North central VN
The five provinces of North-Central Viet Nam, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha
Tinh, Quang Binh. and Quang Tri are ...
1 Thanh Hoa province
Area: 11,133.4 sq.km.
Population: 3,406.8 thousand habitants (2010)
Capital: Thanh Hoa City.
Administ...
Tourism
Located 16km from Thanh Hoa City, Sam Son Beach attracts lot of visitors
to relax and bath. Beside the beach, Sam ...
1.1 Tourist attractions
1.1.1 Mã River, Rồng and Ngọc Moutains
Three sites are situated in the region of Thanh Hoa. In thi...
Sam Son. The local people decided to build a pagoda in his honour on a
rock that bore a giant footprint.
Built under the T...
Ritual ceremonies are held at the temple on the 21st
day of the 2nd
lunar
month.
1.1.7 Hồ Citadel
Ho Citadel, also called ...
Ham Rong. The structures of the citadel lie along the south- north axis,
resembling the Chinese character “wang” on the hi...
Muc Lake covers an area of 3,000ha in Ben En National Park. This is a
favorable environment for the development of fish sp...
Please come to this place to contemplate thousands of fish, visit beautiful
caves and grottos, watch dancing performances ...
1.2.2 Dương Sơn Festival
4th
to 7th
of the 1st
lunar month
Duong Son Festival takes place to commemorate the important dee...
2 Nghe An province
Area: 16,490.7 sq. km.
Population: 2,917.4 thousand habitants (2010)
Capital: Vinh City
Administrative ...
and the North East wet and cold seasonal winds (during November-
March). The annual average temperature varies between 23o...
scattered quite reasonably by residential zone, economic and
administration centre.
-Road: highway 7, highway 48, highway ...
2.1.2 Chùa Village (the homeland of Ho Chi Minh)
Located two kilometers from Sen Village, Chua Village is just as peaceful...
with which Mrs. Hoang Thi Loan used to weave cloth to earn a living and
feed her children.
2.1.5 Cửa Lò Beach
Cua Lo Beach...
2.1.7 Pu Mat National Park
The Pu Mat National Park lies in three districts of Anh Son, Con Cuong and
Tuong Duong, belongs...
2.2 Festivals
2.2.1 Cuông Temple festival
15th
day of the 2nd
lunar month
The festival takes place every year in Cuong Tem...
3 Ha Tinh province
Area: 6,025.6 sq. km.
Population: 1,228 thousand habitants (2010)
Capital: Ha Tinh City
Administrative ...
Ha Tinh belongs to the tropical monsoon area. The annual average
temperature is 23.7o
C. There are two clear seasons:Raini...
The transportation is convenient with National Highway No. 1A and Thong
Nhat Express Train crossing the province. There is...
bell, Buddhist statues and a famous set of paintings called The King of
Hell's Ten Palaces’. The pagoda with a 600 year-ol...
3.1.4 Kẻ Gỗ Lake
This beautiful artificial lake, surrounded by hills and mountains in Cam
Xuyen District, is located 70km ...
3.2 Festivals
3.2.1 Xuan Dien Festival
4th
to 8th
ofthe 1st lunar month
This festival takes place in Phan Xa and Loi Xa vi...
4 Quang Binh province
Area: 8,065.3 sq. km.
Population: 849.3 thousand habitants (2010)
Capital: Dong Hoi City.
Districts:...
Every year, Quang Binh attracts many visitors coming to interesting
landscapes such as Phong Nha, Tien Son caves, primitiv...
4.1.2 Phong Nha Grotto
The beautiful grotto of Phong Nha is also a part of this world heritage site. It
has a length of 13...
unusual sounds that seem to resound from the earth's womb. Tien Son
Grotto is 980m long. Approximately 400m from the entra...
Thien Duong Grotto contributes to promoting the values of the world natural
heritage site of the Phong Nha-Ke Bang Nationa...
4.1.8 Cảnh Dương Sea Village
The village is by the National Highway N°1A and close to Roon River
Mouth, very convenient fo...
Besides the war village-museum, the investor also sets up many camping
sites for tourists along the stream. In addition, t...
4.2 Festivals
4.2.1 Cầu Ngư Festival
14th
to 16th
of the 4th lunar month
The festival is held annually for 3 days in Bao N...
5 Quang Tri province
Area: 4,747 sq. km.
Population: 600.5 thousand habitants (2010)
Capital: Dong Ha City.
Administrative...
trees. It is very pleasant to go on boat down stream on the Ben Hai River
and admire the beautiful landscapes.
Transportat...
leaning on each other to fight the enemy. Between sections 4 and 5 is a
group of monuments in memory of the heroism of Bat...
5.1.4 Quảng Trị Citadel
The citadel was built in 1824, the fourth year of the Minh Mang's reign, in
Thach Han Commune, Tri...
Prior to the construction of the steel bridge, supervised by a French army
engineer in 1950, the only way to cross the riv...
bring visitors along the river where rice and maize fields, green bamboo
belts, rows of Casuarinas trees, and villages are...
Statistical data show that during the 5920 days the Truong Son Trail was
put into operation, the enemy launched 800,000 so...
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North central Viet Nam

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Guide book travel to North Central Viet NM

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North central Viet Nam

  1. 1. North central VN The five provinces of North-Central Viet Nam, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh. and Quang Tri are situated on the narrowest strip of land in the country. This land is a region caught between the grandiose Truong Son Mountains and the ocean. Some say that the position of this piece of land has left its mark on its inhabitants who do not surrender to difficulties or force and always seek truth and knowledge. Thanh Hoa is a rather large and populous province in Central Viet Nam, located where the Vietnamese territory begins to narrow. This ancient land is where the Dong Son culture developed more than 10,000 years ago. Nghe An is a land of outstanding folk culture and traditional festivals which take place on the river. Many great revolutionary patriots are natives of Nghe An Province, including President Ho Chi Minh (1890-1969), the leader of the country of Viet Nam. Many other outstanding revolutionaries and great patriots such as Phan Dinh Phung, Phan Boi Chau, Le Hong Phong, Pham Hong Thai are also natives of North-Central Viet Nam, as well as Poet Nguyen Du (1765-1820), author of The Tale of Kieu, and Nguyen Cong Tru (1778- 1858), a talented strategic thinker who helped the population claim sea-battered lands in the districts of Kim Son (Ninh Binh) and Tien Hai (Thai Binh). In Ha Tinh is a crossroad named Dong Loc, immortalizing the years of resistance against the American. Several significant sites can be found in Quang Binh Province such as Ly Hoa beauty spot, Da Nhay and Nhat Le Beaches, and Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park which has been recognized as a natural World Heritage by UNESCO. In Quang Tri, the remains from one of the most famous wars in history include the ancient citadel of Quang Tri, Khe Sanh Combat Base, Truong Son National Cemetery, Vinh Moc Tunnels, the Hien Luong Bridge, and the Ben Hai River.
