Although Phu Yen is not quite a well-known destination in Viet Nam’s tourism map, the province is surely “a promised land” thanks to its wild but romantic landscapes. There are numerous nature-endowed scenic spots in the south-central province for visitors to explore, including unspoiled beaches.
The provincial capital city of Tuy Hoa is adjacent to the sea. Beaches there are normally crowded with people going swimming when the sun begins to cast its first light or go down beyond the horizon. Watching the vast blue sea and white smooth sand can help people relieve themselves of the tiredness after working for long hours.
Phu Yen has some renowned tourism spots including Da Dia Reef and Dai Lanh Cape as the country’s easternmost point. Da Dia Reef which was recognized as a National Heritage Site looks like an orderly beehive. For a long time, the reef has fascinated anyone paying a visit with a host of legends and stories about the site. Da Dia Reef is famous because the landscape is made of thousands of pentagonal rocks, causing passers-by to stop and contemplate the unusual and magnificent work of nature.
Meanwhile, Dai Lanh Cape where visitors catch the first rays of sunlight on the east coast of the country offers a special feeling. There, one side is the green mountains and forests while the other side is the deep ocean with its blue color combined with the light blue color of the sky as well as multi-shaped vertical cliffs. Under the cape is Mon Beach, a very clean and stunning beach where freshwater flowing from high mountains creates a lovely picture.
The province has many large and small beaches that are described as primitive. Some beaches untouched by visitors are where local fishermen set sail to catch fish. Long Thuy Beach has swaying coconut trees while a fishing village is located in Vung Bau Beach. Bang Beach runs along the rock reef.
Phu Yen also possesses several attractive roads. One leading to Da Dia Reef undulating through mountains and forests overlooks hidden villages, busy markets and small houses scattered around. The road to Dai Lanh Cape is larger, running through Ca Pass to other famous heritage sites. Such winding roads along the mountainside and through the forest surely bring a sense of adventure to visitors.
It takes just a few minutes on foot to reach Nhan Mountain where there is a Champa-style temple. In daytime, tourists can gaze at the panoramic view of Tuy Hoa City, Binh Ngoc flower village, Da Bia Mountain, the East Sea and two bridges crossing the Da Rang River. During nighttime, they can admire the shimmering landscape as lights are turned on.
Phu Yen is also attractive to people owing to its signature Ninh Hoa Nem (Ninh Hoa meat roll), girdle-cakes served with muong fish, O Loan cockles and Phu Yen steamed savory rice cakes. All these dishes have unique flavors of Phu Yen Province where human and nature are closely bonded.
It took more than 14 hours to reach Phu Yen from HCMC on a sleeper coach. I arrived at the coach station lying close to a local busy market bustling with trading activities taking place in the sun and sea breeze. Traders only have breakfast for relaxation following intense work starting early in the morning. Street food stalls selling steamed sticky rice, noodle soup and sandwiches are full of customers checking in and out while another stall nearby sells an assortment of sweetened soup.