Da Dung Mountain is a historic sites (and a scenic) which was ranked as National Monument on Aug, 03, 2007. This is a beautiful landscape which is praised a lot by the poetic and magnificent beauty, coupled with interesting stories, it still remain intact as the original value over time.
Da Dung Mountain is located near the border between Vietnam and Cambodia, in My Duc commune, Ha Tien town, Kien Giang Province.
From Ha Tien town, you can go along The National Highway 80 toward Xa Xia border gate. At Thach Dong Mountain, there is a road at the right side; you go along this road over 1 km further, you will see Da Dung Mountain. This landscape is close to the border of Vietnam and Cambodia about 4 km.
The history of Da Dung Mountain
Da Dung Mountain has another name Chau Nham, in the northwest of the mountain Thach Dong; it is about 6 km from the center of Ha Tien town. This is one of the beautiful landscapes which were praised by Mac Thien Tu poet with the poem: “Chau Nham Lac Lo” in the collection of poems “Ha Tien thap vinh”.
Chau Nham means a mountain range of jade. The reason of that name is in the mountains having kind of stalactites which are glistening look like jade. Books of “Dai Nam Nhat Thong Chi” and “Nam Ky Dia Du Chi” wrote: “when Mac Cuu had just come to explore Ha Tien, he seen in this area a big jewel which is 1 m2 and very precious, so he named Chau Nham.
When Mac Cuu went to this land in the first time, Da Dung Mountain still was beside the sea shore, surrounded by swamp and grassy. This place was the convergence and habitat of birds, most were white stork. Every afternoon, when standing remotely to see the peak of mountain, flocks of white storks landed to find resting place. That scene was inspired to Mac Thien Tu for writing the poem “Chau Nham Lac Lo”. (“Lac” means is falling. “Lo” means the white bird often live at the site of ponds. “Chau Nham Lac Lo” means the scene of white birds flying back to the Jade Mountain).
Characteristics of Da Dung Mountain
Da Dung Mountain is about 100 m high, with trapezoidal shape; it is rather boxy when you look remotely like somebody cut it clever. Today, Da Dung mountain still unspoiled, it has altogether 14 large and small caves such as: Me Sanh cave, Doi cave, Coi Hang Da cave, Trong Nguc cave, Lau chuong cave, Chi Huy cave, Biet Dong cave…. Each cave has particular characteristics, bearing a particular mystery associated with its present name.
Me Sanh cave is smaller inside part until you see the bright light, you go out of the cave. Or as Trong Nguc cave, if you put your hand patted on your chest, you will instantly hear the echoes from the cliffs. Or in Lau Chuong cave has many stalactites, when you tap them, you’ll hear the sound ring as a real bell…
This place has two caves very special: Xa Loc Ky cave và Coi Hang Da cave. Xa Loc Ky cave connect through with outside world by a very small way, the cave has skylights with vines dropping, it makes the cave becomes very interesting, which according to the human imagination, the bristling green vines look like eye lashes naturally, happy when the sun rise up and become sad when evening falls.
Compared to Xa Loc ky cave which makes visitors spellbound by natural and strange beauty, then Coi Hang Da cave is special in different style. This cave is associated with legend Thach Sanh – Ly Thong. According to this legend, one morning in the past, from here, Thach Sanh has shot archery to the eagle when this eagle was taking the princesses flying over Da Dung Mountain.
Later, Ly Thong tricked and locked Thach Sanh inside this mountain cave and sealed the mouth of the cave. There was no way out, Thach Sanh has relaxed by beating to the stalactites and it has emitted polysyllabic sounds carried by the wind to the palace of the king, making Princess Quynh Nga hear and ask his father for soldiers to rescue the Thach Sanh.
Da Dung Mountain becomes particular by structural feature, geological structure, along with the erosion and the effects of nature over a long time. And in these caves there are many seashells, snail shells … sticking out of the cliff, they proved this place was under water in the past. In addition, the grounds of the old books, the old days in Da Dung Mountain had a bird sanctuary (Dieu Dinh) with a large number of white storks living here.