  2. 2. 1 Thanh Hoa province Area: 11,133.4 sq.km. Population: 3,406.8 thousand habitants (2010) Capital: Thanh Hoa City. Administrative divisions: - Towns: Sam Son, Bim Son. - Districts: Muong Lat, Quan Hoa, Quan Son, Ba Thuoc, Cam Thuy, Lang Chanh, Thach Thanh, Ngoc Lac, Thuong Xuan, Nhu Xuan, Nhu Thanh, Vinh Loc, Ha Trung, Nga Son, Yen Dinh, Tho Xuan, Hau Loc, Thieu Hoa, Hoang Hoa, Dong Son, Trieu Son, Quang Xuong, Nong Cong, Tinh Gia. Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Muong, Thai, H'Mong, Tho... Geography Among of five provinces in North-Central Vietnam, Thanh Hoa Province is surrounded by Son La, Hoa Binh, Ninh Binh provinces on the north, Nghe An Province on the south, East Sea on the east with 102km coastline, and Laos on the west. Toppgraphy Topography is divided into plain, coastal and mountainous regions. Hilly and mountains account three quarters of the total area. The Western region own abundant resources of forest products, and huge hydroelectric potentials. The plain is the third largest one of Vietnam. Owing to the cool climate and high rainfall, the province has annual average temperature of 24.50C. Rainy season often begins in June and ends in October.
  3. 3. Tourism Located 16km from Thanh Hoa City, Sam Son Beach attracts lot of visitors to relax and bath. Beside the beach, Sam Son offers scenic spots such as Trống Mái Rocks, Doc Cuoc Temple and Mount Cô Tiên. Tourists also like to discover Bến En National Park in Nhu Thanh, Nhu Xuan districts. The park is a complex of tropical forests, hills, mountains, rivers, springs, and Muc Lake. With natural landscapes and diversified flora and fauna, Ben En is suitable to eco-tourism, sightseeing, and scientific studies. Cam Luong Fish Spring is another interesting place in Thanh Hoa, The stream contains thousands of fish that no one dares catch it. Fish in the stream have red mouth and fins, and brown scales, resembling carp. Please come to this place to play with fish, visit beautiful caves and grottos, watch dancing performances of Muong people and enjoy traditional lam rice and can wine. In addition of these, Thanh Hoa is famous of historical vestiges like Ham Rong Bridge, Ho Citadel and Lam Kinh Remains. Lam Son is the birthplace of national hero Le Loi and the starting point of the Lam Son revolutionary insurrection. Transportation Thanh Hoa is 153km from Hanoi, 62km from Ninh Binh, and 139km from Vinh (Nghe An). National Highway No.1A and North-South Express Train run through province. There are National Highway No.15 linking to Nghe An and National Highway No.217 connecting to Laos via Na Meo Bordergate.
  4. 4. 1.1 Tourist attractions 1.1.1 Mã River, Rồng and Ngọc Moutains Three sites are situated in the region of Thanh Hoa. In this area, there is a mountain in the shape of a dragon (Rong) playing with an emerald (Ngoc). The Ham Rong Bridge used to join the Rong and Ngoc Mountains. The bridge is connected to heroic stories of the period of fighting against American aggressors and has been listed as a national monument. 1.1.2 Vọng Phu Mountain Vong Phu Mountain is situated 3km southwest of Thanh Hoa City, in Dong Hung Commune, Dong Son District. This is a naturally created limestone mountain that looks like a woman facing the East Sea. This metaphor relates to a legend about a woman who waited so long for her husband that she turned into stone. Thus, this mountain is named Vong Phu, or Waiting Husband Mountain. 1.1.3 Sầm Sơn Beach Located 16km from Thanh Hoa City, Sam Son Beach is an excellent location for bathing. The beach became a famous seaside resort in the early part of the 20* century. A number of villas were built on the beach before the first Indochina War, including one belonging to King Bao Dai, the last king of the Nguyen Dynasty. Beside the beaches, Sam Son offers scenic spots such as Trong Mai Rocks, Doc Cuoc Temple and Mount Co Tien. Doc Cuoc Temple is erected on Co Giai Rock, on the Truong Le Mountain, next to Sam Son Beach. It is a place of worship for the One- Legged Deity. According to legend, a young giant tore his body to fight at the same time a marine monster and enemies on land in order to protect the inhabitants of
  5. 5. Sam Son. The local people decided to build a pagoda in his honour on a rock that bore a giant footprint. Built under the Tran Dynasty, the temple has been restored several times. 1.1.4 Trống Mái Beach Trong Mai is located in the Truong Le Mountain in Sam Son Town. Trong Mai is a group of three rocks. The biggest rock is even, lies under the other two and looks like a big platform. One rock lying on the largest one has a sharp pointed head and looks like a rooster. The other one lies just opposite the rooster and looks like a hen. These interesting rocks illustrate the loyal love between the two animals. 1.1.5 Quảng Cư Ecotourism Zone Quang Cu Ecotourism Zone is located in the northeast of Sam Son Town, covering an area of 354 hectares. Apart from a beach adjacent to sam Son Beach, Quang Cu has a system of lakes and ponds to hatch shrimps, crabs and blackish-water fishes as well as green casuarinas forests. Situated in the middle of green natural landscape is the Quang Cu Tourist Zone with houses-on-stilts, bungalows. tents, and camps. This zone is suitable lo those who love the nature, fishing, rowing and studying local cultures. 1.1.6 Bà Triệu Temple National heroine Lady Trieu led the nation in an uprising against the northern invasion in the 3th century. The temple dedicated to Lady Trieu was built on Gai Mountain in Phu Dien Village, Trieu Loc Commune, Hau Loc District, dose to National Highway 1, and 137km from Hanoi. Travellers often stopover at the mountain to pay their respects to the heroine and to admire the view.
  6. 6. Ritual ceremonies are held at the temple on the 21st day of the 2nd lunar month. 1.1.7 Hồ Citadel Ho Citadel, also called Tay Do Wall, is situated in Vinh Tien and Vinh Long communes, Vmh Loc District approximately 150km from Hanoi. The citadel was erected in 1397, during the Ho Dynasty. The stone citadel was built in the shape of a rectangle and surrounded by a deep moat. Its walls were made of green granite. There are four gates on each side of the citadel. The south wall had two small Dates. From the South Gate had a stone road le ading to the Nam Giao esplanade at Don Son. Upon completion of the wall, King Ho Quy Ly moved the capital from Thang Long to Tay Do. The citadel was eventually destroyed and abandoned. More than 6 centuries passed since the wall was erected, and only ruins of the South Gate remain. Nowadays, inside the citadel are remains of the foundations of the royal places and two carved stone dragons. 1.1.8 Lam Kinh Remains Lam Kinh Remains is located 50km to the north-west of Thanh Hoa City, in Xuan Lam Commune, Tho Xuan District, which is the birthplace of national hero Le Loi and the starting point of the Lam Son revolutionary insurrection. Lam Kinh Remains was recognized as a historical site in 1962. After Le Thai To was crowned and moved the capital to Dong Kinh (or Thang Long), he had the second biggest citadel built in his native land, Lam Son.The citadel is known as Lam Kinh, or Tay Kinh Citadel. The northern part of the citadel leans against Mount Dau. Its southern part overlooks the Chu River, 900m from which is Mount Chua standing as the front obstruction. To the east of the citadel is the Phu Lam Mountains and Mount Ngoc, which look like an arrow. To the west are Mounts Huong and
  7. 7. Ham Rong. The structures of the citadel lie along the south- north axis, resembling the Chinese character “wang” on the hilly area. The citadel is 341m in length and 254m in width. Its northern wall is built into an arrow shape, over 1m thick. There remain vestiges of the entrance and foundation of the citadel, which are found 100m from its front. The foundation is found to stretch to the bank of the Ngoc River, and it is 1.8m thick; 10m from the wall is the Ngoc River, 20m in width. Over it is a curved bridge named Tien Loan, on which there is a small house, 50m from the bridge is an ancient rectangular water well. Then comes a large yard leading to Ngo Mon Linings. Along the entrance to the gate are two stone Unicom like animals standing on rectangular platforms. Their bodies are delicately decorated. Their heads raise high forward in a defensive position. Despite the limited number of vestiges, we can assume that the site must have been a very big structure built by King Le Loi. In this place now still remain several monuments such as Le Thai To Tomb, Vinh Lang stele... 1.1.9 Bến En National Park The Ben En National Park was established on January 27, 1992. This natural site spans across Nhu Xuan and Nhu Thanh districts, 36km southwest of Thanh Hoa City. The Park is surrounded by hills and mountains. In the Park stand out some mountains such as Bu Dang, Nui Truong, Bu Co, Bao Cu, Dam and Son. The average temperature during the | year is 23.1°C; the average humidity is 85%. The Park's natural forest is 16,634 ha including 8,544 ha of primitive forest. There are also mountains, rivers, springs, lakes on mountains whose names are associated with legends and ancient tales. The Park's vegetation cover has two types of tropical forest: broad leaf green wood and semi-deciduous. One can find here some rare plants ( lim xanh, cho chi, dinh huong, trai ly) and 870 tall plant species classified into 412 genera and 134 families. Some rare animals such as the red wolf, Tibetan bear, black gibbon, phoenix, and ga tien mat vanglive in the Park.
