Waves and Sands in Binh Thuan

Published:  10:30 Wednesday - November 14, 2012

Waves and Sands in Binh Thuan

Stretching 192km along the coast, Binh Thuan Province borders south-Central and Southeast Vietnam, having the geographical, economic and cultural characteristics of both areas, which makes its tourism potential, especially sea tourism the most unique in the country.


“Paradise” of health resorts

On October 24, 1995 a total solar eclipse occurred in Phan Thiet Town (now Phan Thiet City) of Binh Thuan Province, attracting hundreds of thousands of domestic and international scientists and visitors. Since that day, the name of Binh Thuan has become an impressive spot on the tourist map of Vietnam and the world as well, and the 24th of October has become the Province’s Tourism Day.

Regarding Binh Thuan’s tourism sector it is impossible not to mention the geographical name of Mui Ne – Phan Thiet which is considered a paradise of health resorts. Since long ago, the image of Mui Ne with white sand dunes stretching out in the bright sunshine of a tropical region, waves of sea crashing into the calm fishing village, rows of coconut trees and stone steps of different size and shapes has become familiar to visitors.
Mui Ne boasts the “Sand Hill”, a very magnificent landscape which has become an endless source of inspiration for photographers due to its changing appearance caused by wind. Mui Ne is also the capital of resorts in Vietnam, with over 100 eco-convalescence centres, resorts and villas with natural, beautiful sites, modern architecture, a fresh sea environment, sunshine, wind and sand.

Kite-surfing, a favourite sport of many people in Binh Thuan Province.

Exploring the beauty of sand hills by field motorbikes.

White and red sand hills at Phan Thiet coastal area always attract the tourists’ attention.

Novotel golf course in the centre of Phan Thiet City.

Bathing in mud and Vinh Hao mineral water lures many visitors.

Shiva Resort will soon be put into operation, which provides modern interior and comfortable services
friendly with the environment and full of Cham culture.

The most ancient lighthouse in Southeast Asia (built in 1899) at Ke Ga Cape,
a famous sight-seeing in Phan Thiet City, Binh Thuan Province.

A total solar eclipse occurred in Phan Thiet City on October 24, 1995.

A whale skeleton, 20m long (the biggest found in Vietnam) has been preserved in Phan Thiet City.

Lantern procession at Mid-Autumn Festival in Phan Thiet City.

Beauty of Mui Ne beach.

Tourists like to take photos of the fishermen at work in Binh Thuan Province.

Selecting souvenirs from the sea.

Ca Ty River in the centre of Phan Thiet City.

Binh Thuan Province has Phan Thiet Bay which is rather shallow and very windy, suitable for sea sports, such as surfing, sailing and paragliding. From October to April, when the wind gusts are at their highest, Binh Thuan is besieged by international friends who come to windsurf, kite-board, etc.
Apart from amusement activities at sea, visitors can participate in other unique sports on land, such as conquering the “Sand Hill”, paragliding in the brilliant sunshine or playing golf at Phan Thiet and Sea Link golf courses.

With these advantages, every year Mui Ne beach attracts over two million visitors, including over 220,000 foreign visitors, most of whom coming from Russia, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, France, Britain, South Korea, China, Japan, the US, Canada and Mexico.

Binh Thuan Province is calling for investment to build more hotels and resorts in well suited tourist districts and towns, such as Ham Thuan Nam, La Gi, Tuy Phong and the island district of Phu Quy to fully exploit the strength of their coastal localities. It is also increasing tourism co-operation with neighbouring provinces and cities. Recently, the Province has signed an agreement with Ho Chi Minh City and Lam Dong Province to build the “Tourist Triangle of Ho Chi Minh City, Phan Thiet and Da Lat” to create an important incentive in the tourist development strategy in the south-central region, Tay Nguyen (the Central Highlands) and the Cuu Long River delta.

Ngo Minh Chinh, Director of Binh Thuan Province’s Cultural, Sports and Tourism Department said that to promote the Province’s tourism development, apart from developing Phan Thiet City into a tourist city, the authorities attach much importance to developing the neighbouring areas which have tourist conditions and potential. In the future Phan Thiet will be given favourable conditions to develop in the direction of diversifying its tourism forms, such as sea-island tours, green tours and cultural-sport tours. The area of Ham Tien – Mui Ne will be built into a high-grade tourist area for those not wanting to compromise on luxury. The area of Hon Rom will be a centre for outdoor and community tours. The area of Tien Loi – Tien Thanh will become a centre for entertainment and amusement activities along with discovery, health treatment and MICE tourism (a form of tourism with conferences, seminars, exhibitions….).

On the occasion of the 15th anniversary of Binh Thuan Tourism Day (October 24, 1995-October 24, 2010), Binh Thuan Province will host the International Sailing Festival from December 8-11, 2010 in Mui Ne, with the participation of 20 sailboat teams from 20 countries. It is hoped the festival will pave the way for building up a sailboat entertainment sector of international stature in Vietnam and provide an opportunity to introduce and popularize the potential of sea tourism in Binh Thuan Province in particular and of Vietnam in general.

Land of festivals
In addition to sea tourism potential, Binh Thuan also has cultural and festival tourism strength because it has many cultural and architectural works as well as unique festivals of the Viet, Cham and Hoa ethnic groups.

Binh Thuan has Po Klong Moh Nai Temple, a typical cultural work of the Cham people, where over 100 precious objects of the Cham royalty are preserved, such as the crowns, robes, boots, shoes, rings and bracelets of the kings and queens. It also has Po Sah Inu Towers dating from the 8th century which worship the Shiva Genie and a sacred set of stone linga and yoni sculpture of the Cham people.

“Nghinh Ong Quan Thanh”, a traditional festival of the Hoa people in Phan Thiet City held biannually.

Rowing is a strong water sport in Binh Thuan Province.

Kate Festival of the Cham people held annually near Po Sah Inu Towers.

Phan Thiet City.

Binh Thuan also boasts many unique cultural works, such as the oldest lighthouse in Southeast Asia (built in 1899) at the cape of Ke Ga, Vietnam’s biggest Buddha statue on Ta Cu Mountain, the biggest whale skeleton in Van Thuy Tu Communal House, the most colourful Co Thach stone ground in Tuy Phong District and the relic site of Duc Thanh School built in 1907 in Phan Thiet City, where President Ho Chi Minh taught before he went abroad to seek ways to save the country. In particular, the project on Binh Thuan Water Tower, a unique architectural work, designed by Lao Prince Souphanouvong who was an architect, and completed in 1934, is considered a symbol of Phan Thiet City and Binh Thuan Province.

Apart from a system of tangible heritages, the community of ethnic groups living in Binh Thuan Province also has a rich system of festivals and rituals, such as Cau Ngu (fish worshipping) Festival of the Kinh ethnic group; Kate Festival of the Brahmin Cham ethnic group; Nghinh Ong Quan Thanh Festival of the Hoa community in Phan Thiet City; and Dinh Thay Thim Festival which bears the specific cultural features of Binh Thuan Province so it is one of few festivals in Southern Vietnam listed in the dictionary of Vietnamese Festivals.

Defining tourism as a key economic sector, especially sea tourism, Binh Thuan authorities will prioritize infrastructure development to increase the sustainability and efficiency of the local tourism sector. With the above mentioned potential and favourable policies, hopefully in the near future Binh Thuan Province will become a centre of sea tourism of regional stature.

Source: Vietnam.vnanet.vn 

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