Tours and trekking around Mai Chau

the rhythm of rural life

No pic at the moment -- Sorry!

What we say: 4 stars

Mai Chau doesn't have a tourist service per se, but Mai Chau Lodge organises various activities including kayaking,cycling and trekking.

Check out Mai Chau Lodge's website for details or speak to the helpful staff at the hotel — and many villagers speak enough English to help you out if you ask around.

One trek we've heard of goes 18 km up a mountain about a kilometre above sea level to a H'mong village and typically includes an overnight stay. The surest bet is to make arrangements at a travel agency in Hanoi, or with Mai Chau Lodge, before you arrive.

If you're after something less organised, bike hire is available in the villages for around 40,000 a day. Ask at guesthouse 19 if your place doesn't offer it. Or just take yourself on a walk — there are plenty of paths to be trodden.

Although it's technically feasible to take a boat trip independently, you might have to work hard at finding the right person to ask, and apparently it's illegal for foreigners to travel on some of the boats anyway — that doesn't stop the boat owners, it just means it will cost you and you might find yourself hiding beneath deck if the police show up.

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