The island district of Ly Son, 30km off the coast of the central province of Quang Ngai, opened a night market for tourists on the island in May. According to Vice-chairwoman of the district’s People’s Committee, the night market located in front of Muong Thanh Ly Son Hotel in An Vinh commune. Huong said the market, which will run from 6pm until 10:30pm daily, will host 40 pavilions selling souvenirs, dried seafood and specialties of the island as well as an entertainment center. She said a lack of night entertainment and shopping service has hampered tourist attraction.
Last year, Ly Son island and An Binh islet hosted more than 200,000 tourists. The island has 18 hotels, guesthouses and homestays providing accommodation for 1,000 tourists at present. The islanders of Ly Son offer local cuisine and garlic and onion farming experiences for tourists during a sea trip from Sa Ky port in summer. Ly Son and a vast coastal area of Binh Son district may receive Global Geo-Park recognition from UNESCO. It has been well-known as the ‘King of Garlic’ in Vietnam with 21,000 inhabitants, most of whom make their living from farming garlic and spring onions and fishing.
According to archaeologists, Ly Son Island is a dormant volcano. The terrain of the island was created from eruptions 25 to 30 million years ago, leaving landscapes with rocks, caves, cliffs, rock arches and a lake.
The island has abundant relics related to the Sa Huynh, Champa and Dai Viet (or Great Viet) cultures that existed on the island for thousands of years. Islanders still preserve the annual Hoang Sa festival to pay tributes to local men who enlisted in the Hoang Sa flotilla hundreds of years ago.
The flotilla was set up under the Nguyen dynasty to patrol the Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos and salvage goods from wrecks, catch fish and maintain a Vietnamese presence in the area. The festival, which includes a requiem for those who had died on the sea patrol missions, a procession of four supernatural creatures and the release of lanterns, has been recognized as the National Intangible Heritage.”
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