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Vietnam is home to many ethnic minority groups that live in scenically beautiful locations across the country. Especially, isolated regions of the far north of Vietnam that retained a wild beauty and rugged charm are most appealing to natural lovers.
Travellers when come to northern part of Vietnam can not only get the chance to meet up with these most warm hosts and get to know indigenous cultures; but also be able to immerse ones in the stunning beauty of rice terraces or enjoy all-level trekking through peaceful villages and forests.
Here are the most fascinating and chosen destinations recommended that bring you the utmost experience of Vietnam and will surely please your passion toward the nature exploration.
The highlights of this trip:
Arrive in Lao Cai around 5:30 AM. Breakfast at local restaurant nearby to train station. Depart toward Sapa, stop to visit weekly market on the way.
TUESDAY: COC LY MARKET
This is one of the most typical hill tribal markets along the north-west of Vietnam where you can take see different minorities by their costumes like Flower H’mong, Tu Di, Tay and Dzay… as well as their shopping habit. The method of selling and buying is still basic by trading their goods, it’s less involved of money compared to normal market. After visiting the market, excursion on boat along the bank of Chay river to discover the unspoiled living culture.
WEDNESDAY: CAO SON MARKET
Follow a dirt road that goes up in the mountains, you will reach this small-medium sized market surrounded by pine trees forests and villages. Flower H’mong, Phu La, Black Dao and Chinese come here to buy and sell local products such as food, material for agriculture and handicrafts fabric. After exploring the market, you will then transfer by car and visit to the most secluded peaceful village – Tin Thang. Have an opportunity to see how they distill local wine from corn, making bacon in the most basic way.
THURSDAY: LUNG KHAU NHIN MARKET
Taking place every Thursday, Lung Khau Nhin Market is a small market hiding itself amongst the mountains and forests of the far north Vietnam about 10 km from the border with China. This market also plays an important role to spiritual life of local ethnic peoples Flower H’mong, Black Dzao, Dzay, and especially to those come from very small ethnic groups such as Pa Zi, TouZi, Tou Lao who live in small and isolated villages around this corner of the country, come for meeting, socializing...
After exploring the market, transfer to visit minority village and discover their simple life in the mountain.
SATURDAY: CAN CAU MARKET
Located about 100 km from Lao Cai city, Can Cau can be found by following a narrow road with sharp curves and steep slopes. Still retains the characteristics of an authentic hill tribe market, Can Cau market is a place that gathers Flower H’mong and Dzay come every Saturday for local products such as corn wine, handicraft… as well as animals.
SUNDAY: BAC HA MARKET
Bac Ha Market is held every Sunday and is the biggest minority peoples market in Northwest Vietnam.
Alive with the bright colours and extravagant costumes of the local people, you will meet Flower Hmong, Black Dao, Tay, Nung, La Chi, Phu La and other minority groups who might travel the road for few days to reach and gather here to buy and sell variety of goods, livestock and even trading animals such as horses, goats, cows, buffalos... This weekly event is also a chance for them to exchange news and socialize.
Visit Hoang A Tuong mansion, which is the oldest mansion and used to be the most powerful house in the Northwest region.
Transfer to Sapa in the afternoon. At leisure for your exploration of this charming town until dinner time.
After breakfast, start short journey about 15 min driving south toward Muong Hoa valley, one of the most beautiful valley in the northwest of Viet Nam. Walk descending into the valley. The walk takes you from Lao Chai village of the Black H’mong minority to Ta Van village of the Dzay minority.
In the afternoon, transfer to visit Ma Tra – Suoi Ho for a short trek around the village before dinner.
Transfer to train station to take night train back Hanoi. Overnight on train. (Cabin 4 berths)
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