As autumn sets in, the Suoi Thau Steppe is adorned with the delicate bloom of pink buckwheat flowers, creating a poetic spectacle.
Over the past three years, Suoi Thau Steppe, nestled in Coc Pai Town within Xin Man District in the northern mountainous Ha Giang Province, has gained a reputation as a captivating tourist destination.
Perched at an elevation of 1,200 meters above sea level, the steppe spans more than 90 hectares and extends nearly 5 kilometers from Coc Pai Town.
With each passing season, the steppe unveils its unique charm. In spring, golden mustard flowers grace the landscape, while summer sees the fields adorned with the lush green of corn, rice, and grasslands. However, it is during autumn that Suoi Thau truly dazzles, with pink and white buckwheat flowers intertwining with cunninghamia trees, creating a tapestry of colors.
Visitors are treated to breathtaking vistas of Pa Vay Su, Chi Ca, Then Phang, and Coc Re communes, as well as Coc Pai Town, and the meandering Chay River, encircling the steppe on three sides.
The buckwheat flowers put Ha Giang at the zenith of its beauty during this season. These flowers blossom in clusters, with petals forming an elegant cone shape, initially white but gradually taking on a delicate pinkish hue as the cooler weather sets in.
Beyond their aesthetic appeal, buckwheat flowers are also a culinary delight, incorporated into various local dishes and cakes.
Inspired by the news of buckwheat flowers in full bloom, Nguyen Cong Uy, a 33-year-old from Hanoi, embarked on a journey to Suoi Thau from Sept. 13 to 15, keen to witness the flowers of the rocky plateau. His trip began in Hanoi, where he boarded a bus to Ha Giang City before renting a motorbike with a friend to reach Suoi Thau, a 140-kilometer journey.
After a tough 7.5-hour journey, Uy reached the foot of Suoi Thau mountain, where he faced heavy rain, muddy roads, and thick clouds. He found shelter in a nearby cafe. Thankfully, the rain stopped and the sun emerged around 4:30 p.m., giving him more than an hour to enjoy the beautiful buckwheat flowers and take photos.
Uy's first trip to Suoi Thau had a lasting impact. He was enchanted by the beautiful and serene landscape, with white and pink buckwheat flowers, ripe corn, and rice fields blending harmoniously amid lush mountains and tall rosewood trees, creating a truly picturesque view.
Despite his many trips to northern mountains, Uy said he'd never felt such a gentle and enchanting experience as he did at Suoi Thau. The place had an almost fairytale-like beauty.
As the season draws to a close, the white and pink flowers gradually transform into a deep shade of red, rendering Suoi Thau's buckwheat fields even more enchanting, with their vibrant and distinct colors set against the backdrop of drifting mist.
Despite its growing popularity among tourists, Suoi Thau maintains a pristine allure and limited amenities. Uy and his group mainly wandered and photographed the surroundings.
Along the journey, they discovered a few cafes for rest and refreshments. The costs were reasonable, with Uy's two-day trip totaling approximately VND2million ($81), covering round-trip bus fares, motorbike rentals, and personal expenses, as well as accommodation fees.
Travelers should exercise caution when navigating provincial road 177, as it is currently undergoing construction and may present mud, dirt, and rocky terrain.
Checking the weather forecast beforehand is advisable, as mountain passes and roads can be treacherous, particularly for those with limited driving experience.
Suoi Thau is getting ready to become a top destination in Xin Man District, offering various types of tourism like camping, mountain biking, paragliding, and agricultural activities. The local government plans to enhance Suoi Thau's development through 2025 by adding more accommodations and tourism services, which will create jobs and income for the local community, according to the Ha Giang Province Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism website.