1. Sapa Generan information:
Area: 678.6 sq. km
Population: 52.5 thousand habitants(2007)
- Townlet: Sapa
- Communes:Ban Khoang, Ta Giang Phinh, Trung Chai, Ta Phin, Sa Pa, San Sa Ho, Ban Phung, Lao Chai, Hau Thao, Thanh Kim, Ta Van, Su Pan, Suoi Thau, Ban Ho, Thanh Phu, Nam Sai, Nam Cang.
Located 38km from Lao Cai City, Sapa is a mountainous district of Lao Cai Province. Sapa District is very well-known with Sapa Townlet, a beautiful and romantic resort.
At the height of 1,600m above sea level, the average temperature of the area is 15-18oC. It is cool in summer and cold in winter.
Visitor to Sapa in summer can feel the climate of four seasons in one day. In the morning and afternoon, it is cool like the weather of spring and autumn. At noon, it is as sunny and cloudless as the weather of summer. And it is cold in the evening. With no advance warning of a thunderstorm short and heavy rains may come at noon on any summer day. Subsequently, a rainbow appears, transforming Sapa into a magic land, which for years has been a constant source of poetic inspiration, lights up the whole region.
The best time to witness the scenic beauty of Sapa is in April and May. Before that period, the weather might be cold and foggy; after that period is the rainy season. In April and May, Sapa is blooming with flowers and green pastures. The clouds that settle in the valley in early morning quickly disappear into thin air.
Sapa has many natural sites such as Ham Rong Mountain, Silver Waterfall, Rattan Bridge, Bamboo Forest and Ta Phin Cave.Sapa is also the starting point for many climbers and scientists who want to reach the top of Fansipan Mountain, the highest mountain in Vietnam at 3,143m. Hoang Lien Mountain Range is also called the Alps of the North Sea area since Fansipan Mountain is not only the highest peak in Vietnam, but also in the Indochina Peninsula. The pyramid-shaped mountain is covered with clouds all year round and temperatures often drop below zero, especially at high elevations.
The first thing you notice when approaching the resort town are some detached wooden mansions and villas perched on a hill top or hillside, behind thick pine forests and almost invisible on this foggy morning. Old and new villas with red roofs now appear and now disappear in the green rows of pomu trees, bringing the town the beauty of European towns.
Fresh and cool air in Sapa is an idea climate condition for growing temperate vegetables such as cabbage, chayote, precious medicinal herbs, and fruit trees such as plum, pear...
Sapa is home to various families of flowers of captivating colours, which can be found nowhere else in the country. When Tet, the Lunar New Year Festival, comes, the whole township of Sapa is filled with the pink colour of peach blossom brought from the vast forests of peach just outside the town. Sapa is regarded as the kingdom of orchids. Here, orchid lovers are even amazed by the choice, when trekking in the forest filled with several hundred kinds of orchids of brilliant colours and fantastic shapes, such as Orchid Princess, Orchid of My Fair Lady's Shoe. Some orchids are named after lovely singing birds such as the canary, salangane's nest, and more.
Sapa is most beautiful in spring. Apricot, plum and cherry flowers are splendidly beautiful. Markets are crowded and merry, and are especially attractive to visitors. Minority groups come here to exchange and trade goods and products. Market sessions are also a chance for locals to promenade and young men and women in colorful costumes to meet, date or seek sweethearts.
2. Sapa Attractions:
Sapa Ancient Rock Field
Sapa Ancient Rock Field is in Muong Hoa Valley, Hau Thao Commune, Sapa District, Lao Cai Province
This 8km2 area of remains consists of large multi-grade rocks engraved with ancient images; it is located in the Muong Hoa valley, between the terraced rice paddies of ethnic minority groups. The first exploration research, in 1925, recorded that there were 200 stones of various dimensions concentrated in the area. Hon Bo, which is 15m long and 6m high, is the biggest of these rocks. The engravings on the surfaces of the stone are either picto-graphic or decorative. Remarkably, among the engravings are drawings of humans, stilt-houses of the ethnic minorities and symbols believed to be a primitive form of writing. But their meaning has not yet been deciphered.
In addition, impressive images include a da chong (the husband stone), da vo (the wife stone), as well as stones that look like tigers and a stela with an incantation written on it by the carver to help his people defeat the tigers. The da chong and da vo tell the story of faithful love between a couple who overcame all difficulties to be together; even though they turned to stone, they are still dedicated to each other.
Hoang Yen Chao Castle:
Hoang Yen Chao Castle is located in Na Hoi Tho Hamlet, Bac Ha District, 300m away from Bac Ha Market. It is a unique construction work, which harmonizes the Oriental and Western architectural styles. The castle was built at the beginning of the 20th century (between 1914 and 1921). Its owner was Hoang Yen Chao of Tay origin. He was the father of Hoang A Tuong, a tribal mandarin under the domination of the French colonialists.
The castle covers an area of 4,000m2 in which the main building occupies 420m2. In front of its arched doors are earthen banks. Occupying a pivotal position overlooking the Bac Ha valley, the castle serves both as the residence of Hoang Yen Chao, then Hoang A Tuong and as a fortress. Its network of walls, bunkers, and battlements were reinforced by a mortar mixed with sugar molasses. In a distance, the white castle jutting out from the valley looks imposing and majestic.
