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Hoa Binh Province

Located on the entrance of the Northwest region of Vietnam, Hoa Binh Province is proud to be one of the oldest areas in Vietnam with the world-famous “Hoabinhian Culture”. In the last few years, Hoa Binh has strongly developed to be a tourist attraction city thanks to its valuable natural and cultural heritages.

Hoa Binh is 82km to the Southwest of Hanoi, bordering Phu Tho to the North; Ha Nam and Ninh Binh to the South; and Son La and Thanh Hoa to the West. The climate of this district is representative for tropical monsoon, which is pretty cold and less rain in winter and hot and rainy in summer. The temperature here is between 15 to 29 Celsius Degrees, depending on seasons.

The province was established on 22/6/1886 with its first name “Mường Province” and then was officially re-named Hoa Binh on 18/3/1891 by the Governors of French Indochina. Through many separations and mergence, parts of Hoa Binh now become a portion of Hanoi.

Hoa Binh is also one of the most ancient lands in the world where human life is proven to existed here since 10,000 – 2,000 BCE

Similar to other mountainous provinces in the North of Vietnam, the best time to travel to Hoa Binh should be the winter time, lasting from October to February. As the weather is very cold, this period of time is suitable for exploring hot springs and relaxing yourself with the warmly mineral water here. Also, the winter coincides with the dry season in Hoa Binh, so that travelers have more chances to go around and contemplate natural beauty of Hoa Tien cave, Thac Bo Waterfall or Pu Nooc Primary Tropical Forest. In addition, roads to Hoa Binh tourism destinations are often narrow and along the side of deep valleys and mounts, so traveling in dry season will definitely guarantee the safety of your trips.     

Mai Chau

One of Hoa Binh’s districts, Mai Chau is noted for its beautiful scenery as a mountainous region. The district is about 60km from Hoa Binh and covers an area of 520 km2. In Mai Chau Valley, there are also national caves and grottoes such as Mo Luong Cave, Chieu Cave, Pieng Kem Grotto, and archeological sites such as Lang Cave and Khau Phuc Cave. When standing on the peak of the Cun Mountain, the first things that catch tourists' eyes are the picturesque panorama of Mai Chau stilt houses along with a lush green valley. Another thing that is unforgettable in Mai Chau is that tourists are warmly hosted by the ethnic groups, especially Thai people in Lac village. Those who are in their spare time away from the rice paddies will cook, lead hikes and pull out a sleeping mat for wandering guests.

Normally, most travelers choose to stay a night in one of the stilt houses to experience the life of the ethnic tribe people. Stilt houses are the typical feature of the ethnic people in Vietnam. The houses border both sides of the roads. The houses are quite large in which up to 60 people can stay together. They are roofed with palm leaves while the floors are made of bamboo. The kitchen is situated in the center of the house. This is the place where cooking and weaving work take place. Thai people make colorful clothes themselves from “Tho Cam” materials. They also make many kinds of souvenirs such as wallets, bags, embroidered pictures, hats etc. Tourists can find those in various types and colors in the Mai Chau market. Mai Chau market, especially in spring, is the mixture of nature and people.  Feeling the cold wind and going around the market to admire the beauty and exquisite talent of the Thai maidens or enjoying the local specialty food or buying local fresh products all gives you great pleasure. 

In the recent time, Mai Chau has undergone considerable changes as it has become a popular break point for travelers. Some areas have now been commercialized; as a result, compared to the past the prices here may go up a little bit. However, this trend is not worrying so much because the breathtaking scenery and hospitality of the people as well as the valuable traditions still remain. It is even more convenient as tourism services are highly developed. Mai Chau never stops being a welcoming place for tourists in general.

Thung Nai

Thung Nai impresses anyone who sees it from the very first time with the harmonious combination of mountains, lakes and charming houses nestled in between the high hills. Located in Cao Phong district, Hoa Binh province, just about 110km north-east of Hanoi center, Thung Nai is a popular destination for weekend retreat of both tourists and upper class Hanoians who can afford the time and cost.

Once upon a time, Thung Nai was a great valley covered by the vast forest, which is home to numerous deer. Hence, the local people call it “Thung Nai” means “the Valley of deer”.

