Mu Cang Chai Attractions

kHAU PHA PASS - Horn of Heaven


By Custom Vietnam Travel | Updated 1/5/2019

Years ago, Mu Cang Chai was called as "The forgotten land in Viet Nam" for its remote location. Now it's more well-known and well-liked by both domestic and foreign tourists. Although Mu Cang Chai has been more touristy than it was in the past, this area still retains its original layout with the outstanding natural landscape and traditional way of living. One of Mu Cang Chai’s attractions you must see is Khau Pha Pass, a mountain pass in Mu Cang Chai District, Yen Bai Province, Vietnam. The area is known for terraced rice paddies. In the tongue of Thai people (an ethnic minority in Vietnam), "Khau Pha" means "sky-high horn" or “Horn of Heaven”  since the top of the pass - engulfed in dense fog - looks like rising from a sea of clouds.

Khau Pha Pass 

Khau Pha Pass, which lies between Van Chan District and  Mu Cang Chai District, is the most rugged and longest pass on National Highway 32 with a length of 30 kilometres (19 mi). Starting from  Yen Bai City, visitors need to go upward for about five hours by car before reaching the pass surrounding by endlessly extending mountains. Along Khau Pha are terraced rice paddies cultivated by H'Mongand Thai ethnic minorities and pristine forests which are home of some rare species such as Parashorea Chinensis. An underground river flows beneath the pass.

Along the length of Khau Pha Pass are dozens of sharp bends, and the pass is especially dangerous for driving on foggy days as there is no barrier or warning sign. The pass has deteriorated much due to the lack of regular maintenance, and the land is easily eroded since the pass is situated upon a weak red basalt soil foundation. Adding to that is the constant danger of falling stones from the mountains.

One of the fairy ways in Khau Pha Pass

Located at an altitude of over 1,200 meters above sea level, Khau Pha has temperate weather year-round like Da Lat's one, but the temperature is much lower due to its position in the subtropical region. In the winter, there may be temperatures below zero degrees, at that time, travellers can see snow covering over the pass.

Paddy season is the most beautiful in Khau Pha, approximated in September or October when the rice terraces on foot golden paddy field. This is the time when many tourists choose to conquer Pass and sightseeing. Also, come here, tourists can admire the winding stretch of road passes between the pristine jungle, wild. In the forest is preserved and preserved variety of plant and animal you like: black gibbons, grey; oil pine, to her and all kinds of birds, other rare animals.

The beautiful picture of Khau Pha Pass

Not only is a famous stretch of road pass in the tourist, landmark Khau Pha also associated with feats recorded in the revolutionary history of Yen Bai province: Before 1945, the partisan of Khau Pha took advantage of the terrain and special shifting under thick clouds wind on the pass, “demonic god made” continuous intercept the march of the French from going Nghia Lo, Lai Chau, Lao Cai and vice versa by hackbut or trap rock, prompting French troops terror respect for heroes known as “cloud warriors”. Currently, Yen Bai is doing records monument, memorial monument Khau Pha guerrilla team on top of the pass.

Khau Pha Pass from bird watching 

Khau Pha Pass road has two-thirds of the gravel road, bumpy gravel, just walking through the newly beauty Tu Le is more little slightly. During the length of the pass, it has to bend a few segment sleeve falls. On cloudy days, the pass is particularly dangerous for the driver because of the pass off without any barrier or any warning signs. Delivery Pass has deteriorated so much for not being regular repaired, easily eroded, subsidence due within basaltic soil, soft soil system. Previously there was always danger lurking regularly with stones from the mountain could fall anytime. But now, the road transport sector Pass was – transport and repair Yen Bai province, overcome, become major tourist attractions of road and road economic exchanges western region of Yen Bai. On the “Horn of Heaven”, the weather is always cool like in Sapa, in some year, also it is snowy as at Sa Pa by the altitude more than 2,000m.

With the policy of the Party and State, the descendant of old “cloud warriors” who residing on windswept ridges, whose lives have changed increasingly prosperous; had the rich villages; rice, corn genus for the bumper; now the campus has the child been to your school. Life is renewed each day, but the people still preserve traditional culture. Khau Pha Pass conversely, you will encounter the terraces flank are beautiful as the picturesque, mountain peaks rising above the clouds thousands of majestic and friendly smile, cheerful people who live on the Horn of Heaven.

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