Exploring life along Hau River
Exploring Hau River, Chau Doc Town is located in the southern province of An Giang on the border with Cambodia. Visitors to the town can learn about the daily activities of people who live on the river in the Mekong Delta in the Hau River, also called Bassac River, the popular entry and exit road between Cambodia and Vietnam.
For a tour of life on the river, tourists should start at the T-junction section of Hau River and Chau Doc River, where the bustle and hustle begins in the wee hours of the morning.
First stop would be the floating fruit market in a traditional sampan where hundreds of boats of all sizes gather to unload and pick up many kinds of fruits of the region in line with the season.
The best time to visit is between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. and, like other floating markets, to advertise their goods the vendors tie samples of what they sell onto tall poles so that everyone can see their goods.
The route from the market passes by a floating fishery village along the river which is made up of many fishery houses where the locals raise fish, mainly catfish. Each floating house is about four meters wide and seven meters long and has an eight meter deep cage under the water where from 20,000 to 150,000 fish are raised. The fish farmers and their families also live in these floating houses and have small rafts next to their houses to grow vegetables.
At the fishery houses tourists will observe a scene of hundreds of fish eating the food released by the fish farmers; the fish-food, which is a combination of fish stomach and mash, is also produced at the fishery house.
The next stop is the Cham weaving craft village on the bank of Hau River, where the young Cham ladies weave textile, embroidery and sewing products on their looms. Lip, aged 34, a villager, says that there are nine Cham villages in An Giang Province. His village has about 1,000 people but only his family and one other family in the village still do traditional handicraft weaving. Each day the girls in his family weave about seven pieces of cloth 1.6x2.3 meters in size.
The Cham people here still preserve their traditions, for example they do not eat pork, snake or tortoise and they visit their Islamic temple five times a day. The children in the village go to regular schools with other Kinh people and learn the Cham language at night at the temple, according to Lip.
Further downstream at T-junction section is Chau Giang ferry from Chau Doc Town to Phu Hiep, a Cham community with several mosques, especially the "Mubarak" mosque which was designed by an Indian architect.
(Source: SGT, URL: http://english.vietnamnet.vn/travel/2008/06/786382/)
Other news posted: