If you love to discover the beauty of the Southern Vietnam, then Ben Tre is absolutely a place you shouldn’t forget to put in your list of must-go spots of your Vietnam tours.
Coming to this wonderful land, you will have chance to see how various the tropical fruit is, thanks to the wonderful weather here. This is also the place of birth of many great people of Vietnam, like master Nguyen Dinh Chieu, so besides sightseeing, tasting the sweetness of tropical fruits, you can have chance to listen to the stories of a lot of legendary Vietnamese.
The poetic sceneries in Ben Tre
1. Cai Mon Fruit Orchards and Ornamental Plant Gardens
These orchards and gardens are located in Cho Lach District, 35 km west of Ben Tre. You will find many southern fruits here, such as sweet mango, durian, rambutan, longan, langsat, mangosteen and varieties of citrus. You can also see the results of the many graft and multiplication artists: a diversity of bonsai shapes in spectacular figures such as deer, stag, dragon, and phoenix. There are many small and narrow paths leading through the orchards and gardens.
Cai Mon Fruit Orchards and Ornamental Plant Gardens
The seedling cultivation in Cai Mon was introduced over a century ago by a French parish priest, Gernot, who brought the first fruit tree seedlings from foreign countries, mainly Thailand and Malaysia. He brought fruit trees such as mangosteen, durian, rambutan, langsat, green Siamese coconut, and date-palm. After that the trees were multiplied in the gardens of influential rich men, who also served in the local council. Story goes that Gernot brought about thirty to fourty fruit trees, laid them at the Ba Trum bridge in Cai Mon and had to hire several guards to look after them for fear that they might be taken away by thieves, but some time later the people who guarded the trees had wonderful fruit trees growing in their garden, similar to those brought by Gernot.
2. Coconut Handicraft Villages
Ben Tre is considered the homeland of the coconut tree. All kind of edible products are made of the flesh and milk of the coconut, like coconut candy with peanuts, cashews inside or mixed with durian fruit, popped rice with coconut candies.
Coconut Handicraft Villages
All kind of products are made of the shell too: such as animal statuettes, human face statuettes, sandals, dolls, small baskets, bed lamps, vases, but also bags, spoons, hair pins, etc. You can visit a coconut factory where you will see how they make the candies, enjoy some and of course buy them.
3. Nguyen Dinh Chieu Tomb
Nguyen Dinh Chieu was born in what is now District 1 in Ho Chi Minh City. He was the son of a poet and government official. There were uprisings by poor farmers and ethnic minorities against the corrupt Royal Court in Hue and his father participated in this. Therefore he was fired and had to flee. He went to Hue with his family. The eight years living in Hue helped him realize more clearly the political complications as well as the dark side of the Royal Court. At the same time, he also had chances to absorb the national cultural traditions. In 1843, he went to study. He fell ill when he returned home for his mother’s funeral and became blind, supposedly because he wept too much. After mourning his mother, he began teaching, gave medical treatment to poor people and wrote poems and stories. He lived among the poor and got an insight into their life, their thoughts, their sentiments and what they wanted.
One of the most respectful masters of Vietnam, Nguyen Dinh Chieu
When the three eastern provinces were occupied by the French he and his family went to live in what is now An Duc Commune, Ba Tri District in Ben Tre province as he did not want live in territory occupied by the enemy. He continued teaching and giving medical treatment to poor people in the village. He also maintained connections with other patriotic intellectuals such as Phan Van Tri. He left hundreds of thousands of literary works most of them with an anti-colonialist spirit. The tomb and memorial complex are located in An Duc Commune, Ba Tri District, 39 km southeast of Ben Tre.
Such a place worth for you to make new experience, to taste the flavors of nature and to sightsee,… right!
So what are you still waiting for? Let’s take a journey to Ben Tre to find the simple beauty of Vietnam!