On a trip to the mysterious land of An Giang, you can go anywhere without having to hesitate or think. But no matter where you go, don’t forget to visit Chau Giang Cham village, an indispensable place in your itinerary to explore the cultural beauty of An Giang. The life of the Cham ethnic community in An Giang always has a strange attraction and this is also the inspiration for many musicians, writers, and poets.

General information of Chau Giang Cham Village

Location: Chau Phong commune, Tan Chau town, Tan Chau district, An Giang province

With a distance of 5km by road (takes more than 20 minutes to travel) and 3.5km by river (takes more than 15 minutes to travel) if starting from Chau Doc city center. Moving to Cham village will take one of these two forms:

– If traveling by road, you can use a car or motorbike to get to Chau Giang ferry terminal, about 3km from Chau Doc city center. Here, you will wait for the ferry to cross Chau Phong commune of Tan Chau district. Crossing the ferry, you go more than 1km to Chau Giang Cham village.

– By river, you will go to Chau Doc junction (about 500m from Victoria hotel) or at Chau Giang wharf located on the other side of Chau Doc city to rent a boat. Boat rental prices at each location will vary depending on where your trip goes and how many people are traveling. However, one thing that you can rest assured about is that the price is relatively cheap and very reasonable. This is the form most loved and chosen by many tourists. 

boat to Chau Giang Cham Village

The Chau Giang Cham Village stands out for its Muslim beliefs, stilt house customs and brocade weaving passed down through generations. Stopping here, you not only have the opportunity to understand more about the material and spiritual lives of local people, but you can also leave the crowded city and slow down every moment in a peaceful, gentle village. 

Visit Chau Giang Cham Village

Among the Cham villages in An Giang, it can be said that Chau Giang Cham village is a place that still preserves many unique cultural features in both material and spiritual life. Prominent among them are the traditional brocade weaving, the practice of living in stilt houses and the Islamic faith in the shadow of the mosque. Because of this, Chau Giang Cham village is often sought by writers, poets, and musicians for inspiration to create many literary and artistic works.

Chau Giang Cham Village

Entering Cham village means you are lost in another world. Coming here, in the quiet countryside of the Western region, you will feel the friendliness and hospitality of the people. With a large Cham Muslim community, An Giang has many mosques and minor mosques. The most prominent among them is the Mubarak Mosque, which is recognized as a national heritage.

Mubarak mosque

The splendid Mubarak Mosque – a sanctuary for beliefs and community cultural activities of the Cham Muslims. The cathedral has a unique architecture, round tower, arc-shaped main gate, very unique. The roof of the mosque has a large two-story oval tower, the base of the tower has a crescent moon and star, symbolizing Islam. This is one of the high-value works and an attractive tourist attraction in Chau Giang Cham village.

The Cham people have three major holidays in the  Islamic calendar year: Roja Festival or a pilgrimage to La Mecque Holy Land on December 10; Ramadam (also known as the fasting ritua) lasts from the 1st to the 30th of the 9th lunar month; The birthday of Patriarch Muhammed on March 12.

Ramada festival in Chau Giang Cham Village

Ramadam festival

The Cham’s traditional costumes are unique. Both men and women wear a special dress called a ‘Sarong’ throughout their daily and festival activities. On men’s heads, there is the typical cloth hat of Muslim followers with embroidery motifs. Cham women wear a scarf called a Matora or Khanh Maom around their head and then cover their shoulders. 

Because they follow Islam, the Cham people’s customs here are also closely linked to the rules of Islam. Both men and women wear a special dress called a ‘Sarong’ throughout their daily and festival activities. Men wear hats, old people wear white hats, young people wear black hats. Women wear Mat’ra scarves or Khanh Maom around their head and then cover their shoulders.

Chau Giang Cham Village

Men here don’t drink alcohol. Cham Muslim women here are often not allowed to go out but only stay at home doing housework and weaving. They don’t eat pork; do not wear gold. Also here, you will be able to visit and learn about the traditional brocade weaving profession that has existed for hundreds of years.

At the same time, you can buy products with unique imprints such as towels and bags as travel gifts.

Interspersed with brocade items woven entirely by hand, at the facility, which is considered a tourist attraction, there are also jewelry items such as bracelets, necklaces, earrings, etc., which are also crafted very elaborately and eye-catching by the Cham people here. If you want to buy for use or as gifts for relatives and friends, these items are a reasonable choice.

The custom of living in stilt houses built entirely of precious woods is also one of the interesting cultural highlights of this Cham village. Depending on the conditions of each family, the type of wood used to build the house will show the class of the homeowner. However, most of the houses are designed very delicately in a large, airy space with nature, and there must be a wooden ladder to go up and down.

Chau Giang Cham Village

 There is a difference in stilt houses in Cham Chau Giang village where there are no tables or chairs inside, so when guests come to the house, the homeowner often spreads out a mat or carpet for the guests to sit cross-legged on the wooden floor. 

What to eat at Chau Giang Cham Village?

In Cham Chau Giang village, “cơm nị” and “cà púa” are two famous traditional dishes of the ethnic people here. These two dishes are a harmonious combination, complementing each other. The cooking method is relatively sophisticated, unique and quite strange to both Vietnamese and international tourists.

Com Ri in Chau Giang Cham Village

“Cơm nị” is cooked with rice and milk, and raisins are added depending on each person’s unique preferences, while “cà púa” uses beef to prepare very specifically, using many ingredients such as wine, ginger, and water, coconut milk, curry, onions, peanuts… create a unique feature for the dishes of the Cham ethnic people in Chau Giang. “cơm nị – cà púa” has the sweet and fatty smell of milk, the nutty taste of peanuts, the sweet and salty taste of beef along with the spicy taste of chili and the sweetness of raisins, making diners surprised. All give the eater a delicious, strange feeling, filling the stomach without feeling bored.

In the afternoon, visitors can encounter street vendors with typical dishes of An Giang. These are rustic snacks such as silkworm cakes, steamed bananas, cassava sticky rice… You can buy a wrap to enjoy on the way to explore, never mind about the price.

Source: collected by An

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