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Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

By Tran Hoa   June 29, 2021 | 04:00 am PT
The Central Highlands province of Gia Lai is one of the few places in Vietnam where traces of century-old extinct volcanoes can still be found today.
Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

Chu Dang Ya is the name of a volcano that used to be active millions of years ago. In the J’rai ethnic minority language, Chu Dang Ya means "wild ginger root." It lies in Ploi Lagri Village in Gia Lai’s Chu Pah District, home to the Jarai ethnic minority.

The Chu Dang Ya volcano has been dormant for millions of years, offering fertile land for cultivation.

Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

From above, the volcano resembles a giant funnel, with its crater bearing the red tint of basalt soil created by lava since ancient times.

Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

Mit, 45, clears her family's 1,500-square-meter cassava field at the foot of Chu Dang Ya volcano.

Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

Around the basin, the Jarai people grow coffee, corn, potatoes, pumpkin, and galangal to earn their daily bread. Locals say the red basalt soil gives their products a sweeter taste than those grown in other regions.

Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

Remnants of an ancient, concave-shaped crater in Op Village of Pleiku Town with a radius of about 500 meters, forming a large valley. The land is fertile and has a stable water source, allowing locals to grow rice, potatoes and other vegetables on the crater that has been dormant for millions of years.

Gia Lai, land of million-year-old dormant volcanoes

At an altitude of 1,028 meters, Ham Rong Mountain used to be volcanic. The mountain, around 10 kilometers from Pleiku, boasts cool weather and is often covered by fog.

The mountain has a crescent shape resembling a horseshoe. Currently, the top of the mountain serves as the telecommunications base station for the whole province, and is off limits.

 
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