A salangane nest cave in Nha Trang Bay. (Photo: VNA)

Khanh Hoa (VNA) – The 2016 Salangane Nest Festival took place on Hon Noi Island, which lies about 20 kilometres from Nha Trang city in central Khanh Hoa province, on June 14 or Lunar May 10.

The festival is held annually by the Khanh Hoa Salangane Nest Company to honour the founder and supporters of local edible bird nest production business.
 
A ritual ceremony was performed at the temple of Governor and Holy Mother of the Island to recall the nearly-690-year history of the industry. The festival also dedicated to individuals and organisations contributing to developing the salangane nest resources.

Legend has it that the Rear Admiral of the Tran Dynasty (1225-1440), Le Van Dat discovered edible bird nests on the Phu Binh Khang coastal waters (in Khanh Hoa province today) on his business trip to the South.

He later taught local people how to exploit the nests which earned him the title the founder of the industry.

The salangane lives in caves on limestone cliffs and makes nest using its own saliva. The nest is a popular but an expensive traditional dish which is believed to have health benefits.

Khanh Hoa is home to the largest salangane population in Vietnam.

The Khanh Hoa Salangane Nest Company has to date developed 169 salangane caves on 32 islands from 40 existing natural caves. The firm produces more than 3.4 tonnes of salangane nests every year.-VNA