Explore the villages of Vietnam’s northwestern highlands

Khám phá các bản làng vùng cao Tây Bắc Việt Nam

The mountainous region of Northwest Vietnam with famous tourist destinations such as Sapa, Dien Bien, Mu Cang Chai, Moc Chau, Mai Chau,… and also has minority ethnic groups with many unique and diverse customs and practices. That is part of the unique cultural beauty that every tourist who comes here wants to explore and learn about.

muong ethnic group


The Muong ethnic group is concentrated in the provinces of Hoa Binh and Thanh Hoa, which attracts tourists with the beautiful Mai Chau Valley or the Pu Luong nature reserve.

The Muong people worship their ancestors and believe in polytheism. In the past, the social organization of the Muong people was a system of shared management of regions. The wedding ceremony of the Muong people is similar to that of the Kinh people. When someone gives birth in the house, fence the main staircase with bamboo. When the child is about one year old, he is given a name. When someone dies, the funeral is carried out according to strict rituals. The language belongs to the Vietnamese-Muong group.

The treasury of folk arts of this nation is quite rich: poetry, mo songs, ancient stories, folk songs, vi dum and proverbs. There are many famous songs such as lullabies, dong Giao, flower knocking songs, question songs, children’s play songs… Musical instruments include gongs, flutes, drums and flutes. There are many festivals during the year: rice field festival, rain prayer festival, rice leaf washing ceremony, new rice festival…

The costumes of the Muong people are not too colorful, the men wear indigo clothes; Women wear shirts, skirts, short shirts with openings on the chest (in some places with openings on the shoulders), some button-downs, and overalls. The skirt is quite long, reaching to the armpits, the waistband is woven with dyed silk and has beautiful decorative motifs. The head wears a white rectangular scarf.

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dao ethnic group

In Vietnam, although the Dao people have a small population, their villages extend throughout the northern mountainous regions (Cao Bang, Ha Giang, Lao Cai, Yen Bai, Lai Chau, Tuyen Quang,…) to some central provinces such as Phu Tho, Vinh Phuc, Hoa Binh and the coast of Quang Ninh (Dao Thanh Y village).

The customs and practices of the Dao ethnic group are ancestor worship (Ban Ho); Through the middle name, family lineage and rank are determined, and funerals follow ancient customs. Some areas have the custom of cremating people aged 12 or older. The custom of remaining in the law is limited and permanent. Stilt houses, half stilt houses and half houses, earthen houses. The costumes of the Dao people are also quite simple, men wear clothes; Women’s costumes are richer with traditional decorative motifs and headscarves.

The Dao people live by growing rainfed rice, water fields and crops, developing crafts such as weaving, blacksmithing, carpentry…

H’Mong ethnic group


In the Mong community, each clan lives in groups headed by the clan leader; Freedom to marry but not marry someone from the same clan. Spouses rarely leave each other. Mong people live in a ground-floor house, structured in the style of a cold country, with a fireplace, dried meat eaten all year round, and unique dishes “men men” and “thang co”. Musical instruments are various types of flutes and harps. Tet is celebrated in December of the solar calendar, during the 3 days of Tet, green vegetables are not eaten, young men and women enjoy spring and play the flute to call friends.

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Garments made of self-woven linen. Women wear wide skirts, shirts with openings in the chest, front and back aprons, and leggings that wrap around their legs.

Economy: Shifting cultivation and wet rice cultivation in terraced fields; cultivate flax for textile fibers and medicinal plants.

thai people

The residence of the Thai people is mainly in Dien Bien, Lai Chau, Son La, Hoa Binh and Nghe An provinces. They have customs and practices of ancestor worship, heaven and earth worship, people worship and many rituals. to pray for good harvests. In marriage there is a custom of staying with the son-in-law when a daughter marries. A funeral is a ceremony to send the dead to “heaven.” Thais live in houses on stilts. Black Thais build houses in the shape of a tortoise shell, decorated according to ancient customs.

Thai people have valuable traditional literature: myths, fairy tales, legends, poetic stories, folk songs… they like to sing, recite poetry, sing with poetry, accompany the instrument and dance (called everywhere). There are many dances: the Thai xoe, the bamboo dance. The terms “kung” and “throwing” are also cultural characteristics of the Thai ethnic group.

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