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Vietnam's Mu Cang Chai kicks off flood season festival

Sunday, April 30, 2023, 10:30 GMT+7
Vietnam's Mu Cang Chai kicks off flood season festival
A paraglider flies over flooded rice fields Mu Cang Chai District, Yen Bai Province, Vietnam in this file photo. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

This year's flood season festival in Mu Cang Chai District in the northern province of Yen Bai is held during the ongoing public holidays.

Public workers in Vietnam are given five consecutive days off from April 29 to May 3 to mark the three public holidays including Kings Commemoration Day, Reunification Day, and International Workers’ Day.

Hung Kings Commemoration Day, which takes place on the 10th day of the third lunar month, falls on April 29 this year, and is immediately followed by Reunification Day (April 30) and International Workers’ Day (May 1).

Mu Cang Chai, which has been known worldwide for its beautiful terraced paddy fields, sees the rice fields achieve their full allure in two seasons, including the flood season in April and May, and the harvest season in September and October. 

In the flood season, the terraced fields are filled with water in preparation for a new crop of rice and turn into sparkle ‘mirrors’ on the hills.

Local people walk through flooded paddy fields in Mu Cang Chai District, Yen Bai Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre
Local people walk through flooded paddy fields in Mu Cang Chai District, Yen Bai Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nam Tran / Tuoi Tre

This year's flood season festival in Mu Cang Chai is promised to attract many tourists from in and outside Vietnam.

A highlight of the festival, a paragliding festival will officially kick off on Saturday at Lim Mong Village, with the performances of ten professional paragliders at the opening ceremony.

Within the framework of the festival, paragliding performances over the terraced flooded fields are held from April 29 to May 28.

According to Dang Van My, director of Vien Nam Sport and Tourism JSC -- the sponsor of the festival, around 20 paragliders are also expected to serve tourists who want to admire the beauty of the flooded rice fields from above.

The flying experience fetches around VND2.6 million (US$110) per person.

Besides watching and experiencing paragliding, visitors to Mu Cang Chai on the occasion can also immerse in a cultural and festival atmosphere imbued with local identity through a wide range of activities.

A program to celebrate the reunification day and welcome the flood season is expected to kick off in Mu Cang Chai with folk games, Mong people's khen (a type of instrument) performances, and sports competitions taking place during the five days of the holiday.

Activities to experience local villages will also be held from April 30 to the end of May. 

Accordingly, visitors to Che Cu Nha Commune will have the chance to learn to draw patterns with beeswax, embroider brocade, and weave linen fabrics; while tourists who visit Mo De and Khao Mang Communes can be taught with farming local terraced fields. 

During the Mu Cang Chai flood season festival, adventurous souls can also seek trekking experience at Thap Troi Mountain in La Pan Tan Commune, Lung Cung Mountain in Nam Co Commune, Che Tao species and habitat conservation area, and more. 

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Nguyen Hien - Dong Nguyen / Tuoi Tre News

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