Con Dao raft race held in tribute to revolutionaries

Con Dao Island was once dubbed “Hell on Earth” as it was home to a brutal prison where many revolutionaries were jailed during the war time. The prison witnessed hundreds of uprisings and escape attempts by boat and raft, but most were unsuccessful and resulted in recapture or death at sea. A raft face festival has been held for 16 years, as part of efforts to recall the unforgettable memories.

The 16th traditional raft race of Con Dao district was organised on Con Son Bay, with the participation of 12 teams, each with 7 rowers from local residential areas, enterprises, and armed forces.

Many local residents and visitors came to cheer on the rowers during the festival, which is held to re-enact the escape of Vietnamese revolutionaries from the brutal Con Dao prison.

The teams competed in an 1,800-metre race in bamboo and rattan rafts, like those the revolutionaries used to escape.

Thanks to meticulous preparations and good practice, all of the rafts safely finished the race after some tough competition.

Isolated from the mainland, Con Dao Island is one of the best places to visit in Vietnam. Long used as a prison, mainly for political prisoners and resistance fighters during wartime, it is now renowned for its untouched natural beauty./.