Located in Chau Thanh District, Tien Giang Province – 12km from My Tho City Centre, Dong Tam Snake Farm is one of the country’s largest snake-raising centers where venom is produced for local use and export, with its collection of over 50 species of snake.
This 11-ha-farm was formerly run by a retired Vietnamese soldier and expert-at-snake named Tran Van Duoc (Tu Duoc also). The farm is now under the operation of military, with a big collection of not only snakes but also some animals like: crocodiles, bears, turtles, sheep and ostriches. Some of them are mutant – evidences of the spraying of Agent Orange in the Mekong Delta during war time.
A museum of snake
It is no surprise that Dong Tam Farm is often regarded as the world of snake or the museum of snake, thanks to its big size and considerable number of snakes. From an extremely aggressive and even capable of spitting poison such as: copperheads and dendrophis; to some that can be pulled out for visitors to take photos, the farm is indeed a must-see for those who are interested in these wild and scary reptile. Most of the snakes raised here are pythons and cobras. The king cobras are raised only for exhibits.
In fact, Dong Tam Farm functions as a hospital for those bitten by snakes and a medicinal plant cultivation place which saves hundreds of lives every year. A trip there would provide tourists with information about how to treat snakebites and demonstrated venom extraction and some of its uses.
From Ho Chi Minh City, it’s quite convenient to get to the farm by motorbike, as well as car. From Dong Tam Junction, follow the dirt road for 4km, turn right and continue until you reach the snake farm. To get there from My Tho, follow Le Thi Hong Gam street westward along the river for around 7km and turn right just beyond the Binh Duc post office. Then follow the dirt road for 3km.
Visitors can purchase snakes at a price of VND 150,000 to VND 200,000 per kilogram (depending on the type of snake) as well as snake wine, snake flour, glue and anti-venom. Some local restaurants have snakes on their menus.