Since the 1980s when the Da River hydropower plant was constructed, Thung Nai has become a huge lake containing the water served for the operation of this hydropower plant. All initial surrounding high mountains become floating green islands and create poetic and magnificent scenery which can enchant any tourist. Thung Nai is called “the second Ha Long Bay on land” in the North of Vietnam (the first position was taken by Tam Coc Bich Dong in Ninh Binh province).

Most tourists traveling to Thung Nai choose the Windmill guesthouse, which is located on Friends Island as an ideal place for a comfortable and relaxing stay. The guesthouse area consists of a large two-storey redbrick house and a windmill offering visitors a breath-taking view of Thung Nai, a stilt house functioning as a communal dinning place, and a tennis court lying in the lush orchard. The Windmill itself is often regarded as an attraction of Thung Nai.

Staying in the Windmill, tourists will be served local specialties like grilled Muong pork, smoked or grilled Da River fish, or fish sour soup, and straw wine. After the dinner, tourists, especially the youngsters often gather for the campfire in front of the guesthouse, and watching the sparkling fishing canoe floating in the lake by night.

Waking up in the morning, tourists can refresh themselves by breathing the fresh air and enjoying the natural beauty in early morning. A boat tour to discover sites around the lake in Thung Nai like Ba Chua Thac Bo temple, Thac Bo grotto (with a lot of stalactite in various shapes), Ngoi Hoa village of Muong people is also a good option. Especially, tourists who luckily come here on Sunday morning can drop by Thac Bo floating market, just 20 minutes by boat from the Windmill, where they can buy fresh fish, shrimp caught by local people.

Thung Nai is said to be most beautiful in the autumn, when the water level reaches the highest and the valley is filled with the romantic lake water. Try visiting Thung Nai this time to best enjoy the landscape.

From Hanoi, tourists can travel to Thung Nai easily by car or motorbike. After riding along the National Highway 6 and reaching Hoa Binh town, turn right and keep riding 20km toward the upstream of Da River then stop at Binh Thanh marina. From here, tourists will get on the boat and begin the trip to discover the beauty of Thung Nai.

TRAVEL BROUCHURE 2013
Spotlight Destination
TESTIMONIAL
  • I spent my 05 holidays in Hanoi and Halong Bay with Vietpremier service. It was a memorable trip for me and my friends. Not only the professional service, but also the intelligent tour arrangement and seasoned tour guide make us feel highly comfortable, minus the cost for us but still bring the best service. This impressed trip made me miss all about the person, scenery, lifestyle and I’m really want to be there again. Those are unforgettable holidays with me and my friends. I’m so excited with my next trip with Vietpremier J
  • Ms. Nguyễn Như Hảo & friends

  • Phung and our guides responded perfectly to our needs. We were tired after the train journey and so the only part of the itinerary we would change would have been to just spend the afternoon by the pool at the resort rather than taking a tour of the Hoi An sites
  • Mrs. Lisa Marie Behan and our family

  • Mr Liem was a wonderful guide he was professional but still showed a good sense of humour. We would never have been able to cross the roads without his help. Your design and management of our trip were excellent. I just realised that I hadn’t given feedback on the meal in the Mekong on the first day – this was at the house on the Mekong river, this was very remiss of me as although all meals were excellent this one was exceptional and the best we had for the entire trip, I should also have mentioned that the guide (a lady) we had on the Mekong cruise was excellent.
  • Ms. Jennifer Grace Agustin & Friends

  • A very well designed tour. We were very thankful to have contacted you and felt that your arrangements for us made everything a lot easier. Mr. Trang He was a fabulous guide who was quite knowledgeable about everything. We really felt like he made our trip even more enjoyable. His English is also extremely good and he tries hard to accommodate. Our favorite was Phu Quoc but we also really enjoyed our tour of the Mekong Delta though didn’t need two nights in Can Tho because there isn’t much to do in the city. Maybe should have done one night on a boat in hindsight but wasn’t sure we would like that.
  • Ms. Marlo Kravetsky & Mr. Daniel Ages

  • Hi Viet Premier!
  • Mr. Johan Kruimer

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