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Ha Giang travel guide - Time to visit and things to do

Updated: May 11

Hey there, ready for an epic adventure? Ha Giang province is the spot for thrill-seekers! Picture this: stunning karst mountains, crazy steep passes, twisty roads, and charming fog-covered villages. But it's not just about the scenery - Ha Giang is a melting pot of different local ethnic groups, each with their own awesome traditions and lifestyles. If you're after a truly authentic experience, the remote areas here are where it's at. No tourist traps, just pure cultural vibes and breathtaking landscapes. The ultimate move? Hop on a bike or jump in a car and hit the road to uncover Ha Giang's awesomeness firsthand!

Best travel time to Ha Giang

Ha Giang's scenery is jaw-dropping no matter when you visit.

  • From April to October, it's all warm and rainy, but watch out for July and August – they're the rainiest months and prone to landslides.

  • If you're not a fan of getting soaked, maybe plan your trip for the dry season, which kicks in from November to March. Just a heads-up: December and January can get pretty chilly up in the mountains!

Best things to do in Ha Giang

Nestled in the remote far northern region of Vietnam, Ha Giang is more than just a border province – it's an official Frontier Area, steeped in history and rugged charm. Embarking on a journey to this province is like stepping back in time, immersing yourself in some of Vietnam's most awe-inspiring landscapes. The best way to experience Ha Giang? Hit the road on two wheels and let the adventure unfold! From majestic mountains to quaint towns and vibrant minority villages, here are some destinations you absolutely shouldn't miss when exploring Ha Giang.

01 Quan Ba – Heaven gate in Ha Giang

Quan Ba - Nui Doi Ha Giang
Quan Ba - Nui Doi Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

Have you heard about Quan Ba Mountain? It's a must-see spot along National Highway 4C, just about 40km away from Ha Giang town. Known as a gem of Ha Giang tourism, this place is something else! Picture two mountains that resemble the curves of a beautiful woman's breasts – yup, you read that right! It's like nature's own masterpiece. Nestled amidst rugged rocks and terraced fields, these mountains pop up in the most surprising way, leaving visitors in awe of Mother Nature's creativity. Legend has it that these peaks are connected to the enchanting tale of the "Fairy Mountain".

02 Dong Van - Ha Giang Ancient Town

Dong Van Ancient Town
Dong Van Ancient Town Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

Dong Van Ancient Town boasts around 40 charming old houses, all under a century old. These houses are real beauts, built with fancy stone columns and sturdy U-shaped structures that form a bustling market area. Come weekends, the market livens up with folk songs echoing, and villagers busting out some dance moves.

As the evening sets in, the old town transforms into a scene straight out of a fairytale, with houses adorned in vibrant red lanterns and traditional goodies like brocade on display. Here, you can catch captivating shows, snag some unique products, and indulge in local delights like "Thang Co" stew and corn wine, all while chatting the night away. These one-of-a-kind activities add an extra dash of magic to Dong Van Ancient Town.

03 Meo Vac local market in Ha Giang

Meo Vac local market Ha giang
Meo Vac local market Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

Nestled in a valley embraced by mountains for centuries, Meo Vac market is the heartbeat of cultural richness in the stone plateau of Ha Giang. Every Sunday, this bustling market comes alive, showcasing the essence of various ethnic minorities. With its distinct character, Meo Vac market draws in crowds of both local and international visitors. It's a one-of-a-kind gem that simply can't be overlooked when exploring Ha Giang.

04 Lung Cu flag pole - the northernmost point of Vietnam

Lung Cu flag pole Ha Giang
Lung Cu flag pole Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

At Lung Cu peak, also known as Dragon Mountain peak, stands the majestic Lung Cu flagpole, a national symbol marking the northernmost point of Vietnam. From this vantage point, you can gaze upon the border and lands of China. Perched at an altitude of approximately 1,700m above sea level, in Lung Cu Commune, Dong Van District, Ha Giang Province, this spot offers breathtaking views. Looking down from the top of the flagpole, you'll spot two lakes flanking the mountain, known as the "dragon eyes." These lakes are a perpetual source of water for two ethnic minority villages, sustaining them year-round. It's a sight to behold and a testament to the symbiotic relationship between nature and culture in this region.

05 Ma Pi Leng Pass - one of four great mountain passes in Vietnam

Ma Pi Leng Pass Ha Giang
Ma Pi Leng Pass Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

Ever heard of the Ma Pi Leng pass? It's a real stunner! Stretching just 20 km between Dong Van and Meo Vac districts, this pass sits a cool 2,000 meters above the river below. But what really gets you is its sheer magnificence. Known as the "Sky Path," this rocky route winds through limestone cliffs, past Hmong villages perched high in the mountains, and amidst cornfields scattered across the karst plateau. From up top, you're treated to jaw-dropping views of towering limestone mountains and the lush green Nho Que river snaking through the valley below. It's simple yet utterly breathtaking!

06 The Palace of the Hmong King in Ha Giang

The Palace of the Hmong King Ha Giang
The Palace of the Hmong King Ha Giang (Source: Internet)

Tucked away in Xa Phin Commune, Dong Van District, Ha Giang Province, lies the Hmong King’s Palace, a true gem of this plateau. It's a bit of a trek from Dong Van District, about 24 km, but trust me, it's worth it! This palace is a marvel of unique and stunning architecture. As you approach, you'll notice the entrance – a gently sloping path paved with large square stones. Once inside, you're greeted by two sturdy stone walls, standing about 60cm to nearly 1m thick and towering 2.5 to 3m high. It's a sight to behold and a testament to the rich history and craftsmanship of the region.

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