  8. 8. Muc Lake covers an area of 3,000ha in Ben En National Park. This is a favorable environment for the development of fish species. On the upper lake (ho tren), there are 21 large and small islands and a few islets with natural trees; and the lower lake (ho duoi) borders mountains, which have exotic and huge shapes, constituting a breath-taking landscape. Inside the Hai Van Mountain Range are caves such as Ngoc, Can, Doi (Bat) famous for their mystical and astounding stalagmites. People go to the Ben En National Park to relax, to live in harmony with nature, to explore and to study rare animal species. They may have a good time to spend enjoying grilled fresh fish next to a brook. Given its great natural potential, the Park is becoming an ideal destination for those who interested in eco-tourism, sightseeing and scientific studies. The locality has spent much effort to develop infrastructure, tourist accommodations, as well as facilities for pupils, students, tourists, and scientists for the purposes of studies and visits. For the locals, the Park is the first choice for outdoor activities at weekends. With its natural landscape and its rich and precious flora and fauna, Ben En constitutes a great ecological tourist attraction. 1.1.10 Cẩm Lương Fish Stream This site belongs to Ngoc Village, Cam Luong Commune, Cam Thuy District, 80 km west of Thanh Hoa City. The stream is unique because it contains thousands of fish that no one dares catch it. Fish in the stream have red mouth and fins, and brown scales, resembling carp. Each fish weighs from two to eight kilograms, particularly, the big ones can weight 30 kg. In the morning, schools of fish swim in the stream that comes from the cave. They swim back to the cave in the evening. In addition to the Fish Stream, you can visit Cay Dang Grotto, and the Ngoc Village of Muong ethnic people.
  9. 9. Please come to this place to contemplate thousands of fish, visit beautiful caves and grottos, watch dancing performances of Muong people, and enjoy traditional lam rice and can wine. 1.2 Festivals 1.2.1 Lam Kinh Festival 22nd of the 8th lunar month Lam Kinh is the home town of the national hero Le Loi and his famous generals Le Lai, Le Thach, Le Khoi, who led the Lam Son insurrection against the Ming invaders in the 15#i century. Here, we find many tombstones, temples, tombs, and palaces, which remind us of the different kings, queens, and the royal family of the Later Le Dynasty. Every year the festival takes place on the 22nd day of the 8th lunar month (the anniversary day of the death of King Le Thai To) at Lam Kinh in the commemoration of the exploits of the national hero Le Loi, his general Le Lai, and many successive Le kings, who recovered national independence from the Ming aggressors and built the country stronger and wealthier. The festival starts with a solemn ritual and a palanquin procession from the tomb to the worshipping temple. After the offering incense rite, pilgrims have a chance to view the whole historical relics of Lam Kinh. Besides, they can watch or participate in many folk games, dances and plays such as 'Defeating the Wu", or “Vassals coming to the Royal Court”. On this occasion, the people from mountain regions of Thanh Hoa Province offer visitors valuable products such as sandal-wood, cinnamon, wood ears, aro- matic mushrooms, herbs, and so on.
  10. 10. 1.2.2 Dương Sơn Festival 4th to 7th of the 1st lunar month Duong Son Festival takes place to commemorate the important deeds of Le Phung Hieu, a renowned general of the Ly Dynasty. It comprises rice- cooking competitions, sticky rice preparation, cake baking, singing and dancing. 1.2.3 Bà Triệu Temple Festival 21st of the 2nd lunar month People come from every comer of the country to participate in the Ba Trieu Temple Festival and to recall Ba Trieu's saying, “I want to ride a strong wind, tread on a ferocious wave, cut the whale with a sword on the high seas, fight and chase the Ngo aggressors out of the country, deliver the people from the yoke of slavery, and to not give my back to be another man's concubine”. 1.2.4 Sòng Temple Festival 18th of the 3rd lunar month Song Temple Festival is held to honour the memory of Princess Lieu Hanh, a woman who was raised to the rank of Thanh Mau or Holy Mother. This festival generally has many participants who come to express their respect and gratitude and to ask for blessings.
