ISLANDS AND ARCHIPELAGOS OF VIET NAM 9

Though this island is isolated far out to sea, it was reclaimed and inhabited from very early times, which is evidenced by the discovered ancient traces. While exploiting squelchy stone, people unearthed large burial jars with labor tools like stone “bons”, axes and slim artificial hand bracelets. Legends also say that in the times when the island was not yet settled by migrants from the continent, a mountain tribe had lived on the coast. They lived on gathering, hunting and fishing. Centuries later, Phu Quy Island became an attractive destination for sequential migration waves from the mainland. The migrants were people of many nationalities in which the Kinh people were the principal ones.
Linh Quang Pagoda on Phu Quy Island is located on a high hill above My Khe village, Tam Thanh commune. It is a historical vestige of the state level, was built in the 18th century and is now over 250 years old. Royal edicts of the Nguyen dynasty of the 19th century are still preserved in the pagoda. In Tam Thanh commune there is Van An Thanh Temple worshipping the Nam Hai God (Whale God). Royal honorable edicts of the Nguyen dynasty are also kept here. The Ba Chua Ngoc Temple (Pearl Lady Temple) and Thuong Hai Temple are the two historical vestiges recently recognized as vestiges of the provincial level. Five royal edicts honoring the deification of the Pearl Lady are preserved in them. Other precious worship objects are copper urns, lamp bases, a bell, two royal honorable edicts to the Nam Hai God and two royal honorable edicts to the Duke-Admiral Bui. In the communal house of Trieu Ditong village are lots of precious relics such as parallel sentences carved in wood, horizontal wood boards carved with nom characters and five royal honorable edicts of the Nguyen dynasty to the tutelary god. This communal house is a historical vestige of the provincial level.
In October 1941, a dead whale floated onto the island. The Service of Culture and Information of Binh Thuan province reported that the local people solemnly buried it. Since then Trieu Duong villagers have regarded the 15th day of the 1st lunar month each year as the death anniversary of the whale, which is considered to be an ancestor.
For long periods people on Phu Quy Island carried out a closed self- sufficiency economy. They engaged in farming, sea products exploitation and some other crafts, for example fabric weaving and making hammocks. But fishery has played the predominant role.
Around Phu Quy Island are the following neighboring islands:
Hon Tranh Island: approximately 600 meters southeast of Phu Quy Island. Area: nearly 40 hectares. Hon Tranh was a deserted island mainly covered by imperata cylindrica grass. Later, people reclaimed it for crops. Now on the island forests are planted for refreshing the environment. There is no resident population but on the island is located a sea¬watching radar station of the Vietnamese People’s Navy.
Hon Den Island: approximately 100 meters northeast of Phu Quy Island, consisting entirely of basalt rocks. When the tide recedes, people may go on foot from Hon Den Island to Phu Quy Island.
Hon Trung Island: three kilometers northwest of Phu Quy Island. It is a good place for boats to anchor during storms.
Hon Giua Island: it is a chain of sharp rocks located near Hon Den Island. It bridges Hon Den and Hon Do Islands.
Hon Do Island: located northeast of Phu Quy Island. It is called Hon Do Island (Red Island) because all rocks on it are of red color.
Hon Hai Island: 70 kilometers from Phu Quy Island. In shape it is a vertical rock block. Here is located the Baseline of Ao for measuring the territorial waters of Viet Nam in the southeastern sea region.
Hon Do Lon Island: 60 kilometers southeast of Phu Quy Island. It was formed in 1923 as the result of lava eruption on the seabed in the East Sea. Originally it was round. It is 40 meters in diameter. On its surface is white sand. Around it are stepped, gentle slopes.
Since old times Phu Quy has been famous for valuable rare sea products. In 1935, traders traveled by boat from South Viet Nam, Central Viet Nam and Phan Thiet province to Phu Quy to buy dried fish, lobsters and snails to resell to Cambodia. Since the 1990s, Phu Quy has really been changed thanks to great assistance of the central and provincial governments and great efforts of local authorities and people. Peoples incomes rose as the occupation of exploiting sea products has been equipped with new, efficient technology.
Apart from sea products, Phu Quy is also known for its great potential of ecological sea tourism. The climate on the island is clean and healthy. The water surrounding the island is so clear and clean that visitors can see with their eyes the seabed and the objects on it at the depth from 5 to 7 meters. What is particular is that around it are dense coral reefs of diversified types. There are nice beaches like Trieu Duong, Doi Dua, Nho Ganh Hang, and Mo Thay. Trieu Duong Beach is especially large with pure white sand. There are coconut rows, a shady poplar woods, fresh water and several scenic spots. People of Phu Quy are industrious, simple and hospitable.
With its rich nature, Phu Quy is a destination of visit tours, relaxation tourism, sports tourism, ecological sea tourism, fishing on the sea, and cultural and historical tourism.

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