December 7, 2016 | InsideVietnam Tours
A newly-launched trip from InsideVietnam Tours provides a rare chance to discover Vietnam’s remote communities in the lesser-visited northern region of the country.
Focusing on the less-known, more rural areas, the 12-night ‘Northern Star’ trip explores the varied ethnic communities of the northern highlands through immersive elements such as home stays, and provides the chance to discover how these people make their living.
Home stay: Spend a night with the Tay minority people in the village of Pac Ngoi on the shore of Ba Be Lake in the Bac Kan province. Staying with a family in a traditional stilt house, there is the chance to enjoy a home-cooked meal and learn, first-hand, about life in the village and this fascinating culture that is exemplified by colourful dress and compelling traditions.
Local market: Having explored the villages of the San Chay and Nung ethnic groups, there is the opportunity to visit a local market in the town of Meo Vac in the beautiful province of Ha Giang. Close to the Chinese border and surrounded by dramatic peaks, Hmong, Zao and Lo Lo people come from their villages on the surrounding mountains to sell their wares, to stock up on supplies, and to socialise.
Women’s co-operative: Visit a cutting-edge female co-operative on the route to Hoang Su Phi that provides opportunities for over a hundred of the region’s poorest Hmong and Zao women. Established by a local female entrepreneur, this arts and crafts movement provides women with the choice of working from home or from the workshop while they look after their children. Producing traditional handicrafts through weaving and embroidery, they are, in turn, taking control of their livelihoods.
Breathtaking landscapes: Bookended by overnight stays in Vietnam’s capital of Hanoi, ‘Northern Star’ is also defined by diverse and dramatic landscapes – natural lakes, thick forests, rocky plateaux, towering mountains with limestone caves and lush valleys.
The 12-night fully-tailored itinerary is priced exceptionally well, from £1,770 pp (two sharing) and includes B&B accommodation each night (comprising hotels, homestays, an eco lodge, Halong Bay cruise and overnight sleeper train), seven lunches and three dinners, all transport within Vietnam, airport transfers, and guided excursions as outlined in the detailed itinerary. International flights extra, which can be booked via InsideVietnam Tours with Vietnam Airlines from approximately £569 pp return (London to Hanoi).
For more information, call InsideVietnam Tours on 0117 370 9758 or visit www.insidevietnamtours.com.