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Vung Tau


Vung Tau (Vungtau) is a resort town in the province of Ba Ria Vung Tau, 125 km from Saigon. The town is a long strip where the southern tip of town meets the ocean. Historically, the first settlements in this area occurred in the reign of King Gia Long. During this period, there were many Malay bandits in this region. This created a threat for merchants in the Gia Dinh area.

The King sent three garrisons of troops to the area to quell the disturbance and to clear this area for settlement. A few years later, the bandits were driven away and in 1822, King Ming Mang rewarded the three officers who led the army to this region. The soldiers were allowed to retire and brought their families to this area to make a living. The name Vung Tau came about because the geography in this area also forms a natural bay where many merchant ships would stop to seek shelter. In time, this area became known as Vung (puddle) Tau (ships).

Vung Tau is the first seaside resort for the elite in Vietnam. Many bungalows and vacation homes have been built. Vung Tau is also known for its abundance of pagodas and temples, most of them lean against the mountains and face the ocean.

During the Vietnam War, Vung Tau was home to the Australian Army and American support units, and was a popular spot for in-country R&R for U.S. combat troops. After the war, Vung Tau was a common launching place for the Vietnamese Boat People fleing the communists.

The winding road goes up and down along the shore, offering a spectacular view of the skyline and refreshing ocean wind. Facing the ocean on three sides, Vung Tau is windy all year round and has 2 distinct seasons, rainy from May to October and dry from November to April. Average temperature is 28 deg. C.

Traditionally a weekend get-away spot for city dwellers from Saigon , Vung Tau has also a significant fishing industry. With oil rings only 70 km off shore, the city is a center of services for the exploitation of gas and oil.



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