to stop on your way to and from Cai Be floating market? Or maybe you found it too quiet or crowded here? We’ve got some ideas! Check out our list: Coconut candy village (some minutes by boat), Tan Phong island & small canal (20 minutes away by boat), fruit gardens (30 minutes away by boat), Cao Dai temple in Cai Be, Brick and pottery kiln in Vinh Long, Mekong delta river excursion…
2. Travel Guide to Cai Be Floating Market
According to the seniors who used to enjoy Cai Be floating market, around the end of the 80s of the last century many boats bought and sold in the vicinity, gathered here to exchange agricultural products. Vam Cai Be gradually became a floating market, it was considered as one of the large-scale floating markets of the Mekong Delta, the length of the market was up to a kilometer on the river. Located in the Tien River section, bordering 3 provinces: Vinh Long, Tien Giang, and Ben Tre, this was a large fruit tree production center, considered the cradle of the Tien River region right from the time of reclamation.
Cai Be floating market was a famous Tien Giang tourist attraction. It was also a living museum of the southern traditional culture that has been fostered by the Mekong Delta’s interlacing waterway systems. It was a wholesale market, selling fruits, vegetables and other agricultural products from Tien Giang city as well as from 13 neighbouring provinces in the Mekong Delta region. The market is on the Tien river. It is just in the centre of Cai Be district
With the advent of several new road networks and bridges over many rivers, as well as the setting up of supermarkets on the mainland, the indispensability of floating markets has been dented somewhat, but the waterways still offer the only route to several rural remote areas in the Mekong Delta region. The locals still prefer floating markets, which have been a part of their daily lives and livelihoods for generations
Top tip: The best way to discover Cai Be floating market is by boat or sampan before 7am. Anyway, there is a “Cai Be Bridge 2” nearby the market which gives you a bird’s eye view of this stunning market as well. Just to remind you that, there are about 10 boats now at Cai Be floating market.
3. What to Do – See – Eat at Cai Be Floating Market
According to Vemekong inspections, Cai Be floating market has about 10 local boats and some tourist boats each day. Trading activities at the Cai Be floating market are an occasion for visitors not only to buy indigenous specialties but also to sense the hardships of the sellers and learn more about the local peoples. A visit to the Cai Be floating market is a great way to experience how the local population uses the river canals for transportation and commerce.
4. Free Itineraries from VeMekong
As a local travel expert, we have some ideas for you to think about.
From HCMC to Cai Be town, or from Can Tho to Cai Be
Route 1: Start from hotel in HCMC – Cai Be boat station – Cai Be floating market – coconut candy, pop-rice traditional village – sampan ride in small canal with small boat – lunch on the island – discover the local life and mighty Mekong river cruise – Vinh Long brick & pottery kiln – hotel in Can Tho or back to Saigon (fun cooking show with the islet people if requested in advance. Can stay overnight in Vinh Long homestay as well).
Route 2: Start from hotel in Can Tho – Cai Be boat station – Cai Be floating market – coconut candy, pop-rice traditional village – sampan ride in small canal with small boat – lunch on the island – discover the local life and mighty Mekong river cruise – Vinh Long brick & pottery kiln – hotel in Can Tho or back to Saigon (fun cooking show with the islet people if requested in advance. Can stay overnight in Vinh Long homestay as well).
If you do not have much time left, it is easy to contact us directly for the package tour Cai Be floating market tour from HCMC 1 day, or Cai Be floating market tour from Can Tho 1 day, you can contact www.vemekong.com or Hotline/WhatsApp/WeChat/Zalo +84939888559; email: email@example.com
5. Google Maps of Cai Be Floating Market
Google Maps made a name for itself helping people travel from one place to another, avoid traffic (You probably know the route from your hotel to the gas station by heart, but what you can’t be sure about is gridlock), measure a distance, get back to the hotel on time, share the location…
6. Visit Cai Be Floating Market by yourself
Solo traveller? Travelling on your own means you will get out of any difficult situations by yourself. This, in turn, leads to more satisfying travel experiences and helps you improve your problem-solving skills. These days we rarely get the chance to sit with ourselves and simply be. That’s why you should consider the time you spend alone on your trip as a gift.
