Situated halfway between Saigon and Can Tho, Vinh Long acts as a gateway to the Mekong Delta. Its location makes it perfect for breaking up a road trip through the Mekong Delta, so that’s exactly what we did. This local town is very much off-the-Vietnam-tourist-trail, and as such, we weren’t entirely sure what the town had to offer in the way of sites to see. But we were pleasantly surprised by our day in Vinh Long and found plenty of things to keep us entertained; from nature to culture, Vinh Long has a little bit of it all. Here’s how to spend a day in Vinh Long.
How to Spend a Day in Vinh Long
I recommend exploring Vinh Long by motorbike, as some of the sites mentioned here are outside of the city and are too far to cycle to alongside seeing the other sites. If you aren’t on a road trip like us, I recommend renting a motorbike from your accommodation*.
Take a tour of the pottery factories
Vinh Long holds an ancient tradition of pottery making, and the town is dotted with factories handmaking ceramics. Leaning all about how the artisans turn sand from the Mekong River into rich red pots is the perfect introduction to Vinh Long.
Hidden off the main streets, these pottery factories are impossible to explore without a guide; we stayed at The Mekong Pottery Homestay* and booked a tour where our host, Yenni, showed us the whole process from sand to pots. The highlight was definitely getting up close to the traditional pottery kilns which you’ll see lining the rivers and roads of Vinh Long, billowing streams of smoke into the sky as they fire the ceramics.
Explore the Vinh Long central market
After our morning exploring the pottery factories, we were ready for a snack. So we jumped on the motorbike and headed into the city centre, venturing into the bustling central market to find some street snacks and drinks. To the left of the market, you’ll find a lane full of street vendors rather than people selling fresh produce. Aside from needing some refreshments, this market was really busy and a photographer’s heaven.
Chợ Long Châu📍 Nguyễn Huệ, Phường 2, Vĩnh Long, Vietnam
Drive out to Nông trại Ông Bà Tư (or Khu Di Tích Xẻo Quýt)
Depending on the season I would recommend trying to fit in a trip to one of these nature parks. The first, Nông trại Ông Bà Tư, is a farm where during the right season (June time) you’ll find fields of sunflowers and ponds filled with water lilies. Even if you visit during the off-season, which we accidentally did, you’ll be treated to a beautiful drive through the countryside and fields of lush green rice at the farm. The later is Xẻo Quýt nature reserve, which we visited as part of our 3 Day Mekong Roadtrip.
Stop by the Temple of the Emerald Buddha
On your way back into Vinh Long, stop by the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, a Buddhist temple complex on the outskirts of the city. The pagoda is fairly typical on the inside but hosts a beautiful central tower on the top. There are a number of other pagodas in Vinh Long, which you can find detailed in my friend Sams blog post.
Watch the sunset behind the pottery kilns
Round off your day in Vinh Long watching the sunset behind the pottery kilns. It took us a little bit of hunting to find the perfect spot, but if you head down street ĐT 907, running adjacent to Rach Cai Tay river, you’ll find a few spots with access to the river where you can watch the sunset from.
📍 ĐT 907, Vinh Long
⏰ 5:30pm or early to watch the sunset
Sleep on An Binh Island
If you have another night to spend in Vinh Long, I recommend staying on An Binh island, just across the river from Vinh Long city. The island is mostly orchard farms but is home to a number of homestays, like Mekong Riverside Homestay* where we stayed on a previous trip through Vinh Long. The homestay also offers sunrise boat trips to the Cai Be floating market, similar to the Cai Rang floating market in Can Tho but less of a tourist trap.
Planning a Trip to the Mekong Delta
Vinh Long is definitely overlooked by most travellers to Vietnam but is the perfect place to stop off during your exploration of the Mekong Delta. To see everything else we got up to on our road trip, check out 10 days of motorbiking through the Mekong Delta (coming soon).
For details on places to see in the Mekong Delta, as well as recommendations on where to sleep and eat, check out the following guides:
For a more detailed guide to visiting Vinh Long, check out my friend Sam’s blog post all about her 4-day stay in the city.