Photo: On the canals near Vinh Long.

Eat and meet

If you're staying amid the cluster of hotels by the river, the first thing you'll notice is the fruit -- a fantastic array of it is sold on the footpath, so if you're after a vitamin C hit, this is a good place to start. Across the road on the river's edge sits the Hoa Nang restaurant which does coffee and cold drinks during the day and belts out karaoke in the evening. Further upriver from the Hoa Nang is Phuong Thuy restaurant, which has an English menu and does standard Vietnamese fare.

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Along the southern stretch of the market there's some excellent stall eating during the day and a small night market sets up behind the main market. If you're after more coffee, take the laneway between the Van Tram Guesthouse and Cuu Long Hotel and follow it around, you'll reach another entry to the market where there's a bunch of coffee stands.

You won’t find many pho joints here as hu tieu is king in the Mekong. Head to Hieu Tieu Hong Mai on 98 1 Thang 5 for a mean hu tieu with fresh made wontons. Ba Thu Banh Mi on the corner of Hung Vuong and Chi Lang does a roaring business from 14:30 to 22:00 and is well worth a stop for their fantastic banh mi nem nuong.

For night owls, aside from the karaoke scene in the Hoa Nang, there's always karaoke at Hoa Nang or the disco inferno at the 4.1 nightclub on 1 Thang 5 Street.

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Vinh Long? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Vietnam.

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