A nondescript Vietnamese village of an ethnic group in the northeastern region contiguous with China has become a magnet for tourists thanks to a renovating effort by young local people.
The village, located in Mong Cai – the city of Quang Ninh Province, northern Vietnam – is adorned with frescos on the walls of its houses.
Two years ago, this residential area, consisting of members of the same surname Dang, lay in obscurity in terms of tourist potential, although it sits merely under 100 meters away from the local government building.
At the time the place was overshadowed by a scene of disorder, with chicken coops and pigpens positioned out front at the houses, and no residents thought of a transformation in spatial appearance or knew how to effect the change.
Vu Thi Thao, deputy secretary of the Mong Cai Youth Union, entertained the idea of refashioning the village with paintings after catching sight of a fresco-decorated one in another province in the newspaper.
It took young people from the Youth Union several months to persuade the villagers into the idea of creating frescos on home walls, for the local people believe that wall paintings will lure ghosts toward their houses.
At first only two households agreed, but later the remaining followed suit when witnessing a number of backpackers stop here with interest to take photos.
Dang Chan Denh, one of the first people accepting the proposal, has his house walls beautified by a fresco of a hill covered with rose myrtles – familiar flowers in the locality.
Other paintings also bear the stamp of the locals’ everyday rural life, which partly explains their liking for them.
“Life in the village has changed since the young people came here to draw murals. Now tourists visit this place every weekend,” Denh said.
The model experimented with at the village has been transplanted into two of the other ones in the province.