Trip Description & Day-by-day Itinerary
cycling vietnam mekong delta is customized for both active cyclist and family holidays. You bike on flat road, the back roads and village lanes. The places you will cycle through are Long An, My Tho, Vinh Long, Sa Dec, Cho Moi, Chau Doc, Long Xuyen, Can Tho, Binh Minh. You will also experience also the water life and floating markets in the peaceful Mekong delta. This 6-day biking tour to the Vietnam Mekong Delta is an easy cycling tour that can be ideal for both small groups tours, incentive and holidays with kids. The bicycle tour can be extended with a sightseeing, culture, history tour or a beach break to either Cambodia or a nice beach such as Phu Quoc island beach or Mui Ne, Phan Thiet beach. This bicycle adventure is provided with experienced English-speaking tour guide, support vehicle, good mountain bikes (trek bikes or giants bikes), helmet and spares.
cycling vietnam mekong delta itinerary
Day 1: Ho Chi Minh city – Long An – My Tho – Vinh Long.
You will be met up at your hotel in Ho Chi Minh city by Lotussia Travel team and transferred to the Mekong Delta.
After an hour drive, we get to Long An, where we begin our interesting day on saddle to explore a picturesque area of expansive rice paddies, green fruit orchards and plenty of small canals. After 2hr biking we will reach My Tho, a quiet town by the bank of the Mekong River.
Lunch break in My Tho before we continue riding to Vinh Long, the capital of Vinh Long Province which lying between two big branches of the Mekong River. Along the way from My Tho to Vinh Long, we peddle on small paved roads running through a vast expanse of rice field. Upon arrival in the small town of Cai Be we take an interesting boat trip to cross the mighty Mekong River to reach a village on a small island in the middle of the river, where we spend the night in a local home. The home stay will be an unforgettable experience and can give you a unique insight into the culture of the locals. A dinner with local delights is cooked by the family.
Transfer: 60 mins
Biking: 40-50km. Ride on flat country road, partly unpaved road
Day 2: Vinh Long – Sa Dec – Cho Moi – Chau Doc.
After breakfast we say goodbye to the family and across the Mekong River on boat. We will take a bus transfer to the peaceful town of Sa Dec, which is famous for its many nurseries of flower and bonsai. Here we begin riding to Cho Moi, a small town known for its rich groves of fruit. The ride in the morning is on the smooth paved road along the Mekong.
Lunch in Cho Moi before taking more biking in the afternoon to reach Chau Doc, a pleasant little town near the border. We will have a panoramic view over the vast plain of the Mekong Delta and far into.
Dinner in local restaurant and enjoy an orientation tour of Chau Doc by xe dap loi (pulling cyclo). Overnight in hotel.
Biking: 50-60Km Ride on smooth paved
Day 3: Chau Doc – Long Xuyen.
After breakfast, our guide will take you out for a fantastic boat cruise to Cham Village, where around 4000 Muslim people living in the area. Cham village where the people are Muslim and speak Malaysian which is kind of unusual for Vietnam. These people live in houses on the land but because of the flood water in the rainy season, they have to build them on stilts 3 metres high.
After Cham Village we move on to fishing village, where the local residents make a living from farming fish in cages under their houses. These catfish are far too expensive for the locals to eat and so are all exported, mostly to the USA. Even the houses are all floating they are still on the electricity grid as the girl at the front of boat found out.
We return to hotel after boat trip and pick up our bikes and start our day’s ride on spectacular road passing through “thot not” canopy. We ride along traffic free roads to the Vietnamese killing fields at Ba Chuc. It was here that Pol Pot’s regime massacred over 3,000 Vietnamese in 1978. Stop to visit the local museum here. Along the way we cycle by red flowering Madagascar trees (if in season), and several temples.
We finish our ride at Long Xuyen, where we spend our night. Dinner in local restaurant and overnight in hotel.
Biking: 45-50km Ride on smooth paved road.
Day 4: Long Xuyen – Can Tho.
After breakfast, we across Long Xuyen Ferry, at An Thanh we pick up our bike and start the first legs on beautiful single track passing through picturesque country side of Mekong delta. The dirt road last after 20km, then we hit paved road at Tan Hung town, from here we cruise on flat terrain along Tien River.
A stop for lunch will give us a quick break before we continue cycling to Cai Von. We then hp in bus and transfer the rest way to Can Tho.
Overnight in Can Tho
Cycling distance: 40-50Km
Day 5: Can Tho by bike.
