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To market…To market

Experience the colours and flavours of a local market in the Northern Highlands of Vietnam – the perfect place to mix it with the locals.

There’s no better way to experience a way of life centuries old and to meet the locals, than by immersing yourself in a bustling market in Vietnam’s northern highlands. There are many markets across the region, from roadside local village stalls to the larger, more structured attractions.

Dong Van Market in Ha Giang province is located at the start of the Ancient Street. Its busiest day is Sunday but well worth trying on other days where you can sample the produce and bargain with the locals. The old market built of stone is full of character and one of the most picturesque as are the surrounding buildings.

One of the most colourful markets is held on Sundays in Bac Ha. The rich and exotic brocades of the Flower H’mong costumes with their ornate frills and cuffs and electric pink or green head scarves are the main attraction but you’ll find everything from livestock, to silver jewellery, handicrafts, food stalls with just about anything on the menu and if it all gets too much you can retire to one of the many refreshment areas and take part in a little corn wine.

The Sapa market in the centre of town, moves at a frenetic pace, especially on Saturdays when it is crowded with both tourists and local hill tribes. Local wares, produce, handicrafts and all manner of herbs, cures and curios are for the taking.

The love market…where locals come to find their perfect match The town of Khau Vai, some 20 kilometres south of Meo Vac in Ha Giang, is famous for its annual love market. This local tradition is almost a century old, the hill-tribe minorities of H’mong, Dzao and Tay come from all around to find a husband or a wife. It takes place on the 27th day of the third lunar month, sometime from late April to May.
 

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