Ma Pi Leng Pass
Ruby Le

Ruby Le

Ruby Le's keen on travelling and exploring undiscovered places in Vietnam,
love to share travel experiences, photos, writing article after every trips.

Ma Pi Leng Pass

Ma Pi Leng Pass is one of the most spectacular mountain passes in the world. Located in the Ha Giang Province of Vietnam, the pass is a stunningly beautiful stretch of road that winds its way through the mountains of the region. It is a popular destination for travelers looking to explore the stunning scenery of the region and experience the unique culture of the local people. This travel guide will provide you with all the information you need to plan your trip to Ma Pi Leng Pass, from the best time to visit to the best places to stay and eat. So, if you’re looking for an unforgettable adventure, read on to find out more about this incredible destination.

Ma Pi Leng Pass is one of the “four great mountain peaks” of the northern mountainous region of Vietnam. The pass is in Ha Giang province, about 20 km long, surpassing Ma Pi Leng peak. It is a mountain peak of about 1,200m in Dong Van Plateau, on the road named Hanh Phuc connecting Ha Giang, Dong Van city and Meo Vac town.

This is an ideal place for those who love adventure and like to conquer winding and rugged roads. How it is to enjoy the freedom and harmony with nature and sky.

Ma Pi Leng

How Ma Pi Leng Pass is unique?

The peak of Ma Pi Leng is in the three plains of Pa Lung, Pa Vi and Xie Cai (Meo Vac, Ha Giang) in the Dong Van Plateau. It’s about 2,000 m above sea level, formed by a series of limestone deposits shale, silt containing fossils about 426 million years ago. There are including many slides and cracks caused by mountain formation. The landscape of this area is rocky, with the deep of the Nho Que River as a split pair of peaks and the Pun Pun (Sam Pun) on either side.

Coming to this place, visitors to Ha Giang Vietnam tour not only have the opportunity to admire the majestic scenery of the rocky plateau. But also understand the history of this majestic mountain pass better. This is considered one of the historic passes because to build the Ma Pi Leng pass section which connects Ha Giang with the provinces downstream. The workers had to work very hard for 6 years to build the road by themselves. Mostly it is done by rudimentary tools and without any support of machines. Even they always face danger and death. But willing to resolve the people here have successfully built “Pyramid of the Hmong people”.

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The border crossing point and the border gate are from Xin Xin to Tianjin, China. French scholars, hundreds of years ago, called the peak of Mt. Ma Pi Leng in particular. And the Global Geological Park of the Dong Van Plateau is generally a “geologic monument”. Passing on Ma Pi Leng Pass overlooking the deep pool, Nho Que River just as a thread. If you want to reach the water of the river, it will take more than a day. You will find all detail at North Vietnam photography trip here.

The local people on Ma Pi Leng pass

Top things to do in Ma Pi Leng Pass

Ma Pi Leng consists of 9 winding sections with cliffs and deep abyss on both sides of the road. The passages lie precariously between the mountains, squeezed high above and in the fog. On the journey to conquer this mountain pass, you will be stopped and admire the area of Nho Que river which shares two roads, one branch is to Sam Pun and one is Ma Pi Leng.

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1. Scenic Drive:

Embark on a thrilling drive along Ma Pi Leng Pass, known for its breathtaking views and dramatic landscapes. Enjoy the winding roads that hug the cliffs, offering panoramic vistas of deep valleys, jagged mountains, and the Nho Que River below.

2. Photography:

Capture stunning photographs of the picturesque scenery from various viewpoints along the pass. The rugged terrain, winding road, and stunning mountain vistas make for incredible photo opportunities.

3. Trekking and Hiking:

Explore the surrounding area on foot by taking a trek or hike along the trails near Ma Pi Leng Pass. Discover hidden viewpoints, encounter local flora and fauna, and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the region.

4. Visit the Ma Pi Leng Panorama:

Stop at the Ma Pi Leng Panorama, a designated viewpoint that offers a sweeping panoramic view of the pass and its surroundings. Marvel at the grandeur of the landscape and take in the awe-inspiring vistas.

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Image Source: Internet

5. Admire the Nho Que River:

Take a moment to appreciate the beauty of the Nho Que River as it meanders through the deep valley below Ma Pi Leng Pass. The river’s turquoise waters contrasting against the towering mountains create a mesmerizing sight.

6. Motorbike Adventure:

Experience the exhilaration of riding a motorbike along the challenging roads of Ma Pi Leng Pass. Feel the thrill as you navigate the twists and turns, with the stunning scenery unfolding before you.

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7. Visit Ethnic Minority Villages:

Discover the local culture and way of life by visiting nearby ethnic minority villages. Engage with the locals, learn about their traditions, and witness their craftsmanship.

8. Picnic and Relaxation:

Find a scenic spot along Ma Pi Leng Pass to have a picnic and enjoy a peaceful moment amidst nature’s splendor. Unwind, take in the fresh mountain air, and admire the awe-inspiring views.

9. Paragliding:

For those seeking an adrenaline rush, try paragliding over Ma Pi Leng Pass. Soar through the sky and experience a unique perspective of the pass and its surroundings.

10. Sunset/Sunrise Viewing:

Plan your visit to Ma Pi Leng Pass during sunrise or sunset to witness the enchanting colors painting the sky and illuminating the landscape. It’s a magical time to appreciate the beauty of this iconic pass.

Note: Ensure your safety while exploring Ma Pi Leng Pass by following designated paths, respecting local regulations, and being aware of weather conditions.

How to go there?

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Transportation to Ma Pi Leng Pass, you can choose to go by motorbike, bus or car rental.

– By bus: From Hanoi, you take the bus to Ha Giang from many different bus station. Such as My Dinh bus station, Bat Giap, Nuoc Ngam or Gia Lam, … trips from 5 am to 9 pm. With this flexible time frame, you are free to arrange a time that suits your schedule.

– Motorbike: This is the way often chosen by people. Travelling by motorbike helps you are more active on the trip. If you choose to ride a motorbike, follow these two routes:

  • From Hanoi, go towards Thang Long Bridge, turn to Viet Tri, Phu Tho, pass Tuyen Quang to Ha Giang.
  • From Hanoi to Son Tay, go straight to Trung Ha Bridge. Go to Son Tay junction and go straight to see La Thanh to Co Tiet and then go to Phong Chau Bridge. And then turn left along the Thao river road to Phu Tho – Doan Hung town, then turn to Tuyen Quang and follow Highway 2 to get there.

– Rent a motorbike: If travelling by bus to Ha Giang you can rent a motorbike to continue your discovery journey. Some car rental addresses such as Giang Son (group 1, Cau Be village, Phuong Thien commune), Mr Vinh (group 1, Quang Trung ward), Phon Tooc (19/5 street, Nguyen Trai ward) …

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When is the best time to visit Ma Pi Leng?

Ha Giang is like the “muse” of the mountains, with the softness, clarity and tranquillity of nature bestowed on this place. Whether you go to Ha Giang holiday in any season of the year you can watch full scent of the mountains here.

January to March, the time after the Lunar New Year is always chosen by many people to travel for spring. This is also the time for apricot, plum and yellow mustard flowers to bloom. Watching the scenery of Ha Giang from the top of Ma Pi Leng pass will appear before the eyes of visitors a brilliant picture of the spring day, full of life with the vibrant colours of flowers mixed with gentle colours of apricot petals, plum blossoms.

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If you want to participate in Khau Vai love market. Please visit Ha Giang in April every year, participating in the fair. Come here you will have the opportunity to better understand the traditional culture of the local people.

Visit Ha Giang on the occasion of May. It’s the flooding season, from the top of Ma Pi Leng you will admire a mural with deep. But extremely attractive colours created from terraced fields. The flooding season, when people lead water from ravines and streams to terraced fields to allow water to gradually seep into the soil and prepare for transplanting.

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In September, Ha Giang becomes more vibrant and attractive than ever, with golden terraced fields when entering the ripe rice season. Travel along the path to the top of Ma Pi Pass. You will have the chance to see the golden fields in the deep forest of mountains.

In October and November. When the triangular flower petals begin to hatch. Travel on this time gives visitors a peaceful feeling, the soul becomes calmer when dropping soul among the fields of triangle flowers stretching to the horizon.

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In December, the weather started to get colder at this time when the yellow mustard flowers in full bloom in a corner of Ha Giang. And then gradually covered the rocky plateaus with their brilliant yellow.

You should pay attention to avoid the period from June to August. Although the summer weather is very beautiful, suitable for check-in rocky plateau. However, it is not suitable for backpackers because it often rains. It makes the road slippery and dangerous, in the early morning and evening, the fog is quite thick.

The amazing view from Ma Pi Leng pass

Recommended accommodation

Ma Pi Leng homestay

  • Ma Pi Leng Village, Meo Vac District, Ha Giang, Vietnam

Hoang Ngọc Hotel

  • Highway 4C, Dong Van District, Ha Giang, Vietnam

Meovac H’mong Ecolodge

  • Highway 4C,Pa Vi, Meo Vac, Ha Giang, Vietnam

Meo Vac Clay House – Homestay

  • Pa Vi, Meo Vac, Ha Giang, Vietnam

What to eat?

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Not only natural scenery, majestic passes. Ha Giang cuisines are also extremely rich and diverse, bearing the typical flavour of Northwestern mountains. You can enjoy Com Lam Bac Me, Smoked sausage delights, five colours sticky rice, thang co, … If you like, you can sip a little more wine of the people here to feel special in eating, drinking culture at this land.

Ha Giang Tour 3 days from Ha Noi

It’s great for

  • Natural lover, photographer, solo traveler, private tour

Recommend Tour Itineraries to Ma Pi Leng pass From Ha Giang City

1. Ma Pi Leng Pass Day Trip

  • Start your day early from Ha Giang City.
  • Drive to Ma Pi Leng Pass, enjoying the scenic journey through picturesque landscapes.
  • Stop at various viewpoints along the pass to admire the breathtaking views and capture memorable photos.
  • Visit the Ma Pi Leng Panorama and soak in the panoramic vistas of the pass and surrounding mountains.
  • Take a short hike or walk along the trails near the pass to explore the area on foot.
  • Enjoy a picnic lunch at a scenic spot along the pass.
  • Return to Ha Giang City in the late afternoon, concluding the day trip.

2. Ha Giang and Ma Pi Leng Pass Adventure 3 Days

  • Day 1: Explore Ha Giang City, visit local markets, and immerse in the local culture.
  • Day 2: Embark on a full-day excursion to Ma Pi Leng Pass.
  • Drive along the pass, making stops at various viewpoints to admire the breathtaking scenery.
  • Visit ethnic minority villages along the way to learn about their traditions and way of life.
  • Enjoy a traditional lunch at a local village.
  • Trek or hike in the surrounding area to discover hidden viewpoints and encounter the natural beauty of the region.
  • Return to Ha Giang City in the evening.
  • Day 3: Explore other attractions in Ha Giang, such as Dong Van Karst Plateau or Lung Cu Flag Tower.
  • Return to Ha Giang City or continue your journey to other destinations.

3. Ha Giang Motorcycle Expedition:

  • Embark on a multi-day motorcycle adventure through Ha Giang Province.
  • Explore various attractions including Ma Pi Leng Pass, Dong Van Karst Plateau, and Lung Cu Flag Tower.
  • Experience the thrill of riding along the winding roads and breathtaking landscapes.
  • Visit ethnic minority villages, interact with the locals, and learn about their unique cultures.
  • Enjoy local cuisine and stay overnight in homestays or guesthouses to immerse in the local way of life.
  • Discover hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path locations along the way.
  • Conclude the expedition back in Ha Giang City or continue your journey to other destinations.

Note: The suggested itineraries can be customized based on your preferences, time available, and specific tour operator arrangements. It is recommended to consult with a local tour operator or travel agency for a comprehensive and well-organized tour experience.


The Ma Pi Leng Pass is an incredible destination for travelers looking for a unique and unforgettable experience. With its stunning views, rich cultural heritage, and unique local cuisine, it is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to explore the beauty of Vietnam. Whether you are looking for a relaxing getaway or an adventurous journey, the Ma Pi Leng Pass has something for everyone. With its breathtaking scenery, friendly locals, and unique attractions, it is sure to be an unforgettable experience.

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