Apart from Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark and buckwheat seasons, Ha Giang Province in Vietnam has gained a reputation for the Nho Que River. This river has become the symbol of Ha Giang boils down to its legendary formation and its dazzling beauty.
- Location: Dong Van District, Ha Giang Province
Length: 192 meters
I. Overview of Nho Que River
Nho Que River is a tributary of the Gam River and has its origins in Nghiem Son Mountain which is located in Yunnan Province (China) with a height of 1500 meters. It flows in the northwest – southeast direction and hits Vietnam at Xeo Lung Village, Dong Van Province.
When reaching Meo Vac, its flow lingers at Tu San Abyss Alley at the foot of Ma Pi Leng Pass – a well-known spot to those having a head for adventure travel. Then it winds through a part of Cao Bang Province territory before joining itself into the Gam River.
Nho Que River is 192m long in total, with the length of 46m engraved on Vietnamese territory. It flows through layers of jagged rocks, just like patches of punji sticks that can pierce through the blue sky.
II. What is the Best Time to Visit Nho Que River?
The period from September to October is the ideal time to contemplate the gorgeous beauty of Nho Que River. At that time, Ha Giang is in the season of harvests and buckwheat flowers as well.
Visitors can also reach this destination in March to enjoy a boat trip on Nho Que River while watching red silk cotton flowers in full bloom at the river bank. You will be under the illusion that you are lost in a wonderland adorned with millions of red lanterns.
III. Highlights of Nho Que River
Thanks to its strong currents, the Nho Que River has created numerous rapids and waterfalls hidden in the clouds of the valley. All of them fabricate an ink wash painting, with majestic patterns of mountains and rugged cliffs embraced in the turquoise waters of that poetic river.
The formation of this river is associated with a long-lasting mythology. It is said that Nho Que River was born by the sword of Thunder God. Despite being a manifestation of ancient belief, the sacredness in this story is still handed down until today.
If you have a chance of experiencing a boat tour on the river, perhaps you will be told about this legend by the porters.
IV. What to See and Do When Visiting Nho Que River?
1. Hunt for Photographs
Once visiting Nho Que River, you cannot resist the temptation of capturing all fascinating scenery into your camera frame. Just one click and the time would voluntarily stop in front of you, you can become the owner of that moment forever.
One of the most striking places to hunt fantastic photos of the Nho Que River is Ma Pi Leng Pass. This pass is famous for being dangerous with cliffs at one side and the abyss at the opposite side. In addition, the road is covered with fog almost all the time, which makes drivers difficult to observe hair-pin bends.
Myriads of excursionists, especially professional riders; however, crave for conquering this 20km long pass regardless of twists and turns. The motive is that if we look down from a height of thousands of meters, we can fully grasp the grandeur of Ha Giang nature and the ribbon-like shape of Nho Que River.
2. Embark on a Kayaking Trip
Whenever exploring a river, sailing is certainly a worth-trying activity. When it comes to Nho Que River, you should never ignore kayaking trips. For a small sum, you can rent a kayak – a light narrow canoe and go for a row across the river. The relaxing feeling of floating on the waves is likely to blow all your fatigue away.
Besides these self-control services, travellers may also ask for boat services. They can either opt for travelling upstream from Xin Cai Commune’s boat station or choosing to travel downstream by starting at Ta Lang boat station.
Ticket price for a 30-minute boat tour: around 100.000 VND.
3. Venture up Tu San Abyss Alley
Described as the most splendid canyon of Southeast Asia, Tu San Abyss Alley is a one-of-a-kind wonder that visitors always pop into during their itinerary. It is up to 900m deep and 1.7 km long.
The most interesting feature of this abyss is that it is situated between two ravines. Watched from a significant height, the two giant cliffs seem to bunch together. Its marvelous beauty combines with the river’s emerald green water to provoke breathless excitement.
4. Taste Ha Giang Cuisine
- Au Tau porridge: When visiting Nho Que River, you will have a chance to try a special type of porridge made with Aconitum fortunei roots. This is a local delicacy of the H’mong ethnic group.
- Buckwheat cake: Ha Giang is the land of buckwheat flowers, so it’s imperfect not to try this special cake. A little bit fluffy and a little bit pungent flavor of this cake will keep you mouth-watering.
- Thang Co: Thang Co containing the characteristics of Northwestern mountains is also a worth-tasting specialty.
V. How to Get to Nho Que River?
If setting off in Ha Giang City, you could go about 150 km towards Dong Van Plateau, then pass Meo Vac and Ma Pi Leng Pass to reach Nho Que River. If you are a self-driver, remember to ensure your safety by helmets or protective gear in case the roads are winding and slippery.
Another problem that most visitors consider is how to get to the boat station. There are two options for you:
- Getting off at Xin Cai boat station: At the end of Ma Pi Leng Pass, there is a left turn sign leading the way to Xin Cai. Continue to travel 5 – 7 km more and you will find the boat station to soak up your journey on Nho Que River.
- Getting off at Ta Lang boat station: From Dong Van Town, you will have to go 4km onto the intersection of Pine Hill. Turn left to enter Ta Lang. Provided that you choose this way, it is necessary to pay close attention as the road is very steep, easy to cause accidents.
VI. Extra Tips
- You can contact the boat owner in advance and fix the travel time. This can help you avoid being overloaded later or wasting your time waiting for enough people to get on the boat.
- During your journey, you may need to trek around 4km in total, so be prepared if you are unfamiliar with climbing.
- Some souvenirs you can buy when visiting Nho Que River: corn wine, Shan Snow old tea, Bac Ha honey.
Nho Que River in Ha Giang Province is a beauty spot that attracts tourist masses. If you are wondering where to go in the early winter, this would be an ideal destination. Whether you are a lone traveller who wants to unwind yourself or you would like to cherish unforgettable moments with families, Nho Que River always offers the most delighting experiences.