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Pu Luong – a paradise for trekkers, budget travellers

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Located in the north central province of Thanh Hoa, Pu Luong is renowned as an ideal destination for trekkers and budget travellers because of its seclusion and fantastic scenery of terraced rice fields and primary forests.

Pu Luong – a paradise for trekkers, budget travellers hinh anh 1Pu Luong during the ripening rice season. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi – Located in the north central province of Thanh Hoa, Pu Luong is renowned as an ideal destination for trekkers and budget travellers because of its seclusion and fantastic scenery of terraced rice fields and primary forests.

About 130km northwest of the provincial capital city of Thanh Hoa and 190km south of Hanoi, Pu Luong is close to several favoured tourist attractions in Hoa Binh province’s Mai Chau, Tan Lac and Lac Son districts, providing explorers with a full circle of exciting adventure.

It is the best to travel to Pu Luong at the end of May and early June since it is the occasion to start a new rice crop when terraced fields here wear a layer of green, looking all fresh and peaceful.

Mid-summer is also a good time to go to Pu Luong as it is situated in a low land limestone area, with many tropical forests and few inhabitants, making its climate quite pleasant even during hot days.

Visitors can also travel to Pu Luong between September and October when it enters harvest season, with multi-layer terraced fields on the hillsides turning yellowish, making it even more spectacular. During this time, Pu Luong is dubbed as “a paradise amidst the jungle,” attracting a lot of tourists to enjoy the scenery of ripening rice fields.

Residents in the hamlets surrounding Pu Luong, such as Son, Ba and Muoi in Lung Cao commune; Kho Muong in Thanh Son; Don in Thanh Lam; and Hieu in Co Lung, are Thai and Muong ethnic minority people who lead lives steeped in tradition and customs. They remain largely uninfluenced by modern means.

Discovering the local cuisine and culture is a highlight of any trip to Pu Luong. There is nothing more delightful than dishes made from ingredients grown right in the area. Pu Luong is home to an array of vegetables, such as baby pumpkin leaf, green beans and bamboo shoots. For a real Pu Luong lunch or dinner, visitors should try the locally raised pork and grilled mountain snails dipped in fish sauce.

In lunar February, local people flock to the top of Pu Luong to harvest wild bitter-tasting bamboo shoots which are served in various local unique dishes, from simple to difficult. The simplest one, boiled bamboo shoots served with chili fish sauce, is also the most popular dish that locals use as a treat to welcome their guests.

Far different from the hustle and bustle of city life, a day in Pu Luong starts with the sound of singing birds and babbling brooks meandering down through low hills, and the picturesque view of mountains blanketed in a fluffy layer of fog. It truly provides a great getaway for those who want to have some quality time without distractions of modern life.

There are many stilt houses in the villages where visitors can explore daily life of the locals and spend the night. They can also stay in a wide range of hotels and resorts inside Pu Luong Nature Reserve, for example, Puluong Natura Bangalow, Puluong Retreat, Puluong Eco-Garden, and Puluong OhayO, which offer a combination of local architecture and modern elements.

Pu Luong is a nature reserve established in 1999 with its area covering Ba Thuoc and Quan Hoa districts. It is considered a valuable natural reserve for scientific research, socio-economic and ecotourism development./.

Source: https://en.vietnamplus.vn/pu-luong-a-paradise-for-trekkers-budget-travellers/221301.vnp

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The remote, rustic beauty of Sín Chải Village

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In May and June, the terraced fields in Sín Chải are filled with water as locals begin transplanting rice. VNS Photo Thanh Mai

Thanh Nga

Sín Chải is a beautiful village in Sa Pa Town, Lào Cai Province, that still retains the rustic simplicity of a mountainous village.

The village belongs to Hoàng Liên Commune, located about 4km from the centre of Sa Pa. Although located right next to Cát Cát, a famous community-based cultural tourism village of the town, Sín Chải is still pristine and quiet compared to the neighbouring village.

It lies at the foot of the Hoàng Liên Sơn mountain range, surrounded by vast hills. It has been the home of the Mông ethnic minority for generations.

For Hanoian Ngô Thanh Mai, who loves to visit Sa Pa, Sín Chải is special because of its tranquillity, charming terraced fields and friendliness of locals.

“I always see friendly smiles when I walk into the village. There are many beautiful terraced fields here. I like the peaceful life of the people. This place has not been commercialised like other villages in Sa Pa,” Mai said.

Located next to Cát Cát tourism village, Sín Chải hasn’t changed much since Sa Pa developed into a tourism centre. The road to Sín Chải is still the same, people’s lives are peaceful every day.

The road to Sín Chải Village. VNS Photo Thanh Mai

Like many people in other villages in Sa Pa, Sín Chải villagers mainly live on crop farming and animal husbandry.

