Looking to meet people in Can Tho City

Hello everyone!

I'm looking for some people to have a chat, go for a drink or a walk... in Can Tho City. I will be moving there next week and don't know anybody in the city yet.

I am a student from Belgium (23 y/o) and I'm coming to Vietnam for research on rice production (interesting, right?!). My native language is Dutch, but I speak English quite well and could maybe even try to have a conversation in French or Spanish.

I hope to make some friends in Can Tho for the time I'll spend there. If you are living in Can Tho (temporarily of permanently), feel free to contact me :) . If you know how I could get in touch with the English speaking community in Can Tho, I would be very grateful for your tips!

Kind regards
Eva

If you go to Ninh Kieu park by the river, you will find plenty of westerners at night having dinner and/or drinking coffee.   One of the streets off of the Park, there is a coffee shop called "English Coffee".  Some expats hang out there.  If you are interested in meeting locals, just let me know.

So sorry, should have advised this as well.  If you go to the park at night, you should definitely have a drink or a coffee at VIVA bar, you can't miss it, it is on the main street across from the park.  Always lots of young expats hanging out there.  We always go there when we visit family.

Down the same street you'll find (if you look closely enough) the Mekong bar/cafe/restaurant which has long been a hangout for local expats and tourists - it's almost directly opposite the statue of Ho Chi Minh.
The local expats also gather in a bar along the canal every Saturday night (you'll need a taxi).  I don't know the address but can get it and put you in direct contact with one of the locals at the same time if you wish.

The "canal" restaurant/bar - Saturdays from ~5pm to 7 or 8pm:
Thanh Nhã         
104 Huỳnh Cương, An Cư,
Ninh Kiều

Mekong Restaurant - most evenings from 5-6 pm:
38 Hai Bà Trưng

Café English - pretty much anytime:
11 Trần Quốc Toản

Good luck!

In Can Tho, Vietnamese look at foreigners as if they watch animals!
When you go to Can Tho, you are like an animal in a zoo.

Wow - that's never been my experience!  I've always found the locals extremely friendly and eager to help strangers to their city.  "View others as you wish to be viewed."

Starfleet :

In Can Tho, Vietnamese look at foreigners as if they watch animals!
When you go to Can Tho, you are like an animal in a zoo.

You must be an alien because I have never seen the people of CanTho act like that.

Starfleet :

In Can Tho, Vietnamese look at foreigners as if they watch animals!
When you go to Can Tho, you are like an animal in a zoo.

You can also find this in HCMC.

Go to a street market or walk through a busy street where you usually don't see any tourists.

I worked in 2004 in the Shanxi region (China) for about 4 months.
It was in a city growed around an aluminum plant.
The local men and children (not the more intelligent women) pointed their fingers at us and laughed at us.
It was unpleasant but I had to accept it because I was in a backward area in the countryside where the locals had seen the first Caucasians half a year earlier.

However, in certain areas of HCMC in 2019 you can still see similar behaviour, except that they no longer point the finger at you.

Andy Passenger :
Starfleet :

In Can Tho, Vietnamese look at foreigners as if they watch animals!
When you go to Can Tho, you are like an animal in a zoo.

You can also find this in HCMC.

Go to a street market or walk through a busy street where you usually don't see any tourists.

I worked in 2004 in the Shanxi region (China) for about 4 months.
It was in a city growed around an aluminum plant.
The local men and children (not the more intelligent women) pointed their fingers at us and laughed at us.
It was unpleasant but I had to accept it because I was in a backward area in the countryside where the locals had seen the first Caucasians half a year earlier.

However, in certain areas of HCMC in 2019 you can still see similar behaviour, except that they no longer point the finger at you.

I get two fingers and a thumb...

✌😎👍

Andy Passenger :
Starfleet :

In Can Tho, Vietnamese look at foreigners as if they watch animals!
When you go to Can Tho, you are like an animal in a zoo.

You can also find this in HCMC.

Go to a street market or walk through a busy street where you usually don't see any tourists.

I worked in 2004 in the Shanxi region (China) for about 4 months.
It was in a city growed around an aluminum plant.
The local men and children (not the more intelligent women) pointed their fingers at us and laughed at us.
It was unpleasant but I had to accept it because I was in a backward area in the countryside where the locals had seen the first Caucasians half a year earlier.

However, in certain areas of HCMC in 2019 you can still see similar behaviour, except that they no longer point the finger at you.

I live in D12, not many foreigners, walk round the market every day, have good laugh with the market ladies there & the kids are so polite too, never had the finger pointing, had some strange looks mostly from men but always eye contact & smiles from ladies. Heading for Vinh Long tomorrow & then Can Tho for a couple of days so lets see what they make of this monkey!

