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The exotic world of sand in Binh Thuan

Tue, 05 Aug 2014 . Last updated Fri, 08 May 2015 21:12

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Although the tourism in Binh Thuan is quiet young, it has the strong appeal for tourists. Traveling to this land, tourists cannot surely miss the chance to discover and experience the colorful world of sand considered as a specialty of Binh Thuan.

Binh Thuan is one of the key tourist destinations of Vietnam. Although it does not have a track tourist record as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City or Hue, Binh Thuan with Mui Ne has become a the favorite destination of domestic and international tourists. Before 1995, Mui Ne Phan Thiet was just a small point on the tourism Vietnam map, liked a stop to buy specialty. This pristine land was awakened since 1995, when the total solar eclipse occurred. At that time, Mui Ne was the only place that can observe this phenomenon most clearly. Therefore, thousands of tourists and scientists came here to contemplate and study. From this event, the beauty of Mui Ne is gradually explored and exploited on the large scale. Currently, when referring to Binh Thuan, tourists often mention the beautiful white sand beaches or the convenient resorts.  However, a there is an indispensable feature of this land is sand. Not only is the sand along the beaches but the sand in Binh Thuan is also an exotic world appealing tourists.

Now before our eyes, there is a colorful world of sand. The sand in Binh Thuan has many colors including yellow, white, dark red and light red that are mixed together looking very nice.  Depending on the direction of the sunshine, the sand here can change different colors. Interestingly, sand dunes here are the flying sand hills, because its shape constantly changes due to the wind. The sand is iridescent as a desert, changes the shape due to the wind erosion. The vast sand dunes and the mysterious, sexy and attractive curves always appeal the professional, amateur photographers and tourists. How much color of sand here? The members of the program “Discovery of Vietnam” start from this question.

These sand dunes are the endless inspiration for the painters, photographers and poets. The sand hill has the total area of nearly 50 hectare stretching from Binh Thuan to Ninh Thuan, but the most beautiful area situates in Mui Ne. This is considered as the unique sand hill in Vietnam. The color of the sand is created by the old iron mine, so it creates many different colors. Tourists can count 18 colors, but our team wants to discover whether the sandy world have only 18 colors. Hence, we decide to come to a famous unit manufacturing sandy pictures here. It is Phi Long. We believe that we can meet people understanding the sandy world of Binh Thuan. When arriving, we were immediately attracted to the talented hands of the craftsmen making sand paintings. The sand seems senseless, now through skillful and meticulous hands of craftsman becomes valuable works of art.

Only with a small spoon, artisans are patient to put the sand into the frames. Sand paintings cannot be wrong, if you put the sand in the wrong position, the whole picture will be damaged, cannot erase as using the paint. The whole picture will be destroyed or have to start over.

Reporter Quoc Tin: As I know, in Binh Thuan, due to the windy and sunny climate, the nature endows many beautiful and wild landscapes. Currently, there are dozens of natural sand types, of which Phi Long Limited Liability Company has collected appropriately 85 colors.

Mr. Le Van Nghia, the manager of the company: Currently, the company  has collected from 80 to 85 natural colors. The source of sand has in the province; some other types of sand have to take from the North as in Nghe An, Thanh Hoa, Nam Dinh, even in Lam Dong, Dong Nai.

Coming here, we have the general view of the richness in the color of sand in Binh Thuan. Particularly, this area has nearly 60 colors among more than 70 colors found throughout the territory of Vietnam. In addition, there are lots of strange colors due to mixing types of sand together. This is the new creativity of the artisans making the sand paintings. Do not use any chemical substance; the colored sand is mixed together to create the strange and diverse color. Initially, the sand paintings of Vietnam are quite simple in the color, currently, thanks to the persistence of craftsmen, many new sandy colors have detected. The grain of sand has brought the beauty of life into the paintings with the high aesthetic that is not less other forms of art. Therefore, the sand art not only is the purely handmade products but also becomes an art work. In the future, it will be the national art bearing the cultural identity of Vietnam.

Reporter Quoc Tin: In my opinion, Binh Thuan is situated in the South Central Coast, so the land located near the hill and sea will create the different types of colors such as yellow, red, grey and black…Each place has its own unique color and this is the endless material.

Mr. Le Van Nghia: Every time, there is from 3 to 4 people going into the mountains to find the suitable types of sand for making sand paintings. Besides, there are many types of natural sand but they are not appropriate. So we had to take the sand in far places.

Leaving the manufacturing unit, we decided to follow Phi Long and some craftsmen to find the sand source.  The more we go, the more strange colors of sand we find. We went to an area located about 50km from Phan Thiet city to find strange colors of sand. After a difficult journey, a colorful world of sand is appearing before our eyes. Under the sunshine, the strange colors of Binh Thuan sand became shimmering as a masterpiece of the nature bringing an indescribable feeling for people.

Craftsman: Since I have worked here, there is about70 unusual colored sand. There are many types taken in Lam Dong, Ha Tinh. The moss green is in Can Gio. The orange, yellow and red are often in Binh Thuan. Most colors in Binh Thuan, the specific colors must take in the other provinces. The sand is not concentrated in one place, we had to find in different places, because each area has different characteristics and different colors. These are monochromatic colors, while making the paintings; we have to mix colors together.

Why does the sand in this area have many colors? According to the researches, the abundance of sand in Binh Thuan is due to the influence of ancient iron mine existing hundreds of years ago. The ancient iron mine has created the different colors for the sand. The sand in Nha Trang, Phu Yen has also lots of colors, but the only sand in Binh Thuan located on the ancient iron mine has the superior rich color. Perhaps, due to the influence of a mysterious geologic area the strange colors of sand are spawned. The different depth will create the different colors. Maybe in someday, with the patience and persistence, the young craftsmen will discover more unique colors. The pure sand is not used immediately, people have to sieve take out the impurities, then dried and continue to sieve again. If the grain of sand is big, they may be crushed to suit with creating color and shapes. Thanks to this, we can see the elaboration of the craftsmen.

 The colorful world of the sand in Binh Thuan still hides many mysteries. It looks like that the new colors keep finding here. Goodbye Mui Ne, goodbye the unique flying sand hills, we return with the comfortable felling, because we have living the fantasy, sparkling and colorful world of the sand.



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