Tra On (Vinh Long Province) is one of the most abundant areas of plants and fruits in Mekong River Delta. In this district, there is a unique market called Tra On Floating Market. Tra On Floating Market is not just one of the most characteristic cultural activities in Southwestern provinces as Vinh Long, Can Tho, Tien Giang, Ca Mau ... but also one of the oldest bazaars existing in cultural life of Southwestern people.
Tra On Floating Market is about 250m from Tra On rivulet mouth. It has been enlarged over the time; currently it is 300m in length and 150m in width. The market is located in An Thanh Hamlet, Luc Si Thanh Commune in Tra On District. It is the last floating market on Hau River before emptying into the sea. The market is situated in the junction of Hau River and Mang Thit River with mild year-round fresh water, alluvial fertile farms, and many types of fruit. Tra On Floating Market is consists of two main parts: one situated along riversides, another floating on the river. All activities on the dock or on boats are exciting and bustling.
When people are in their deep sleeps, Tra On Floating Market begins a new day, from 2-3 a.m, the busiest moment is from 5-6 a.m onwards. In the dim foggy space on surface water, boats of purchasing are wafting gather here. Many types of products are categorized, weighed for traders. From here big boats carry products throughout the country: Can Tho, Vinh Long, Chau Doc, Soc Trang, Ca Mau, Ho Chi Minh City... The market is open all day. The special characteristics of the Tra On Floating Market is that all activities in this market depends on the water level of Hau River. Normally, the market is crowded in the morning, at the same time with the high peak of tide. Thus, tourists can still see the beauty of the market at any time of a day, with different scenes. In addition, all agricultural products are bought and sold in groups, and distributed from boats and gardens in wholesale form. This unique feature also creates Tra On Floating Market an attractive distinction appealing tourists, especially foreign ones. Main products in this market are fruit such as coconut, banana, guava, pineapple, jackfruit, grapefruit, orange ... Large and small boats meet each other in tandem closely to purchase all types of agricultural products.
Like all floating markets in Mekong River Delta, all sellers and buyers have to sit on boats. On swaying boats, you will "feed" eyes full by all kinds of fruit of the Mekong Delta River and enjoy a bit of each kind: The sweetness of Thien My mangoes, Phu Thanh rambutan, longan; the fatness and fragrance of durian and jackfruit, juicy flavor of grapefruit and oranges. Besides, there are many other seasonal agricultural products such as gourds, okra, potatoes, radishes, cabbage, melon... In this floating market, there are delicious dishes being seen as specialties in this floating area: beef noodles served with a special vegetables (getting from banana tree). The scene is more lively and bustling with small boats selling coffee, ice tea, bread, rice noodles, bread, tobacco ... creeping into bigger boats to server. In this floating market, you also see the "grocery" boats on which there are many items from the needle, spool, sugar, salt, cooking oil, peanut oil ... Sounds of "ad languages", of paddles, and of engines create an exciting remix. It is no different from any onshore markets.
In terms of economy and culture, this floating market has contributed to exchanging and consuming goods and products. The price is not restricted and forced by traders. In recent years, Tra On Floating Market is an attractive tourist attraction in Mekong Delta, fascinating tourists from afar. A large number of European tourists have to watch it avidly, take pictures on the bustling floating market, and the openness of this unique one. Visiting the floating market will bring different feelings and experiences to tourists, which should not be missed when coming to Mekong Delta.