Mai visited Sín Chải in the season when the terraced fields were submerged in water. The water is taken from the streams, so it is very clear, reflecting the sunlight and making a large area shimmering and sparkling beautifully.

September and October is the time when Sín Chải enters the rice harvest season. Local farmers only plant one crop a year.

The village is home to about 1,600 ethnic Mông people, so when coming here, Mai feels the Mông culture which has a significant impact on life, architecture as well as many other factors in the village.

Sín Chải villagers are very friendly. VNS Photo Thanh Mai

Along the way to the village are small, low houses that are covered with pơ mu wood, pieces of linen drying in front of the porch and farm tools that have not yet been stored. And that journey brings a feeling of peace to the lives of villagers here.

In addition to growing rice and maize, locals also grow thảo quả (a plant used in traditional medicine and as a spice) on the mountain slopes. The good harvest of thảo quả also brings people a significant source of income.

The life of the Mông is simple. They grow rice and thảo quả, and at the end of these seasons, they only go to the forest to collect firewood and raise buffaloes and horses.

Mông women sew all year round. They often have their own flax growing fields to get yarn to weave clothes for their family and to make beautiful dresses on their wedding day for themselves. The handicrafts of the Mông in Sín Chải are never sold outside.

When visiting the village, you should not miss delicious specialities such as maize cakes, smoked buffalo meat and home-brew Sán Lùng wine.

Buffalo meat hung over wood fires is a speciality in Sín Chải. Photo hanhtrinhdulich.vn

Currently, trekking is a type of tourism that is very popular with tourists when visiting Sín Chải Village. You can walk while admiring the poetic beauty of the scenery on both sides of the road while learning about the customs, lifestyle and cuisine of the people here.

If you want to learn more clearly about the life of the Mông people, you can have a homestay in the village with the price of about VNĐ50,000 per person per night.

You can choose the form of sightseeing that best suits you such as buying a tour from a travel company or renting a motorbike to experience the village for VNĐ120,000-150,000 a day.

To trek to Sín Chải, you must have strength and endurance. You should also not forget to bring drinks and a little snack because there will be almost no shops along the way. You should also wear clothes that are easy to move in and soft sports shoes for the mountainous terrain here.

Without noise and bustle, Sín Chải is now really the soul of the northwest mountains, where everything is still as simple and intact as in the past. VNS

Tourists visit Sín Chải Village. Photo sapavietnam.vn

Source: http://ovietnam.vn/travel/the-remote-rustic-beauty-of-sin-chai-village_334177.html

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Ninh Thuan gets ready for bustling summer tourism

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The south central coastal province of Ninh Thuan is ramping up tourism development solutions in a bid to lure tourists this summer.

Ninh Thuan gets ready for bustling summer tourism hinh anh 1A view of Vinh Hy Bay in Ninh Thuan (Photo: VNA)

Ninh Thuan – The south central coastal
province of Ninh Thuan is ramping up tourism development solutions in a bid to
lure tourists this summer.

According to Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee
Nguyen Long Bien, a series of measures have been implemented to promote the
local sector in a safe, green, and effective manner.

In addition to capitalising on existing destinations, the
province is paying attention to build new tourism products based on cultural
and sport events to keep holiday-markers stay longer.

Local agencies and localities have been requested to improve
the quality of their destinations and services, and form short tours for small
groups and families, with focus laid on beach, resort, sport, eco-, cultural,
and agro-tourism.

The provincial tourism sector has also begun implementing cooperation deals
signed with other provinces and cities such as Lam Dong, Binh Thuan, Khanh Hoa,
Ho Chi Minh City, and Hanoi. It is also working with airlines and travel
agencies to organise safe tour packages.

According to the provincial Department of Culture, Sports
and Tourism, in May alone, Ninh Thuan hosted an estimated 355,200 arrivals, up
143.9 percent on-year. Of the total arrivals, there were some 1,200 foreigners. Tourism
activities reeled in approximately 251 billion VND (10.8 million USD), an
annual surge of 258.6 percent.

In the first five months, the province has hosted close to
1.46 million visitors, realising 60.3 percent of the yearly target./.

Source: https://en.vietnamplus.vn/ninh-thuan-gets-ready-for-bustling-summer-tourism/229281.vnp

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The unique architecture of Dong Khanh Tomb

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Possessing a unique Asian-European architectural style, Dong Khanh Tomb was recognised by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage. Dong Khanh Tomb is a unique architectural work in the system of Nguyen Dynasty mausoleums in the ancient capital of Hue.

Source: https://en.vietnamplus.vn/the-unique-architecture-of-dong-khanh-tomb/229134.vnp

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