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Thành phố Phan Thiết
|Founded||1898, as Phan Thiết town, by Thành Thái|
|Incorporated||1933, as the Commune of Phan Thiết|
|Consolidated||1999, as the City of Phan Thiết|
|Named for||Hamu Lithit
|Time zone||MST (UTC+7)|
Phan Thiết ( listen) or Phan Thiet city is the capital of Bình Thuận province, in southeastern Vietnam, where all government offices for the province are located. The population of Phan Thiết is expected to increase to about 400,000 by 2015. There are also seven districts in the province: Hàm Thuận Bắc, Hàm Thuận Nam, Đức Linh, Tánh Linh, Hàm Tân, Bắc Bình, and the island district of Phú Quý.
Its main economics sources are agriculture, aquaculture, services, and tourism. Phan Thiet is a coastal city which is famous for its tourism district Mui Ne and its seafood as well as sea products such as fish sauce. Phan Thiet is also known as the land of dragon fruits which are exported to China, Europe, Japan, and United States of America.
There are several theories about the origin of the name Phan Thiết most of which agree that, "Phan Thiết" is not a pure Vietnamese name:
- Before the Vietnamese conquest of the area in the 17th century, the Cham people called this land "Hamu Lithit" - "Hamu": hamlet in the field, "Lithit" :near the sea. With the arrival of the Vietnamese settlers, a new name in Vietnamese was gradually developed. Since the Vietnamese had already changed the Cham city of Panduraga into Phan Rang and another settlement into Phan Rí, they attached the prefix "Phan" into the shortening of "Lithit" to make the name Phan Thiet.
- Vietnamese people have been transliterating the Cham names into more Vietnamese sounding names Panduranga or Mang-lang into Phan Rang, Mang-lý into Phan Rí, Hamu Lithit or Mang-thit into Phan Thiết. Those three places are referred to as "Tam Phan" (Triple Phan).
- The name of the Cham Prince who was the military governor of the area in the 15th century was Po Thit (brother of the princess Po Inu Sah and son of King Par Ra Cham Chanh or Trà Chanh). The fortification was thus called Camp Po Thit. The Vietnamese pronounced the camp name as Phan Thiết.
- This area used to belong to the ancient kingdom of Champa and was later absorbed into the Đại Việt Empire (former name of Vietnam). Vietnamese rule was established over the area which has become present-day Bình Thuận, although back then the administrative level and the boundaries of the area hadn't been determined.
- In 1697, Bình Thuận in turn was changed from a fort ("trấn") to the district (phủ), then to the dinh. Later, Phan Thiết was officially recognized as a đạo (along with Phan Rang, Phố Hài and Ma Ly of the Tam Tân area).
- From 1773 to 1801, there were fierce fighting between the forces of the Nguyễn Dynasty and Tây Sơn Dynasty in the area.
- In 1825, during the reign of Emperor Minh Mạng, Bình Thuận officially became a province; part of Phan Thiết was made into the district of Hàm Thuận. In 1854, during Tự Đức's reign, the district was renamed Tuy Lý).
- In 1836 (17th year of Minh Mạng), a cabinet officer named Dao Tri Phu was sent to Bình Thuận to oversee the surveying tasks and establish land boundaries for 307 communes and villages, in fifteen districts of Bình Thuận in order to determine taxation. On the right bank of the river (Cà Ty river today): Đức Thắng, Nhuan Duc and Lac Dao village; left bank side: Long Binh, Minh Long.
- Even near the end of the 19th century, Phan Thiết was not yet officially recognized as an administrative unit (lower level) under Bình Thuận province.
- In 1898 (10th year of the reign of Emperor Thành Thái), Bình Thuận's provincial capital was moved to Phu Tai village, a suburb of Phan Thiết. On 20 October of that year, Thành Thái signed a degree to make Phan Thiết a city and provincial capital (on the same day as the establishment of the cities of Bình Thuận, Huế, Hội An, Qui Nhơn, Thanh Hóa and Vinh).
- In the 20th Century it was a centre of VNQDĐ independence movement activity.
Phan Thiết is subdivided into 18 wards and communes, of which 14 are urban wards, namely: Đức Thắng, Đức Nghĩa, Đức Long, Phú Hài, Phú Thủy, Phú Trinh, Phú Tài, Thanh Hải, Hàm Tiến, Mũi Né, Xuân An, Bình Hưng, Hưng Long, Lạc Đạo and 4 suburban communes, namely: Tiến Lợi, Tiến Thành, Thiện Nghiệp and Phong Nẫm. Located on an arm of the South China Sea, Phan Thiết is one of Vietnam's most important fishing areas. Its population is roughly 205,333 (as of 2004). Hồ Chí Minh reportedly lived in Phan Thiết for a short time and worked as a schoolteacher.
During the Vietnam War, Phan Thiết was the site of the U.S. military base known as Landing Zone Betty, which was located at the now closed airfield southwest of the city. In recent years, Phan Thiết (specifically Mũi Né Beach district) has been transformed into a resort destination. 24 October 1995 is considered to be the birth of tourism in Phan Thiết, when thousands rushed to Mũi Né to see the total solar eclipse. The event was commemorated on the same day in 2005 as the tenth anniversary of tourism for the province. Local people in Phan Thiết regularly practice a ceremony to a whale god, which is believed to give good luck in nautical pursuits.
Photos of Phan Thiết
- Van Dao Hoang Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang: A Contemporary History of a National ... 2008 Page 158 "Phạm Hoài Xuân's ancestors originated from Phan Thiết. He was now to continue his revolutionary works with the other members of the VNQDĐ in Phan Thiết."
- The whale god of Phan Thiết