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My Tho - Tien Giang

Geographical location: Tien Giang is located at the North of the Mekong Delta, alongside Tien river bank which has 120 km long, apart from HCM city 70 km in the South West. Administrative border: It borders Long An in the North, Ben Tre in the South, Dong Thap and Vinh Long in the West, East sea in the East.

Its natural area is 2,367 km2, in which forestry area is 10,190 ha; rice area 100,037 ha; industrial tree area over 20,000 ha; orchard area 44,322 ha; salt area 14.5 ha; aquaculture area 9,580 ha; coast line has 32 km long. The major river net contains Tien river crossing the province in the South at a lengh of 120 km, Soai Rap river crossing in the North with a length of 30 km.

The total population in 2005 was 1.748.922 people, of which male had 889,308 people; female 859,614 people. 212,117 people lived in urban area (12.9 per cent); 1,436,805 people in rural area (87.1 per cent).

Employee working in the economy is 867,405 people, in which workers in sector I is 613,683 people (70.75 per cent); sector II 85,016 people (9.8 per cent); sector III 168,706 people (19.45 per cent).

Tien Giang has 9 districts and towns including My Tho city, Go Cong town and 7 districts (Tan Phuoc, Chau Thanh, Cai Lay, Cho Gao, Cai Be, Go Cong Tay, Go Cong Dong) with 165 communes, wards and towns.

My Tho, the quiet capital city of Tien Giang province, is the traditional gateway to the delta, owing to its proximity to HCMC. Visitors on a whirlwind Vietnam tour often take a day trip here to catch a glimpse of the famous river. In order to visit floating markets, however, you will need to continue on to Can Tho. The town itself is an important market town, and its quaint but busy waterfront is easily explored on foot. My Tho was founded in the 1680s by Chinese refugees fleeing Taiwan for political reasons. The Chinese have virtually all gone now, having been driven out in the late 1970s when their property was seized by the government. The economy is based on tourism, fishing and the cultivation of rice, coconuts, bananas, mangoes, longans and citrus fruit. My Tho city , which sprawls along the Upper Mekong River is one the closest cities in the mighty Mekong Delta to Ho Chi Minh city ( Sai Gon ). Visitors can reach the city for 1 ? hours drive along the National Highway's the green rice fields. Those who are in tight schedule can take a day tour to My Tho with boat trips around the 4 beautiful islands named as Dragon, Unicorn, Phoenix, Tortoise island with fruitful garden.

A lot of women here still wear the traditional dress to work, which is silk trousers and a long silk top, they look stunning, and they have sun umbrellas.

The Vietnamese like to cover up from the sun, they all wear hats when out in the sun, face masks, mainly because of the pollution though, and silk gloves that cover there hands to stop the sun. we have tanning cream at home, an they have whitening cream. lol lol !!!

The people here are so friendly here and are always willing to help you out, an they don't pester you if you say no then they talk that the first time. The city is always busy they begin at 5.30am and go right though all night really. there is always a buss, which is great.

Dong tam Snake farm:

Not far from Vinh Trang Pagoda, Dong Tam Snake Farm is one of the country's largest snake-raising centers where venom is produced for local use and export. Located 12 kilometers from My Tho City, Tien Giang Province, the World of Snakes is a place for the animals to have a peaceful life without the impact of man. There, tourists can see a lot of researched snakes which are extremely aggressive and even capable of spitting poison, and other snake-based medicines are produced to save lives. The farm covers 12 hectares, including simulated wilderness areas, surrounded by ditches for snakes as well as areas for other animals like sheep, ostriches, yellow tortoises, tigers, crocodiles and so on. During a trip to the World of Snakes, you will be informed about Dong Tam farm's history, offered information about how to treat snakebites and demonstrated venom extraction and some of its uses.

Luckily, coming to this farm, you will have the chance to see how 500 snakes are taken venom at a time. This venom will be used to process medicine and other uses.
Dong Tam guides will also give tourists an opportunity to explore the farm. If you are afraid of snakes, you should not get too close to cages, as there are many poisonous snakes like copperheads, dendrophis which lie in branches, or snakes crawling out of their holes. Here, you can take a lot of photograph of the cobras which are kept in an open pit. Normally, they will not harm you if you ignore. Yet, they will strike if they are once provoked. On the other hand though, the pythons are docile enough to be taken out of their cages and handled, but be warned that the larger ones are capable of strangling a human.

At some cages, the guide even pulls a snake out for visitors to take photos and expounds about difference kinds of snakes. If you take notice, you can also see that there were some snakes live in special cages and they were put mice out for meals by the employers of the farm. Yet, not all snakes are being raised for venom production; some of them will become meals for fellow creatures. Interestingly, the farm offers products made from snakes such as snake medicinal wine for you to buy. The snake farm is operated by the Vietnamese military for profit and is open to the public. The restaurant here includes cobra on the menu and there's a shop where you can stock up on cobra antivenin.

A representative of the farm said that Dong Tam saves around 500 lives annually, usually poor patients in the Mekong Delta who come to the farm when their situations become critical. We never seen any gold shopkeepers come to the farm by luxury car, he joked. But every person who comes here will be helped, he added.

Sound interesting, isn't it? Let's join a trip to Dong Tam snake by coming from HCMC, continue for 3km beyond the turn-off to My Tho and turn left at the Dong Tam lunation (signposted). From the junction, follow the road for 4km, turn right and continue for lion until you reach the snake farm.

  • Model: sight seeing place introduction