Visit Ha Giang during the buckwheat season
- on Feb 12, 2018       By: Hai Anh
After the harvest season (September - October), a lot of backpackers and tourism lovers start preparing for the trip to Ha Giang - region of buckwheat blooming annually in November. Besides Mai Chau and Mu Cang Chai, Ha Giang worths your attention during the visit Vietnam. Follow us to every corner of Ha Giang to explore and to feel every breath of this majestic highland.
1. Pho Bang - Yen Minh
Pho Bang is an old town located right beside the border of Vietnam - China in Dong Van rural district. This area is the muster of ancient houses which contain a lot of memories. The fields on the 2 sides of Pho Bang road are full of buckwheat flowers. On the way to Pho Bang, you will see a rose valley and a vast buckwheat field besides the road.
Walking in Pho Bang, you will meet local people from Hoa and Mong ethnic groups working on the field, which dissplays the most authentic beauty and known as the symbol of Ha Giang. Young ladies are often in charge of weaving fabric, sewing colourful brocades where as aging people are having tea and young children are playing in front of veranda. It iss undeniable that your visit Vietnam and to Ha Giang could not be completed without coming to this peaceful town.
Driving through Pho Bang, you will see Lung Cam, where Sung La - a peaceful and beautiful valley located. Sung La has been known as one of the most famous tourism destinations in Ha Giang with colorful flower fields. Sung La Valley is considered as a highland flower. This area attracts visitors by its natural and peaceful little houses, green corn and lovely buckwheat fields. Sung La Valley represents the hidden charm of mountainous regions. In Sung La Valley, there is a village named Lung Cam. This is the residence for more than 60 households, mainly belongs to Lo Lo, Mong and Han ethnic groups. Among these 3 groups, Lo Lo is the most ancient and attractive one to every vistors visit Vietnam.
Vuong family’s Residence located in the top of a small hill with a straight row of old samu. Inside is the Residence of Vuong family - one of the most honoured families in the region due to drug trading a long time ago in the past. The Residence has a special architecture of 3 cultures: China, Mong ethnic group and France. This Residence has been recognised by Vietnamese government as National Monuments in 1993. It is 14 km from Vuong family’s Residence to Dong Van. Nowaday, this site has attract a great number of tourist to Ha Giang during their visit Vietnam
From Vuong family’s Residence, you can go back to the T-junction of La & Ma Le Streets to go to Lung Cu Flag Tower - the mark of Vietnam & China border. On the road from Ma Le to Lung Cu, you will see a vast buckwheat field on the hill. Until now, this is biggest buckwheat in this region. Lung Cu is 2000m above the sea surface. You should spend a few hours at Lung Cu in the late afternoon for the sunset and then go back to Dong Van for resting at night. It is said that if you go to Ha Giang and not staying at Dong Van for one night then it is not considered visiting Ha Giang yet.
The ancient street is hidden in the valley and covered by the mountains. There are only about 40 households in this street. When night comes, you can feel the calm and taciturnity of this street. If you come to Ha Giang on the monthly evenings of 14th, 15th and 16th, you will see this street in a completely different look with red lanterns and many brocatelle exhibitions, music performances and traditional food courts of minority ethnic groups. Early in the morning, the picture of Dong Van ancient street is a combination of 2 colors, yellow of sunlight and grey of ancient houses.
It is around 20 km from Dong Van to Meo Vac, passing by Happiness Road (where situated Ma Pi Leng Mountain Pass. This mountain pass is known as the most beautiful road of this rocky highlight. You will experience wonderful and unforgettable memories while driving on this impressive road with one side of high and hard-rock mountains and the another side of deep abyss.This is a big challenge for those who love adventures. There is a cliff emerging on Ma Pi Leng moutain pass. From this cliff, you will be able to observe the full view of imposing Northern mountains.
7. Khau Vai Market Hà Giang
Khau Vai Market (Khau Vai in the languages of Tay and Nung ethnic groups means ….) or called “love market”. The Khau Vai love market has existed since 100 years. Some references record that it may start from 1919. The market is situated in Khau Vai village, Meo Vac Distric, Ha Giang, Vietnam and only organised annually on March 27th (Lunar Calendar).
Ha Giang people still remains their specific customs, therefore, the schedule of their local markets follows the lunar calendar. If you visit Ha Giang and unintentionally see a local market, you are quite lucky. Local market in Pho Cao, Pho Bang, Sa Phin and Lung Phinn all starts early in the morning and finished after mid-day. Street vendors are divided into different areas such as: brocatelle clothes, vegetables, Chinese herbs, food, shoes, "carried-under-arm" pigs, dogs raised by Mong people. In addition to Khau Vai market, there is also Dong Van market organised in Dong Van District every Sunday. The market was constructed in 1920s, therefore, it has ancient features that contributes to the antique beauty of Dong Van ancient street.
May (the rainy season) or September (the harvest season) are perfect time for visitors to travel to Hoang Su Phi. From Ha Giang, you can rent a motorbike to travel to Hoang Su Phi. At Hoang Su Phi, you will see terraced fields matching the sky, alternate the yellow fields and the roofs of ethnic houses flickering in green bushes. When the sun sets, the colourful sky blending with kitchen smoke from the rooftops generating a simple but imposing beauty that is undescribable by words. The areas that are famous for cultivating the largest amount of rice in Hoang Su Phi include: Ban Luoc, Ban Phung, San Sa Ho, Nam Ty, Ho Thau & Thong Nguyen.
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