After enjoying an early morning breakfast weave through teeming early morning market bustle along the banks of an active riverfront. Ride on a narrow paved road to Phong Dien floating market. Absorb the sights of endless cottage industries, timber merchants, coconut shredders, small docks loading/unloading rice, tiny vibrant markets. Continue by bike on the narrow lane to explore the hidden backwaters of the delta.
Overnight in Can Tho.
Day 6: Can Tho – Binh Minh – Vinh Long – Saigon.
Early get up for a great boat trip to explore floating Cai Rang market, which is renown as one of the busiest floating markets in Southeast Asia. We will see a lively and colorful market on a large bend of the river. Boat trip back to town for breakfast in the hotel.
Our shuttle will bring us our of town and cross Can Tho ferry, we get off at Binh Minh, where we start to cycle on beautiful dirt road passing through local villages, orchards and canals of peacul countryside of Vietnam.
Our cycling finish at Vinh Long then we hop in bus and transfer the rest legs to Saigon. Trip ends.
Occasionally our tour itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travelers’ comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the service proposal. It’s very important that you print and review a final copy of your itinerary prior to travel. If you have any queries, please contact us.
Please note that while we operate successful cycling holidays in Vietnam throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.
Bargaining is not a strange fact in Vietnam. There are many places in Vietnam where people bargain, especially in open-air markets, street shops and rural areas. Therefore we are not good at bargaining. We don’t like this trick neither. Our time is precious and we appreciate your time as well. We would prefer spending our time on the tour arrangements to the price negotiation. Our price is fixed.
Our trip cost usually includes the following services. Please bear in mind Lotussia Travel is specialized in tailor-made trips. Trip cost vary depending on group size and other details.
- Vehicle for transfers and support
- Tour guide. The English-Speaking guide is provided by default. Other language may be available upon request (with extra charge).
- Bicycle rental
- Sightseeing entrance fees.
- Bottled water.
Unless required most of the following services are usually not included in our tour price.
- Visa (required)
- Flight/Train tickets.
- Accommodation pre/post trip.
- Travel insurance
- Personal expenses
Visitors are required to have a valid visa to enter Vietnam. A one month tourist visa is usually sufficient for most visitors, though it is possible to arrange three months or six month – multiple entry visa for regular visitors.
The official national currency is the Vietnamese Dong (VND), but the US dollar is widely accepted in Vietnam. However, small towns and the villages the VND is preferred, ATM are available in all major cities and towns, tourist destinations, Vietcombank, Agriculture banks are the two largest networks with a limit a single withdraw limit of 2,000,000 d (95 USD). Most major currrencies can be exchanged in Vietnam, but the USD is the most preferred. The exchange rate 1 USD = 22.400 VND (Nov. 2016)
Vietnam has a tropical monsoon climate. Broadly speaking, the weather in Vietnam is dictated by two seasons – the southwest monsoon from April to September and the Northeast monsoon from October to late march or early April.
Due to regional climate differences, there are no right or wrong seasons to visit Vietnam. The north Vietnam is cool, damp in winters between November and December and February with tempreture in Hanoi falling to around 15oC. The summer months from April to October are hot and dry. The best time visit Vietnam is spring (February – April) or Autunm (late September – December) when it is not so humid. The weather turns quite cold and wet in January and this continues to march. The humidity can prove oppresive from May to the early September.
Wearing a helmet is compulsory on all our biking adventures. Our tour guide often carry first aid kit while riding. Please follow your guide while biking, and much attention is required while you cross streets.
To assist you visualize how our bike trip is difficult, we have graded our Vietnam cycling tours into three categories, easy, moderate, and challenging. We group many factors into consideration into this grading, including distant covered, terrain, altitude, and vehicle support.
Involves cycling for up to two to three hours a day at easy pace and usually, less than 3 days in duration. The cycling distances is around 15 – 30 km per day. There are likely to be no steep and sustained descents as well as demand for technical riding. We will normally ride on flat roads. Suitable for bikers who enjoy occasional weekend riding on trails at home. Push bikes are sometimes used for these itineraries.
Involves biking for up to six hours a day at a steady pace and are usually between three to five days in duration. The cycling distance is about 35 – 55 km per day. Sometimes it can be long flat rides or medium ride with fews up and downhill climbs. The support vehicle will not always be available. We will need a good level of fitness. We use either mountain bikes or road bikes for these itineraries.
