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Finding peace in Nam Cang

Nam Cang is located in Lien Minh Commune, Sa Pa Town, Lao Cai Province, about 36 kilometers from the town center. Along the way to Nam Cang, there are small waterfalls with beautiful poetic scenery.

Although Nam Cang is not yet a well-known tourism attraction, it has its own tourist draw with an idyllic setting and distinctive natural scenery of the northwestern region.

Nam Cang terraces in rice ripening season

Nam Cang is known for its long and wide terraced rice fields, where crops ripen earlier than elsewhere and the yellow terraced fields blanket the region from about mid-August to early September.

The rice field are dotted with the stilt houses of the H’Mong and Dao people. In addition to the peaceful natural beauty of Nam Cang, visitors also have an opportunity to enjoy local specialties such as Thang Co, a traditional dish of the H'Mong, salmon hot pot, grilled stream fish, roasted pork and many kinds of fragrant forest vegetables.

Visitors can visit the village and explore the Red Dao people’s life, learn about their embroidery, silver carving, traditional bamboo paper making and herbal baths. The more they learn, the more they will find that life there is very peaceful. Everyday, local women weave, embroider, or go to the forest to pick herbs, while the men engage in silver carving and farming. When they are off school, the children play in streams or tend to the family buffaloes and cows, and help their parents by doing housework.

After a long day exploring and learning about local culture, visitors can relax in a wooden bath with a light scent of forest leaves. According to experts, bathing with medicinal leaves of the Red Dao is not only healthy, it also reflects the cultural identity of the local people.

Tourists have the opportunity to enjoy local Nam Cang specialties

Residents have also developed cold-water fish farming with more than 80 fish farms along large and small streams. Many families can catch tens of tonnes of fish during a farming season.

According to the Secretary of the Party Committee of Lien Minh Commune, Vu A Trung, each house cultivates fish tanks. The household that raises the most is that of Tan Chan Quyen, who was not only a pioneer in cultivating cold-water fish but also invited aquaculture experts to direct the production of fingerlings and commercial fish.

In the H’Mong language, Nam Cang means “clear water”. This is the main region of the two ethnic groups, the H’Mong and the Dao. Residents make a living from farming and keeping livestock, as well as picking leaves to make medicine or food.

Thanh Tam

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