Cam Luong Fish Stream is situated at the foot of Truong Sinh Mountain, Cam Luong Commune, Cam Thuy District, Thanh Hoa Province, about 140km from Hanoi city’s center.
Cam Luong Fish Stream is home to thousands of “gioc” fishes, a carp species named in the Red Book of Vietnam (spinibarbichthys denticulatus), weighing from 2kg to 8 kg each. There are several king fish of up to 30 kg. According to local belief, these fishes are the god fishes (sacred fishes), so people only admire and pray luck, nobody dares to catch the fish.
During the day, schools of fishes swim from the cave of Truong Sinh Mountain to the stream through a small cave’s entrance. At the end of day, they swim back to the cave.
According to the legend, the ancient Luong Ngoc village at the foot of Truong Sinh Mountain suffered from severe drought and crop failure. There were a couple of poor, infertile farmers in the village. The wife often went to the stream to cry about their unfortunate situation.
One day, while catching snails and crabs in the stream, the wife accidentally touched a strange egg. Thinking the egg was rotten, the woman dropped the egg into the water and continued her work. But strangely, she did not catch any snail or crab that day, just the strange egg, although she moved to other locations.
She took the egg home and told her husband. The egg hatched a silver white snake. The husband took the strange snake to the stream and released it. But the snake returned home at night to sleep in the same bed with the couple. At first they were scared, but then their life was associated with the snake like a pet. They even considered the snake as their child.
Also, since the snake had appeared, the weather had been very nice and the crops very good. The Muong people became prosperous and happy. They loved the snake very much and they called it the snake boy. After one rainy night with strong winds and thunder, local people discovered the body of the snake on the stream bank.
They built a temple on the stream bank to worship the snake. Since then, thousands of strange fish have appeared in the Cam Luong fish stream to guard the temple.
In the dry season, Cam Luong fish stream is only 20-40 cm deep and the water is clear. Visitors can reach out to caress the fish. The density of the fish is thick but the water does not smell. Local residents use the water for cooking, bathing and washing. This tourist attraction attracts thousands of visitors yearly.
Locals say the fish have been there for hundreds of years and the people consider them as treasures. The fish have never been attacked by disease. Despite floods, the fish in Cam Luong fish stream never drift away. The big fish hide themselves in caves and the small fish that were swept away by flood sought way to return to the stream.
Cam Luong fish stream festival
Every year, in the first lunar month, Cam Luong Fish Stream attracts thousands of visitors in the traditional god fish festival.