At this time of year, the sizzling heat of the summer sun scorches down on many areas of Vietnam, but for mountainous Bac Ai District, it often feels instead like spring is in the air.
The lush district in the central province of Ninh Thuan is the junction where the neighboring provinces of Lam Dong and
Khanh Hoa converge.
To enter the district's center, several primeval forests and ethnic minority villages must be crossed, and there is no shortage of magnificent scenery along the way.
Mountain flowers bloom in wild abundance while fresh, young buds sprout up in every inch of the forest.
Emerging from their cocoons, butterflies spread their delicate new wings and take their first flight.
Most farmers of the area's Raglai ethnic minority also choose to start their farming season during this time.
Everyone has a task to do.
Parents plough fields on which to grow corn.
The children bring the cows out to pasture.
Even the babies come along for a ride on the backs of their mothers as they head out to the fields.
The vast Song Sat Lake reflects the resplendent surrounding scenery, which has been preserved for years in its natural condition.
On the other side of the district, one can enjoy leisurely walks along shady macadam paths overlooking the Cai River while observing white stone banks in the deep valleys.
Along the way, a wide variety of bird songs can be heard coming from the tall trees that stretch overhead.
To experience a day in the life of the Raglai people, visitors are welcome to visit the Phuoc Binh Commune amid the dense Bac Ai forests.
Locals may invite you to drink wine and listen to songs played on the Chapi, their traditional musical instrument made from bamboo.
They will also likely tell you the story of a hero named Pinang, who invented a trap using crossbows and stones to fight against enemies.
The trap is considered a symbol of the bravery and intelligence of the local residents and can still be viewed today.
Reported by Hanh Tri