MY THO - VIETNAM - MEKONG RIVER
My Tho, the quiet capital city of Tien Giang province, is the traditional gateway to the delta, owing to its proximity to HCMC. Visitors on a whirlwind Vietnam tour often take a day trip here to catch a glimpse of the famous river. In order to visit floating markets, however, you’ll need to continue on to Can Tho. The town itself is an important market town, and its quaint but busy waterfront is easily explored on foot.
My Tho was founded in the 1680s by Chinese refugees fleeing Taiwan for political reasons. The Chinese have virtually all gone now, having been driven out in the late 1970s when their property was seized by the government. The economy is based on tourism, fishing and the cultivation of rice, coconuts, bananas, mangoes, longans and citrus fruit.
My Tho has long been the most popular point for travellers to the Mekong Delta on account of its proximity to Saigon. Those planning to spend a few days in the Delta should across the river to Ben Tre, or further again to Cai Be and Vinh Long where things get less crowded with tourists and more interesting with real local life.
My Tho is famous for its noodle soup Hu Tieu My Tho, (more common in South Vietnam is Hu Tieu Nam Vang – literally Hu Tieu Phnom Penh Style). Hu Tieu My Tho is typically a clear pork broth with rice vermicelli and wheat flour noodles (mi) combined. Sliced pork, meaty pork bones, offal such as intestines, liver, and heart and fresh shrimp, and possibly deep fried wonton. The soup is then garnished by the diner to the individual taste with salad leaves, garlic chives, beans sprouts, lime, fresh chili, soy sauce, and vinegar. The noodles can be served dry with the soup on the side, or as a noodle soup.
Also famous in My Tho is Bo Vien or beef balls. There are very busy stalls near the My Tho market that serve only Bo Vien in beef broth or with Hu Tieu noodle. It is eaten with very hot chili sauce (tuong ot).