05.10.2020, 10:19

Take the harvest route to Mu Cang Chai

Take the harvest route to Mu Cang Chai

At the end of September, when harvest season spread across Vietnam's northwestern provinces, Doan Manh and his family spent two weekend days and one night in Mu Cang Chai, a rural district in Yen Bai. The group with three adults and a 4-year-old had traveled from Hanoi by car.

While it's not too far from the capital city to Mu Cang Chai, about 270 km away, the terrain in some parts is pretty steep.

The group woke up at 4:30 a.m. to prepare and departed at 5 a.m., arriving at Lap Mong Village under Khau Pha Pass at 11:30 a.m, just in time for lunch.

Manh said on the day he
drove t
o Yen Bai Province, the rain was heavy and persistent and the fog thick,
Khau Pha Pass to only 10-15 m
in places

Lim Mong and Lim Thai villages are home to Thai ethnic communities residing below Khau Pha –
one of the great four mountain passes
in Vietnam.

After crossing a suspension bridge, the group reached the tiny, steep road ascending the mountain. Visiting Lim Mong in September or October is ideal for those wishing to experience rice harvest season.

Manh's group dined and lodged at a homestay called Quyet Doan, in operation for the past three years.

It overlooks Lup Mong Valley with its golden rice fields, also a landing spot for paragliders. The price for one night here is VND150000 ($6.5) a person.

This year, visitors to Mu Cang Chai can also explore a 60-year-old bamboo forest located 20 km away in Na Hang Tua Village. This is also a main source of bamboo shoots, a specialty of the region.

Manh said the road to the forest was very muddy and slippery due to recent rainfall.

The group visited other major attractions like Mam Xoi Hill and Mong Ngua Hill.

To reach these places, tourists often have to walk or hire a motorbike taxi driver since the roads are narrow, steep, slippery, and not accessible by car.

The price for a motorbike taxi ride to Mam Xoi Hill is VND60000 to Mong Ngua Hill, VND100000 and the bamboo forest, VND130000 per person.

Since their time was limited, the group focused on visiting the main attractions here before returning to Hanoi. They avoided going too late because crossing the steep pass at night is quite tiring.

Before leaving, the group came to buy
(green rice flakes) at Tu Le
Commune, watch people make the specialty, and buy some as gifts for their relatives.

The total cost of traveling, accommodation and shopping for Manh's family was around VND3 million ($130).