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Ox race show draws large crowds in Mekong Delta

Ox racing, a distinctive feature of Khmer ethnic culture, attracted 100,000 visitors to an event in An Giang last weekend, helping to bolster the Mekong Delta province's tourism.

Eight pairs of oxen participated in a race in Soai Chek Stadium of Tri Ton District on Saturday as part of the paragliding event "Flying on Phung Hoang Son". The event was organized by local authorities in coordination with the Hanoi Paragliding Association to promote the destination and diversify local tourism to attract more visitors.

Ox race show, large crowds, Mekong Delta, distinctive feature, Khmer ethnic culture, paragliding event, local tourism

Eight pairs of oxen participated in a race in Soai Chek Stadium of Tri Ton District on Saturday as part of the paragliding event "Flying on Phung Hoang Son".

An Giang is famous for Bay Nui Ox Race, part of traditional Sene Dolta Festival held by the local Khmer to commemorate their ancestors, pray for the living, and strengthen community bonds. The festival is held annually between Tinh Bien and Tri Ton districts, which neighbor Cambodia, in lunar August and September. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, this year's event was canceled.

Because the race took place as Tri Ton entered the dry season from December to May next year, water spanning the track rapidly evaporated. Some photographers commented that this year’s bull race had failed to make a splash as during prior occasions.

Some oxen wear rosewood bead necklaces for good luck. Such a necklace is also a reward to pairs of oxen for their good plowing and racing.

Oxen compete across a 5.5 ha area in Soai Chek.

Many spectators, especially photographers, gathered close to the edge of the track to catch all the dramatic moments as the animals sprinted toward the finish line.

Ox race show, large crowds, Mekong Delta, distinctive feature, Khmer ethnic culture, paragliding event, local tourism

visitors also enjoyed paragliding performances featuring nearly 90 gliders from Hanoi, Da Nang, Nha Trang, and Ho Chi Minh City.

In addition to the bull race, visitors also enjoyed paragliding performances featuring nearly 90 gliders from Hanoi, Da Nang, Nha Trang, and Ho Chi Minh City. Each departed from Co To Mountain, known as Phung Hoang Son Mountain, and flew over Ta Pa rice fields before landing in the bull race field, all in Tri Ton District.

Tran Minh Giang, vice chairman of Tri Ton, said this was the first time paragliding was held in Tri Ton and the Mekong Delta region, well suited to the sport thanks to its natural topography.

Ta Pa fields that stretch to the foot of Co To Mountain are a tourist attraction of An Giang Province. The spot attracts visitors all year round, especially during the rice harvest season from August to early December. Ta Pa is also a spiritual hub with an eponymous Khmer Buddhist temple that offers expansive views of the area.

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Source: VnExpress

Ox race show, large crowds, Mekong Delta, distinctive feature, Khmer ethnic culture, paragliding event, local tourism
 
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