  11. 11. 2 Nghe An province Area: 16,490.7 sq. km. Population: 2,917.4 thousand habitants (2010) Capital: Vinh City Administrative divisions: - Town: Cua Lo, Thai Hoa - Districts: Dien Chau, Quynh Luu, Yen Thanh, Do Luong, Nghi Loc, Hung Nguyen, Nam Dan, Thanh Chuong, Tan Ky, Anh Son, Con Cuong, Nghia Dan, Quy Hop, Quy Chau, Que Phong, Tuong Duong, Ky Son. Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Kho Mu, Tho, Thai, H'Mong... Geography Nghe An is a large province in the central part of Vietnam that connects the North to the South. Nghe An shares its border with Thanh Hoa in the north, East Sea in the east, Laos in the west, and Ha Tinh in the south. Nghe An is located on the North East of Truong Son range, with complicated topography, divided by hills, mountains, rivers and streams slanting from North-West to South-East, the highest peak is Pulaileng (2,711m) in Ky Son district, the low areas are Quynh Luu, Dien Chau, Yen Thanh districts and the lowest one is Quynh Thanh commune in Quynh Luu district with the altitude of 0,2m above the sea level. Mountainous and hilly lands cover 83% natural area of the whole province. Climate:The province is located in the tropical monsoon area, directly affected by the South West hot dry seasonal winds (during April- August)
  12. 12. and the North East wet and cold seasonal winds (during November- March). The annual average temperature varies between 23oC and 24oC. Tourism Nghe An has enjoyed favourable conditions in terms of geographical location. The province has the national highways and railway, as well as the Cua Lo International Port and Vinh Airport. Nghe An marks the starting point of the Heritage route in the central part, and the legendary Ho Chi Minh Trail. In addition, it is also the starting point of the tourist route following the east-west corridor, connecting Vinh- Laos- Thailand through Highway No. 8. Two thirds of its area is forested. Nature has endowed Nghe An with beautiful landscapes for tourism development. Among them include its long seaside with pristine beaches, especially Cua Lo which is considered one of the best in Vietnam, and Pu Mat National Park, which is home to diverse flora and fauna, apart from breath-taking landscapes. Nghe An takes pride in its tradition in the building and defence of the nation. One hundred and thirty-one historical-cultural sites have been recognized as national treasures. The Kim Lien historical-cultural site, the native village of President Ho Chi Minh, World Cultural Celebrity and National Liberation Hero, is one among those. Nghe An people have won kudos for their intelligence, diligence, eagerness to study and their hospitality, cultural traditional imbued with national identity. Nghe An is fast changing with every passing days. It will be a highlighted destination for tourists near and far. Transportation Nghe An is one of the important clue of transportation throughout the country. It has diversified and developed transportation, including land road, railway, river road, air port and sea port which are formed and
  13. 13. scattered quite reasonably by residential zone, economic and administration centre. -Road: highway 7, highway 48, highway 46, highway 15... Vinh is 14km from Kim Lien Village, 16km from Cua Lo Beach, 139km from Thanh Hoa, 197km from Dong Hoi, 291km from Hanoi, 368km from Hue, and 468km from Danang. - Railway: 124km (of which 94km North - South line, with 7 stations, Vinh station is the main station. - Airway: Vinh airport, Vinh - Danang - Tan Son Nhat flight (and reverse direction). - Seaport: Cua Lo port now for the 10,000 toned ship. It will be convenience for being the international clue. - Border gate: Nam Can. Tourist attractions 2.1.1 The Native Land of President Ho Chi Minh Starting from Vinh City, take Road No. 46 for about 13km, then turn into a red earth path lined with eucalyptus and casuarinas trees. The path will lead you to Sen, also known as Kim Lien (Golden Lotus), village where there are many lotus ponds. The thatched cottage where President Ho Chi Minh used to live during his childhood is built from bamboo and wood. It has five compartments. The interior furniture is similar to that of other farmers' houses: a wooden bed, a bamboo chong (a bamboo bed without raised walls at the two ends), a hammock made from hemp, and an altar. It was built in 1901 with the help and donations of the villagers as a present to Nguyen Sinh Sac, President Ho Chi Minh's father, when he gained the doctoral title at the court exam, which glorified his village.
  14. 14. 2.1.2 Chùa Village (the homeland of Ho Chi Minh) Located two kilometers from Sen Village, Chua Village is just as peaceful as any other Vietnamese villages. But it is famous, both domestically and internationally, as President Ho Chi Minh's maternal homeland and the place where he was bom and brought up by his mother. Walking through a bamboo gate and a path lined with low plums; visitors will see two simple thatched cottages, Ho Chi Minh's house. 2.1.3 The Worship House - Mr. Hoang Duong's House Mr. Hoang Duong, President Ho Chi Minh's maternal grandfather, built this simple cottage in 1882 to make it a place for worshipping his paternal grand grandfather, grandfather, and father. The altar is decorated in a simple but solemn fashion. Attractive to visitors is the pair of parallel sentences hung in the front of the house, which praise the family clan's fame. The house has five compartments and two lean-tos. Three outer compartments adjoin with the worship house; so it is well ventilated. Mr. Hoang Duong used to teach his students while sitting on the wooden bed placed in the first compartment. In the second compartment, there is a bamboo sofa and a table where he placed his pen-bmshes and ink-slab. He and his students would take a rest on the bed put in the third compartment. The remaining two compartments were used as his wife's bedroom and the family’s living room. 2.1.4 The tomb of Mrs. Hoang Thi Loan (1868-1901) In 1985, on the occasion of President Ho Chi Minh's 95th birthday anniversary, the people in Nghe An Province built her tomb on Mount Dong Tranh. From the mount foot, visitors will have to climb nearly 300 stone steps leading to the tomb. Above it is a concrete roof stylized as the loom
  15. 15. with which Mrs. Hoang Thi Loan used to weave cloth to earn a living and feed her children. 2.1.5 Cửa Lò Beach Cua Lo Beach is located 16km from Vinh City. This 10km sandy beach is outlined by pine forests. It is a nice beach with its white sand and clear blue water. Realizing the potential of Cua Lo as a seaside resort, the French built villas for the exclusive use of the French community. Unfortunately, the villas were destroyed during the first Indochina war. Not far from the beach are 3 islands: Hon Ngu, Hon Chu, and Hon Mat with natural and primitive landscape which is attractive to visitors. Once in Cua Lo, tourists can visit the islands by boat, climb the mountains, dive, and visit historical and literary sites such as the temple in honor of Nguyen Xi in Nghi Hop Commune, the Trung Kien Pagoda in Nghi Thiet Commune, and the Hoang Van family altar in Cua Lo. Nowadays in Cua Lo, a number of rest houses and hotels, and modem services system have been constructed to meet the need of the travelers. 2.1.6 Cuông Temp Cuong Temple is situated on Mo Da Mountain, in Dien An Village, Dien Trung Commune, Dien Chau District, near National Highway 1A, 30km north of Vinh City. The temple was built to worship Thuc An Duong Vuong, the successor of the Hung Kings. According to legend, it was erected on the exact location where he took his own life. The temple was built as the Chinese character tam (three) and consists of three parallel residences. On the roofs, there are running lions and two dragons looking at the moon. Cuong Temple is an interesting site to visit.
  16. 16. 2.1.7 Pu Mat National Park The Pu Mat National Park lies in three districts of Anh Son, Con Cuong and Tuong Duong, belongs to the West Nghe An Biosphere Reserve which was recognized fc by UNESCO as World Biosphere Reserve on February 2008. The West Nghe An Biosphere Reserve is the largest biosphere reserve in Viet Nam, with special scientific, environmental, cultural and humanity values. The flora in this park is very abundant with 1,513 species of upper plants from 159 families of 545 branches. There are 220 varieties of precious herbal plants such as multiflorous knotweed, China-roots, cinnamon, codonop- sis, oppositifolius yam, etc. and timbers, aloe wood as well as hundreds of vegetables and fruit trees. Especially, there are many century- old trees with the diameter of over 4.7m. The fauna in Pu Mat consists of 42 species of mammals (tigers, cheetahs, wild boars, black gibbons, Malayan bears), 20 species of small animal, 295 species of birds (including pheinardia ocellata, pheasants, wild chickens). Especially, in Pu Mat, there are two rare species of muntjacs and three Indochinese endemic species: sao la, striped rabbits and black white- cheeked gibbons. This is a natural treasure and an attractive ecotourism site. In the park, there are many waterfalls (Khe Kem is over 140m high) and beautiful grottoes. Many seminars on national parks have confirmed that among national parks in Viet Nam, Pu Mat has the largest area, the highest biodiversity and the best landscape. Pu Mat National Park is an ideal site for ecotourism, relaxation, research and adventurous tourism.
  17. 17. 2.2 Festivals 2.2.1 Cuông Temple festival 15th day of the 2nd lunar month The festival takes place every year in Cuong Temple to commemorate King Thuc An Duong Vuong who built the Au Lac Nation. The festival is organized in solemn. During the festival, many folk games took places such as Vi singing, phuong vai singing. 2.2.2 Thanh Đàm Festival 15th to 18th day of the 2nd lunar month The festival takes place every year in Thanh Dam Village and people ask for material self- sufficiency. The Mussel Procession on the river occurs on the main day of the festival. The master of ceremonies throws handfuls of mussels into the river in hopes that the Genie of the Water will make the shells reproduce to provide the population with plenty of food. 2.2.3 Quỳnh Festivals 27th day of the 12th lunar month The village of Quynh, in Quynh Luu District, has more than 500 years of history. Every year, a festival is organized to commemorate the founders of the village. The main part of the festival involves a procession to take the genies to the communal house. Wrestling competitions provide the participants with great entertainment.
