Arriving in Thanh Ha, visitors can see not only poetic nature but also ancient pagodas and a national treasure of special value.
Dong Ngo pagoda in Tien Tien commune is a beautiful pagoda with a national treasure - a cuu pham lien hoa (nine-tier lotus-shaped) tower
Numerous attractive destinations
For about three years, Thanh Ha countryside has been an attractive destination to numerous tourists.
Traveling more than 100 km from Thai Nguyen to Hai Duong, the first place Bui Thi Hue wanting to set foot in was Bach Hao pagoda in Thanh Xa commune.
A historical research enthusiast, Hue said: "I was introduced this pagoda by my friends for research on lotus-shaped stone pedestals.
"Only after having arrived here did I know that there are many ancient pagodas classified as national relics in Thanh Ha.
"I have visited some other pagodas like Minh Khanh and Dong Neo and found them still retaining their ancient beauty. Particularly, nine śarīra of King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong are still being kept at Minh Khanh pagoda.
"I will spend more time exploring this land."
There are 13 national relics, two intangible cultural heritage items, one national treasure, and 17 provincial relics in Thanh Ha district.
Apart from holidays, pagodas also welcome many groups of sightseers and worshippers on weekdays, such as Dong Ngo pagoda in Tien Tien commune, Tu Ha temple in Thanh Binh commune, etc.
Besides ancient pagodas is the peaceful rivery countryside with great tourism potential which is gradually being known by tourists.
After the Thanh Ha Thieu Lychee Festival, held last June, the district has lured many more groups of arrivals.
Tourists from as far as Ha Noi, Hai Phong, Ho Chi Minh city, and even foreign countries have visited guava, longan, lychee, and grapefruit gardens and experienced ecotourism at several households in the communes of Thanh Xa, Cam Che, Thanh Binh, and Thanh Hong.
Especially, the ancestral lychee tree area in Thuy Lam hamlet, Thanh Son commune has attracted thousands of visitors since the beginning of the year.
Ha Van Trung, a visitor from Ha Noi frequently weekending with his friends in Thanh Ha, said: "What attracts me the most is that Thanh Ha countryside is very peaceful.
"I often come here at the weekend to enjoy interesting rural dishes which are totally different from urban ones. Local people are also good-natured, plain, and honest.
"The atmosphere of this countryside is suitable to those interested in outdoor activities, discovery, and pagoda contemplation."
Many new sub-projects
With such tourism potential, Thanh Ha district authorities have decided to exploit ecological tourism in association with spiritual one to connect tourist-serving orchards with historical relics and pagodas.
The district authorities have coordinated with the Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism to survey and add tours linked with Huong river tourism site, including Dong Man thieu lychee gardens in sub-hamlet 5, An Lao hamlet, Thanh Khe commune. There, tourists will take a boat trip, admire the river scenery, and pick lychee fruits during harvest.
In Thuy Lam hamlet, Thanh Son commune, tourists will visit the ancestral lychee tree and contemplate riverside scenes by boat.
Besides, there may be tours to orchards, Xuan Ang hamlet (Thanh Xuan commune) to catch ruoi (Tylorrhynchus heterocheatus) and cay (small crab), and Mac Thu 1 hamlet (Lien Mac commune) to care for, harvest, and try VietGAP guavas.
Taking the Thanh Hai water puppetry troupe – Dong Ngo pagoda tour, visitors will enjoy pieces performed by water puppetry artisans and visit the national treasure of cuu pham lien hoa (nine-tier lotus-shaped) tower.
Arriving at waterways near Tu Ha temple, a national relic in Thanh Binh commune, tourists will see an early lychee area and visit the temple by boat.
"Last lychee crop, my family welcomed a lot of domestic and foreign visitors. We have 11 boats to serve tourists wanting to experience a boat trip, pick and enjoy lychee fruits. I will be very happy if the provincial and district authorities add this area to tours," said Pham Thi Liem, a resident of An Lao hamlet, Thanh Khe commune.
Secretary of the District Party Committee Nguyen Duc Tuan said the district authorities had directed the planning of some regions specializing in VietGAP-oriented fruit-tree cultivation to serve visitors, such as Lien Mac guava and Thanh Hong rosy-pulped pomelo areas.
The district authorities have continued to improve the ancestral lychee tree zone, surveyed the construction of a road to the tree to provide a straight exit for tourists, and coordinated with press agencies to propagandize, promote, and develop the local tourism potential.
The District Culture and Information Division has sent a number of cultural officials, local Youth Union secretaries, and restaurant staffs to training courses on communication and behaviors with tourists.