The central coastal province of Phu Yen attracted more visitors after the launch of Victor Vu’s movie Yellow Flowers on Green Grass in 2015.
About Phu Yen
During the past three years, the number of tourists has sharply increased, especially during public holidays such as Reunification Day (April 30) and Labour Day (May 1). For the first time in memory, all hotels and guest houses in Tuy Hoa City (2,600 rooms) have been fully occupied.
Phu Yen is one of the most beautiful provinces in the centre of the country. It has nearly 190km of coastline bordered with zigzag mountains and dotted with many bays, lagoons, cliffs and reefs.
Break of day
For those who like trekking up mountains to watch the sunrise, Mui Dien (Dai Lanh) light house is a must. I was stunned at its location, but it was worth all the sweat and energy I lost during the 1km trek up.
The lighthouse stands on top of Mui Dien (Dien Cape), which towers over the sea. The cape is 35km southeast of Tuy Hoa City, so to catch the first sunrise, the journey up should begin very early from Tuy Hoa City.
Trekking up the steep winding path, a junction appears with three signposts: one points to the lighthouse, another leads to Mui Dien, while the other points to Sunrise Cape.
At Mui Dien, a signpost reads: “The easternmost point of Vietnam, where the first sunrise appears”. However, others believe that the first area to receive sunlight is Mũi Doi (Doi Cape) in the central province of Khanh Hoa.
However, I didn’t care which was the easternmost cape, I just felt moved to see a skyline not hidden behind high-rise buildings. And doing morning yoga in the early sunlight is one of my most enjoyable past-times.
Standing on top of Sunrise Cape watching the sun emerge over the horizon, my lungs filled with cool breeze, I felt as if time stopped. The lighthouse was built by the French in 1890. It measures 26.5m and rises 110m above sea level and helps orient ships passing nearby Vung Ro (Ro Bay).
The lighthouse was severely damaged during war time and was re-opened in 1995. It is one of eight light houses aged over 100 years in Vietnam. Many young people arrive at the light house late at night to wait for the sunrise.
“We camped here last night,” said 20-year-old Phan Tien Hai from HCM City, “Listening to soothing waves under the high cliffs, looking up the sky with so many stars and the light from the light house is a precious experience.”
I can see the happiness in the eyes of Hai and his friends. They were cheerful in red T-shirts with a yellow star in the middle, joyfully taking photos of themselves in the early sunlight – with their hands on their chests.
I felt moved by their patriotism – the same feeling I experienced when I put my hand on my heart under the national flag at Lung Cu in northern Ha Giang or at Cà Mau, the southernmost point of the country.
Down at the foot of Dai Lanh Cape, Mon Beach has long white smooth beaches and smooth waves throughout the year. At the southern end of the beach, there is a fresh water stream running down from the mountain.
The 400-metre-long beach is bordered by Mui Nay (Nay Cape) in the north and Mũi Dien (Dien Cape) in the south. The beach was recognised as a national landscape in 2008. Within 5km from the cape, there are three national-level sites, including Mon Beach-Mui Dien, Da Bia Mountain and Vung Ro.
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