Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Day 34 - Cat Ca Village in Sapa, Vietnam

The last day in Sapa would be another hike, but this time, to the more mountainous regions full of trees and shrubbery, something I'm more used to seeing in the United States. It would be a shorter hike, 3 km heading down to the valley, and then another 3km back up to the starting point.

We would be guided by another Black Hmong member, and would be visiting a village called Cat Ca. The trek itself was fun, as we were able to see the local villagers working away, and the kids playing. We stopped by a home to see an old woman make fabrics out of hemp (and yes, we saw some fields of hemp as well.) I asked the guide if the people smoked it, but they said that they didn't. We also saw some plots of land growing indigo leaves, which is what they use as the ink on all their fabrics.

I asked the guide how they determined who owned what plots of land, and she said that it's mostly inherently known amongst the group who owns what lands.

We reached the bottom of the mountains where there was a scenic spot next to a waterfall and I got to take pictures with the tour guide.

The hike back up was a bit challenging, and I didn't realize how far down we went until I exhaustingly trekked back up. A couple of the tourmates took a motorbike back up since they were tired, but most of us decided to test our endurance, which was no small feat. I don't think I had ever sweat so much in my life!

The rest of the day was free time for us to explore the village again, before heading back to Hanoi by train. Talked with some of the other tourmates, a Dutch couple, and two people from Singapore and may I just add that Dutch people are beautiful? Or maybe it was just this couple... And so far, two different people asked me if I was Singaporean while I was in Sapa.

Kids playing on the bridge by the waterfall

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