planning a trip to Vietnam and are having difficulties
deciding where to go and what to do, what you cannot miss
and what to skip. From the feedbacks of our customers,
Cheap Vietnam Holidays would like to recommend some
activities considered by travellers as must-do's when you
are in Vietnam....
Quite a lazy transit day. The ferry between Phnom Penh and Chau Doc in Vietnam
one a day and only carries about 30 or 40 passengers. Travelling down the Mekong
with the flow of the river, only stopping off for the formalities at the border
crossing which is shown below. The bags are meant to be removed from the boat and
passed through airport style checks but a few dollars changed hands and they stayed
on board the boat. All up the journey took about 5 hours.
Now for a bit about the rivers of Cambodia. Weird, weird, weird. The only river
system like it in the world. The main river artery of Cambodia is the Tone Siep
which runs north to south and includes the Tone Siep lake where we visited the
floating village. The Tone Siep river meets the 'Mighty' Mekong at Phnom Penh.
During the rainy season the Mekong River completely floods and the Tone Siep flows
'backwards' up into and filling the Tone Siep Lake. When the rains stop the Tone
Siep changes direction the the water from the lake flows back out. The direction of
flow changed about 2 weeks ago.
Travelling down the Mekong you can see the whole Mekong Valley is flooded with
stilted houses and the tops of the mangroves marking out the dry season river bank
as you can see above. It was an interesting journey giving a good look at rural
life, which in this area is completely based on the river.
We reached Chau Doc at about 6 and ate out at the floating restaurant by the ferry
terminal. The first thing that strike you is how much cheaper Vietnam is compared
to Cambodia which was hardly expensive itself. The local currency is the Dong and I
am a millionaire. I went to the cash point and took out 1,000,000 Dong! I think the
exchange rate is about 27,000 to the pound.
After dinner the more energetic and adventurous of us hopped onto cyclos and got a
tour of the town. It a rural port town, not at all touristy (it can't be when only
30 or so pass through in each direction on any day. They cyclo guys then took us to
a locals bar. We invited them in to drink with us. We started on the beer which
came in slightly dubious litre bottles. The the cyclo guys asked us if we wanted to
try some rat, bat or snake. Soon we had a plate of bbq rat. It was good, tasted a
lot like rabbit. Then we got a bottle of banana wine, which tasted quite like
sherry and finally onto the rice wine which just tasted like alcohol. So all up we
had 6 litres of beer, half a litre of each of the wines and two huge plates of rat
between the 6 of us and our 6 drivers. And it came to $10 in total, less than a
dollar each. The half litre of rice wine was 16p.