Tri Ton is a town in the west of the Mekong Delta, close to the Cambodian border, south of Chau Doc and northwest of Can Tho.
It is not a big town and it is certainly not a popular place for tourists to stop there – they rather stay in Chau Doc or Can Tho. But this is maybe what makes this place so attractive.
Despite not being a touristy hub it is a couple of hotels I saw on the main road near the market. It also has quite a few local food places and cafes. Though I have not seen menus in English.
The most interesting sights in town is the large local market, a small Cao Dai temple as well as a larger Pagoda. However, the real highlights are outside of the town. It is a nice base to explore the various mountains in the area, including the nearby Nui Co To and Nui Cam. The Ba Chuc Crypt is also not too far from the town. And the scenery around the town is beautiful as well.
With its local feel, welcoming locals and the interesting sights nearby I really like Tri Ton. Even though it is not as developed as Chau Doc for example, I actually prefer this little town (maybe exact for this reason. So if you are exploring the area by yourself, Tri Ton should probably not be missed and is a great place to stop for a night.
Arrival / Departure
Buses will head to Chau Doc from Tri Ton and Long Xuyen. I am not sure that there are direct buses to Can Tho.
If you go there by motorbike or car you could either arrive from Chau Doc, Long Xuyen, Can Tho or the Cambodian Border.
From the North (Chau Doc): You will most likely arrive via DT948 and you get straight to one of the main road of Tri Ton. Turn left at the first big crossing and you get to the market and a few hotels.
From the East (Long Xuyen): You will use the DT941, which leads you directly to the market as well (this time from the south). On the road you will find several hotels.
From the South (Can Tho): You will most likely using DT943, passing Nui Co TO and arrive at the larger pagoda in Tri Ton. FOr the market turn right after the pagoda and at the end of the road is the market (and a few hotels)
From West (Cambodian Border): If you head to Tri Ton from the Cambodian Border turn off the QL80 onto Dien Bien Phu. Follow that road until you reach Tri Ton and turn left into the Duong Nguyen Thi Minh Khai (first larger raod in town), which will lead you to the market area.
Tri Ton is not a tourist hub, so there are only a limited numbers of hotels. On DT941, the road where the main market is, you can find two hotels opposite of each other. I am not sure if there are more hotels on the other main road.
Food & Drinks
Along the DT941 are a few food places – all serving traditional Vietnamese dishes. Some are specialised on specific dishes, but i passed one or two rather large food places with a nice set-up.
I had dinner at Bao Yen on the other side of the market. It is a standard food place you find everywhere in Vietnam with the plastic chairs and tables. They have a large menu, but as the staff seemed to be a bit worried they served is grilled chicken and fried beef. Both dishes were very nice. So this is a nice enough place for dinner.
For breakfast or lunch I would highly recommend to head to the market. There are a number of stalls serving small dishes throughout the indoor and outdoor area. But there is also a food court serving soups, Banh Mi etc. and drinks. This is where you can experience the real Vietnam. Enjoying traditional food like a delicious Bun Bo Vien (a noodle soup with little meat balls) while watching the locals doing their normal daily activities. You will not find a better place to have breakfast in Tri Ton.
Along the same street you will also find a number of cafes where you can enjoy a drink until late (11pm). I enjoyed my ca phe sua da at Saigon Cafe, with its open court set up.
What to do
Tri Ton itself has only a few attraction.
There is a little Cao Dai temple next to the market. You can enter it during the day and check out the interesting decoration of the temple. If you have never seen an Cao Dai temple this is certainly something you should visit. It is a rather intriguing religion.
There is also a larger pagoda at the southern entrance of Tri Ton. It looks nice, however I did not visit it.
My favourite place in Tri Ton was the local market. It is a great way to observe and experience the real of Vietnam. Like other markets it is worth a visit. Here are some details and photos of the market.
Most highlights are, however, located outside of Tri Ton.
A short ride south of Tri Ton on DT943 is Nui Co To, where you can drive to the top of the “mountain”.
North of Tri Ton is one of the most popular destinations in the area – Nui Cam. THis is one of the larger mountains and from the cable car that brings you to the top of the mountain, you have a great view of the surrounding area. On top you can visit some temples and a lake. It is a beautiful place to visit. Here are more details.
For those interested in history a visit to Ba Chuc is a must-do. In 1978 Ba Chuc was the place for a massacre committed by the Khmer Rouge. Over 3.000 civilians were slaughtered. Today a small memorial reminds of this terrible crime. THis should not be missed. Click here for more details.