Despite the country of Việt Nam is going through a time of increased urbanisation, it is about 2/3 of the population that is still living in the countryside and maintaining a more traditional way of living. Naturally the population is living all of the nation, but Việt Nam has 2 large plains where most of the countryside people are located:


Red River Delta (Northern Delta) is approximately 15,000 km² covered by alluvium of two large rivers, the Red River and Thai Binh River. This is the residence of the ancient Vietnamese and is also the place where the wet rice civilization. Mekong Delta (southern delta) is over 40,000km², is fertile land, favorable climate. This is the largest granary of Vietnam. There are thousands of large and small rivers in Vietnam. Along the coast, there is an estuary about 20 km, so the navigation system is quite convenient. Two important river systems are the Red River in the North and the Mekong River (also known as the Nine Dragons River) in the South.


The lifestyle of farmers of Red River and Mekong River has many interesting differences. Residents of the Northern Delta mainly live on wet rice cultivation and live in harmony with nature that are influenced by Buddhist thought, Confucianism, heavy grace, belief in cause and effect. A typical village in Red River has often bamboo, village gate, houses and religious works such as communal houses, pagodas, shrines, etc. Village House is the most typical feature of the village of the North. The Village House is a large house and has the most beautiful architecture in the village. Village residents worship Thành Hoàng who had contributed to create careers for the people, or fought with the enemy to protect the country. In the occasion of festivals, the villagers hold a parade of procession of gold lacquer in drum, gong, reverberant music, describing the story and merits of Thành Hoàng. The parade of the village festival creates a sense of sacred unity in the community. The Village House witnessed the activities, customs and all changes in the social life of the village.


Countryside north vietnam

Village House Mong Phu  


Mekong Delta residents. In the early and mid-seventeenth century, Vietnamese immigrants from the North and the Central crossed the sea to explore the southern region. The Vietnamese expatriate population gradually expanded from the east to the southwest. The majority of Vietnamese immigrants, poor craftsmen in the north, had to leave their homeland for a living. A few others were feudalist troops dispatched to the garrison, some of them were sent to the border region and the criminals were exiled or escaped arrest. They formed new inhabitants along Mekong River. They are come from many areas with different cultures and lifestyles, therefore, they are more opened to adapt with a less controlled organization. There are 2 obvious cultures in the South. They are culture of garden and culture of river.



tourists in Mekong delta

A very simple bridge in Mekong Delta – cầu khỉ 


Culture of garden. The garden zone, according to Writer Son Nam, is a general term for relatively high areas with citrus orchards along the Tien (Front) and Hau (Back) rivers in Sa Dec, Vinh Long, My Tho and Can Tho. Garden culture represents the highest form of material and spiritual activity in the Mekong Delta. The mango, durian, plum, tangerine, oranges on the banks of the Tien and Hau Rivers have become symbolic of the rich and spiritual life of the people of the Mekong Delta. “Cải lương” and “đờn ca tài tử”– 2 kinds of folksongs using traditional musical instruments with typical singing style has obvious characters of this culture. When travelling along the river, tourists can hear local people singing cải lương on the boat or on the field they are working on.


vietnamese folk music

Đờn ca tài tử  


Culture of river. The river life here is very exciting. Because the canals are complicated, people in the Mekong Delta use boats to move from one place to another. The people are called under their order in the sibling such as Two, Three, Four, etc. He wears a bà ba, wrapped a bib with black and white squares on his head boating around the canals has become a bold mark of the Southwest. Not only the lifeblood of traffic, but also Mekong River brings abundant source of fish and shrimp, contributing to forming a diverse and unique cuisine of the river. Mekong River has become an essential part of the life of every local people. They grew up beside the rivers, drinking river water, bathing the river and growing up. They sail on the river, sing on the river, date on the river. Mekong River has become a sacred symbol in the spiritual life of the local people. Because of that, the river has become a source of inspiration for poetry, songs, and folk songs of the Southern people.


Vietnamese livestyle

Mekong River wedding