  18. 18. 3 Ha Tinh province Area: 6,025.6 sq. km. Population: 1,228 thousand habitants (2010) Capital: Ha Tinh City Administrative divisions: - Town: Hong Linh - Districts: Huong Son, Duc Tho, Nghi Xuan, Can Loc, Huong Khe, Thach Ha, Cam Xuyen, Ky Anh, Vu Quang, Loc Ha. Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Thai, Muong, Chut. Geography Ha Tinh is located on the Northern Central of Vietnam, surrounded by Nghe An Province on the north, Quang Binh Province on the south, Laos on the west, and East Sea on the east. Locating at the east of Truong Son Mountain Range, Ha Tinh's terrain is both narrow and sloping, tilting towards the east. To the west is a high mountain range (with average height of 1,500m), following with a range of hills, small and narrow elongated plain and coastal sandy banks. Mountainous terrain accounts for 80% of the province's natural area that is sharply differentiated and divided, forming deferent ecological areas. There are 14 rivers such as Ngan Pho, Ngan Sau, Cay. The coastline is 137km in length which is suitable for making salt, rearing shellfish such as shrimps, crabs, oysters, snails...
  19. 19. Ha Tinh belongs to the tropical monsoon area. The annual average temperature is 23.7o C. There are two clear seasons:Raining season lasts from August to November. Annually average rainfall is from 2500mm to 2650mm, account to 54% of whole year.Dry season is from December to July next year. The weather is dry, hot and highly vaporizing West- Southern wind (blowing from Laos). Tourisms The province has many special internal tourism places ecologically, historically, culturally, namely National Park of Vu Quang, Ke Go reservoir, Hong Linh Mountain, interests inhering to poet Nguyen Du, monument of comrade Tran Phu - First General Secretary of Vietnamese Communist Party, Dong Loc Road Junction - a monument sticking with glorious victory of Vietnam against the US. Then, tourists are able to relax in Xuan Thanh, Thien Cam, Thach Hai or Deo Con beaches, or in medical treatment area of Son Kim Hot Spring. Ha Tinh preserves many temples, pagodas such as Cua Dieu Tower, Huong Tich, Bich Chau, Yen Lac pagodas, Tam Lang, Chieu Trung temples. Coming there, visitor do not forget make tour to some of handicrafts villages such as Van Cham, Minh Long iron, Duc Lam cooper, Cam Trang pottery, Thai Yen wood, Ha silt, Ho cloth. Apart of that, tourists can follow National Road No. 8 passing Cau Treo Border Gate to Laos, Thailand and other ASEAN countries... Ethnic groups Ha Tinh population is mainly Viet (Kinh) following Mau believing, Confucianism, Buddhist, tutelary gods worship. The province is home of Hai Thuong Lan Ong- a famous physician, Nguyen Du, Huy Can poets, and Nguyen Cong Tru, Tran Phu, Ha Huy Tap, Ngo Duc Ke. Transportation
  20. 20. The transportation is convenient with National Highway No. 1A and Thong Nhat Express Train crossing the province. There is Keo Nua Border Gate linking to Laos, Thailand. Ha Tinh City is 341km from Hanoi. Tourist attractions 3.1.1 Đồng Lộc Road Juntion The intersection of provincial roads 5 and 15 used to be the main junction of the supply line during the war against the United States. American aircrafts heavily bombarded the area in repeated efforts to destroy the junc- tion. The 20km section of road underwent 2,057 air bombardments. A unit of ten young female volunteers, aged to 24, led by Vo Thi Tan was assigned to keep the road open to traffic. Despite repeated bombardments, they stayed at their post, using only shovels and hoes to level bomb craters. They were all tragically killed during an air attack on 24 July 1968. A monument engraved with the names of the ten heroines was erected on a hill at the Dong Loc Road Junction. 3.1.2 Thiên Cầm Beach and Moutain Thien Cam Beach is situated approximately 20 kilometres southwest of Ha Tinh City, in Thien Cam Small Town, Cam Xuyen District. Thien Cam Beach has long been famous for its beautiful pristine landscape and a 10km long white-sand beach. The sea is almost always calm all the year round and this is good for swimming and relaxation. It is a good idea to lie on Thien Cam beach to listen to the natural music created by breezes and waves hitting rocks and mountains like celestial instruments, which is translated as Thien Cam in the Vietnamese language. The low mountains near the sea have created a beautiful landscape. Coming to Thien Cam Beach, visitors can visit several surrounding interesting places. Separated from the mountain by a sandbank is Yen Lac Pagoda, built during the 13th century. It boasts antiques, including a bronze
  21. 21. bell, Buddhist statues and a famous set of paintings called The King of Hell's Ten Palaces’. The pagoda with a 600 year-old Bohdi tree and surrounded by the sea on three sides, receives thousands of visitors and pilgrims each year. Visitors can also walk in pine forests and have picnics in Thien Cam Mountain and Ho Quy Ly Cave, or tour of the Nhuong Ban 500-year-old fishing village. Villagers love performing traditional songs and dances, reflecting their daily life and tales of conquering the sea's fierceness. Not far from the beach are En and Boc islands where delicious seafood and dean beaches are available. If tourists are not satisfied with Thien Cam, they can take a boat for a cruise of half an hour to Boc Island to view imposing rocks over-looking the sea. Behind these rocks is a clean beach ideal for swimming in the rippling of the water surface and under the sunshine. Sitting in huts on the island to have boiled fresh seafood in the late afternoon is a common habit for most visitors. Not far from the island is Tien (fairy) Beach at the foot of Tuong Mount, with stone caves where both currents of salty and fresh waters meet. The French built Thien Cam to be a resort, but the wars nearly destroyed the entire infrastructure. Thien Cam was then designed as a tourism resort in 1991, covering 249 ha. Many hotels and guest houses have been built since then. Nowadays, Thien Cam Beach has become a tourist site where many like to spend their vacations. 3.1.3 Hồng Lĩnh Mountains The great Vietnamese poet Nguyen Du was bom in this grandiose and poetic area. Approximately 100 pagodas, temples and shrines, including Huong Tich Pagoda and Chan Tien Pagoda, are scattered throughout the 99 peaks of the Hong Linh Mountains.
  22. 22. 3.1.4 Kẻ Gỗ Lake This beautiful artificial lake, surrounded by hills and mountains in Cam Xuyen District, is located 70km south of Vinh. It took four years to build the 30km-long lake, the main dam and the ten auxiliary dams. The lake is an attractive tourist site where people can go swimming, fishing or hiking. Ke Go Lake is also an abundant source of food for the neighbouring areas. The fish and shrimps from the lake are very tasty and can reach impressive sizes. 3.1.5 Nguyễn Du Memorial Site Nguyen Du (1765-1820) is a great poet and cultural celebrity of Viet Nam. The temple dedicated to him was built in 1825 in his native land of Tien Dien Village, Nghi Xuan District.The vestiges associated with Nguyen Du and the Nguyen clan scatters on an area of 20ha in Tien Dien Village, stretching from the bank of the Lam River to the border with Dong Cung region. The Nguyen Du memorial site is about two hectares in area. From the main entrance, we can see the guesthouse, village literati temples No 2 and No 1, memorial site to Nguyen Quynh, Temple dedicated to Nguyen Du, and exhibition room. The room displays some valuable objects such as the ink-slabs, plates made of shell Nguyen Du received as gifts during his ambassadorial trip to China, a compass he used for hunting, a wine bottle and cups, and the container of the royal diplomas conferred on Nguyen Nghiem. Nguyen Du's burial site is located in Dong Cung, consisting of an altar, the tomb, and a garden. The altar has a stone stele and a statue in the shape of a table. The stele is carved with 19th century designs. Visiting the site, especially Nguyen Du's tomb, tourists have the chance to share the suffering of human life with the immense soul of a great poet of the Vietnamese.
