Ho Chi Minh City is not exactly a synonim for an unforgettable cultural experience. Actually, as a tourist I wouldn’t know what to do there apart from exploring the local coffee shops and designers (which I did quite in detail). Even the tours that are offered are not exciting at all unless you like to visit military museums and hear stories about how clever were the Vietnamese people to kill so many Americans.
The only interesting day trip was to Mekong delta. We booked it the day before from a local agency around Ben Thanh market. They all have different prices so it’s better to enter in a couple or three and compare the fares. At the end we chose Candy Travel, they organize all kind of tours around Vietnam and the girls from the staff were extremely helpful.
The next day we drove for a couple of hours to My Tho (mainly on highway) from where we started our river journey around the surrounding islands. Everything was extremely touristic and far away from off the beaten track paths but nevertheless I think we got a glimpse in how the local people live. We saw a bee farm, tried locally produced honey, saw how they make sweet candies and listened to some traditional singing (the ladies needed to outsing the performers from the next door venue though). I would have liked to explore more deeply the villages that we saw but I guess this is something that should be organized earlier with a local guide.
In a nutshell, would I recommend a day tour on Mekong? If you don’t have anything else to do- yes.