Ha Tien - At the gulf of Thailand
Ha Tien is located at the Gulf of Thailand near the border to Cambodia. It is a part of the Kien Giang province and is a good starting point for adventure tours to Cambodia along the coast (especially to Kep/Kampong). Ha Tien, however, is far less developed for tourism. Geographically, Ha Tien doesn’t belong to the Mekong delta anymore, because it is already on solid ground and not on the alluvial land of the Mekong.
Ha Tien’s specialty - coconut with delicious pod
There are numerous shrimp farms in Ha Tien and many coconut trees. The coconuts in this area are somewhat different than normal coconuts: There’s no coconut milk inside, but the pod is much more delicious. This pod is served at the lively market on the river and in many cafés and restaurants with ice and sugar.
Many old houses and temples contribute to a beautiful atmosphere in Ha Tien, as well as the bay, which is surrounded by hills. The bank of Dong Ho or of the East Sea (an extension of the To Chau River) invites for a stroll especially in the evening.
A curious story
Worth a visit is the grave of Mac Cuu (Chinese immigrant and founder of Ha Tien in 1708) and the grave of Co Nam, a daughter of Mac Cuu, who was murdered shortly after her birth by her brothers because she had been born with long hair and were therefore considered to be a demon. There is also the Sac Su Tam Bao Pagoda, which has been donated by Mac Cuu. Opposite of the pagoda you can find an unusual Catholic Church.
In the immediate vicinity of the town are many beaches and rocky coves, as well as romantic lakes and isolated islands. The area is surrounded by limestone formations and many caves, some of them have been converted into temples. For many years, Ha Tien has been an isolated border post. But this seems to be changing slowly: the government has begun to build an international deepwater port. From here there is also a ferry to the holiday island of Phu Quoc.