  23. 23. 3.2 Festivals 3.2.1 Xuan Dien Festival 4th to 8th ofthe 1st lunar month This festival takes place in Phan Xa and Loi Xa villages, as well as in Ich Mau, in Can Loc District, to commemorate the memory of the Tam Lang Genie who helped Dai Viet troops defeat foreign aggressors. Some special activities include tuong and cheo performances, as well as rice-cooking competitions. Every three years, a dragon-boat race and a procession for the Spirit are organised on the stream in front of the temple.
  24. 24. 4 Quang Binh province Area: 8,065.3 sq. km. Population: 849.3 thousand habitants (2010) Capital: Dong Hoi City. Districts: Tuyen Hoa, Minh Hoa, Quang Trach, Bo Trach, Quang Ninh, Le Thuy. Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Bru - Van Kieu, Chut, Tay. Geography Located in North-Central Vietnam, Quang Binh Province is surrounded by Ha Tinh Province on the north, East Sea on the east, Laos on the west and Quang Tri Province on the south. The provincial topography is narrow and sloping from the west to the east. The area is divided into specific geological zones: mountainous, hilly and midland, lowland, coastal sandy area. The seaside stretches 116km with large Gianh and Nhat Le ports. Quang Binh belongs to the monsoon-tropical zone. The climate is divided into two seasons. Rainy season lasts from September to March next year. The annual average rainfall is 2,000-2,300mm. Heavy rains concentrate in September, October and November. Dry season lasts from April to August. Annual average degree is 24oC-26oC. Tourist Quang Binh is famous for many charming landscape of mountain and sea. The coast is dotted with blue water, yellow sand beaches that sparkle under forests of green willow trees.
  25. 25. Every year, Quang Binh attracts many visitors coming to interesting landscapes such as Phong Nha, Tien Son caves, primitive forest in Phong Nha - Ke Bang reserve, Nhat Le, Da Nhay beaches, Bang Mineral Hot Spring, etc. Among of them, Phong Nha?- Ke Bang National Park has been recognized as the World Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2003. In addition of these, Quang Binh preserves objects from Bau Tro Remains, Hoa Binh and Dong Son culture as well as historical relics like Quang Binh Gate, Luy Thay, Rao Sen... Many places related two resistance wars name Cu Nam, Canh Duong, Cha Lo, Cong Troi, Xuan Son, Long Dai and Ho Chi Minh Trail. Transprotation Road, rail and shipping routes are fairly well developed. Dong Hoi City is 491km from Hanoi, 94km from Dong Ha, 166km from Hue, and 197km from Vinh. National Highway No.1A and North-South Express Train runs throw the province and stop at Dong Hoi City. Quang Binh has Cha Lo Border Gate in Minh Hoa District to Laos. 4.1 Tourist attractions 4.1.1 Phong Nha - Kẻ Bàng Nation Park: the World Natural Heritage Site The complex of Phong Nha - Ke Bang is 50km from the northwest of Dong Hoi City. It covers an area of 85,754 hectares. This complex is a part of the area of the oldest limestone mountains in Asia, which were taken shape 400 million years ago. In addition, it contains special values of the formation and development of the earth. Primitive forest accounts for 94 percent of the area of the entire forest, so its biodiversity is richest among Vietnamese forests. The forest boasts 568 floras and 876 faunas, many of which are listed in Viet Nam's Red Book. With the great value, Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park was recognized as the World Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2003.
  26. 26. 4.1.2 Phong Nha Grotto The beautiful grotto of Phong Nha is also a part of this world heritage site. It has a length of 13,000 meters with 14 large caves which are from 10 to 40 meters high. At the entrance are stalactites that look like huge teeth. Deep inside the caves are stalactites and stalagmites in various unusual shapes. A group of English geologists, together with SE Vietnamese colleagues, investigated Phong Nha Grotto and a number of other caves. The group boated deep inside the grotto and discovered that this is the longest underground river in Viet Nam. It is attractive to geologists, hydro geologists and explorers. An investigation of Vietnamese and foreign geologists shows that Phong Nha has “seven best” in Viet Nam: longest cave, highest and widest entrance, the most beautiful sand and rock banks, the most beautiful underground river, the most magnificent and fanciful stalactites and stalagmites, the longest underground river, the widest and the most beauti- ful dry cave. 4.1.3 Tiên Son Grotto 400m from the entrance of Phong Nha Grotto and 130m above sea level is Tien Son Grotto. It is also known as Dry Grotto or Upper Phong Nha. Climbing to steps, visitors reach the entrance of Tien Son Grotto. Deep 1,000m inside the mountain, the grotto looks like a stone castle. Its vault is high and well- venti- lated, and has white veins that seem to be gilded with silver and gold. Particularly, visitors to the grotto can enjoy acoustic resonance from slabs of stones and stone columns. When you knock at stones, they produce
  27. 27. unusual sounds that seem to resound from the earth's womb. Tien Son Grotto is 980m long. Approximately 400m from the entrance is a 10m-deep abyss, and that is also the distance visitors are allowed to go in. According to the studies of explorers from the British Royal Geographic Association, Tien Son Grotto was formed millions of years ago. It is even older than Phong Nha Grotto. Phong Nha and Tien Son create a beautiful picture in the complex of caves and grottoes in Phong Nha-Ke Bang Natural Heritage Site. Phong Nha Caves are 50km from Dong Hoi City. Opening time of sightseeing site: 7am to 5pm every day. Cultural and Ecological Tourist Center (under the National Park's Management Board) Son Trach Commune, Bo Trach District Tel/Fax: (052) 3677 323 4.1.4 Thiên Đường Grotto The newly-discovered Thien Duong Grotto is situated at Milestone 16 on the western line of the Ho Chi Minh Road, within the Phong Nha- Ke Bang National Park, Phu Trach Commune, Phu Binh District, about 30km from Phong Nha-Tien Son Grottos. It is a dry grotto with no underground river. The early evaluation of the British Royal Expedition shows that Thien Duong remains untouched, with a very splendid beauty, longer and larger than Phong Nha or Tien Son Grottos. In the grotto, there are several high and wide arches with numberless strange shapes. Deep in the grotto, stalactites are much unique than elsewhere, even in Phong Nha or Tien Son Grottos. The big, round beautiful stalactites adjoining one another sparkle like stars in the dark sky.
