Thursday, April 27, 2023

Ben Tre and the coconut

Having ample time left we decided to break up the ride to Ho Chi Minh City by stopping in Ben Tre.

The city of Ben Tre lies on a big island in the Mekong and is considered the coconut capital of Vietnam. Among its oddities is the so called Coconut Monk. A Buddhist monk who founded his own religion, the coconut religion. He only ate once a day and did only drink coconut water. 😆
He is long dead now (as well his religion) and where he used to live and meditate is now a weird mix of temple/restaurant/theme park with water games, wedding ceremonies as well crocodiles 🤷‍♂️ 
The place is on Phoenix Island and can only be reached by boat or motorbike by using a little exit in the middle of the bridge crossing the Mekong. Was a funny drive 😄

Enjoying a coconut at the coconut monks place.

The temple part

Great A’Tuin?

The coconut monk 

Hihi penis

Crocodiles just meters away from the water games 🫣

Most of the coconut gets processed, famous is the coconut candy. But also the husk get used as char coal or for carvings and the tree trunks for building.
Everywhere are huge piles of coconut husks

Coconut factory 

Coconut farms everywhere 

We slept at a homestay which has only three little cabins, each one different. Bamboo was my obvious choice even though due to the nature of bamboo the walls weren’t closed entirely 😅

We stayed in this nice bamboo hut 😊

They also had this cool A frame. Also cool as in it had AC 😂
And then it was time to continue to our final destination, Ho Chi Minh City. We decided to take a detour to see more of the Mekong delta.

More swallows nest farms

Fish farms using this paddle contraption to aerate the water

Many ferry crossings

Some of the canals are total overgrown 

And too soon we were in the crazy traffic of HCMC!