A tiny islet that’s big on fish, garlic and sheer good looks

By Thanh Nguyen   October 31, 2019 | 08:10 pm GMT+7

An Binh Islet (Small Island) has an area of less than a square kilometer, but the respite and delight it offers is manifold.

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The islet is part of the island district of Ly Son in the central province of Quang Ngai. Ly Son is formed by five mountains, four of which are dormant volcanoes. Broadly, it is a combination of three islands including Dao Lon (Big Island), Dao Be (Small Island, as the An Binh Islet is called) and the Mu Cu Islet. The island district, which used to be off the beaten tourism track, has become increasingly popular among both domestic and foreign visitors in recent years.

The Small Island, with a total area of just 0.6 square kilometers, is home to 100 households who live mainly on fishing and garlic cultivation.

Previously, to reach this islet, visitors had to hire fishermen to take them from Big Island in small boats. Now, visitors can easily rent boats or canoes to get to the island in just 15 minutes. Boat trips to the islet usually depart at 8 a.m. and return to the Big Island at 2:30 p.m. daily with prices ranging from VND50,000 ($2.2) to VND60,000 per person. The islet is attracting increasing numbers of tourists with its crystal blue waters and unspoilt beaches.

Previously, to reach this islet, visitors had to hire fishermen to take them from Big Island in small boats. Now, visitors can easily rent boats or canoes to get to the island in just 15 minutes. Boat trips to the islet usually depart at 8 a.m. and return to the Big Island at 2:30 p.m. daily with prices ranging from VND50,000 ($2.2) to VND60,000 per person. 

The islet is attracting increasing numbers of tourists with its crystal blue waters and unspoilt beaches.

The Cave Beach offers plenty of shelter to berth coracles, rest a while and admire stalactites.Coracle paddling and diving are popular activities among tourists. Such rides cost VND60,000 ($2.6) per person for a group of three or four, including rent for life jackets and goggles.

The Cave Beach offers plenty of shelter to berth coracles, rest a while and admire stalactites.

Coracle paddling and diving are popular activities among tourists. Such rides cost VND60,000 ($2.6) per person for a group of three or four, including rent for life jackets and goggles.

A woman drives past an old tropical Malabar almond tree with lush foliage on a concrete path on the peaceful island.Authorities in Quang Ngai Province recently decided to charge an entry fee of VND70,000 ($3.02) per person for visiting sites on the Big Island, the largest on Ly Son, which includes attractions like the Cau Cave, Cave Pagoda, To Vo Arch, and Thoi Loi Mountain and VND30,000 for the Small Island, which has its own historical and cultural sites and museums.They said the admission fees will be used for funding conservation efforts.

A woman drives past an old tropical Malabar almond tree with lush foliage on a concrete path on the peaceful island.

Authorities in Quang Ngai Province recently decided to charge an entry fee of VND70,000 ($3) per person for visiting sites on the Big Island, the largest on Ly Son, which includes attractions like the Cau Cave, Cave Pagoda, To Vo Arch, and Thoi Loi Mountain and VND30,000 for the Small Island, which has its own historical and cultural sites and museums. 

They said the admission fees will be used for funding conservation efforts.

Visitors walking around the island will easily spot lava rocks turned into fields to grow onions and garlic.Ly Son Island is famous for its lonely garlic, that is exported to many countries. Many people believe that garlic from Ly Son boosts the human immune system and even helps prevent cellular cancer.

Visitors walking around the island will easily spot lava rocks turned into fields to grow onions and garlic.

Ly Son Island is famous for its "lonely garlic," that is exported to many countries. Many people believe that garlic from Ly Son boosts the human immune system and even helps prevent cellular cancer.

Over the past three years, residents on the island have started augmenting their earnings from tourism-related services, including homestays and resting places that blend harmoniously with the natural scenery.

Over the past three years, residents on the island have started augmenting their earnings from tourism-related services, including homestays and resting places that blend harmoniously with the natural scenery.

Since 2017, murals created by Vietnamese volunteers have decorated walls on the island, helping change local attitudes towards the marine environment and also leaving a strong impression on first-time tourists.

Since 2017, murals created by Vietnamese volunteers have decorated walls on the island, helping change local attitudes towards the marine environment and also leaving a strong impression on first-time tourists.

Since early September this year, the Sea fish eat plastic waste installation, over 2 m long and 1.5 m wide, has drawn positive reactions many visitors to the islet. The installation is the brainchild of a volunteer group in Ly Son District, seeking to raise public awareness of plastic waste and the harm it causes to the marine environment.Vietnam has been ranked the fourth biggest polluter of oceans in the world by U.S. based non-profit environmental organization Ocean Conservancy.

Since early September this year, the "Sea fish eat plastic waste" installation, over 2 m long and 1.5 m wide, has drawn positive reactions from many visitors to the islet. The installation is the brainchild of a volunteer group in Ly Son District, seeking to raise public awareness of plastic waste and the harm it causes to the marine environment.

Vietnam has been ranked the fourth biggest polluter of oceans in the world by U.S. based non-profit environmental organization Ocean Conservancy.

Kayaking is also a popular activity on this small islet.

Kayaking is also a popular activity on this small islet.

 
 
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