How to travel to Moc Chau for your best experience
Moc Chau Travel Guide – What to do, when to visit, and more…
Spanning widely across Son La, a remote northwestern province of Vietnam, Moc Chau is the widest and dreamiest plateau enticing visitors with its magnificent beauty of nature and the authentic culture of minor tribes. With various colorful flowers, green tea hills, majestic waterfalls, also as home to Thai, Meo, Muong ethnics,
Spanning widely across Son La, a remote northwestern province of Vietnam, Moc Chau is the widest and dreamiest plateau enticing visitors with its magnificent beauty of nature and the authentic culture of minor tribes.
With various colorful flowers, green tea hills, majestic waterfalls, also as home to Thai, Meo, Muong ethnics, Moc Chau gives an incredible opportunity for you to experience the land, regardless if you are a retreat lover or an adventure seeker. But before heading there, let’s have an idea of how to travel to Moc Chau for your best experience in this article.
1. Pha Luong Summit
Sits at an altitude of nearly 2,000m above sea level, called “the roof of Moc Chau plateau”, Pha Luong is the captivating place for those who love exploring. Climbing to the summit of Pha Luong requires courage and endurance as the road is slopping and jungle-coated.
However, when you have successfully conquered the Pha Luong summit, you will feel proud to contemplate the imposing mountains. On cloudy days, this place is referred to as “heaven” with its fantastic scenery. And because Pha Luong peak is in the shape of vertical cliffs, your view from the top is airy, not obscured by any obstruction.
2. Dai Yem Waterfall
Dai Yem, the name was derived from the tale that the fall is the shirt of the fairy who rescues the man from the raging flood, the waterfall makes itself a majestic and poetic scenery with the cascade flows powerfully from the upper height creating the dazzlingly white foam frothing under. The waterfall consists of two parts. The upper waterfall is 70 meters wide and there is a distance of 270 meters between the upper and lower waterfall. You may also find the vegetation on the top of the waterfall is rich and beautiful.
3. Happy Land
Recently popular to not only locals but also tourists alike, this newly constructed Happy Land will add more fun to your journey as its name conveys. At Happy Land, you will be able to view flowers blooming all year round. Moreover, to get yourself acquainted with the place, there are a wide variety of activities organized to assist you.
4. Moc Chau Tropical Flower Garden
With an area of over 12 hectares, the tropical flower garden is located in Bua village, Dong Sang commune, Moc Chau district. The flower garden has been expanded and diversified. You can see how the local people grow and take care of flowers in this area. Let’s visit the flower garden to observe and enjoy a peaceful time in this flower paradise.
5. Heart-shaped Tea Hill
Tan Lap commune is famous for the most beautiful tea hills in Moc Chau. These green tea hills are likely, unlike anything you have seen before. The most beautiful tea hill in Tan Lap is Doi Che Trai Tim, also known as Doi Che Moc Suong. Many couples choose this place to take their wedding photos and record their happiest moments. Besides tea hills, there are plum blossoms and yellow mustard flower gardens in the commune.
6. Dairy Farm
Dairy cows in Moc Chau are unique. Naturally bred, you will see these cows roaming the landscapes, not confined to cages. At this dairy farm, you can explore the large farms with thousands of healthy cows lined up in beautiful rows. You can even visit and feed the cows, witness the milking process, and even do the milking with your own hands.
7. Thung Cuong Village
Thung Cuong is an H’ mong village located between Dong Sang commune in Moc Chau District and Xuan Nha Commune in Van Ho District. You will traverse a vast valley covered with white mustard flowers on your way to Thung Cuong Village, which is very enjoyable. This is also one of the favorite wedding photography spots for young couples coming from urban cities.
8. Pa Phach Village
Pa Phach is the home of the Thai and H’Mong people. The local people grow white mustard flowers to sell the seeds which are used to make oil. Therefore, big white mustard flower fields cover the entire village. In particular, the village is full of thick fog in the evening. When spring comes, the plum blossoms replace the white mustard flower and make the village beautiful in a different way.
9. Ang (Pine Forest) Village
Ang Village has a natural lake with an area of five hectares surrounded by green pine forests planted on reddish-brown ferralsol hills. In the distance, the scenery of Moc Chau plateau with the tea hills and colorful flowers is romantic and stunning. This is home to the Thai people who live mainly on farming, livestock breeding, and handicraft. In Ang Village, you will have the opportunity to experience daily life with the villagers such as staying in the stilt houses, picking the tea on the hill, fishing in the stream, and eating local dishes.
10. On Village’s Five Caves
Especially suitable for trekking gurus, On Village’s Five Caves is not something anyone can handle whether access-wise or beauty-wise. Despite being named wonders by a wide range of sources, On Village’s Five Caves is a category of its all thanks to its pure primitiveness. Reaching the spot, travelers will be able to feel first-hand the mightiness of the five caves closely attached to Eastern five basic elements philosophy (Metal-Wood-Water-Fire-Earth). Another merit of taking up this attraction is that on your way, you can experience yourself the life of Thai Tribe in the most genuine manner.
1. Cai Meo (Cabbage of Meo)
Cai Meo is a one-ingredient dish featuring Son La. Rest assured since it won’t disappoint you with numerous tastes your tastebuds will feel with only a bite of it. A little bitter at first but it will pass soon, leaving a clear sweetness in your mouth. Although Cai Meo can be used to add in hotpot, fried fish, chicken, its favorite style is the easy boiling and then served with a bowl of soy sauce or fish sauce.
2. Grilled Stream Fish
One merit of grilled stream fish is that you can eat both the meat and the bone. In addition, the grilled fish is tasty with the company of spicy fish sauce (mắm tỏi ớt) or chili sauce. It is highly recommended to eat grilled stream fish with sticky rice, which never fails to amaze the diner.
3. Dried buffalo meat
This dish is a specialty of Thai people. The buffalo meat will be marinated then hung on the wooden bars on top of the kitchen’s fire. The smell of charcoal remains with the flavors of peppers, ginger and “mac khen” – a kind of forest pepper in northwest Vietnam.
The fresh milk in Moc Chau, Son La has made a name for itself across the country for being perfectly creamy and nutritious. Having a cup of warm creamy milk in the chilly morning is an undeniable blessing feeling, rendering you warm as well as refreshed.
For most first-timers, we often suggest a 2-day & 1-night itinerary, which includes various activities of outdoor exploration and culture discovery, for your best experience while traveling Moc Chau.
Day 1: Pha Luong Summit – Moc Chau highlights – Ang Village
Get to Pha Luong to climb the summit. Enjoy the cool air and grandiose panorama from the top. Hike down the mountain and visit Moc Chau highlights including Happy Land, Moc Chau Tropical Flower Garden, Heart-shaped Tea Hill, Dairy Farm… Enjoy the attractions while taking great selfies with beautiful nature. Trek to Ang Village in the afternoon, stay and dine with locals for a night.
Day 2: Dai Yem Waterfall – On Village’s Five Caves
Visit Dai Yem Waterfall to enjoy the majestic and poetic scenery in the morning. You may hike, swim, or simply do nothing but still have great relaxation. Then move on to On Village’s Five Caves to trek over and witness the pure primitiveness of the attraction before ending the wonderful trip.
If you are a veteran backpacker, please feel free to manage the trip on your own and alter it when needed, else, we recommend you join a tour organized by a professional company that can free you from hassles and keeps you safe throughout the journey.
It may say that this area is beautiful regardless of the season. Indeed, in January and February, peach and plum flowers blossom covering this land with pink and white colors. Next, the season of mountain ebony flowers is from March to April. By the way, if you are interested in cultural events, the Het Cha Festival of the Thai people occurs from March 23rd to the 26th.
Besides, from April to August, peach and plums begin appearing on the trees, so you can eat these fresh fruits in bountiful handfuls. At the end of the year, Moc Chau is still colorful with white mustard flowers and wild sunflowers from October to December.
However, beware of the wet season (June through September), when to expect heavy rainfall and misty weather with possible landslides.
From Hanoi, there are several options for transportation for you to take to get to Moc Chau District, Son La Province.
By public bus: Buses leave pretty much hourly from Giap Bat, My Dinh, Yen Nghia, or Thanh Xuan Stations in Hanoi, from 7 am-9 pm and cost roughly $12 that take around 9 hours of traveling.
By private car: Alternatively, there is the option to hire a car and driver in Hanoi to drive to the region, which gives a very convenient and comfortable trip, but at a higher fare of about $60.
In addition, you can rent a motorbike to drive yourself from Hanoi to Moc Chau, Son La. Although renting a motorbike is not a big deal, we do not encourage you to do this, especially when you first come to Vietnam. Ensure your safety first.
Throughout this article, we wish you to have an idea of how to travel to Moc Chau for your best experience. In case you are looking for your own travel agent, who can offer a wonderful and hassle-free trip to Moc Chau, please feel free to let us know. We always commit our best to make it your once-in-a-lifetime journey.