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Jan 24, 2022 / 15:48

Photograph of water lilies on the Mekong River featured on National Geographic

The mellow beauty and immense charm of the water lily of the Mekong River Delta attract many who love nature to flock in for nice shootings. This drone photo depicts the endless beauty of Vietnamese people and scenery.

Flooding is a way of life along the Mekong River in Vietnam. Every year, during the wet season, rising water levels upstream in the place. The annual flooding brings new organic matter from upstream and deposits alluvium into the fields.

This drone photos captured women harvesting water lilies on the Mekong River by Khanh Phan has just been highlighted in the US National Geographic magazine.

It also eliminates a great part of the salinity in the soil of coastal areas and flushes out toxicity released from acid sulphate soil, while also curbing the insect and rat populations. Fish come with the floods, as does plankton as fish food and nutrient-rich silt to farmlands near the river, allowing vast fields of rice to grow.

The smellow beauty, immense charm and the richness of seasonal agricultural produce of the Mekong River Delta has attracted many who love nature to flock in for admiring the beautful landscape as well as taking nice photoshoots.

At this time of the year, the whole area is covered in a mantle of white and pink lilies. These gorgeous aquatic plants have always been an iconic symbol of the Mekong River. This event attracts local farmers in a harvest that somewhat simulates a dance, a harmonious game of soft and sinuous movements, among one of the most romantic ceremonies in the world.

Water lilies are washed, tied into bundles and sold on the market. In addition to beauty, waterlilies are a favorite food, an ingredient for some hotpots and family dishes.

The water lily harvest takes place in the labyrinth of water and land of the Mekong Delta and is undoubtedly a moment to experience, one of the many wonders of Vietnam. 

The romantic scenery has always won the heart of many local and international photographers. 

A photo themed water lily harvesting on Mekong River Delta has just even been highlighted  US National Geographic magazine.

“During flood season, flowering water lilies paint the mighty Mekong white and fuchsia,” writer staff of National Geographic Rachel Ng wrote.

The Mekong River flows through China, Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia before fanning out into a network of waterways in southwestern Vietnam and emptying into the South China Sea.

“During flood season in the delta (June to November), women steer long-tail boats to harvest water lilies. Wading into waist-deep water, they rinse and bundle the plants for sale at markets and to restaurants,” Geographic added. 

The magazine quoted photographer Khanh Phan as saying that these women learned boating from their mothers and grandmothers. She likens the circle of lilies to one big blossom on which “the women are like bees.”

The female photographer is famous for her water lily shootings. With the photo entitled ‘Harvesting Water Lilies’, she won the third prize of the Malta International Photography Award (MIPA) in 2021.

The photo which is introduced in National Geographic is from the water lily photo collection that was snapped by Khanh Phan in Moc Hoa District, Vietnam’s Mekong Delta province of Long An.

  1. "Washing water lilies"- In Mekong River Delta, women ride boats to pick water lilies, then wash and sell them at the local market. Water lilies planting has been a traditional work for women in southern part of the country for generations. The edible flowers are also a delicacy.

Waterlily can be found everywhere in Vietnam, but the flowers proliferate in the Mekong River Delta area. The vivid white and purple flowers are not only ideal for adorning the house, but also a rich source of food for local residents.

According to the photographer, foreign tourists are always astounded to see the beautiful images that are hardly found in their countries. “The scenery of harvesting waterlily in Mekong River delta is my endless source of inspiration,” she told The Hanoi Times.

She added that best time to shoot the photos of waterlily is in the morning. After nine o’clock, its petals will close slowly, concealing a part of the flower’s beauty. Thus, she arrived at the pond the night before, waiting until dawn for taking the best shots.

The following are some outstanding aerial shots of water lilies by Vietnamese award-winning photographers:

The photo entitled “Harvesting Water Lilies” by Nguyen Tan Tuan won the excellence award of The First Half of 2021 “Smile World” International Photography Awards.
The beautiful water lilies shot by Vu Tuong Chieu with the marvelous background of Rhizophora apiculate forest.
The colourful photo of harvesting water lilies by Huynh Nam Dong.