From Ho Chi Minh City to Cai Be floating market by yourself? Take a sleeping Futa bus (125,000 VND per person) to go to Cai Be district (about 3,5 hours one way – 2 hours on the bus, and the waiting time for departure, rest stop, pick up, drop off…). When you arrive at the Cai Be bus station, it is about 15 minutes or some km to reach Cai Be boat station near Cai Be bridge. Our local guide and boat will pick you from there for a tour with a local budget. And then we can drop you off at one of the hidden homestays in Cai Be Vinh Long for your amazing Mekong exploration.
From Can Tho city center to Cai Be floating market? It is only 2 hours drive by car (about 70km) from Can Tho to Cai Be (not really bad traffic like Saigon to Cai Be). We personally think you will take Can Tho Cai Be 1 day trip, or stay overnight at Best Extended Vinh Long Homestay,
7. Responsible Travel and Advice to Cai Be Floating Market
It is always good to repeat “responsible travel” over and over. The river itself is facing so many challenges and pollution from chemical and human waste and modern life with high-tech. We do appreciate any of you who do visit and take good behavior to the river and the local village. Top tip: Please take this note “be a part of the solution, not part of the pollution”.
8. Amazing Video flycam/drone of Cai Be Floating Market (4k)
If a picture says a thousand words, it stands to reason that the video says many times more.
Updating video very soon
9. Incredible Tips for Photography, Specialists, KOLs, Media and Influencers
To get the best of the best for your unique writing, featuring, photo, video and insider’s stories. We do recommend you to have a local travel expert, the one who always gets more ground information and makes sure every single element is solved perfectly. Vemekong (very exclusive Mekong) team is your priority choice. Email and have a private talk with them to customize your journey smoothly, personal and the most ultimately amazing. You can contact www.vemekong.com or Hotline/WhatsApp/WeChat/Zalo +84939888559; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
10. Cai Be Floating Market Opens during the Lunar New Year?
We do not think so! Cai Be floating market opens all year round but it does “close” and has no boat and no activities during the traditional Tet Lunar New Year, but the Christmas and Calendar New Year are fine.
11. Pro Tips
Best time to visit Cai Be floating market is from 5:30am-6:30am. I hope you have an amazing sunrise on the Mekong Delta river.
You can stay in a homestay which is near the floating market, this will help you out the best option. Then you can hire a scooter, car or bike and explore it by yourself, but you still need to hire a boat for the Cai Be floating market.
If you plan to extend your travel to Cai Be Vinh Long homestay, do not forget to bring mosquito repellent cream.
Visit Cai Be or do any customized tours, please choose reputable providers with boat trips equipped with lifebuoys, jackets, motorcycle and cycling tours with the helmets and. Safety is a priority! Choose Cai Be responsible tours which help you give back while traveling. It’s a cliché, but it’s true.
Cai Be food & drink guide ranges from street food, authentic, fancy to fusion foods. As a tropical land of many fresh vegetables and homegrown gardens, which always make Tien Giang cuisines fresh, close to nature and very traditional. If you are a food lover, don’t hesitate to put other bites onto your food lists such as Hu Tieu My Tho (a kind of noodle soup but it is really yummy), elephant ear fish, snails with pepper, rambutan jam, snake wine, coconut candy, pop rice…
Bring your hat, sunglasses, and sunblock, scarf to wear when visiting temples, pagodas, and the cathedral.
Bring the raincoat if you’re planning a trip to Tien Giang in the rainy season, as Tien Giang always looks fantastic in the full rain and full sun.
Cai Be tourist attractions are magnificent itself, but if you have enough time, don’t forget to put other places onto your bucket lists such as Coconut Candy Traditional Village & Small Canals, Puffed Rice Cake Traditional Village, Cao Dai temple (with a holy eye), Cai Be – Vinh Long homestay 2D1N, Cai Be floating market & small canals, Ba Duc Old House, Ba Kiet Old House, Mekong rest stop, amazing Vinh Long homestays on the islets, cocohome homestay, Vinh Long brick & pottery kiln, sampan (small boat) ride in small canals, mighty Mekong river cruise, educational tour and community tour in Cai Be Vinh Long, Tan Phong Islet, Cai Be Church, Le Longanier Restaurant
Hopefully, the above tips will help you to come up with a great plan for your adventure in Cai Be, My Tho, Tien Giang province, Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Have a safe trip!
“Sleep less, travel more, respect more” – Thomas Vietnam – Local travel expert.