For those who love the beauty of wild nature, Tra Su cajuput forest will be the ideal choice for your trip to Mekong Detal. The forest is considered the most interesting and attractive attraction of An Giang. Visitors coming here will feel overwhelmed by the vast cajuput forest and have the opportunity to explore the typical flooded forest ecosystem west of the Hau River with many diverse and rare flora and fauna species.
General information about Tra Su cajuput Forest
Tra Su cajuput forest is the name of a forest with many melaleuca trees located near Tra Su mountain area of Tinh Bien district, An Giang. The forest was formed in 1983, from a deserted lowland area, heavily contaminated with alum, and Tinh Bien Forestry Enterprise planted melaleuca on a trial basis to contribute to improving soil and preventing upstream floods. Tra Su cajuput forest has 845 hectares wide and a very important effect on the water environment and climate regulation for the entire Bay Nui region, which is home to many precious species of animals and plants belonging to Vietnam’s special-use forest system.
According to researches, Tra Su cajuput forest is home to 70 species of birds and storks, including two species listed in the “Vietnam Red Book”, the Indian stork and oriental darter. The ecosystem is also very rich with 22 species of reptiles, 11 species of mammals, 23 aquatic species. Not only rich in animals, Tra Su cajuput forest is also very diverse in plants with 140 species belonging to 52 families and 102 genera, including nearly 80 medicinal species.
With the vast green space of cajuput along with the colorful picture of flora and fauna systems… Tra Su cajuput forest is not only a destination that cannot be missed for tourists, but is also considered to have international importance in wetland conservation in the Mekong Delta.
The most beautiful season to visit Tra Su Cajuput Forest
The flood season, from September to November every year, is considered the best time to experience the beauty of the cajuput forest. The pouring water makes the forest green, combined with layers of duckweed covering the water surface, creating a beautiful scene. The floating water season also creates favorable conditions for the growth of fish and shrimp species and is an attractive destination for many bird species.
The best time of day to explore Tra Su cajuput forest is early morning or sunset. Around 3-5 p.m, many kinds of birds and storks gather in the forest, creating a beautiful natural scene.
How to get here?
From Ho Chi Minh City, visitors can go to An Giang by personal vehicle or buy bus tickets at Western Bus Station to Long Xuyen or Chau Doc with an average price of 150,000 – 300,000 VND/trip, distance about approx 250km travel time takes about 4 hours. From Can Tho to An Giang is about 117 km long, you can get here by personal vehicle or go to Can Tho bus station to catch a bus to Long Xuyen or Chau Doc. Travel time on the route is about 3 hours.
For convenient travel, visitors should stay overnight in Chau Doc city, depart for the cajuput forest in the morning, and stay until the afternoon. Tra Su cajuput forest is located about 30 km from Chau Doc city, travel time is 30 to 40 minutes by car or motorbike, the road is convenient.
Interesting things to do in Tra Su Cajuput Forest
When you step into the cajuput forest, you will be overwhelmed by the natural scenery surrounded by the vibrant green shirt of the forest, creating a cool, pleasant space. To visit and explore the Tra Su cajuput forest, first you will go to the wharf to buy tickets and rent motorbikes (means of transportation like canoes and motorized boats).
Visitors will experience a journey through canals and straight into the heart of the cajuput forest. Along the way, you can observe local people harvesting honey from containers placed in the forest. This is an opportunity to relax, enjoy the beautiful scenery, and the lives of the people here.
Visiting the melaleuca forest by boat is also an opportunity for visitors to take beautiful photos amid the green space and duckweed covering the water surface. If you’re lucky enough to go on a sunny day, the rays of sunlight shining through the trees will make the space magical.
Through the road on the water lasting about 3km, visitors will come to Forest Landscape Protection Area. You continue to walk along the small path deep inside. On both sides of the path are towering cajuput trees, casting cool green shadows that make all fatigue seem to disappear.
Coming to the center area, visitors switch from a motorbike to a rowing boat to go deep into the nooks and crannies of the cajuput forest. There are no longer any engine noises or other noisy sounds, bamboo boats with just enough space for 4 people gently drift along water, weaving between small canals, through cajuput trees hanging above people’s heads.
Here, you can see under the water a layer of green water hyacinth covering the surface of the water, you can touch it and see the bright yellow sesban flowers and the green melaleuca rows creating a natural picture of the river wonderful.
Going deep into Tra Su Melaleuca forest, you will see many species of birds residing. With fresh air filled with the sound of birds chirping, Tra Su is suitable for tourists who want to escape the noisy, dusty city to find nature, giving you a trip to An Giang full of experiences.
Once you’ve finished exploring inside the forest, don’t forget to stop by the Observation Tower with a telescope that has a 25km vision, you can see the entire melaleuca forest, birds flying, or nesting in the trees.
From here, you can also see the Khmer village living a few kilometers away.
If you have time, you should also visit unique handicrafts such as silk weaving, brocade of the Khmer ethnic people, beekeeping for honey, cajuput essential oil area, dried fruits of all kinds, brocade towels, straw hats, fine wooden furniture…
In addition, visitors can also rent bicycles to go around and take photos with the animals in Tra Su forest. Visitors can encounter many birds foraging, nesting, and hear their calls during their exploration. Occasionally there is a monkey bridge across the water channel connecting the two patches of forest.
Besides natural beauty, Tra Su Melaleuca forest also has beautiful artificial structures. Gathering all types of Vietnamese bamboo in all parts of the country, the investor is determined to build a project that will achieve the Giuness record “thousand-step bamboo bridge” through Tra Su cajuput forest to serve tourists.
What should you eat in Tra Su Cajuput Forest?
Tra Su Restaurant has two main areas for dining: along the outside of the forest gate, on both sides of the pier and the hut area floating on the water inside the forest (beside the Observation Tower).
At these dining spots, visitors will enjoy delta specialties such as grilled snakehead fish, fish sauce hotpot, coconut tofu salad, Eel hotpot, frog hotpot, snake hotpot, chicken hotpot, grilled fish, grilled chicken, Steamed chicken, grilled frog, roasted quail… The most famous are still grilled rice-field rat with salt and chili, grilled snakehead fish, grilled chicken with honey.
Prices are affordable, clearly announced, you don’t have to worry about being ripped off. During the flood season, don’t forget to enjoy the hot pot of Linh cotton fish… delicious.
An Giang has long been famous as one of the localities with extremely poetic and unique scenery. Travel to An Giang to explore Tra Su cajuput forest, especially during flood season, to fully feel the peace and poetry of the rivers of the Mekong Delta region.
Source: collected, writer: Hoai An