Cai Rang Floating Market, Can Tho


Cai Rang Floating Market is the most famous & biggest floating market in the Mekong Delta. The market is quality culture of local people living along this mighty river. Instead of shopping in the town, they siêu thị & barter on the river that is more convenient to lớn access by waterways.

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The floating market is located on Can Tho River (part of Hau River), Cai Rang District – about 6 km away from the center of Can Tho City in the direction of Soc Trang, or around 45 minutes away from Ninc Kieu Quay by boat. In năm nhâm thìn, Cai Rang Floating Market was recognized as a national intangible cultural heritage. The market was also elected as one of the most impressive markets in the world by UK’s Rough Guide. Once you visit Mekong, floating market is a kind of things should not miss in your travel plan. To experience Cai Rang at its best, get up early và take a boat trip, it is really worth for your day visit.


Overview of Cai Rang Floating Market.

Table of Contents

4. What to lớn see at Cai Rang Floating Market?5. How to lớn get to Cai Rang Floating Market?

1. History of Cai Rang Floating Market

The market, which has thrived for over a century, has been a centre for commerce in Can Tho City & its neighbouring provinces, such as An Giang, Vinch Long, Dong Thap, Tra Vinc and Soc Trang. It was formed when road and transportation had not been developed yet.


The name of this market has been existing for a long time, but its origin has not been clear. Legendarily, the name came from a big crocodile’s teeth which were plugged into the river’s bank. Thus, the lvà was called Cai Rang (means a tooth). Another theory mentioned in a book related lớn southern language, that Cai Rang has its origin from Khmer language – “karan” means a molded clay stove sầu. Khmer people made a lot of “karan” & sold them everywhere in this land. Since then, local people pronounced “karan” inlớn Cai Rang.

The need of exchanging agricultural products, & basic things connected local people by boats on rivers. Today, even though the road traffic network has developed significantly, Cai Rang Floating Market keeps growing và brings value to lớn the locals of the country and area in terms of economy, culture, and tourism.

2. Weather in Can Tho


Cai Rang Floating Market at dawn.

Unlượt thích the Northern part of Vietnam giới where there are 4 distinct seasons, the South has only 2 major seasons: the rainy season (from May lớn November) và the dry season (from December to lớn April). The weather in Vietnam giới is quite mild, so you can visit Cai Rang at any time of the year. Each season, of course, makes for a different experience.

Trips during the rainy season will be much more relaxing due to lớn the cooler atmosphere while the harvest season falls during the dry months, which means there will be more types of native fruits và agricultural products available.

3. Best time khổng lồ visit


Tourists on a small boat from Ninch Kieu Wharf to lớn Cai Rang.

When it is still dark, local merchants bring their farm products & things lớn market. The buyers also want to lớn siêu thị early when the weather is still cool then go trang chủ lớn start their normal day. That is why you should get up early for the most exciting moment of the market. The ikhuyễn mãi giảm giá time is from 5 A.M lớn 7 A.M when hundreds of boats gathers khổng lồ buy and sell goods in crowds. The most distinctive feature of the floating market is probably the bamboo pole called “Cay Beo” with a length of 3m – 5m. This is a unique way lớn advertise when all kinds of goods that they sell are hang on the top so buyers could see from distance.

Cai Rang Floating Market does not open in lunar festive days, such as the first và second days of the first lunar month, Doan Ngo Festival (the fifth day of the fifth lunar month).

Read more: Top Floating Markets in Mekong Delta

4. What to see at Cai Rang Floating Market?

4.1. The Bustling Trading Scene


A motorboat with full of watermelons at Cai Rang Floating Market.

Cai Rang Floating Market is specialized as a wholesale market of fruits, agricultural products of the region. Goods here are concentrated in a large number. You can see the smooth performances of traders juggling fruit from boat lớn boat. Just look at what’s tied to the long pole above the boat lớn see what they’re selling. Local people & surrounding areas often use middle-size boats, canoes lớn carry agricultural products to consume here, while the big boats are owned by traders to deliver fruit khổng lồ everywhere.

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4.2. Daily life of the locals


Local people enjoy breakfast on their “home” boats in Cai Rang.

Soaking up in the bustling atmosphere of the special market, you can observe & learn life of many families with several generations living together on boats. There are boats as “di động apartment” on the river with flower pots, animals, and full interior such as TV, DVD, stereo… including motorcycle parked on the boat. Not only is the vehicle used to purchase & deliver, but it is also the residence of traders’ family. All daily activities take place on boats.

