Travel Travel

07/06/2019 - 08:31

Pass climbing and lagoon wading: Tiredness brings excitements.

Tour operators in Hue city are organizing the exploration of the journey of discovering the historic “Mandarin Road” for tourists to experience and discover the culture, life and activities of local people living on both sides of the road.

Organizers are carefully checking the bikes before travelling


Receiving the invitation, I participate in a trip to explore the “Mandarin Road” as the name of the tour. The journey begins in the early morning from Hue city. I and the tourist group start cycling to Highway 49B and arrive at Thuan An beach about the time for a morning recharge.

Quite simple and rustic food is served with different options such as Hue beef noodles, chicken sticky rice and soup. After that, the tour continues with a ride to Phu Dien tower to explore the unique Cham architecture left in Thua Thien Hue province.

After about 2 hours of riding bicycle, we get on a car to continue our journey. Travelling for a while, the van turns left and follows a small road leading to the “tomb city” of An Bang.

Also having seen the city in newspapers and on television, but we are still overwhelmed by the magnificence of the tombs as getting out of the car. Perhaps, there is no place in Vietnam and in the world having such a “tomb city” like this.

We then continue to visit Thanh Duyen pagoda on Tuy Van mount, which is located by Vinh Hien estuary and Ham Rong sea. The group in turn burn incense to pray at this pagoda. Lost in this charming destination, our difficulties of life seem to be forgotten. Only carefree feelings remain.

Climbing Hai Van Pass by bicycle is such an interesting experience

Now that it is also about noon time, the tour operator takes the team to Hai Binh sea (Loc Binh commune, Phu Loc district) to enjoy fresh seafood dishes and a cool sea breeze. After the lunch break, we get on a boat and experience local fishing activities on Tam Giang-Cau Hai lagoon - the largest lagoon system in Southeast Asia.

Looking at how foreign tourists are excited as they themselves pull up fish traps with abundant fish and shrimps, I find that the organizers are so sharp to “hit” the tourists’ demands for exploring and experiencing the indigenous life.

The group continues getting on the car to Hai Van Pass, which still holds the traces of the historic “Mandarin Road”. Stopping at the top of the pass, the whole team is introduced to the history and landmarks of Hai Van Gate, the remaining important architecture located on the North – South Mandarin Road.

In one day of exploration and experience, tourists may not be able to feel the beauty of the legendary Mandarin Road running through the ancient capital. However, I agree with the words of a foreign female tourist: “Your country is beautiful, peaceful and the people are so friendly... all create a sense of security and freshness”.

Riding through small roads amid Tam Giang - Cau Hai lagoon

Increasing experience

The development of Mandarin Road tour will increase the diversity for Hue tourism and bring new experiences to tourists as they visit Hue. However, to develop the tour as an attractive tourism product, the tour operators need to increase more experience to the tourists, especially the experience of exploring local cultural life, agricultural production or aquaculture activities, and catching seafood... These industries are associated with local people who live near the sea and on the two sides of the Mandarin Road.

In order to turn this into a true exploring journey, the authorities also need to research and redefine the Mandarin Road crossing Hue. It may not be as original as it was but there are also some major milestones, where tourist stops could be formed for visitors to learn it more thoroughly. A number of more professional services should also be provided for tourists... Thenceforth, the tour will be maintained for a long time.

Director of Hue tourist, Tran Quang Hao, shared that to move on the old natural path will be very hard; tourists have to walk, use a boat ... so, the company plans to form some short routes for visitors to experience again the movement of the ancients to increase the interesting part.

Minutes of relaxation of female tourists on Hai Van Pass

Mr. Le Ngoc Sanh, Chief of the Office of the Department of Tourism assessed, ‘Hue and Da Nang have just put into operation the sightseeing flight service between the two localities. If tourism connection points and highlights are created on the route, tourists will have a great experience exploring the “Mandarin Road” from an aerial view’.

In addition, the tourism sector will have discussions with researchers and tourism businesses to develop more well-organized and accurate tours, at the same time, to increase the linkage among businesses to exploit tours in a professional and comprehensive manner.

Story, photos: DUC QUANG