I wonder if those who worry about 'laughing' and/or 'finger pointing' understand that Vietnamese often laugh to cover the fact they're nervous or embarrassed (usually but not always because they can't speak English or the language of the foreigner they're interacting with).
It's their country, and we're the 'aliens' so I'd suggest the onus is at least as much on us as them to welcome each other.  If not, then perhaps this is the wrong country for your expat experience...

linhmartin :

If not, then perhaps this is the wrong country for your expat experience...

Often heard argument of the so-called Asia understanders.

But there are also people who can't just leave Vietnam because they have a job or other obligations.

I only say what I see every day.  But everyone has a different perception with more or less strong pink glasses.

I generally like Asian people more than others, but in 2019 I expect more from people living in a city like HCMC.

But since I'm not a philanthropist in general, I could also tell you what I don't like about expats in HCMC.  :)

G'day AP - I guess you're referring to my comments, since you highlighted the last sentence.
I first worked in VN in 1991, returning frequently over the following decade for work-related trips.  I married a Vietnamese and have lived in various communities in Saigon (HCMC), Nha Trang and Vung Tau virtually full-time since retiring nearly 16 years ago so yes, I'd agree that I do have a bit of an understanding of the culture - although I've never been called an 'understander' before, so thanks for the compliment (assuming it was actually meant as a compliment...).
But no-one knows everything about anything - and we all have our reasons for being in different places, hence my final sentence that you highlighted.  The point I wanted to make was that there's a well-known cultural trait amongst Vietnamese whereby they cover their own nervousness, embarrassment, etc by smiling.
It's not something generally seen in western culture and you don't need to be an expert or even much of an 'understander' to recognise it.  But a couple of posts (firstly Starfleet's and then yours) sounded critical of being 'looked at' by locals, so I figured I'd mention that cultural trait in case either of you (and/or anyone else) weren't aware of it.
End of story - enjoy your time in VN.  Like anywhere, it's only as good as you make it!

Looked at and being stared at are two different things. When I get stared at I just stare back, it usually brings things to a halt. Same with finger pointing, just point back.

If they are close and can hear you, just ask " cái gì sai" they will generally just laugh and smile back.

I can tell the difference between a smile of embarrassment and a laught at me.

In the last months I have been dealing with Vietnamese men almost every day because the construction of the house.

And I feel like a circus monkey all the time. It's not a smile of embarrassment, it's amusement in one who's different from themselves.

An electrician even tried to flirt with my wife before my eyes.

That is disrespect from backwardness.

And this degree of backwardness in and around a city like HCMC surprised me, I have to admit.

I haven't experienced this in such a pronounced way in any other Asian region.

Andy Passenger :

An electrician even tried to flirt with my wife before my eyes.

That is disrespect from backwardness.

And this degree of backwardness in and around a city like HCMC surprised me, I have to admit.

I haven't experienced this in such a pronounced way in any other Asian region.

I think I understand exactly what you mean here. But I guess things like this has nothing to do with the location or nationality. This happens even here in Sweden.

When a Sri Lankan girl comes to a fellow countrymen party with her Swedish husband Sri Lankan young men(not all of them) don't see her as someones wife they try to hit on her anyway.

I have seen this even in Sri Lanka when the husband is a westerner boys can't see the relationship as a   real serious one. But if husband is from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh or some other similar nationality then they be able to see the couple in a different angle.

Prejudice against westerners or prejudice against girls who marry westerners.

colinoscapee :

Looked at and being stared at are two different things. When I get stared at I just stare back, it usually brings things to a halt. Same with finger pointing, just point back.

If they are close and can hear you, just ask " cái gì sai" they will generally just laugh and smile back.

You got it 100% & i do exactly the same. Stare right back, give them a WTF look & they quickly turn away or smile & go about their business. Usually men that do it in a sort of bad way. Ladies look into your eyes & smile in a totally different way!

