An Attractive Mu Cang Chai in Water Season

When the first downpours of the summer drop heavily and the sun are not very burning is also when the terraced fields in Mu Cang Chai are sparkling in the gorgeous color.

Mu Cang Chai

The ethnic minorities in Yen Bai cultivate in high mountain slopes. When the spring passes, they have to wait until when it rains, when the terraces are flooded (it is called water season) to do the transplanting, the only crop in a year. Thai ethnic people build their village in the lower area to grow sticky rice in Tu Le valley. Whereas, Mong people, who are good at climbing and passing the mountains, turn the rough and exhausted mountain areas into the beautiful terraced fields. The skillful, industrious hands of people of Dao, Mong, Ha Nhi, Giay, Tay, Xa Pho, Nung, Pa Di… ethnic groups have created the masterpieces from generations to generations.

National Highway 32 is the only way leading to Mu Cang Chai. From Hanoi, you have to go through Khe Pass to go to Yen Bai, then from here, drive along this road to Nghia Lo then to Mu Cang Chai. Before coming to the immense terraced fields, you should stop to have a look at Tu Le, enjoy the sweet- smelling sticky rice with chicken to get the energy to conquer the winding Khau Pha Pass of 20km long to reach the land of Mu Cang Chai.

Mu Cang Chai 2

In the early morning when the morning dew still covers the space, people of Mong ethnic group wear cabooses (bamboo or rattan basket) on their back, carry shoes on their back, lead the buffaloes carrying baskets of rice seeds to the field. When the first rays of sunlight shine, the men in bare feet lead their buffalo to plough the plots of land. The glittering water reflected by the blue sky, the dark brown plots of land, the shadow of a Mong married the couple in flower clothes ploughing with their buffalo… create a rustic but very wonderful working scenery. A simple and short- lived hut is built beside the dry plot of land. Some rustic things such as a can of water, rustic dishes wrapped in banana leaves for lunch are placed inside the hut, sometimes, there is a boy of several months old who are sleeping deeply.

Terraced fields in three communes of La Pan Tan, Che Cu Nha and Ze Xu Phinh of Mu Cang Chai district was recognized as national heritage on 18th, October 2007 by Vietnam Ministry of Culture, Sports and  Tourism. They, perhaps, are some of the most unique and special sights in Vietnam. Within the of 20km, the terraced fields are placed between the mountains and are gradually slow until the blue river below.

Mu Cang Chai 1

This land is most beautiful in May- June when the terraces are in water season, and in September- October when a bright yellow of ripe rice spreads the fertile plots of land. they are also the two periods when Yen Bai, Sapa and Y Ty- Bat Xat in the Southwestern Vietnam welcome crowded of visitors including the photographers who come here to “hunt” the most unique and beautiful photos.


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