When traveling to Lao Cai, everyone immediately thinks of foggy Sapa, with many poetic and romantic destinations. But you know, this Northwest land has many other coordinates that are equally attractive. Therefore, if you want to find a place that few people know to enjoy the wild beauty. So traveling to Muong Khuong is a suggestion worth considering.
1. Where is Muong Khuong?
Muong Khuong is a border mountainous district in Lao Cai province. It’s about 55 km northeast of the city center and about 330 km northwest of Hanoi capital. Muong Khuong is bordered to the East by Si Ma Cai district and Bac Ha district, to the West and North is bordered by China with a 86.5 km long Vietnam – China border. Including 55 km of land, to the south Muong Khuong borders Bao Thang district.
2. How is Muong Khuong unique?
Coming here, visitors have the opportunity to admire the mysterious beauty amidst the vast mountains and forests. But is also where the Pha Long bronze drum was discovered. It’s one of Lao Cai’s ancient artifacts dating back 4 thousand years ago.
Muong Khuong market held on weekends is a vivid and colorful miniature picture of Muong Khuong. Unique and rare features in Muong Khuong are the horse market and bird market corner. It is also home to about 14 ethnic groups, creating a diverse cultural style, blending many ethnic groups, making it extremely unique, with many strange customs and traditions.
Weekend is the time that attracts many tourists to Muong Khuong with the desire to experience the highland markets and enjoy many delicious and attractive dishes. Such as trying to win horses, coc Ngu wine, and rice. Many local dishes are waiting for you to explore.
In addition to the rich and unique cuisine, you also have the opportunity to visit many natural tourist attractions, favored by nature, spanning thousands of years of history to form, with pristine and wild beauty. Especially takes you to a space filled with green trees, cool waterfalls with clear water.
3. Which is the best season to visit Muong Khuong?
Possessing the climatic characteristics of the tropical monsoon region, the weather here is somewhat erratic due to the influence of many factors, especially the terrain. According to experience from people who have lived here for a long time, it will partly help you determine the time period that is right for you.
It will be sunny around April – August. If you are someone who likes to travel by motorbike on the roads, this period is the golden time!
If you are a fan of the scenery of ripe rice season or peach and plum blossom season. So you should plan to travel to Sapa from August to March. However, from January to March every year, This area is often a bit cold and the air humidity is high, so it is sometimes a bit wet. But in return you will enjoy the pleasant chilly atmosphere.
If your purpose of coming to Lao Cai is to hunt for snow, then try to come here in December – January! During this time, remember to bring extra cold-resistant clothing to protect your health.
4. How to get to Muong Khuong
To move to Muong Khuong, first of all, you need to move from Hanoi from My Dinh, Giap Bat bus stations… to Lao Cai city. Then from there move to Muong Khuong along Highway 4D with time. It’s only about 1 hour. The route to the village is also quite easy to follow. You can look it up on Google maps to follow the predetermined route.
After arriving in Lao Cai city, you will be able to choose from many diverse forms of transportation to get to Muong Khuong. So consider the characteristics of each type as well as your plan to make the most suitable choice.
4.1. By motorbike
With this route, if your group has a small group of people. If You’re not familiar with mountain roads, you should rent a motorbike taxi to ensure safety and save time. Besides, motorbikes are a quite popular form and easy to call. So if you choose this form, you will not spend much time traveling and can discover many beautiful views on the way. more.
4.2. By taxi
In addition to traveling by motorbike, you can also choose to rent a taxi to move quickly, safely and without wasting your energy. This is a form that is quite suitable for groups of about 3 – 7 people. With this method, you can also save a significant amount of money.
4.3. Renting a motorbike
This is the form chosen by many young people because of its convenience and more initiative in their schedules. You have the opportunity to visit many other attractions along the way or stop at any corner to take pictures.
5. Sightseeing & things to do in Muong Khuong
5.1. Ham Rong Cave in Muong Khuong
With wild beauty, Ham Rong cave is a favorite place for many tourists to visit. This complex includes 4 caves, of which 2 caves are connected to each other, with a length of up to 750m. Besides, the entrance of the cave is also the origin of Tung Lau stream, a place with natural beauty no less than Ham Rong cave.
As soon as you enter, you will definitely be overwhelmed with the image of multicolored stalactites everywhere in the cave, sparkling like a fairyland. At the same time, the cave belongs to the group of national heritages that need to be preserved, so it still retains its wild, lively character and has not suffered much human impact.
5.2. Lung Pau Cave
The cave has a rather dangerous entrance and is located quite deep. However, it is a place that preserves many traces of ancient people’s activities, so this is one of the places that brings you many new experiences.
According to research, Lung Pau cave is about 4,000 years old and has quite high historical value, so if you are a history lover and want to discover many stories about our ancestors’ culture in ancient times, you cannot. Skip this attraction.
5.3. Co Tien Mountain
With sparkling beauty like a fairyland, the name Co Tien Mountain comes from the ancient legend that the mountaintop is the place where fairies descend to earth, because of the magical, unique and charming beauty of this place. .
5.4. Enjoying the beauty of corn fields laden with brilliant fruit
Corn is the main agricultural product grown by people here, thanks to the suitable soil quality as well as many generations of experience. Corn in Muong Khuong Sapa brings quite high yields, the corn is firm, less damaged and of standard quality.
So when you come here, you will have the opportunity to enjoy many attractive dishes made from corn, typical of the Northwest region such as corn wine, 7-color sticky rice,…
5.5. Cao Son fair market
Cao Son fair is the market of the H’Mong, Phu La, Dao and Black Han ethnic groups living in the four largest villages of Muong Khuong district. It is a place to buy, sell and exchange goods with many diverse products with mountain and forest flavors.
5.6. Pha Long Market
Pha Long Market is not only a place to buy, sell and exchange goods but also a place to meet and interact with ethnic people here. It becomes more beautiful because of the cultural identity of the people here thanks to traditional costumes and typical specialty products of this highland.
5.7. Ta Lam Waterfall
Ta Lam Waterfall is a beautiful, famous waterfall on the Nam Thi River located west of Muong Khuong. The waterfall is located between two mountains like two dragons reaching down and carrying on their bodies the vast green forest. The waterfall has cool water flowing all year round, so this place has majestic natural scenery and is the pride of the Muong Khuong ethnic people.
5.8. De Chu Thang cloud hunting spot
This is an ideal place for those who love to take beautiful photos, located in the Northeast of Lao Cai province. Visitors will admire the panoramic view of the valley with its peaceful beauty and rich national identity that cannot be found anywhere else.
5.9. Muong Khuong Market
Muong Khuong market is the largest market in Muong Khuong district. The market is usually held every Sunday, mainly by people of the Nung, H’Mong, and Thai ethnic groups with many diverse and colorful products. In addition, the market has an indispensable specialty: cans of corn wine. sold by local people and villages here.
6. Specialties when traveling to Muong Khuong
The uniqueness of culinary culture is always one of the important factors that attract tourists, and Muong Khuong is a convergence of many cultural quintessence imbued with national identity that few localities have. Delicious dishes with local colors, derived from daily life and the essence of heaven and earth here.
6.1. Seng Cu rice, Muong Khuong chili sauce
Mentioning Muong Khuong means mentioning: chili sauce, Seng Cu rice, thang co, sausage, Men Men, Coc Ngu corn wine,… In particular, Seng Cu rice and chili sauce have become brands of indigenous agricultural products. granted intellectual property certification, known to the market as an endemic brand of Lao Cai highland.
Muong Khuong is one of the few localities with a suitable climate for growing this rice variety and is also the place where the highest quality Seng Cu rice is produced. The rice grains are very fragrant, large and plump, and when cooked, they become even more fragrant, the rice is sticky, and stimulates the taste buds immensely. That’s why Cu Muong Khuong chili sauce and rice are now one of the indispensable ingredients in many restaurants and kitchens of every Vietnamese family.
6.2. Smoked sausages
During Tet holidays, it would be a mistake not to mention the smoked sausage dish with its special flavor, unique to every highlander’s home. The special thing about the dish is that it relies on typical spices of the Northwest high mountains such as mac Khen seeds, ginger, doi seeds,… and the enthusiasm that the makers put into watching the fire and smoking the dish. Beautiful in form and guaranteed in quality.
6.3. Thang Co
Thang Co is a traditional dish of the H’Mong ethnic people in Lao Cai province. This dish is made from horse meat and the special thing here lies in the way it is prepared. When cooking thang co, no part of the horse’s body will be removed, but all parts must be cleaned and prepared. In the Northwest weather in winter, sitting around a pot of thang co sipping a cup of corn wine will definitely be an unforgettable experience.
6.4. Men Men
Men Men (ground corn) is considered the main dish of highland ethnic people because this dish is made from corn, a readily available food, and Men Men can be eaten during the day or even for a few days. day when going to the fields and forests. To prepare a delicious batch of Men Men is not too complicated, but it also goes through quite a few steps and certainly requires a certain amount of experience and skill.
In the markets, Men Men can be eaten with thang co and grilled chili. Because the weather conditions in the highlands are very cold, H’Mong people are very good at eating chili; Grilled chili peppers, pounded with salt, eaten with men, must be called delicious.
Each specialty dish of Lao Cai in general and Muong Khuong in particular carries a very typical flavor of the Northwest mountains and forests and is increasingly gaining a place in the hearts of tourists from all over. If you have the opportunity to enjoy it, don’t miss it!
In addition, when coming to Muong Khuong, you will also have the opportunity to enjoy many other famous delicious culinary specialties such as: Wood wine brewed in mountain caves; smoked pork, Tofu, Muong Khuong Pho, Seven-color sticky rice, Black Chung cake…
7. Accommodation when traveling to Muong Khuong
When traveling to Muong Khuong, you can refer to some of the accommodation facilities below. Most of these accommodation establishments are concentrated in Muong Khuong town to facilitate tourists moving between tourist destinations and enjoying other amenities from accommodation establishments.
- Muong Khuong Hotel. Address: Tung Chung Pho, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
- Xuan Mai Guesthouse. Address: Old residential group 2, Muong Khuong Town, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
- Ngoc Hoa Guesthouse. Address: Muong Khuong Town, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
- Hong Hue Guesthouse. Address: New Neighborhood Residential Group 3, Muong Khuong Town, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
- Ham Rong Guesthouse. Address: Muong Khuong Town, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
- Motel 386. Address: 386 Giai Phong Street 11/11, Muong Khuong Town, Muong Khuong, Lao Cai.
8. Some important notes when traveling to Muong Khuong
If you want to plan to explore Muong Khuong completely and safely, you should consult the experiences of many predecessors or tours in Muong Khuong.
- Plan meticulously to ensure you discover all the attractive destinations in Muong Khuong.
- Always pay attention and ensure safety, in case you need emergency help so you don’t get confused if you encounter one.
- Bring all personal belongings and identification documents. If you want to explore the cave, bring a flashlight and insect repellant spray to ensure your health.
- The weather here changes erratically, so you should bring a raincoat. And clothes that are easy to move in and keep warm.
- Don’t forget to bring cash because in highland areas, transaction methods are not very diverse.
Muong Khuong – Lao Cai is a relatively new destination for many tourists. But not too far from Sapa center, with great experiences and unique cultural diversity. That will definitely bring you stories and great experiences.
Don’t hesitate to add the name Muong Khuong to the list of must-visit places if you have the opportunity to visit this foggy city in the Northwest. If you are planning your tour Vietnam to Muong Khuong – Lao Cai, please immediately contact Origin Vietnam – a professional tour operator. With a team of consultants, tour operators and guides who are experienced, dedicated and have a deep understanding of this land, we will take you on a journey to discover Muong Khuong with interesting surprises and exciting experiences.