Bao Ha is the name of a remote commune belonging to Bao Yen District of Lao Cai Province. Lying in the northwestern upland near the Vietnamese-Chinese border, Bao Ha commune is home to ethnic minority groups of Mong, Tay and Dzao.
The commune by the Red River not only captures tourists’ hearts for it peaceful and untouched natural beauty, but also attracts for an amazing harmony between what nature and humans have created there.
When you sit on the bridge linking Bao Ha and Van Ban District, you will surely admire a poetic landscape of mountains from afar and corn fields owned by ethnic locals. Entering further into the commune, you will see some of ethnic villages, where stilt, tile-roofed and wooden houses shelter local people instead of modern concrete buildings.
For those who would love to experience the ethnic culture, a visit to Bao Ha Temple is highly recommended. Legend had it that the temple of Bao Ha was built by people in the border for worshipping Nguyen Hoang Bay, who had gathered strong men to take down bandit gangs in the past, protecting peace in this area. Stopping at the temple, you will get an opportunity to enjoy an art performance of Chau Van Singing – which is regarded as a traditional singing style of Vietnamese people in Northern Vietnam. Bao Ha Temple welcomes hundreds of people every day.
In the afternoon, tourists to Bao Ha can join local ethnic market sessions to find some products mostly from the forest as well as to see local women from Mong, Tay and Dao in their colorful traditional dresses. It’s time for you to meet and talk to them for understanding more their unique culture and customs.
A trip to Bao Ha cannot be perfect without a soft hiking to the peak of Ma Yen Son Mountain before turning around to get a bird’s-eye view of Bao Ha.