With its cool weather, beautiful landscapes, and large grass and
tea fields, Moc Chau National Tourism Site in Son La province, 200 km from Ha
Noi, draws crowds of visitors.
The site boasts diverse ethnic cultures reflected in local clothing, house
architecture and cuisine. With the growth of homestay services, visitors now
have a more intimate way to explore the local culture.
Homestay services are becoming popular in Viet Nam. Cheap and authentic, this
type of tourism draws visitors closer to local life and nature. Moc Chau is a
great place to enjoy this kind of experience.
Áng village is a prime destination. Last year 100,000 out of 350,000 visitors
did a homestay. Local residents have expanded their houses and improved their
vegetable and flower gardens to accommodate tourists. Lu Tien Quan was one of
the first homestay hosts in the village. Renovated a few months ago, his house
can now accommodate 30 people. Over the past months, he has welcomed 1,000
visitors and earned more than US$5,000.
Mr. Quan said, “In the past months, we welcomed a large number of visitors Our
increased income will be reinvested in upgrading our services.”
Doi village, 30 km from Moc Chau district’s center, is a favorite place for
tourists fond of Moc Chau tea, one of the best in the country. In 2010, Ha Van
Quyet, a resident of Doi village, signed a contract with a travel agency in
Hanoi to provide homestay services. Since then, his family has welcomed
thousands of visitors who are invited to sample the local food, watch
performances by local amateur artists, savor the excellent local tea, and
participate in tea harvesting and preparation.
Quyet said, "We have learned that tourists love photographing natural landscapes
around Moc Chau, eating the local agricultural produce and observing local
farming activities. We have built houses on the hillside and in tea production
areas to introduce tourists to our specialty.”
Hua Tat village in Van Ho commune is another popular destination for homestay
tourism in Moc Chau. Gardens of peaches and apricots and beautiful valleys are
the local attractions. Mr. Trang A Chu, a Mong local, upgraded his house for
homestay but retained its traditional architecture.
Built in September last year, the house on stilts with a thatched roof of Trang
An Senh has welcomed hundreds of tourists. Guests sleep on the first floor, in a
huge dormitory, separated by thin wooden partitions. Comfortable mattresses and
mosquito nets guarantee a good night's sleep. This experience delights tourists
in search for unusual adventures.
Tourists can spend time with the villagers, sample local cuisine, play folk
games, and help with tea production. Nguyen Huu Chinh, a visitor from Hanoi,
said, “Things have changed dramatically. The atmosphere is wonderful and people
are enthusiastic. I love the city, which has a lot of historical sites
recognized as national relics. I love the nature, the local people, and the
wonderful homestay service.”
Far from the more crowded tourist sites, the small ethnic villages of Moc Chau
have kept their authenticity. The traditional houses, lifestyles and cultures of
its ethnic minorities make Moc Chau a wonderful place to explore the historical
roots of Viet Nam.