Yang Bay imposing waterfall in Khanh Hoa

Yang Bay means smoke and dew of heaven?. It’s high up in the hills where the air is fresh, cool and the spray thrown in all directions creates a screen of zillions of tiny water drops.

Even though it’s only 40km from Nha Trang City, Yang Bay was known only to woodcutters and a few other locals in the past. It didn’t appear on any tourist map until 1998. Local authorities got to hear about it and decided to build a road. And a State -owned company called Khatoco has spent VND 20 billion turning the ?sleeping beauty? into Yang Bay Tourism Park without despoiling the landscape.

Still, there is a plastic something-or-other swaying lightly in the wind to welcome visitors at the main entrance and from a distance they can see two huge cement gourds in front of a restaurant, which purposely resembles a typical wooden house of the ethnic people in the northern province of Hoa Binh. Getting closer brings into view the gourd trellis at the restaurant entrance. Seeing and touching the gourds might conjure up the image of a peaceful rural village in some minds.

The paved road to the falls goes through a manicured bamboo forest planted in 2002 and now containing small cement mushrooms, bamboo bridges, green grass and a variety of flowers. The water that flows over Yang Bay cascades down to the Cai River, the one that Nha Trang bestrides. Along the way are delightful pools where the water is so clear that the pebbles on the bottom are as obvious as day.

Not only the sounds of the descending falls, visitors can also hear a litho phone, a musical instrument comprising five slabs of stone that hang under the falls and make pleasing tones when the water hits them. These special slabs were brought from Lien Sang Commune 30km away.

To discover Yang Bay’s upper section requires clambering up a hand-hewn staircase to the beautiful pools of Ho Me (mother lake) and Ho Con (child lake), but few tourists bother to make the effort. Usually people stop at the second or third pool then find a good flat rock to sit on and indulge themselves in the fresh air amid the sound of cascading water.

If visitors don’t like trekking then they can always wade across the shallows at the base and investigate the forest on the other side. There they can lie down on carpets of grass or fallen leaves under the shadow of giant trees as a reward for making the trip to the most beautiful waterfall in Khanh Hoa.

To add variety, Yang Bay Tourism Park plans to set up crocodile and ostrich enclosures and start an animal circus.

( Saigon Today)

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