The most popular thing to do in Mai Chau is cycling and hiking, so sportswear is the best choice to pack!
Comfortable tracksuits and shoes are must-have.
If you are traveling during hot season, take sun-cream and hats. Sun may be very strong in Mai Chau!
During winter, it is good to wear a jacket or sometimes even cap, scarf and gloves.
Sunglasses will be useful all over the year, especially if you are planning to spend a lot of time outdoors.
Mai Chau travel tips #5 Support the locals.
Mai Chau is charming, idyllic village. People living there are friendly and nice. We, tourists, love places like this. That is why we should support their local economy and culture. We should show them that what they are doing is great and they should keep up this good work.
Mai Chau with Starbucks, McDonald’s and shopping malls won’t be the same. It will lose their charm and beauty…
Buying things like hand-made scarves from local women is a great way to support Mai Chau community.
Mai Chau travel tips #6 Take your camera.
Mai Chau is a great spot for photography lovers. Or even for those who don’t know how to take good photo. Mai Chau is beautiful enough to look great on any picture.
Mountains, rice fields and unbeaten bath are just calling to be explored!
If you are social media freak (just like us), buy local SIM card to be able to share your photos any time you want. Vietnamese SIM card doesn’t cost much (less than $10) and it’s a great help with communicating with the world.
It is not difficult to find 3G in Mai Chau but LTE or 4G is something you should forget about.
Mai Chau travel tips #7 Take enough cash.
Remember how we talked that there are no hospitals in Mai Chau? There are also no ATMs! At least we didn’t see any.
If you rely on paying by card or withdraw little amount of money everyday to cover your expenses, you will be disappointed.
CASH is something you should have in Mai Chau. ATMs are easy to find in Hanoi but not in the small Vietnamese towns.
Mai Chau travel tips #8 Choose the right place to stay.
It is really important to choose the right place to stay in Mai Chau. Not everywhere you will feel comfortable enough to be able to relax and enjoy spending time with locals.
The very best hotel in Mai Chau is Mai Chau Ecolodge.
We stayed there and we absolutely loved this place! It is both luxurious and eco which is very rare combination.
The lodge is pretty big but it doesn’t like to be considered as a ‘resort’. Everything what they did and from what the bungalows are made of are natural. The main goal of Mai Chau Ecolodge is to support local economy and take care of traditions.
If you will be travelling during hot season, you can also use the lovely Mai Chau Ecolodge swimming pool to relax even more.
Mai Chau travel tips #9 Be ready to try some delicious food!
Mai Chau people are descendants of immigrants from Thailand. Two main tribes White Thai and Black Thai are the biggest population of Mai Chau.
We are absolutely crazy about Thailand and Thai food, that’s why we loved everything we ate in Mai Chau.
Rice, noodles and soups are delicious there. You should also try Vietnamese oranges from the local orchards. They are so sweet and tasty! They also don’t have any preservatives that makes than extremely healthy.
Mai Chau travel tips #10 Stop on top before getting to the village to take some awesome photos from above.
The village of Mai Chau is situated on the valley but when going from Hanoi, you need to be on the top of the mountain first and then go down to the village.
Ask your driver to stop when you see the beautiful view like on the picture below.
Aerial view on Mai Chau is really breathtaking!
Mai Chau travel tips #11 Choose the most convenient way to travel.
There are many ways to get to Mai Chau. You can take one or two days trip to Mai Chau from Hanoi.
We chose to organise everything by ourselves. Our hotel picked us up from the Hanoi Old Quarter and after few hours we arrived to Mai Chau.
This is the most convenient and pretty cheap option. $12.5 one way is not that bad, right? 🙂
If you prefer to travel in a group, you can buy one of trip offered by travel agencies in Hanoi. At the Old Quarter area you will find plenty of interesting offers.
Mai Chau in numbers
When you travel to a new place, it’s good to know a little bit more about it. Here are the most important numbers of Mai Chau:
Population of Mai Chau is 48 570.
Mai Chau district covers an area of 520 km².
Mai Chau is located 135 km from Hanoi.
And 65 km from Hòa Bình.
Mai Chau is situated 400 m above sea level.
There are 7 Ethnic Minority groups in Mai Chau, including: White Thai, Zao, H’Mong, Muong, Hoa, Tay and Viet.
Until 1993 Mai Chau was an isolated farming community, not visited by tourists
the lowest temperature recorder in Mai Chau is 5,7ºC (42.26 °F).
Mai Chau is situated 250 km from Vietnam’s highest mountain- Phan Xi Păng (3143 m/ 10 312 ft above sea level).
Mai Chau borders was established in 1957.
There are 4 main villages that are the best to visit in Mai Chau: Na Tang, TòngĐậu, Cha Long and Van villages.
Disclosure: We want to thank Mai Chau Ecolodge for a complimentary stay. All opinions presented in this post are honest and our own.