Sapa Fansipan Mountain
Fansipan Mountain is located 9km south¬west of Sa Pa in the Hoang Lien Son Mountains. It is the highest peak (3,143m) of the Indochina Peninsula. From a distance, it’s very difficult to see clearly Fansipan, even in a clear day.
The Hoang Lien National Park is a grandiose natural museum with an abundant flora of 1,680 species of 679 families, including over 700 endemic ones. At the foot of the Hoang Lien Son Mountain is a population of cotton, jackfruit and coi trees. Going up further, there are thick primeval forests of creepers and conifers such as po-mu, firs, hemlocks, lieu sam, arrow woods, yews, yellow sandal-woods, etc. Along the paths, there are a lot of orchids and do quyen flowers.
Climbing up the mountain along the path via Cat Cat Village of the H’Mong people, you must cross an abrupt slope, a cold spring and a thick forest. To the edge of the forest, you are at the altitude of 1,700m. You can go along the mountain side to the height of 2,080m. At 2,400 m above the sea level, there is a beautiful forest of pine trees. Up to the height of 2,900m, you can see Sa Pa Small Town through the layers of clouds. Crossing a thick forest of bamboos and three streams, Fansipan Peak looms in front of you. Atop of the peak, there are rocks of all sizes, much weathered by winds and harsh climatic conditions. In a slanting position stands an stainless steel pyramid placed in 1984 to mark the altitude of 3,143m.
Ta Van Sapa Vietnam: Located far from Sapa less than 10 kilometers, Ta Van - a village of Lao Cai province is lying peacefully in the valley of Muong Hoa. Residents are mainly the H'Mong ethnic, Giay, and Red Dao... with approximately 1000 people. From Ta Van, we can travel very convenient to other popular destinations of Lao Cai such as: Lao Chai, Cau, Ta Phin, Cat Cat...
Ta Phin Sapa Vietnam Ta Phin reputes with the terraced rice fields, streams, etc. It has Red Dao ethnic minority and Mong… Come to Ta Phin, visitors will know more about their customs, traditions and lifestyle of people. The traditional cultural activities of the Red Dao have been staging of performances for tourists such as: wedding ceremonies,
Stone Church of Sapa Vietnam The ancient church is known as stone church or the Holy Rosary church which is located in the heart of Sapa town built by the French from the early 20th century. Before starting to build this structure, the French architect selected carefully about the terrain. The shape and architecture of the church was built by cross. This architecture presented in the roof, bell tower… which created the elegant church.
Silver Waterfall Sapa Standing on Ham Rong Mountain, visitors will see the water flows down as silver so that people in here called the waterfall with the romantic name “Silver Waterfall”. Go over about 2 kilometers, tourists will come to Tram Ton where the mountain Fan Si Pan conquest begins to conquer the roof of Indochina.
Ban Ho Village Sapa Come to Sapa, tourists can climb Ham Rong Mountain, Cat Cat or Lao Chai- Ta Van of The H'Mong, Ta Phin village where The Dao live and go to Silver Waterfall, Rattan Bridge or ancient reef, the roof of Indochina-Fan Si Pan mountain. Sapa has one place that you should come and stay with home stay style. No foreign tourists before leaving Ban Ho village without leaving the emotional entries beacause the natural scenery is very fascinating and people is very friendly and hospitable.
Lung Khau Nhin Market Sapa Lung Khau Nhin Market has meeting on Thursday of every week. It is one of the famous ancient markets of Lao Cai province. Like other fairs, Lung Khau Nhin has vibrant color of the dresses, blankets, green cabbage and yellow citrus.
Coc Ly Market Sapa Vietnam From Dist. Lao Cai, following the national highway 4D, visitors will come to Bao Thang district, Lao Cai province. Turn left and follow provincial road 154 which sneaks through the country side along the Chay River for 17 km to Coc Ly. Coc Ly market is market of ethnic living in the northwest of Bac Ha district. The market has meeting beside suspension bridge across the Chay River. It opens only on Tuesday.
Cao Son Market Sapa Cao Son market is located in Cao Son commune, Lao Cai province. Visitors will have the opportunity to interact and learn more about the daily life of ethnic. In order to Cao Son market, visitors can follow several routes. However, if visitors want to have opportunities to cruise on the river and soak up the natural landscape, they will join tours on the Chay River. Cao Son market is the market of ethnic H’Mong, Phu La, Black Dao and Han living in 4 biggest villages of Muong Khuong. Market has only meeting on Wednesday.
Can Cau Market Sapa Can Cau market belonging to a commune, Lao Cai district. Visitors have not only the opportunities to be aware of fair but also a chance to learn more about the daily life of people. From Lao Cai province, along the national road 4D, visitors will come to Bao Thang district, Lao Cai province.
At this landmark, you can have a panorama of all directions and take photos in joy and pride that you have conquered the roof of Indochina.
Visitors to Sapa will have opportunities to discover the unique customs of the local residents.