Natural land area: 2,315 square kilometres
Population: 1,400,000 people
Administrative units: 1 township & 7 districts
Ethnics: Kinh (Viet Nam's main ethnic group)
Climate: Tropical monsoon, with rainy season from May to October, then dry season from November to April next year.
Rainfall: Annual average between 1,250mm and 1,500mm.
Annual average temperature between 26oC and 27oC.
BEN TRE, located at the end-stream of Mekong River, is one of the 13 provinces that make up the Mekong Delta. It faces the South China Sea and provinces such as Tien Giang, Tra Vinh, and Vinh Long. The Province's central point is 86 kilometres from Ho Chi Minh City- one of the largest cities in the country - by road to the North-East. That is, travellers from Ho Chi Minh City should ride (bus or motorbike) Southwest through Long An and Tien Giang provinces before arriving in Ben Tre. The Province's main rivers are Tien, Ba Lai, Ham Luong and Co Chien Rivers, depositing and enriching the soil with layers of alluvium for centuries, and cutting it into three large islets: An Hoa, Bao, and Minh. You can see on the map the land spread into a pie shape, with its peak at the upstream, and the River's branches like the pokes of a big hand-shaped pie spreading out to the East. The Province has a natural land area of 2,315 square kilometres and a population of 1.4 million. It has a flat terrain, with sand elevations intermittantly intermingling with orchards, coconut woods and rice fields. There are almost no woodlands here, and the main land is surrounded with rivers and sea waters.
How to visit Ben Tre
There are two ways to reach Ben Tre by road. The first one is going from Ho Chi Minh City on the National Highway 1A to the Trung Luong T-junction in My
Tho City, then turn right into the National Highway 60 to Rach Mieu Ferry (about 4 km from Trung Luong). The total length of this way is 86 km.
It takes each of the large ferry boats about 22 minutes or so to finish its journey to the Ben Tre side, while the small ones travel in only 15 minutes. The Ferry operates round the clock (24 hours a day). At the moment, there is an express ferry boat which crosses the river in a little more than 10 minutes. There is no peddling on the ferry boats, and Rach Mieu Ferry is considered the cleanest and best organized in the country.
The other way is to go from Can Tho City to Vinh Long province, then take the National Highway 57 after crossing the (small) Dinh Khao Ferry to Cho Lach District going on to Ben Tre Township. The length is 50.7 km.
Besides, visitors can also reach Ben Tre by boat on the Tien River, or take tourist ships traveling by sea and sailing up-stream the Tien River. However, this way is currently a bit inconvenient for there are no harhbours with enough capacity to receive large sea-borne ships.
There is no airport in Ben Tre province.
Here are the details of some programmes in Ben Tre and My Tho: