Dong Van is the northernmost district of Ha Giang province, located in the most unique rocky plateau area of Vietnam. Coming here, visitors will have the opportunity to admire the immense mountain scenery. Also you can know more about the daily life of the people of Dong Van. Especially, one of the places that tourists should visit is Dong Van Market.
Dong Van market is located in Dong Van old town. From Ha Giang City, along 4C Highway, back up to the northeast about 150km, visitors will come to Dong Van Market. This is the largest place of cultural and goods exchange in the Dong Van – Meo Vac rocky plateau. This is one of the typical markets of the community of ethnic minorities in the North.
How Dong Van Market is unique?
The highland market is unique, different from the market in other places because the market does not take place every day. However, you only meets once a week on Sundays. Above all, the goal of going to the fair of ethnic minorities is very different from that of the Kinh people. If the plain market is just a place to exchange and trade daily, in this place, the market is not only a place to buy and sell goods, but this is also a place for meetings, meetings, cultural exchanges, … a cultural uniqueness of the ethnic minorities in Ha Giang.
The whole market is designed in Vietnamese – Chinese architecture and has a very delicate interference with highland feng shui: the spacious market, firmly in the middle of the valley of the Dong Van plateau valley, is an impressive highlight. The Dong Van market created with a magnificent U-shaped structure, ancient architecture on the stone was built in the period from 1925 – 1928.
Top things to do in Dong Van Market
Coming to Dong Van market, visitors will have the opportunity to see a vivid, beautiful scene of a highland fair. Groups of people were flocking and ampling in their ethnic costumes from the villages. Everyone gathers to the market and brought their available agricultural products, cattle and poultry to give to exchanging and trading in markets.
Especially on the 14th, 15th and 16th of the lunar month every month, this market and old town has lively cultural activities. They have specific characteristics of the land and upland people such as organizing a bird-throw contest. They are as performing traditional brocade weaving of ethnic groups in the region. Dong Van fair is simple, not picky with many items but left in the hearts of tourists many attachments for Ha Giang loop tour from Hanoi.
The market is scientifically divided into specialized areas corresponding to each product category. This corner specializes in selling all kinds of donuts, the other side specializes in selling vegetables. And then the area selling knives, plough shares, hoes, shovels … At the other corner of the fair, they sell all kinds of goods but most of them are goods. China. So you can easily explore, as well as in finding the items you want.
How to go there?
You may take the local bus from Hanoi – Ha Giang:
- Gia Lam bus station: Address: 132 Ngo Gia Kham, Ngoc Lam, Long Bien, Hanoi
- My Dinh bus station: Address: My Dinh, Nam Tu Liem, Hanoi
Arrive in Ha Giang, you rent a motorbike or car to Dong Van
If you want to proactive time and start from Hanoi, you can use your car or motorbike to travel from Hanoi to Ha Giang. Then from Ha Giang you follow 4C Highway to go to Dong Van.
When is the best time to visit?
Dong Van market is held from 5 am to 1 pm every Sunday. Therefore, you should choose to start your trip on the weekend to attend the fair promptly.
Recommended accommodation in Dong Van
Old Town Market Dong Van
- Address: Dong Van, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam
Lam Tung Hotel
- Address: Dong Van, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam
Hoa Cuong Hotel
- Address: Dong Van village, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam
Old Houses Homestay
- Address: Address: Dong Van, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam
Dong Van Bar hotel
- Address: Doan Ket village, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam
What to eat in Dong Van Market?
Besides, when visiting Dong Van market, tourists can also find and enjoy specialties of the Northwestern mountainous people. These special food are Thang Co, buckwheat cake, corn wine.
1. Thang Co
The main material for making Thang Co is from “organ” of cow, not pork or horse as many people think. The reason is that horse meat is very rare here, not always able to buy.
After pre-processing and cleaning the organs, people marinate a bit more “mountain forest” as cardamom, anise … There are more than 12 spices combined and blended. That is why Thang Co Pot has a unique smell. People simmered Thang Co pot for about 1 hour and then began to burn the fire. Thang Co has now been softened and flavoured. Then, people gathered around the pot of Thang Co in big circles, started enjoying and sipping a cup of wine.
The aroma of cardamom, nut and lemongrass, mingled with the greasy taste of meat warms the space between the cold weather. H’Mong men who go to Dong Van market all expect to eat a bowl of Thang Co. Drink a few bowls of wine with friends is an exciting experience. People think that who has many friends, he or she is offered a lot of wine. Those who are drunk when returning to the market are happy because they have many friends.
2. Con Wine
Corn Wine warms upland markets and cannot be absent from food counter. No-fuss, no words, but only jingle and warm handshakes.
The wine area is concentrated in the corner of the market, with 10-litre and 20-litre cans lined up. Here, the majority of sellers are women. The wine is made from indigenous maize combined with traditional leavened yeast. The average alcohol content is about 25-30. The wine sold directly at the market is measured by a mug, then put into small and large cans. Before buying at the market, the buyer can freely try and then choose. For those with poor drinking capacity, try from the beginning of the stall to the end of the stall can also be intoxicating.
Using raw material buckwheat seed. This seed is harvested, dried. Then grind into flour to use as a cake. The second raw material is water. The filtered water is used to make starch so it doesn’t need much. Only 1 bowl or you can get more. The remaining materials are porcelain or glass mould.
3. The buckwheat cake
The buckwheat cake is very soft and fluffy. When enjoying it, if you sip slowly, you will feel the sweetness spread in your mouth. The cake is not too wet as monosodium glutamate. The cake is also having a buttery taste, and have the pungent outdoor of Dong Van rocky forest trees.
If you have chance to the Ha Giang, do not forget to visit the Dong Van Market to enjoy a warm glass of corn wine in the morning dew, and immerse yourself in the diverse and colorful activities of the people here. Keep reading all things need to know before travel Ha Giang from Origin Vietnam. Also if you need any trip to Ha Giang don’t hesitate to contact our professional team.
It’s great for
- Natural and cultural lover, photographer, solo traveller, private tour