Bordering Cambodia, Chau Doc is a city of diversity. The regional culture and way of life is heavily influenced by the Chinese, Cham, Khmer and Vietnamese communities that live here side by side. Its simplicity and tranquillity are the key fascinating factors for the serene traveller. Peaceful nature walks and quiet retreats is what can be expected when in Chau Doc.
Just a short ride from Chau Doc, the Tra Su Protected Nature Reserve is unlike any other. It is a forest, but it is in the water. And while mangrove tours are common in tropical countries, in Tra Su most of the trees are not mangroves but cajuput trees. It looks different, more ephemeral, surreal. The standard way to tour the forest is by boat, but there is also an extensive network of bamboo trails that criss-cross the area, if you are looking for a more in-depth exploration.
Go across the river to visit a Muslim Cham village. The modern Cham people are the descendants of the powerful Cham Pa Kingdom, an empire that stretched from Hue to the south of Vietnam from the 7th to 18th centuries. Walk around the village to see the local mosque, observe the divergence of Cham-style stilt homes as well as their modest colorful style of dress.
Go on a cycling tour along quiet roads. Time travel through small rural villages, rice fields and orchards. This experience is ideal for the photography aficionados looking to capture the timeless spirit of Vietnam.