Do you wish to find somewhere peaceful entangled in harmony with nature, to find your soul and to live true to yourself? Or simply you are an adventure-lover and wish to challenge yourself. Let’s come to Pu Luong. From the infinity pool, just with your hands out a little, as if you can touch the clouds, a sense of adventure is difficult to describe that feeling. And when it comes to experience, people often call it "Pù Luông thương nhớ!’’.
What is more wonderful when you are immersed in the jungle, waterfalls all day and night, watch the first rays of sunlight spread on the terraced fields or in the middle of the grass, admire the starry sky when the night falls, and especially join a lots of amazing activities such as walking, kayaking or rafting at Pu Luong in Ba Thuoc mountain, Thanh Hoa province.
1. What is Pu Luong?
Among Vietnam trekking tours, Pu Luong seems to be slightly strange. Actually, Pu Luong is the name of the Thai ethnic group which means the highest mountain in the region. It is considered to be a valuable nature reserve in terms of science, socio-economy and ecotourism. Together with Pu Hu, the forest in this area plays an important role in watershed protection of Ma river in Thanh Hoa province.
Pu Luong Nature Reserve is 25 km from Cuc Phuong National Park, which is connected to the end of Cuc Phuong National Park by two gray limestone mountains running parallel to each other with rice valleys in the middle. Pu Luong Nature Reserve is a seasonal evergreen tropical forest.
Pu Luong trekking
Flora and fauna diversity with 598 species of animals in 130 vertebrate families, including 51 rare species (including 26 species of animals, 5 species of bats, 6 species of birds, 5 species of freshwater fish, 6 reptiles) are also great to conquer. This reserve is home to leopards, star deers, bear, chamois and white thighs. Especially, the insect system in Pu Luong has at least 158 butterflies and 96 species of soft-shell on land. In the season, you will be amazed because of Pu Luong’s poetic beauty.
2. What to see in Pu Luong?
Come to Pu Luong you will be shedding all anxiety, depression, and pressure to harmonize with nature.
- Conquering the peak Pu Luong at above 1.700m is the great experience only for the adventurous tourists. From the top of Pu Luong, you will look at the spectacular view of the valley at the foot of the mountain.
- Experiencing the journey Son Son - Ba - Ten: The paintings are as beautiful paradise in Pu Luong. Although the road is difficult and hard but the scene in the destination will not make you regret.
- Trekking across Pu Luong: Depart from Muong village, walk through 4 villages - Thanh Cong - Cao Hoong - Kiet to discover the life, culture, and customs of local people. Or follow the trail of Kho Muong - Sapa - Pho Doan to Quanh village to experience a peaceful, simple and slow life, here you will see time as a stop.
- Visiting waterfalls of Ban Hieu, ruins of primary forest and Pu Luong Nature Reserve are also places to explore Pu Luong cannot be ignored. A place not to be missed when visiting Pu Luong is the Hieu Waterfall. On the way from Pho Doan town, visitors can see many Thai-style water rides. Through the suspension bridge, cross the slope on the hill you will have to be happy when catching the Hieu waterfalls.
- Visiting Pho Deo Market: Take place on Thursday or Sunday. Here you can not only experience the highland market but also can buy souvenirs, Highland products and specialty food.
- Participating in campfire activities, jumping and watching the Khmer Thai dance in the Thai village of Pa Luong in the evening.
With many foreign tourists, Kho Muong is the ideal starting point for trekking through Pu Luong. Coming to the Kho Muong, besides the majestic landscape, visitors are discovering caves with the legendary stalactites. From Muong village, you can go along Muong village, Ban Ben village - Thanh Cong - Cao Hoong village - Ban Kiet village to discover the cultural characteristics, or follow the trail linking Kho Muong to Ban Ooi - Pho Doan village.
Kayaking in Pu Luong
3. The best time to visit Pu Luong
Late May - early June: This is the time when Pu Luong starts the new rice crop. The fields and terraces will be wrapped in green, extremely beautiful and peaceful. Especially, although it is summer, but because of the low limestone mountains, there are many tropical forests and few inhabitants so the air and weather here are cool and pleasant. In addition, you can come here any season of the year to relax with cool space, all year round fog covered in some highland.
- From Hanoi, you can go motorcycles to Ban Lac (Mai Chau) and continue to follow the direction of Co Luong, Dong Dieng, and turn 15C road along Ma river to Pu Luong nature reserve.
- If you start from Thanh Hoa and the central provinces, or the South: let’s go up the Northwest, follow Ho Chi Minh road, then turn right at Cam Thuy town, go straight to Canh Nang town, and finally turn to 15C and go about 10km to Pu Luong.
Since Pu Luong is a nature reserve, the important tropical forest of Vietnam, the visit and travel here are spontaneous, with few professional tours. Therefore, Pu Luong does not have a hotel, the main form of accommodation here is homestay and popular guest house. On the trip to Pu Luong, visitors can rest in the spacious floor of the Thai, Muong in Ban Lac, Com Poong, Hoa Binh or in the core area of Pu Luong in the East Village, Kho Muong, Nua village, Kiet 1 village, and Cao Hoong.
Cost: 40,000 - 50,000 VND/ guest/ night.
Here are some suggestions:
- Kho Muong: Nech House, Anh Nam House, Thanh Tuan
- Ban Nua: Anh Hoang, Anh Minh
- Ban Kit 1: Anh Thao
For the perfect trip, visitors should prepare some main items such as rope, parachute cord to tie the tire when encountering slippery roads, dark long-sleeved dress, soft hats, forest boots, socks against wrinkles, flashlights, raincoats, binoculars, tents, antiseptics, mosquitoes, insect repellents to explore the forest.
Pu Luong with terraced fields, wild mountains and simple houses nestled on the hillside has long been a promising land for relaxation. And I bet that in the near future Pu Luong will be one of the top trekking destinations in Northern Vietnam.