I must be walking down the wrong streets because no-one's 'stared' at me in anything but a nice welcoming way since way back in those dark, early days after đổi mới ("renewal") in 1986, when US soldiers and their allies with B52s, flamethrowers and agent orange were still at the forefront of most northern VNs memories - so their suspicions and resentment were perfectly understandable.  Down south, there was also a lot of (understandable) resentment because they felt they'd been deserted by the US and allies - collectively represented by anyone who didn't look Vietnamese, ie all foreigners, regardless of origin!
They were also the days of wall to wall 'girlie bars' and 'bar girls' (prostitutes) - not everywhere but certainly in Hanoi, Saigon and, subsequently, Vung Tau (oil money) - so most VN men were convinced that any VN girl with a foreigner must be a bar girl.  Perfectly understandable at the time, even if not always correct (as in my case and many of the guys in our company - all of whom are still happily married to VNs all these years later).
In those days, I did the same as being recommended above - stare back, talk back, or just ignore them.  But foreign investment and tourism brought rapid changes to VN society, to the extent that most VNs - especially in the cities and major tourist destinations - quickly realised that being nasty to foreigners was NOT the way to get rich!  Jealous? Maybe. But stupid when it comes to making money? Never!  So I'm really surprised and not a little disappointed to hear anyone mention that such behaviour still exists - and have to wonder at the actual extent of it because I haven't seen it for years, and we get around the country a fair bit!
But I digress - a student from Belgium has come onto this site to see if she can find someone in Can Tho for a chat.  Why don't we do her a favour and either stick to the topic or start a different thread...

linhmartin :

I must be walking down the wrong streets because no-one's 'stared' at me in anything but a nice welcoming way since way back in those dark, early days after đổi mới ("renewal") in 1986, when US soldiers and their allies with B52s, flamethrowers and agent orange were still at the forefront of most northern VNs memories - so their suspicions and resentment were perfectly understandable.  Down south, there was also a lot of (understandable) resentment because they felt they'd been deserted by the US and allies - collectively represented by anyone who didn't look Vietnamese, ie all foreigners, regardless of origin!
They were also the days of wall to wall 'girlie bars' and 'bar girls' (prostitutes) - not everywhere but certainly in Hanoi, Saigon and, subsequently, Vung Tau (oil money) - so most VN men were convinced that any VN girl with a foreigner must be a bar girl.  Perfectly understandable at the time, even if not always correct (as in my case and many of the guys in our company - all of whom are still happily married to VNs all these years later).
In those days, I did the same as being recommended above - stare back, talk back, or just ignore them.  But foreign investment and tourism brought rapid changes to VN society, to the extent that most VNs - especially in the cities and major tourist destinations - quickly realised that being nasty to foreigners was NOT the way to get rich!  Jealous? Maybe. But stupid when it comes to making money? Never!  So I'm really surprised and not a little disappointed to hear anyone mention that such behaviour still exists - and have to wonder at the actual extent of it because I haven't seen it for years, and we get around the country a fair bit!
But I digress - a student from Belgium has come onto this site to see if she can find someone in Can Tho for a chat.  Why don't we do her a favour and either stick to the topic or start a different thread...

"Why don't we do her a favour and either stick to the topic or start a different thread..."

Just wondering why you didn't take your own advice, the long rant is a prime example of being off topic. :dumbom:

Because I was trying to close the 'off topic' down by putting it into correct historical context - sorry you couldn't see that.  But don't worry, I've provided three venues where Eva can hopefully meet some expats and/or locals, so I'm outta here...

linhmartin :

Because I was trying to close the 'off topic' down by putting it into correct historical context - sorry you couldn't see that.  But don't worry, I've provided three venues where Eva can hopefully meet some expats and/or locals, so I'm outta here...

***

Just came back from my local tạp hóa, whilst there, two middle aged ladies were staring at me. Maybe you are not as good looking as I am, hence why you don't get stared at.

Moderated by Bhavna last year
Reason : Please remain polite. Thank you
edemits :

I'm looking for some people to have a chat[/b], go for a drink or a walk... in Can Tho City. I will be moving there next week and don't know anybody in the city yet.

If you know how I could get in touch with the English speaking community in Cần Thơ, I would be very grateful for your tips!

Kind regards
Eva

I don't know anything about the English community in Cần Thơ, just want to extend a welcome to Vietnam to you, Eva. 

And don't worry, not all English speaking communities in this country are as wacky as what you see here on expat.com.  Some are actually worse.  :joking:   But if life in Cần Thơ ever becomes too monotonous and you feel the need to sharpen your wits, you're welcome to stop by these forums, our door is alway open.

You will be fine in Can Tho, Eva!  There are some pretty cool people who live and work in this neck of the woods.

Yes,, I wish I can say the same for a few of the characters on here.  But I really can’t!  They are all in a class by themselves.   Just don’t let such foolishness stop you!  These fellas are after very different things in life. 

Cheers.  And welcome to Vietnam.

Wild_1 :

You will be fine in Can Tho, Eva!  There are some pretty cool people who live and work in this neck of the woods.

Yes,, I wish I can say the same for a few of the characters on here.  But I really can’t!  They are all in a class by themselves.   Just don’t let such foolishness stop you!  These fellas are after very different things in life. 

