A peaceful village in the middle of the Northwest mountains and forests
If you have ever visited the northern mountainous provinces, you may have encountered ethnic minority villages. These villages are traditional, rustic, and somewhat wild. However, one village in the Moc Chau district, Son La, stands out for its lack of modern amenities. Hang Tau, as it is known, has no electricity, phone signal, or internet access.
Hang Tau covers an area of over 1 hectare and is a production area that is home to 20 Mong ethnic households who live in Ta So 1 village. Despite having houses with full electricity and water, the people prefer to live in Hang Tau to facilitate farming and animal husbandry. The villagers are content with the peaceful life they lead, despite the lack of modern amenities.
Since there are not many amenities available in Hang Tau, the villagers focus on working and playing within their own community. Every day, they go to the fields to farm and grow rice, corn, and plums for selling. They draw domestic water from natural mountain springs for daily use. Some villagers go out to work for a while to support their families.
Hmong women have a long-standing tradition of embroidering and crafting traditional costumes by hand, which they learned since childhood. It is a common sight to see them sitting in a corner, creating intricate patterns with their needles. The crafting process takes anywhere from four months to a year, which is why the selling price for a Hmong woman’s dress is around 2 million VND per set.
Hang Tau in Moc Chau offers a breathtaking landscape with green pastures surrounded by mountains. Visitors can catch a glimpse of various types of cattle running around, and in the distance, traditional stilt houses can be seen, adding to the area’s serene and lively atmosphere.
Life prospers thanks to tourism
Hang Tau has become increasingly popular among tourists over the past two years, thanks to its beautiful and unique scenery. As a result, locals have started creating services to earn extra income. For example, Ms. Song Thi Say, a former worker from Hai Phong, now offers tourism services in Hang Tau. She and her husband invested 50 million VND into buying a horse four months ago. They offer horse riding experiences to customers for 100,000 VND. Ms. Say has also invested in camping gear to cater to groups who prefer camping overnight.
Similarly, Mr. La’s family also offers tourism services in Hang Tau. In addition to farming and raising livestock, he also offers food and lodging to tourists. His family sells vegetables, livestock, and poultry, and provides lunch for guests who need to rest. A tray of rice with chicken, pork, etc. costs around 200,000 VND/person.
Currently, the ticket to Hang Tau costs 30,000 VND/person. The money collected from tourism is used to build toilets, a communal dining room, and for conservation work. The local authorities encourage people to preserve the wild features of Hang Tau’s landscape and cultural beauty by not building too much.
Ms. Say is content and happy with her life in Hang Tau. It is a peaceful and simple place where households do not quarrel or have conflicts. She has attended five training sessions on sustainable tourism in the district. She remembers that the most important thing when serving guests is to respect them.