Ao Châu Lagoon is considered a miniature Hạ Long Bay of Phú Thọ Province. — Photo dulichphutho.gov.vn
Ao Châu Lagoon in Hạ Hòa District in the northern midland province of Phú Thọ, is a pristine and charming natural landscape that is often likened to a miniature Hạ Long Bay.
Located about 80km away from Việt Trì City, Ao Châu Lagoon is nowadays a potential attraction of the land of Hùng Kings.
The road to the destination is very easy to access. Visitors can reach by road and waterway along the Red River and railway route Hà Nội–Yên Bái–Lào Cai.
Ao Châu Lagoon has a rather special shape. Looking at the map, it looks like the head of a buffalo with two horns spreading out on both sides of the Thao and Lô rivers.
The lagoon has 99 branches, interwoven between hills and mountains, collecting water from 99 small streams. Moreover, each ramification has green islands covered all over the water, forming an extremely beautiful, charming picture.
The large and small islands of all shapes are what people associate the beauty of the lagoon with the natural wonder of Hạ Long Bay. Visitors are immersed in a green space, lush trees and breathtaking scenery.
An island on Ao Châu Lagoon. — Photo dulichphutho.gov.vn
Legend has it that at the time of nation-building, King Hùng the 1st went out to choose the land to establish the capital. He went to this land which had 99 hills and branches. The king and his court officials were ecstatic at the beauty of the land. While sightseeing, they encountered a fierce battle between two golden buffaloes. Then, both of them dived into the lagoon and disappeared.
The lagoon has an area of about 300ha of water surface on a total area of about 1,500ha. It makes lush crops for locals here, so it is as precious as jewels. That’s why it is called Ao Châu Lagoon (lagoon of jewels and ivory).
The mountainous terrain has created hundreds of water niches wriggling between the areas, and many beautiful streams pouring water into the lagoon. Thanks to the four seasons of water storage, it has created conditions for natural vegetation to develop, mainly reeds, neohouzeaua, tea and low bushes. Some hills later were covered with eucalyptus, snowbell, pine and fruit trees such as litchi, longan, jackfruit and pomelo.
Hillsides and mountainsides are often covered with vast undulating rice terraces.
According to a survey, the lagoon has a rich and diverse flora and fauna ecosystem with 702 species of plants, including 86 species of rare wood trees; 332 species used as medicine as well as 47 species used as edible vegetables.
The lagoon also has 22 species of mammals, 71 species of birds, 29 species of fish, including carp, milkfish, catfish and chub. Especially there are various kinds of turtles in the lagoon.
Ao Châu Lagoon has fresh nature, and tourists can fish here. — Photo luhanhvietnam.com.vn
Over the years, Ao Châu Lagoon has retained the wild beauty of nature. The water never dries up all year round, it always keeps its clear blue colour because the water level in the lagoon has a depth of 3.5 to 5m, some parts up to 15m.
Thanks to the regulation of temperature and humidity of the lagoon and the forest, the climate here is cool and pleasant. The winter temperature here is not too low, and the summer is always cool.
Ao Châu Lagoon – the green pearl of Phú Thọ – has favourable conditions to develop into an eco-tourism area with various types of tourism such as resort, boating, fishing and mountaineering.
Along with this tourist area, tourism resources belonging to other localities such as traditional festivals, historical and cultural relics, the cave system of Xuân Sơn National Park, Thanh Thủy Hot Spring Resort, cultural activities of ethnic minorities in Thanh Sơn and Yên Lậpd districts will create a hub with unique, rich and diverse types of tourism. VNS
The lychee garden around Ao Châu Lagoon attracts tourists. — Photo luhanhvietnam.com.vn