  28. 28. Thien Duong Grotto contributes to promoting the values of the world natural heritage site of the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. 4.1.5 Quảng Bình Citadel Gate This structure consists of an arch-gate and walls built in 1630 to protect Phu Xuan, the remote capital of the Nguyen Dynasty. Due to several battles and the passage of time, the citadel gate has suffered heavy damages. Fortunately though, it has since been restored to its original design. Visitors crossing the territory of Quang Binh will be delighted by the wonderful landscapes surrounding the Citadel Gate. 4.1.6 Nhật Lệ Beach and Bàu Tró Remains This beauty spot is 2km north of Dong Hoi City, next to the Nhat Le Estuary. Nhat Le Beach is beautiful and very popular. In addition to sea bathing, visitors also have an opportunity to see the Bau Tro vestige. In 1923, a French geologist excavated and discovered remains of primitive Stone Age people 5,000 years ago. This is the point of intersection of the Vietnamese and Cham cultures. 4.1.7 Lý Hòa Beauty Spot This beauty spot is situated next to National Highway 1A, 24km from the city of Dong Hoi City. Ly Hoa is a small pass at the bottom of which there are many rocks breaking through the surface of the water. Not far from there, is Da Nhay Beach, a long expanse of white sand with blue water and gentle waves. The landscape is fascinating and an ideal place for sea bathing. Visitors can also go and see the Phong Nha Caves via the river.
  29. 29. 4.1.8 Cảnh Dương Sea Village The village is by the National Highway N°1A and close to Roon River Mouth, very convenient for traffic between the North and the South. Canh Duong is the most bustling and prosperous village in the coastal area of Quang Binh Province. Moreover, it also has a long history and cultural tradition. In 1643, people from Nghi Loc, Nghe An Province chose the sandy area near Roon River Mouth for their settlement. With the passage of time, the village has become crowded. Fishing, seafood processing and trade have been increasingly thriving. In addition to economic development, residents also pay much attention to cultural activities. Every spring, the vil- !age organizes festival with the ritual of deities procession, and traditional games, such as human chess, rice-cooking competition, boat race, and singing contest. 4.1.9 Vực Quành Cultural and Ecological Tourist Site Vuc Quanh Cultural and Ecological Tourist Site is located in Trung Nghia Hamlet 7, Nghia Ninh Commune, 4km west of Dong Hoi City, covering an area of about 10 hectares. From the gate of this resort, follow a small path lined with trees on one side and a winding stream on the other side, one comes to a village with traditional houses having I thatched roofs, walls made of mud mixed with straw. Each house has a yard, and an orchard garden with underground A*shaped shelters lying scattered around. Inside these shelters are displayed tools and equipment for kindergartens, schools, and hospitals. In the two banks of the stream are put gasoline drums and bags of rice. A network of trenches, ferries or communication lines are also built. Tourists feel like visiting Quang Binh 30 years ago, amidst its struggle against enemy fierce bombings.
  30. 30. Besides the war village-museum, the investor also sets up many camping sites for tourists along the stream. In addition, there is also about 1 kilometer of the reproduced Truong Son Trail. Tourists can drive a Zin 130 truck in this rugged trail to experience the difficulties of the soldiers during the resistance war. This tourist site is just 2km away from the Ho Chi Minh Road and lies on the same route to Phong Nha Cave. It has become one of the famous tourist attractions in Quang Binh Province. 4.1.10 Bang Mineral Hot Spring Located 60km south of Dong Hoi City, in Kim Thuy Commune, Le Thuy District, Bang Mineral Hot Spring has been recorded as the only hot water source in Viet Nam with an on-spot temperature of 105°C. The mineral water with a composition of many precious elements has become an internationally prestigious mineral water source. In addition, this hot spring is potential for resorts. Investments have been made on several ten hectares of land area for the development of swimming pools, spas, and accommodation and tourist services to make Bang Mineral Hot Spring a favorite resort and wellness tourism destination of both international and domestic visitors. Besides health and eco-tourism, the southern Quang Binh tours with many privileged natural landscapes are also favored tourist attractions of the area. These tours will provide tourists with memorable visits to the national General Vo Nguyen Giap exhibition house, the tomb and temple of mandarin Nguyen Huu Canh who greatly contributed to the national expansion to today Ca Mau Cape, picturesque An Ma Lake and many other cultural and historical vestiges.
  31. 31. 4.2 Festivals 4.2.1 Cầu Ngư Festival 14th to 16th of the 4th lunar month The festival is held annually for 3 days in Bao Ninh Commune, Dong Hoi City. The village's communal house is dedicated to two fishers and Whale, which, according to legend, saved the village's fishers in a heavy storm. The festival begins with the ritual of whale skeleton procession. After that, amateur artists perform traditional songs and folk dancing. On the following day, people take part in the ritual of “going to the sea". They float paper boats and fish to the sea, and then pray for good weather and a bumper crop. 4.2.2 Boat Race in Quang Binh National Day 2 September Like residents in coastal areas, Dong Hoi City and Le Thuy people in Quang Binh annually organize boat races on the National Day (2 September). These boat races have taken place for more than one hundred years. In the past, Dong Hoi City boat race was held every six years, in the years of Mouse and Horse. The race ended with buong phao ceremony to commemorate the persons who drowned. Le Thuy boat race took place in spring or in the sixth lunar month after the harvest.After the 1945 August Revolution, these two boat races have been held on 2 September j added with cultural activities of this land.
  32. 32. 5 Quang Tri province Area: 4,747 sq. km. Population: 600.5 thousand habitants (2010) Capital: Dong Ha City. Administrative divisions: - Town: Quang Tri - Districts: Vinh Linh, Gio Linh, Cam Lo, Trieu Phong, Hai Lang, Huong Hoa, Da Krong, Con Co. Ethnic groups: Viet (Kinh), Bru - Van Kieu, Ta Oi, Hoa. Geography Located on North - Central Vietnam Quang Tri is surrounded by Quang Binh Province on the north, Thua Thien-Hue Province on the south, Savanakhet (Laos)on the west, East Sea on the east with 75km seaside. Topography consists of mountains, hills, plains, sand dune and seaside. The long coast and complex network of rives includes Ben Hai, Cam Lo, Quang Tri, Thach Han making a good condition for hydroelectricity and aquiculture. The weather condition is very severe with hot and dry south- west winds. Annual average temperature is 24°C. Tourism Quang Tri preserves many remains from the anti- American resistance war such as the ancient citadel of Quang Tri, Khe Sanh Combat Base, Truong Son National Cemetery, Vinh Moc Tunnels, Hien Luong Bridge and Ben Hai River. Coming to there, tourists are able to take interesting holiday in Dakrong Beauty Spot and Cua Tung Beach. The beach has sparkling clean water, silky sand and soft breeze, the whisper made by the rows of casuarinas
  33. 33. trees. It is very pleasant to go on boat down stream on the Ben Hai River and admire the beautiful landscapes. Transportation Dong Ha City is 74km from Hue City, 80km from Lao Bao Border crossing, 94km from Dong Hoi (Quang Binh Province), 190km from Danang, 617km from Hanoi, and 1,112km from Ho Chi Minh City . National Highway No.1A runs through the province and National Highway No.9, the Trans-Asia Highway connects with the Lao Bao international border gate to Laos. 5.1 Tourist attractions 5.1.1 Khe Sanh Combat Base Khe Sanh is a valley surrounded entirely by rolling mountains and forest. Geographically, it is very similar to Dien Bien Phu. It used to be an American defence station that was believed to be unassailable. More than 10,000 army men, not to mention many other troops ready to intervene, were stationed there. However, after 5 months of intensive battles, the Vietnamese Liberation Army succeeded in taking over Khe Sanh. 5.1.2 Trường Sơn National Cemetery The cemetery is located on a hill surrounded by eight hills like an eight- petal flower in Vinh Truong Commune, Gio Linh District, Quang Tri Province, dose to Road No15, 25km north-west of Dong Ha City. It is 106 ha in area. The main part, 40 ha, houses 10,263 tombs of fallen soldiers and is divided into 24 smaller sections which are categorized according to localities. This part is located in 6 hills, and the memorial monument is situated on the highest hill. The Memorial of the Nation to Soldiers' Sacrifices has three sides representing the three Indochinese countries
  34. 34. leaning on each other to fight the enemy. Between sections 4 and 5 is a group of monuments in memory of the heroism of Battalion 559 and Viet Nam-Laos solidarity. The cemetery is the resting-place of soldiers who fell on the Ho Chi Minh Trail, which has become part of the history of anti-American war, and in battlefields in the Central part of the country. This is the biggest, highly artistic memorial site showing the people's deep sorrow, gratitude and respect for those who have sacrificed their lives for the liberation of the nation. Every year, it welcomes thousands of visitors from around the country. Many foreigners have crossed thousands of miles to visit it. Truong Son National Cemetery is 9km south of the Ben Hai River. 5.1.3 Vịnh Mốc Tunnels The Vinh Moc Tunnels are a unique infrastructure of tens of underground passages in the village of Vinh Linh District. The tunnels were dug while the country was at the anti- American war, between 1965 and 1966. The tunnels used to be thousands of meters long. But now there remain only 1,700m. This underground network is linked with 13 doors (seven opening to the sea and six to the hills). The structure is divided into three layers, the deepest being 23m underground. They are connected by a 768m main axis that is 1.6 to 1.8m high and 1.2 to 1.5m wide. Along the two sides of the main axis are housing chambers. There is also a large meeting hall with a seating capacity of 50 to 80 people, which was used for meetings, movies, art performances, surgeries, and even the delivery of babies (17 were bom here). There are also four air wells, two watch stations and three water wells. Visiting the tunnels, tourists seem to be living in the wartime, and they can meet with friendly locals who recorded numerous wonderful victories.