Cheers.  And welcome to Vietnam.

Don't hold back, free yourself of this burden,lol.

:proud

How have you been, Colinoscapee?  Vietnam is treating you well?

I’d much rather not!  I have far better things to do with my time.

Don’t hesitate to drop me a line, when you venture into this area.

Wild_1 :

:proud

How have you been, Colinoscapee?  Vietnam is treating you well?

I’d much rather not!  I have far better things to do with my time.

Don’t hesitate to drop me a line, when you venture into this area.

All good thanks. Long time since seeing you post on here.
Take care. 😀

G'day Wild_1:  how pleasant to find someone with the same opinion about some of the posters on this site as myself!  :)
You've been in Can Tho for a long time now (unless you made it to Ecuador and back in the meantime?), so perhaps you already know the venues I posted at the beginning of this thread for Eva.  And you'd also know that several of your countrymen often show up at "the canal" restaurant/bar on Saturday nights from ~5pm to 7 or 8pm:
Thanh Nhã         
104 Huỳnh Cương, An Cư,
Ninh Kiều
Huỳnh Cương runs around the lake in the middle of the canal and the restaurant is near the flea market.
I'll be there on Saturday 27 April to catch up with some of them, so feel free to come along if you haven't been before.  I'm hoping to get there by 6 pm (bussing it down from Vung Tau), but if you get there earlier, ask for Steve (from Oregon) and tell him I gave you the contact on expat.com
Same goes for you, Eva, if you're reading this and haven't been there yet.
So I'll maybe see you both there - looking forward to it already!
Cheers
Martin (my VN wife's name is Linh, hence the Linhmartin monicker)

Wild_1 :

This is Eva’s thread.

I expect that Eva is long gone.  Either that or in the rice fields studying production and too busy to be reading here.  It is likely that at least a few of her local peers in rice research speak English and she is probably enjoying their company a lot more than the banter here.  :cheers:

Perhaps I could request a little calm, please :)

n1tw1t :
colinoscapee :

Looked at and being stared at are two different things. When I get stared at I just stare back, it usually brings things to a halt. Same with finger pointing, just point back.

If they are close and can hear you, just ask " cái gì sai" they will generally just laugh and smile back.

You got it 100% & i do exactly the same. Stare right back, give them a WTF look & they quickly turn away or smile & go about their business. Usually men that do it in a sort of bad way. Ladies look into your eyes & smile in a totally different way!

On the bus, I had some obnoxious man of about 20 turn round and pester a VN girl I was with, question her aggressively, preventing us from going about outr own business. Angry stares by me were ignored, like one's honking gets ignored by taxis driving across the main 2-lane highway.

GREED is right beneath the surface. (Have you been to buffet restaurants overseas)? And a lack of soft skills. Or manners. From smacking lips to urinating even on the floor in a bathroom with a urinal 5 feet away. // Another very puzzling thing is the fact that people who can't possible bear a grundge keep fabricating stuff. Say, the house I want to find is 50 m and next to theirs. No, they make you cross a highway. Can't they read? Just wondering. (It is happening all the time, despite Google Translate).

I thought you fell over the earth!  Great to see your still here.  Long time I have not seen you but I am guessing your still in Can Tho.  We moved to the States and our daughter was recently born.  We do plan on visiting family, just not sure when.  Definitely stay in touch!

When I was last in Cần Thơ I did notice locals were much less used to seeing foreigners than I thought they'd be, but I never saw negatively them staring at me. I remember there were a few places in town where when I started speaking a bit of Vietnamese their eyes popped open, it was kind of funny. Anyway I really like the city, it's a nice trade-off between the craziness of Saigon and the "countryside". Will be going back in the city probably in October, hoping to meet a few of ya bunch.

hey,
I am currently studying in Can tho university.
Its been like 3 months here in vietnam.
Its a nice place.

edemits :

I am a student from Belgium (23 y/o) and I'm coming to Vietnam for research on rice production (interesting, right?!). My native language is Dutch, but I speak English quite well and could maybe even try to have a conversation in French or Spanish.
Kind regards
Eva

Pujabanmali :

hey,
I am currently studying in Can tho university.
Its been like 3 months here in vietnam.
Its a nice place.

This forum gets occasional queries about whether and where English speakers can take University level courses in Vietnam.  From the above comments, there seems to be an indication that such courses are available in Can Tho.  It would be interesting to definitively know if this is so.

Hey..i am new in here too..looking to meet people. Whatsapp me : +95XXX

See you soon
cheers

Moderated by Julien 3 months ago
Reason : for your own safety, please use the private message system to share your contact details
We invite you to read the forum code of conduct
New topic