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Mekong Delta’s iconic floating market goes lifeless as sellers abandon boats

Can Tho City in Vietnam's Mekong Delta region is worrying about the bleak realities of the Cai Rang Floating Market as sellers rush to abandon their boats to find other ways to make ends meet.

Cai Rang Floating Market, designated as national intangible cultural heritage by the Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism in 2016, has been a must-see for visitors to the Mekong Delta region.

Previously known for trading rice and groceries, Cai Rang Floating Market now trades a variety of fruits and agricultural products from the delta.

However, the market is now falling into disrepair as sellers rush to abandon their boats to find other ways to make ends meet.

According to the Can Tho tourism industry, the current number of boats at Cai Rang Floating Market is only 250 to 300, which is half of what it was historically. 

Therefore, the question is what the future of this floating market will look like if a few dozen boats are eliminated annually, as is the case currently.

Meanwhile, overland traffic has grown significantly, and farmers in the Mekong Delta have traders collect produce on-site at their warehouses, complicating the lives of sellers at Cai Rang Floating Market.

In addition, Can Tho is building an embankment near the market, inadvertently reducing natural communication and isolating the floating market merchants from the people on the shore.

As a result, tourists are becoming increasingly dissatisfied as the floating market is devoid of sellers and goods. 

The current situation has put the floating market in an urgent need of being reorganized and associated with appealing tourist services, in order to avoid squandering a prime tourism location in the Mekong Delta.

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Linh To - Tran Chi Liem / Tuoi Tre News

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