  35. 35. 5.1.4 Quảng Trị Citadel The citadel was built in 1824, the fourth year of the Minh Mang's reign, in Thach Han Commune, Trieu Hai District. It is nearly 3km in perimeter and 4m in height. It has four doors looking to the main four directions: east, west, south, and north. Outside its walls is a trench 18m wide. In 1972, during the anti-American resistance war for national salvation, Vietnamese liberation soldiers stationed at the citadel had to cope with American and South Vietnamese armies' huge bombings as eight times destructive as the nuclear bomb the US dropped onto Hirosima of Japan in 1945. The soldiers, however, were determined to protect the citadel for 81 consecutive days and nights, from 28 June to 16 September 1972, despite the extremely grave situation.The citadel has gone down in history as a glo- rious symbol of the nation’s war against foreign invasion. The Vietnamese people are proud of it, and foreigners admire it. Looking at its walls riddled with bullet holes, visitors will feel how devastating the war was. In order to commemorate the soldiers' meritorious service, a monument was set up in the centre of the citadel as a symbol of the indomitable spirit of the Quang Tri people and army and as a token of gratitude to the sacrifices of the fallen soldiers for the independence and freedom of the nation. 5.1.5 Bến Hải River and Hiền Lương Bridge Ben Hai River, also known as Rao Thanh River, starts from Truong Son Mountains and runs 100km through it to meet the sea at Cua Tung (Tung River Mouth). The widest part of the river is about 200m. The portion covered by Hien Luong Bridge is approximately 170m wide.
  36. 36. Prior to the construction of the steel bridge, supervised by a French army engineer in 1950, the only way to cross the river was by boat. The bridge is 178m long and has seven girders. Its surface was made of wooden planks. Under the Geneva Accord on Vietnam signed in 1954, the Ben Hai River was selected as a temporary demarcation line separating the country into two parts for military regrouping purposes. Hien Luong Bridge was then divided into two parts, each part serving as a border gate. Today, Hien Luong Bridge has become a historic landmark and a great tourist attraction. 5.1.6 Dakrong Beauty Spot Dakrong beauty spot is the general name of an area graced with the romantic and majes- tic natural scenery of the mountains west of Quang Tri. The Dakrong River, that inspired many epic and cultural legends, runs through the area. Over the river shrouded in mist, stands the charming Dakrong Bridge. Waterways, moun- tains and forests stretch as far as the eye can see. Nearby, there is a precious natural min- eral water source. Dakrong was an important site on the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Now Highway 9, the Trans-Asia Highway, passes through this site en route to the international border gate in Lao Bao-Den Sa Van. 5.1.7 Cửa Tùng Beach Although Cua Tung Beach is not very wide or long, it has its own beauty. The beach has sparkling blue water, silky sand, and it is touched by soft breezes throughout the year. It is very pleasant to go on a boat down stream on the Ben Hai River and view the beautiful landscape. From Hien Luong Bridge, the tour boat will
  37. 37. bring visitors along the river where rice and maize fields, green bamboo belts, rows of Casuarinas trees, and villages are visible far off into the distance. In the evening, there are many albatross flying across the sky and diving down into the blue water. As night falls, it is time for wind and sea music, the sound of the waves and the whisper made by the rows of casuarinas trees. Cua Tung is no doubt a great place for both a holiday and a rest. 5.1.8 Trường Sơn Trail In late 1950s and early 1960s, the goods and ammunition were transported by human physical strength from the North to the South of Viet Nam in service of the resistance against the US aggressors. It took six months to a year for each batch of goods to reach the south. The requirements from the battlefields posed an urgent need of mechanized means of transport. In May 1959, the Truong Son Trail was officially put into use. Later, it developed a network of crisscrossed roads, winding alongside with the Truong Son mountainrange. The section in Quang Tri was considered the most pivotal point. During the resistance, Truong Son Trail was subjected to the US fierce bombings. As the US and its lackeys failed to cut off the flow of goods from the north to the south, they launched many operations and used paratroops in the hope of destroying this supply source. Moreover, they also utilized modem electronic means to detect the targets such as electronic fences, recorders. However, the Truong Son Trail was not only protected, but also expanding on a par with the requirement from various battlefields. It spanned over 20,000km, including five main arteries, 13 crossroads, and four parallel axes. Despite numerous difficulties, the Vietnamese soldiers still ensured the smooth transportation in this trail.
  38. 38. Statistical data show that during the 5920 days the Truong Son Trail was put into operation, the enemy launched 800,000 sorties, of which 30,000 sorties of B-52, throwing 2.5 million tons of bombs. They launched all together 1,300 operations. The Vietnamese soldiers downed 2,455 aircrafts, putting out of action 18,470 enemy soldiers. The Truong Son Trail, now the Ho Chi Minh Road, has gone into history as a historical evidence of the strength of our all-people war, the staunchness and bravery of the Vietnamese people. 5.2 Festivals 5.2.1 Thượng Phước Festival 13th to 15th of the 3rd lunar month Thuong Phuoc festival takes places in Trieu Thuong Commune, Trieu Phong District. The festival is annually held in 3 days of the third lunar month to commemorate Hoang Dung who found Thuong Phuoc village. 5.2.2 Cướp cù Festival 4th to 5th of the 1st lunar month The festival is organized annually at the An My Communal house in Cam Pho village, Gio My Commune, Gio Linh district in 2 days. After the religious rituals is the game of catching tops. Everybody can take part in the game. This is a sport game with folk properties.

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