Located at just over 140 km from Hanoi and 65 km from Hoa Binh, the incredible Mai Chau valley is located. Surrounded by mountains and covered with green rice fields, the Mai Chau valley is one of the best alternative destinations that we can find on our trip through Vietnam.
MAI CHAU, ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL VALLEYS OF ALL VIETNAM
The main attraction in Mai Chau is undoubtedly enjoying the nature and peaceful atmosphere of the people who live there. This population stands out for being formed by the different ethnic groups that inhabit the area of which the White Tai or Tai White, the Hmong and the Muong stand out.
Mai Chau from above
WHAT TO DO IN MAI CHAU
Enjoy the day-to-day environment of the villages: The main towns in the valley other than Mai Chau are the villages of Van, Lan and Pom Cong. Here we can enjoy the tranquility of its people and the typical atmosphere of the mountain villages.
Visiting the Muong and Pa Co markets: The Muong Etnichal Market and the Pa Co Sunday Market are the 2 major markets in the area. Here we can observe all kinds of handicrafts, especially topical fabrics of the ethnic groups of the area.
Pa Co markets
Trekking in the surroundings: The Valley of Mai Chau is known for its trekking around the area, especially to know the famous Thung Khe Pass and the incredible Pu Luong reserve.
Thung Khe Pass
Know Chieu Cave: Located in the same Mai Chau, Chieu Cave or the Cave of the Sunset, is famous for its grand staircase of more than 1200 steps to access it. Of course the views of the valley from here are incredible.
Day Trip from Mai Chau
Pu Luong Nature Reserve is only 35 kilometers away from Mai Chau, making it a refreshing day trip from the valley. With magnificent mountain ranges, stunning rice terrace fields, scenic rivers and waterfalls, breathtaking mountain passes and remote traditional villages, Pu Luong is truly a microcosm of Northern Vietnam.
*Things to do in Pu Luong: cycling, trekking, rafting, kayaking, and exploring the local culture
As you can see there are many attractions to do in Mai Chau. We hope you enjoy your visit to this amazing place.
When to visit Mai Chau Valley
Mai Chau is a valley surrounded by the green hills, therefore the weather here doesn’t change much during the year. Mai Chai valley appeals with different charms in different times of year:
- Summer: cool atmosphere but there might be floods
- Autumn: golden rice fields, festivals
- Winter: peach, plum flowers, new year festivals
Pu Luong Retreat
*Festivals in Mai Chau you should know:
Asking for Good Crops Festival
When: 3rd and 4th lunar months
Where: Mai Chau
The festival is celebrated by Thai people to wish for rain therefore bountiful rice crops. A group of boys and girls will wear hats and raincoats gathering on a large playground. They will go into the house of the oldest woman in the village to sing the prayer for rain. They all together proceed to the outside field to join the ceremony. Other activities are torch procession around hamlet, singing on the spring banks and pouring water on one another.
Xen Ban, Xen Muong Festival
Where: Mai Chau
This festival takes place in the spring, is celebrated by the Thai people in Mai Chau and other provinces in Northwest Vietnam. The event is to honor the village's founder, to remember the gods who created the land and wish for good health and happiness to the Thai people.
There're several folk games such as con throwing, singing, playing the flute and bird-singing competition.
How to go to Mai Chau
You can go to Mai Chau by bus both from Hanoi and from nearby Hoa Binh. From Hanoi the buses depart from the My Dinh Station and the journey takes around 4 h. From Hoa Binh you can also go by bus and the journey only lasts around 2 h.