Going with my Frenchman, Gerard Memmi, we used two bikes: Honda XL 125cc and HondaCBF 150cc with the necessary equipments to leave on a journey to conquer theland of the far north of Vietnam.
The first night, we stopped at Yen Bai, the second day we headed to Ha Giang, andridded along the Lo River and passed by beautiful green maize fields. Probablymany Vietnamese still cannot forget the heroic victory of the army and peopleduring the war against the French empire on this historic river. Nodaway, theriver is not to sink enemy ships but to welcome travelers from all parts ofVietnam and from other countries around the world. It felled great to forgetthe dust and smoke of the city, to breathe the fresh air, to stop at the rusticcafes and to chat with the local people. Ha Giang have appeared in front of oureyes, the town has seen strongly changed but in the surrounding ethnic villages,the people keep their life with its unique traditions.
Do not sleep at the hotel, we turned left toward the border and then wentstraight to the ethnic Tay village named Thon Tha. Over thirty Tay familieslive together in the large and traditional stilt-houses. Mr. Quyen, the ownerwelcomed us with a big smile: â€œAre you doing well, why you arrive so late? Washyour face and then we drink teaâ€. We explained that we had to pass to thepolice department to get the permit for exploring the border-belt land that whywe were so late.
Gerard enlisted for taking the photos around the village; I checked the statusof our two bikes before taking a shower.
Dinnerwas cozy and fun; we had local chicken and pork roast with indispensable localwine made from corn. If you want to explore and learn the life of ethnicminorities living in the mountains, the first thing you have to do is drinking alcohol!My friend Gerard has never drink alcohol before but with the sincere invitationfrom mr. Quyen and his friends, Gerard took nearly 10 cups of wine corn - thespecialty of the mountainous Ha Giang province. This special wine brought twoof us a good nightâ€™s sleep with many dreams on the warm cotton cushion.
After breakfast with Tay's special noodle dish prepared by Quyen and his wife,we continued our road toward Dong Van. Out of town about 10 kilometers, thelandscape really changed, the road seemed much smaller and very narrow withmany winding and passes. The terraced rice fields were dotted by green, yellowmixed with green corn field on the rocky slopes; somewhere, the Mong ethnicvillages hidden behind stone walls, looming over the mountains, some womengroups were cultivating maize, the main food source of the region.
The most beautiful roadâ€™ part began from the stone park area where we saw thelarge letters in English "Dong Van karst plateau Geopark" hanged onthe mountain side. The road looks like a silk band hanging from the rockymountain range led us to the heaven gate at an altitude of 1,107 m, where isthe intersection of heaven and earth. Looking down from this gate, we sawcolorful majestic scenery: That was so great! We see also the hard life ofethnic minorities in the region. They were born from stone, live with stone andthen go back to sleep with stone at the end of life, from generation togeneration.
Before arriving in Dong Van, we visit Sung As cultural village, which hasbecome very popular after the film "Paoâ€™story" with the old housebuilding from hundreds of years with the unique architecture of the Mong ethnicgroup. You can experience a night here with the typical lifestyle of the Mongethnic dinner with local corn wine and boiled chicken. Continued traveling withtwo bikes, I and GÃ©rard stopped at the Hâ€™mong king palace of Vuong family, thebiggest in the region where their ancestors once were considered as the King inthis far northern land. Large boulders surrounding the majestic palaceappearance a glorious period of the King Vuong Chinh Duc and then his son, Vuong Chi Sinh, who has followed therevolution and became later the president of the Dong Van district.
If you go to Dong Van, you have to try to be there on Sunday because of themarket. You will be immersed in the flow of people where you could record thevivid images of highland life in a great atmosphere with the colorfultraditional costumes.
Come here, you will never forget the unique natural scenery of the mountainousrock, the tender hearts of the local people with a long-standing culture forhundreds of years. /.
#1 riderman has been a member since 30/10/2013. Posts: 5
hi. im planning a 10-day guided (private) motorbike trip to northern vietnam in may.
-any places not worth seeing? want to use my time wisely.
#3 purcitron has been a member since 15/6/2014. Posts: 33