Phu An is a remote village in Trung Nghia Commune, Vung Liem District, Vinh Long Province in the Mekong Delta.
In the rustic and peaceful atmosphere of Phu An, Coco Riverside Lodge, an eco-resort in the village, is appealing to many guests.Staying at the resort is a combination of a tour to a Mekong Delta locality and a trip to experience the southern lifestyle.
Parting from National Highway 53 at Giong Ke Market, tourists will head for a village road.
This 10-kilometer road is a turning point for tourists to enter a countryside atmosphere as paddy fields, lines of coconut trees and a canal are what tourists would see.
On the way to the resort, tourists can stop by temples where local people worship their ancestors and a goddess.
If knowing how to row a canoe, tourists can cruise between lines of nipa palms along a canal. During this boat trip, tourists are allowed join locals to catch fish.
In the afternoon, tourists should visit a woman identified as Tu Chien, who cooks food for guests at Coco Riverside Lodge, to see how she prepares southern specialties for dinner.
After that, tourists should not miss an exotic view of the rural area when dusk falls and dyes paddy fields red.
And when it is dark, staff members will use a type of torch made of beautyleaf fruits to light up the night and lead visitors to their bungalows.
This torch is a product created by pioneers to the southern land.
To make it, they choose old beautyleaf fruits, peel them to get the part inside, and crush it before mixing it with kapok to create tinder for starting a fire.
In the dim light, don ca tai tu (southern folk music) artists will treat visitors with a genre of traditional music which has been recognized by UNESCO as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity.
Bungalows at Coco Riverside Lodge are a blend of traditional and modern features. Each 100-square-meter bungalow is built mostly of bamboo trees, leaves and wood.
It has a corridor, dining room, bedroom, rest room, kitchen, and balcony overlooking the river where tourists can relax, read a book and watch boats cruising down and up the river.
The modern touch of these bungalows is evident in the way they are equipped with air-conditioner, fridge and wifi, aside from tea, coffee, biscuit, and kettle which tourists usually expect to have at a hotel of three stars or above.
In the morning, tourists can make breakfast themselves with the help of local chefs and indulge in a typical southern atmosphere.
An interesting activity which tourists can join is to explore the life of southerners through the harvest of nipa palm trees. Tourists will be guided to cut the tree and get its leaves for roofing houses.