After pickup from your hotel, transfer by air-conditioned vehicle to the town of Cai Be, located approximately 100 miles (160 km) southwest of Ho Chi Minh City. On the way, stop to take photos of the beautiful landscapes and typical farmers working in the rice fields.
Upon arrival in Cai Be, hop on a motorboat with your small group and visit the Cai Be Floating Market, established in the 19th century on the Tien River. Observe locals trading fruit and other wholesale goods, hung from poles aboard boats and rafts, in the bustling floating market. Then, disembark for a short walk to a coconut candy factory and tour the facility to learn how the sweets are produced.
You’ll have the opportunity to purchase some candy before meandering with your guide around the small villages of the Mekong Delta. Visit a fruit orchard and plantation, and listen to traditional southern Vietnamese music called don ca tai tu, which combines elements from court music and folk music.
Afterward, cruise along the Mekong Delta to Tan Phong Island. Here, join your small group in a half-day cooking class with your guide. You’ll learn to prepare Vietnamese dishes from several regions as you discover the many cultural influences at play in Vietnamese cuisine. Try your hand at making savory specialties like fried elephant-ear fish, grilled steak cooked in a bamboo cylinder, grilled fish in banana leaf and fish braised in a clay pot.
Enjoy your delicious creations with your fellow food lovers before hopping on a bicycle to ride along the village path. Pass fruit orchards and a bonsai garden as you explore the neighborhood with your guide and mingle with the local villagers. Your day trip ends with a boat ride back to Cai Be and return transport to your Ho Chi Minh City hotel.