Mai Chau

Mai Chau

Heading east from Hanoi, through the mountains towards the Laotian border, lies the rural province of Mai Chau. Buses leave the My Dinh station in Hanoi and take up to five hours to arrive in My Dinh. Once you have arrived, the best way to get around is on foot or by renting a motorbike.

The main attraction of the area is its stunning verdant landscapes, along with its lakes and rice paddy vistas. Many travelers are eager to see the Thai stilt houses – built, as the name suggests, on stilts above the ground. Mai Chau is home to a number of ethnic minorities, including the Black Thai, from whom the houses get their name. For a fee, you may be able to stay as a guest with a local family in one of these houses. This is a great way to get an inside look at the lives, culture and traditions of the local ethnic minority groups.

Other popular activities in the area include trekking, off road cycling and kayaking. There are also waterfalls and hot springs in the area that won’t be flooded with tourists. If you’ve become disappointed with the number of tourists flocking into Sa Pa, Mai Chau offers a quieter and more serene alternative.

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