Situated in Son Tay town, only 1.5 hours from Hanoi -that time is the mostly getting out of the traffic in the city, the drive to Duong Lam is scenic providing views of smaller towns and farming. Entrances with heavy doors that lead to courtyards with serene goldfish ponds, an old village well, ornate roof sculpturing – ambience of a long ago time, great to experience walking through it!. You can read more: Travel Indochina Vietnam
Duong Lam commune consists of 9 villages and was recognized as a national heritage site in 2006. To be considered as the most ancient village in the North with its history of more than a thousand year of development, Duong Lam Ancient Village has still retained the basic characteristics of Vietnamese ancient villages with banyan tree, well and communal house’s court. The unique architecture has turned the village into one of attractive tourist addresses alluring tourists. With an area of 800.25 ha, Duong Lam Ancient Village in Vietnam is the cultural space having preserving the quintessence of traditional cultural features of Vietnamese people. It is an indispensable tourist site in the journey of exploring Hanoi travel attracting tourists who prefer to discover the unique ancient architectural characteristics. Start setting foot on Duong Lam Village, tourists will actually get unforgettable memories. You will be welcomed by the the village’s gate made of wood which is typical of Northern village with the porticoes curved-shape roofed. Imagine yourself transported for a moment to a place where two kings were born. They were Phung Hung (761-802) and Ngo Quyen (896-944), giving the village its prestige. Both men led resistance wars against northern invasion and after winning national independence, were crowned kings. After their deaths, the local people built temples in their honor. It might not be much but a series of alleys and homes but its look deeper and and you will find smooth transition airy plend of the past. In the present, people are living their lives in the present while constantly being surrounded and reminded of the past that has changed much but at the same time, definitely has what a little bit confused too. I know it communal houses of workshiping temples and ancient home is make up at least 20 historical sites thus this place is a worthwhile excursion from Hanoi. Most old houses here have maintained gate, fencing, courtyard, garden, main house, outbuilding, kitchen, ranch… The main house is designed in traditional style, with wooden columns with a diameter of 30cm which are very familiar with the ancient village in Thang Long – Hanoi but could hardly find elsewhere today. Ancient houses are cool in summer and warm in winter. In addition, open space and the ability to make the most of natural light are also the advantages of Duong Lam ancient houses. The unique culture features is worth to bring Duong Lam Village to become the appealing tourist site in the journey of discovering Hanoi tours. For more information, you can click: Best Indochina tours
Traditional cultural values are shown through not only architectural works but also traditional dishes, especially soy sauce. From many years ago, Duong Lam locals earn their living by making soy sauce. As for Duong Lam people, soy sauce is a kind of traditional spice. Although soy sauce is not the main dish, it enhances the tastes of all dishes. Duong Lam villagers still continue to make soy sauce by hand and rainwater is a necessary ingredient in their recipe. The soy sauce jar is like one of the criteria of lifestyle of a peasant family. Villagers spend a space in their house for keeping soy sauce jars. Each family in Duong Lam ancient village also has few vases of soy sauce at their yard. The secret of making soy sauce more special is the water. The water to make soy sauce have to take from Giang well (the ancient well near by the temple of the mandarin Giang Van Minh). People said that the water from this laterite well is sweet and crystal clear. That’s why Duong Lam, Vietnam soy sauce always has a special flavor that nowhere else has. As for tourists, dishes served with Duong Lam soy sauce are attractive. Besides keeping the tradition alive, locals also make soy bean sauce to make a living as many people enjoy this specialty. After visiting, let’s take a bottle of sauce as a rustic gift for your family, or your friends.
When you’re wondering throught the narrow alleyways, it feels like a step back in time you hear people actually living off of the other side. It is a good combination but when you get there, you just got to make sure that you find the right alleyways and just wander maybe get a bycicle or whatever to go around and explore yourself. Seems like a slow lifestyle compared with the busy highway to and from Hanoi only a kilometer or so away. At this village, there are a number of activities and events for children of all ages, which will not only keep your family coming back for more but also support Duong Lam locals. One of the best part of the visit to Duong Lam you should try is to eat a home cooked meal by a local family. Tourists need not be worried, while it doesn’t look very sanitary. The host family takes very good care and the food is delicious. Let’s try sausage candy, “chè kho”, roasted pork with the stick or Mia chicken- this kind of chicken was the tribute to offer the King in the past. You can ask for vegetarian, which was probably the best dish. It will be set up for small tour groups with tables under the eaves of 400 year old grooves. It’s definitely great experience you will have if visiting here.
Get putting of the hustle and bustle of Hanoi, Duong Lam ancient village is your best choice. Walking around or take a bycle to explore the old lifestyle here will be a new experience you have especially if you are into history. Fresh air, beautiful places, friendly people… help you have a gorgeous place to spend a day with your camera. Don’t hesitant anymore! We are Indochina Voygages, willing to help you have an unforgetable trip to Vietnam.