On our first day in Ho Chi Minh City, ITE HCMC had organised us a day tour of the city before the busy expo days ahead. The Thi Nghe canal cruise is a new tourism product launched only a couple of weeks ago, so we were invited to try it out as one of the first guests. I am all for sitting on boats, so I definitely enjoyed the experience!
The tour is normally three hours, but I think we did a shorter one – or I just had so much fun I didn’t realise time went by. I cannot say. One boat is meant to take 4 persons, but we were 5, and fitted just well into the charming old wooden long boat. And obviously, there was also a local guy standing in the back steering the boat.
On this tour, it’s best to focus on the city views and the experience on the boat itself, but not into the canal water, as even though it has been cleaned, anything may float by – and I mean anything.
At some point during the tour, a little snack boat rowed by to give us all a fresh young coconut to enjoy in the hot and humid sunny day. There’s nothing I love more than a fresh coconut – really not a fan of those canned ones up here in the north, they are fine in a smoothie, but other than that – no thank you.
The boat offered some other fruit and snacks too, but when coconuts are available, I go with coconuts.
The pretty kids behind the coconuts are my blogger friends I explored Ho Chi Minh City with. The lady in the white top is Daniela, from Discovering the Planet (thanks for being the best travel-hat-photo-assistant), the charming gentleman in the middle is Travel Dave and the lovely lady who forgot to pose is Janicke from Norske Reiseblogger. Sitting next to me is my dear friend Marianne, from Travel Junkie.
The fun thing about blogger friends is that you never know where you meet next. I’ve met Dace for the first time in a toilet queue in Spain, then back home in Helsinki and next we’ll be in Chiang Mai at the same time. And in two weeks, I will be heading to Italy with Janicke.
During the canal cruise, there was already a nice plate of exotic fruit on the boat for us – and you may know I am all for eating mainly fruit whenever I am in Asia, even if it got me to the hospital in India. But it was not only exotic fruit and city views on this tour, we were passed by musicians singing along the canal on their boats and playing some funky instruments – which you may have experienced already through my Instagram Stories.
I am currently using Instagram Stories instead of Snapchat, but not yet sure how I feel about it. What do you think?
But to still go back to the canal cruise, the prices are VND220,000 per person on this smaller boat and VND110,000 on a bigger boat for 20 people. Tickets can be bought at the terminals on Thi Nghe Bridge and Le Van Sy Bridge.
I was invited to Vietnam by ITE HCMC (The Mekong’s largest travel event) through Nordic Travel Bloggers Collective, but the opinions are always my own. Follow our journey in Vietnam on social media with #TBEVietnam