Traveling to Danang, to the mountains surrounded by the legendary spiritual story along with many interesting caves in the chilly cold, Bà Nà appears with a poetic beauty. Merging with the surrounding clouds like dreamy white silk, the green space here is just like ” Dalat in central Vietnam“.
From the old story
From the north of Sơn Trà Peninsula, it took us more than 1 hour driving the new 55 km road to reach Bà Nà cable station. Tuấn – a friend from Đà Nẵng and, a team member, excitedly told us about the famous mountain “there is Bà (a woman) but there is no Ông (a man)”: actually, the new name Bà Nà was first recognized in the 20th century by a French captain named Debay, who also discovered Sapa, Tam Dao, Ba Vi. At the time, he had the task of searching for a landscape with fresh air to build resorts for the French officials. While traveling to Đà Nẵng by ship, when the ship was still far from the shore, Debay saw a high mountain, conquering the sky like a lord glorying in the early sun.
Struggling through the forest to find a way to the mountain, Debay met many Bana people who also climbed, and waded across the stream to the top of the forest to find precious drugs. He noticed that their meals were mostly ripe bananas from the green forest. To remember meeting with Bana people, as well as the delicious ripe banana that helped the entourage through the hunger, the captain highlighted the place on his map as “Banana hills”. Due to its difficult English pronounciation, to remember it easier, people changed it into “Bà Nà”.
According to data, Debay discovered Bà Nà in 1901. However, it was not until the fall of 1912 that the French carried out the planning and construction of roads to the summit. 8 years later, the first villa, under the management of Mr. Beisson, a well-known lawyer at that time, appeared on Bà Nà hill. However, this villa’s traces have been almost wiped out.
To the summit by the world-record cable car
Bà Nà telpher system has set two Guinness world records (the longest non-stop cable car [5042.62 m] and the biggest height difference between the upper and the lower station [1291.81 m]). Although I’m already aware of the fact, I am still a bit shocked when I first see the huge cable car system, hidden in the clouds, carrying guests up and down. Trying to buy tickets and getting in, the colorful cable-cars look like square balls, soaring to the summit.
The higher we get the thinner the air becomes; we are surrounded by white clouds and cannot see anything within a radius of 3m. Staying silent in the cable car, everyone seems to hold their breath, dreamily waving their hands towards the clouds as if they were floating in space.
Along the route, we are amazed by the vast green forests. There are some trees covered with red leaves, remotely look like funny giant blooming red flowers. The higher we get the thinner the air becomes; we are surrounded by white clouds and cannot see anything within a radius of 3m. Staying silent in the cable car, everyone seems to hold their breath, dreamily waving their hands towards the clouds as if they were floating in space.
Experiencing the telper system which is longer than 5km with an elevation of approxiamately 1,500m, I realize: When passing the elevation of about 500m, the mountain system plants transform the stems, and leaves so clearly that even the human eye can distinguish it. Sitting in the cable-car, I can see clouds passing quickly, the clear blue sky appears. The wild and imposing scenery comes into sight. Some old French-built roads hidden around the mountain slopes, look quite poetic. There is the whispering echo of small streams running over rocks somewhere, then they converging into a big one and pour water down the mountainside constantly. Somewhere, the stream turns into a small waterfall that looks like a fairy’s cascading hair in the heart of the imposing mountain.
Wandering in Bà Nà
Stopping at stage 1 with an elevation of approximately 1,400m, the group does a tour around the beautiful landscape of Bà Nà. Tuấn explains: the place we’re standing is the center of the old French resort. After the defeat at the battle of Điện Biên Phủ and being forced to withdraw from Vietnam, the French brought home all valuable items in the villas they had built around Vietnam. Therefore, the beautiful villas in Bà Nà have become abandoned, desolate ruins over several decades.
Today, when reconstructing Bà Nà, in addition to restoring old monuments such as the Debay cellar as well as Morin hotel in the genuine French style, to make it easier to travel to the summit investors also try to add a second telpher system; they also built a modern amusement park called Fantasy Park, located underground with 3 stories, of 21.000m2 area.
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