Guidebook A world away from rice fields and rivers


A world away from rice fields and rivers

Ha Tien is a “feng shui masterpiece of land, water, and wind,” writes Vietnam Coracle. “Its irresistible combination of bustling markets and languid backstreets, crumbling shophouses and forested hills, delicious street food and local temples, promenading pedestrians and river traffic, twittering swiftlets and chiming pagoda gongs, makes Ha Tien the ‘Jewel of the Delta’.” And lying on the Gulf of Thailand, it “feels a world away from the rice fields and rivers” that typify the Mekong Delta region, says Lonely Planet.  

Ha Tien has “played its part” in some important events in Vietnamese history, explains Rusty Compass. Nguyen Anh, who founded the imperial Nguyen Dynasty, “took shelter here in the late 18th century before he commenced his conquest for control of the country.” It was also here that he made “a fateful deal” with a French missionary that gave the French “a lever into his future dynasty.” And in the late 1970s, Khmer Rouge attacks on Vietnamese civilians around Ha Tien “provoked the Vietnamese government to invade Cambodia and end Pol Pot's reign of terror.”

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