Mai Chau Valley
Around 135km (85 miles) from Ha Noi is the serene Mai Chau Valley. Known for its ruou can (a unique rice wine drunk through long bamboo straws), Mai Chau is a collection of small villages, farms and individual stilt houses spread out over a vast and verdant valley. Peaceful and charming, it is also the closest place to Ha Noi where one can trek in the countryside from and stay overnight in an authentic ethnic-minority village.
It is fantastic to take a trip to Sapa for your Vietnam adventure tour as it brings you excitement right at the beginning. Not only are there stunning rice terraced paddy fields sprung up right after you set foot in the land, but it is also home to diverse groups of ethnic communities. It is believed that you will not be able to find any place where there is the large number of ethnic people like you see here. In fact, the trip will let you grab an unforgettable memory of dipping yourself into the unique cultural life of locals in the highland, comprising how they gather at market, trading farming products, and treating guests.
Dien Bien Phu
The capital of Dien Bien province, Dien Bien Phu lies on the east bank of the Nam Rom River (Song Nam Rom) at the northern end of the Muong Thanh valley. This was the site of a 57-day siege, the famous Battle of Dien Bien Phu, which brought an ignominious end to French colonialism in Asia. It is encircled by steep green hills from which tens of thousands of Viet Minh troops launched their assault on the French garrisons in 1954.
Visitors can visit a reconstruction of General de Castries’s main command bunker, set amid a litter of rusty tanks and artillery. Not far away, A1 Hill, known as ‘Eliane 2’ to the French, was the scene of fierce fighting and is now a war memorial dedicated to the Viet Minh who died here.
Supposed to be chosen places to visit in Northwest Vietnam, Y Ty will get you excited when you are in the journey to discover it. Y Ty is taken into account as a wonderful and peaceful land hidden deeply in sheer mountains, so it is covered with mist and cloud all year round. Exactly, it is 2,000m high above the sea level and leans against the peak of a mountain called Nhiu Co San. Referred to as a peaceful valley, the destination will certainly be ideal for those who want to experience the real natural charm and explore a part of the Vietnam’s culture.
You will know you are approaching the sprawling market town of Moc Chau by the presence of black-and-white dairy cows, originally imported from Holland, wandering across the road. Much of the area is devoted to dairy farming, so be sure to try out some of the famously rich yoghurt, ice-cream or Moc Chau-branded chocolate bars. Be aware that during the coldest months, January and February, night-time temperatures can fall to –3°C (27°F). With central heating nearly impossible to find, visitors are advised to pack appropriate clothing.