Involves biking in mountainous areas with big climbs for up to seven or eight hours a day and usually more than a week in duration. Cycling distance is about 60 – 80 km per day. There will be steep and sustained ascents and descents. The support vehicle will not always be available. These trips will provide a real sustained workout even for fit and experienced mountain bikers.
When cycling we mostly stay in small hotel, guesthouse or homestays. Some are more basic than others! Bear in mind that some of the places we overnight in are not on the standard tourist trail. In larger cities and towns, our hotels are generally more western style and are three or four hotels. Camping is not available on cycling tours in Vietnam unless it is required and this should be booked months in advance. Please see the details at the session “inclusions”.
Most of our tour guides speak English. Some other speak French. Few speak other language such as German, Russian, Spanish. All our guides have great knowledge of history, local culture, and religions of the area where you are cycling. Our guides have been trained in this field and is fully licensed in tour guiding.
We arrange a mechanic, with extra charge only for big groups or when it is required. When there is no mechanic, our guide will take care of problem which may occur during the bike ride.
Depending on the nature of the tour, our cycle journeys will be accompanied by an air-conditioned car/minibus cover the larger overland sections. We often use mini bus or bus for transfer and back up (guided tours).
- 1 – 4 people: we use minivan to support and carry bikes. Sometimes we use car with support truck.
- 5 – 8 people: we use one van and one truck to support
- 9 people – over: we use one bus and truck to support
We only provide bike rental and truck to support for self-guided bike tours.
Basic spares and tools kit are generally carried by our guide or mechanic or on the support vehicle, although we can not guarantee having spares for every conceivable problem.
Food and drinks
All the meals which, are mentioned in itinerary (B=Breakfast; L=Lunch; D=Dinner), are included in the tour price. Most of meals are Vietnamese local food. Vegetarians are certainly welcome and are always accommodated, please let us know of any dietary concerns at time of booking. Beverage and alcoholic drink are not included at mealtime or in restaurants.
Snacks and water
When we transfer, ride by minibus (no cycling day), our bottled waters are always available for you in the car/van. When we have cycling days, we will offer cold water (summer) plus fresh tropical fruits, soft drinks. Please find out what is included in our service proposal.
Comfortable lightweight clothing in natural fabrics such as cotton is most suitable for travelling in Vietnam. The dress code is fairly casual as in most parts of the tropics but it is advisable to cover arms and legs in the evenings against biting insects. A lightweight raincoat is a good idea in the rainy season. During the winter months warm clothing is needed for visiting the north of Vietnam. Visitors should not wear shorts, short skirts or other skimpy clothing when visiting religious buildings such as pagoda, temple and shoes should be removed before entering a private home.
What you take will naturally depend upon where you are travelling and the style of journey you are undertaking, and it can often be difficult to decide what to pack. Nevertheless, the following should act as a useful checklist of essential items worth thinking about taking.
- 2 pairs of riding shorts
- 2 riding jerseys (quick-dry)
- 2 pairs of quick dry socks for cycling
- Comfortable shoes for biking and walking
- Riding gloves
- 2-3 t-shirts or casual shirts
- Trousers or jeans
- 1-2 pairs of casual socks for non-cycling activities
- 3-5 sets of underwear (quick-dry)
- Cool-weather jacket or rain jacket
- Extra layers and gloves for cooler season or climate (thin, thermal, water-wicking)
- Bathing suit
- Tooth brush and tooth paste
- Hair brush
- Hand sanitizer
- Passport, wallet and ID
- Health insurance card
- Travel insurance card
- Cash and/or credit cards
- Camera (with spare battery)
- Plastic bags (for dirty laundry, wet clothes)
- Electronic chargers (for camera, e-reader, cell phone)
- Adaptors or convertors
Tipping for good services is always appreciated. It is customary, though not compulsory, to tip tour guides and drivers at the end of the tour. Hotels and station porters should also be tipped a small amount for.
Prior to our tours, we contact and work with local community leaders to make sure we are welcome and in a manner that minimizes negative social and cultural impacts. We visit local development and community projects specific to the region, encouraging customers to donate and assist such a projects in appropriate and sustainable manner.
Where make sure that where and whenever possible our tours positively benefit the local community. We stayed at locally owned accommodation and visit cottage industries for local handicraft souvenir, generating income for local business. We often employ, hire support team such as local guide, motor-taxi drivers, cook assistants on all trips to ensure that the local community benefit not only short term but with increased employment opportunities for the future.