4.3. Local products


“Cay Beo” – a pole hanging kinds of fruits or goods that local people sell in Cai Rang Floating Market.

As one of the main trading centers of the Mekong Delta, Cai Rang is a place where the locals sell and buy a wide range of products catering khổng lồ their daily lives. Besides staple commodities, this is a famous location to lớn find local products priced quite reasonably. You can find the freshest fruits harvested from nearby farms: durian, milk fruit, ramburã, mangosteen, grapefruit, etc., or even other processed specialties, such as fish sauce, coconut candy, or dried fish. You can choose from a variety of fresh fruit for a picnic later in the day!

4.4. Foods & Drinks

You shouldn’t miss out on interesting eating experiences while visiting the floating market! Many floating restaurants open to lớn serve breakfast for both sellers & shoppers. Here, you can find most local dishes, such as “com tam” (broken rice with grilled pork, egg), “pho”, “hu tieu”, “bun rieu” – some kinds of noodles that served with beef, pork và crab… With only 25,000 VND (around 1 USD), you can surely treat your hunger with quite a hearty meal.

Don’t forget that people here serve a different type of coffee that you may not see anywhere: Ca Phe Kho. People keep coffee in a clay cook with fire to make it hot and good smell. With one dollar, you can have coffee for two! But if you are not familiar with a bitter of coffee, coconut is a different choice và sold around.

5. How khổng lồ get lớn Cai Rang Floating Market?

5.1. From Hanoi và Danang

A 2 hour và 10 minute flight from Hanoi (HAN) or a 1.30 hour flight from Danang (DAD) to Can Tho Airport (VCA) will bring you lớn Can Tho City where you need to stay one night & join the floating market in the next morning.

5.2 From Ho Chi Minc City (~ 170km)

There is no train connection between Ho Chi Minh City and Can Tho. There is an international airport in Can Tho but no direct flight is operated between the two cities. So, you can travel by bus, xe taxi or private car/ van which takes around 4 hours.

The cheapest way is by bus with some certified tourist bus companies such as: Phuong Trang (Futabus), Vu Linh, Thanh khô Buoi… The price is around US$ 5-8/ticket. Buses stop at Can Tho Bus Station & you’ll need lớn take a taxi or a motorxe đạp to lớn the city centre. As you come khổng lồ Can Tho quite late, you can join our carefully-designed Can Tho City Tour & stay in here one night before start your visit khổng lồ Cai Rang on the next early morning.

If you are adventurous & like to lớn drive yourselves, you can rent a motorxe đạp in Ho Chi Minc City & make the journey via Mekong Delta provinces to Can Tho City. However, the roads are quite dangerous và we wouldn’t recommover it if you are first-time visitors.

A private car/ minivan will be, as always, definitely a great choice for every traveler khổng lồ Mekong Delta’s largest đô thị – Can Tho. It costs you more but provides you the most flexible itineraries, stops, photo lớn opts… and you could reach lớn few other interesting places that you don’t on bus or xe taxi. Typical tours of Mekong Delta often include a visit lớn My Tho, Ben Tre or Cai Be along the way lớn Can Tho, it means you should book a trip that included services of a tour guide và a driver.

5.3 From Can Tho City

It is about 6km away from the city centre to lớn Ninh Kieu Wharf. You can easily take a xe taxi or motorxe đạp lớn the quay then buy a boat ticket (~ US$ 18 per private boat or US$ 6 per person for a sharing boat) to lớn explore the floating market. After touring the Cai Rang Floating Market, you can also take time khổng lồ walk around villages along the river to visit rice paper factory or fruit gardens. It is interesting lớn enjoy the cultural life in the Mekong Delta.

6. Local tips


Vietphái mạnh Travel’s tour designers and travel consultants tasted local fresh fruits on boat in a visit lớn Cai Rang Floating Market.

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• Make sure lớn get there early. The sunrise from the boat is fantastic và the food is at its freshest. You can see the market waking up from its slumber.• Know what goods a boat sells, you just need khổng lồ obverse the poles erected in front of the boat from a distance. On these poles, the sellers will hang a sample of the products they are selling.• Rethành viên lớn bring a hat & sunbloông xã since the sun will become hot very quickly.

Cai Rang Floating Market is definitely a must-visit destination with eye opening activities khổng lồ vị but getting there and being able to lớn immerse into an authentic floating market experience could be a real challenge for many foreign visitors. Vietphái nam Travel, with a branch office in Saigon, organized daily departure tours khổng lồ Mekong Delta, including this Vietnam’s largest floating market. Liên hệ our travel consultants to get best support for your Mekong River tours!