Nghia Lo is an essential stop on your fabulous trip to the north of Vietnam and more particularly on the "Photographers' Road" of which it is the entry point. The second largest rice granary in North Vietnam, Nghia Lo enchants travelers with its vast expanses of undulating rice fields and the hospitality of the Thai ethnic group, the majority in this region.
The breathtaking "photographers' road".
Travelers from Hanoi often stop in Nghia Lo before taking the famous "Photographers' Road". This 100-kilometer road separates Nghia Lo from Mu Cang Chai and offers some of the most spectacular views in all of Vietnam. A fantastic mountain road that, after passing through the village of Tu Lé, takes you over three breathtaking passes: Khau Pha, Khau Than and Khau Song. Along the way, many stops are planned so that you can admire the amphitheaters of rice terraces. It is a grandiose spectacle to see these mountains sculpted by the sole force of man's hand, whose colors and shades change according to the season.
Nghia Lo, rice granary of North Vietnam
The Nghia Lo region is one of the largest rice granaries in North Vietnam along with Dien Bien Phu. Thousands of hectares are devoted to rice cultivation and everywhere you look you can admire vast expanses of rice fields. In these vast rice plains there are two harvests a year, one at the end of May and the other at the end of September. It is very pleasant to walk there to discover the activities that take place there all year round. We plough with the buffaloes, we plant the young shoots, we take care of the young rice, we watch over its good maturity and then we harvest it.
Before arriving in Nghia Lo, you can enjoy the beautiful tea hills that make wonderful landscapes. A powerful green tea, much appreciated by tea lovers who find subtle aromas and a beautiful depth of taste.
Sleeping at the inhabitants’ house
For travelers who wish to do so, it is possible to sleep in a private home in Nghia Lo. Move away from the city center to reach the beautiful countryside where the vast majority of the Thai ethnic group lives. Hospitality, some Thai families welcome you for the night. It is the opportunity to enjoy moments of great conviviality and sharing, and to know more about their cultural singularities. You will appreciate the generosity of the Thai people, their beautiful traditional wooden houses on stilts and their ethnic cuisine inspired by the vegetable garden.
The Battle of Nghia Lo
During the Indochina War, in October 1951, the forces of the Viet Minh and General De Lattre clashed at Nghia Lo. Nghia Lo was a key sector for General Giap in the conquest of northwest Tonkin and because the sector possessed rice reserves that were indispensable for the supply of the Viet Minh army. After more than ten days of fighting, the Viet Minh was defeated. But it was only a postponement, with the terrible siege of Dien Bien Phu a few years later.
Best season to go: It is best to go to Nghia Lo and then on the "Photographers' Road" during the rice season, which runs from March to early October.