|A view of Quynh Nhai reservoir in Son La province (photo: VOV)
Quynh Nhai reservoir spans 10,000 ha, surrounded by mountains and forests. The water of the Da River fills every corner of the Quynh Nhai mountain, turning it into an area of inland islands. On sunny days the jade-green water of the Da River and the clouds surrounding the majestic limestone mountains create a charming and quaint picture.
Trinh Thi Van Anh, a tourist from Hanoi, said, “My family took a boat trip on the Quynh Nhai reservoir. The landscape is very beautiful and the water is blue and clear. The local ethnic people are very friendly. We took a lot of beautiful photos. We will introduce the land and people of Son La, especially Quynh Nhai, to many more people.”
The boat takes visitors around beautiful places such as Heart island, Uy Phong bay, Peace bay, hot spring in Bon hamlet, and the temple of Lady Han, the only princess of the Kho-mu land lord of Quynh Nhai district, who fought against invaders to protect her homeland.
The best time to travel on the reservoir is the floating season from September to April. The vast water surface reflects the skies and landscape creating a stunning view. It’s also the time for many local cultural festivals such as the boat racing festival, the hair-washing festival of the White Thai, the new rice festival in Muong La district.
The Pa Uon bridge on the Da River with its highest pier in Vietnam is the stand for watching boat racing and hair-washing festivals. Mountain fairs also attract tourists to experience local life and buy souvenirs.
Lesser known to tourists, Quynh Nhai still maintains a pristine beauty, which is the advantage for developing experiential, ecological, and resort tourism.
Dieu Duc Trong, Deputy Director of Quynh Nhai Travel Company, said: “We offer boat trips to islets and contemplate the natural landscape. There are many nice places to take photos. Tourists can row a boat to fish and have a meal of local specialties in Uy Phong bay. We are designing more products to attract tourists.”
Son La province’s tourism development plan identifies Quynh Nhai as one of the key sites to become a national tourism brand ‘a blue sea in the mountains’ in 2030.
In addition to taking advantage of its potential, Quynh Nhai has focused on human resource development and building transport infrastructure to connect with other tourism sites such as Moc Chau, Dien Dien, Sapa town in Lao Cai province, and Mu Cang Chai in Yen Bai province.
It is also building multiple-day tours by river and road, said Lo Thanh Thuy, Vice Chairman of Quynh Nhai district People’s Committee: “We are combining the conservation of cultural values and tourism development. There are boat trips on the lake and visits to spiritual sites. This is one of the key tasks to create breakthrough development for the district.”
With rich and diverse tourism resources, the Quynh Nhai reservoir will be an attractive destination for those who want to experience the peaceful and poetic nature of a sea in the dramatic northwestern mountains.