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5 Unique Markets In The Mekong Delta

While the cities of Vietnam become hooked into the global supply chain, their culinary tastes are becoming more homogenous. From pizza to shopping in supermarkets, our diets are slowly moving in line with the rest of the world. But this is not the case in the Mekong Delta where residents still rely on local sources for food and is home to markets that offer everything from scorpions to rats.

Here are a few of these markets that trade in products that us city-folk may find unique.


The Insect Market

Well-known for selling insects, Tịnh Biên Market is a favorite stop for local tourists each time they come to An Giang province. Not a place for those who are scared by crawling critters, scorpions, centipedes, king termites and tarantulas can be bought dead, alive, as a wine or simply for lunch!

Oh, and despite of their dangerousness reputation, many of these insects are believed to act as natural Viagra.


The Rat Market

Over 30 years old and the main source of income for about two hundreds families, Phù Dật Rat Market is the largest of its kind in the Mekong Delta. Though their urban cousins are notoriously dirty and large, the rats of the Mekong are considered a specialty food, one that is particularly favored by drinkers.


The Snake Market

Located along Highway 1A, Phụng Hiệp Snake Market offers up nearly all of Vietnam’s serpentine species, including chopstick-size vipers and one-hundred-kilogram pythons. The market even sells snake wine, which is advertised to cure everything from farsightedness to hair loss, as well as to increase sexual performance.


The Cow Market

If you own a cow in the Mekong Delta, chances are it came through here. Housed in Tà Ngáo village, the market is known by the same name. Starting as a small-scale cow trading market, it has developed a good reputation and attracts a large number of cow sellers not only from the Vietnam but Cambodia as well.

Once a small village Tà ngáo has become a developed place, always crowded with cows, people and trucks.


The Ghost Market

Known for many years as the Ghost Market, its actual name is Định Yên Mat Market. Located in Định Yên village (Lấp Vò town, Đồng Tháp province), for 50 years, the only product sold here has been chiếu, traditional grass mats. Trading only starts when the sky gets dark and really gets going at 1am before winding down at dawn. Oil lamps and flashlights are used to light the market, resulting in a dim glow, earning it its ghostly name.

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