Rach Gia is a coastal area, so it has taken the city many years to carry out a massive project to reclaim land in the sea. This urban area is now home to a lot of coffee shops and restaurants where tourists can eat and drink while enjoying sea breezes. This is also where to admire a magnificent view of the sun setting.However, Rach Gia is also worth exploring. When stopping by this seaside city, tourists can drop by Nguyen Trung Truc Temple and the reclaimed urban area, the two most famous places in Rach Gia.
Rach Gia City worth exploring
Those wishing to take a boat tour to watch the sunset can contact tour operators in the area.
Long before the new urban area took shape, Rach Gia had been known for Nguyen Trung Truc Temple and the festival to commemorate the death anniversary of national hero Nguyen Trung Truc.
As a fisherman, Nguyen Trung Truc (1839-1868) led village militia forces to fight the French in the Mekong Delta from 1861 to 1868. He was active in Tan An, which is now part of Long An Province, and Rach Gia until his capture and execution. His great patriotism and glorious sacrifice during the first years of the anti-French Resistance War are remembered until on February 18.
The famous quote he made before his death is “Only after all the grass in Vietnam is weeded will there be no more Vietnamese people fighting against the aggressors.”
For southern people, the festival to honor Truc’s death anniversary, or Nguyen Trung Truc Festival in short, is an important event taking place from the 26th to the 28th of the eighth lunar month.
During the festival, people from different parts of the Mekong Delta gather at Nguyen Trung Truc Temple, which is located at 8 Nguyen Cong Tru Street in Vinh Thanh Ward, to clean up the temple and worshiping items, and cook a lot of vegetarian dishes.
What makes the festival special is that all people are invited to enjoy food at no cost and those who come from faraway places are offered free accommodation. All expenses are covered by benefactors and philanthropists.
Describing the festival, Vu Van Duc, a local man, said: “People from different parts of the southern region come to the temple to make food on the death anniversary of Nguyen Trung Truc just like they do at home: The living people make meals for offering to their loved ones who passed away, which is a very beautiful culture and tradition of the Vietnamese.
“On the other hand, the festival reflects the hospitality and community spirit of the southerners when people from different places and social backgrounds can sit together to organize the festival, and all food is shared for locals and visitors and donated to the needy.”
Apart from food, the festival features southern folk music performances such as cai luong and don ca tai tu, and specialties in the region.
The festival lured over 800,000 people in 2012 and the figure rose up to over one million last year, according to the Nguyen Trung Truc Temple’s management.