The Mekong River deposits tons of fertile earth on the delta each year, making the region’s produce so abundant, but it also provides a barrier to swift travel, forcing drivers to queue for hours to cross its countless channels by slow, lumbering ferries. In the late 1990s a plan was hatched to build huge bridges at three key points in the delta – My Thuan, My Tho and Can Tho – in order to cut down journey times. The first of these, at My Thuan, crossing the Tien Giang, opened in 2000 and immediately slashed hours off journey times. The second, linking My Tho and Ben Tre, suffered delays but finally opened in early 2009. The third and biggest project, crossing the widest of the Mekong’s nine arms (the Hau Giang) at Can Tho, was the scene of a tragic accident in September 2007 when a 90-metre section of an approach ramp collapsed, killing more than fifty workers. Construction was delayed for a while but was finally completed in 2010, and now visitors arriving by land pass over the longest cable-stayed bridge in Southeast Asia as they approach Can Tho.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Vietnam features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

An expert's guide: the best homestays in Vietnam

An expert's guide: the best homestays in Vietnam

Vietnam’s emergence as one of Asia’s most vibrant destinations shows no sign of abating. And with the rapid pace of change affecting everywhere from hectic …

16 Aug 2017 • Joe Minihane
The truth about elephant tourism in Asia

The truth about elephant tourism in Asia

Elephants are born free, but are everywhere in chains – and it’s tourism which is increasingly to blame. Riding an elephant used to be on every visitor’s …

11 Aug 2017 • Gavin Thomas insert_drive_file Article
Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park: Vietnam's last paradise?

Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park: Vietnam's last paradise?

Planning a trip to Vietnam and keen to explore some of its most spectacular scenery? A little north of the 17th parallel – the demarcation where Vietnam was o…

18 Apr 2017 • Rachel Mills insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month