Hoang Su Phi – Photography in a dreamy world

Hoang Su Phi is 300 km or 185 miles from Hanoi. It’s a district of Ha Giang – the northernmost province of Vietnam. While Ha Giang is already famous and has become the mainstream for some Ha Giang photography tours as well as motorbike tours or adventure tours, Hoang Su Phi is still well untouched. Yet, the place is home to some of Ha Giang’s most picturesque landscapes, traditional local lifestyle and jaw dropping mega texture of rice terraces.

Photography highlights

Photography in Hoang Su Phi

Ready for a photography tour to Hoang Su Phi, it takes 1 day driving to start with. So photographers might want to stay overnight somewhere on the way, suggested to be in Tuyen Quang, where you can get to photograph many tea plantations with workers in conical hats. Then the next day you can expect to get to Hoang Su Phi in time for some further photography before sunset.

Hoang Su Phi, somehow lied under the radar of photography tours to Ha Giang, as well as other sorts of tour. This was because the region stands pretty much on its own, and poorer infrastructure discouraged photographers from coming. And for that reason, most photographers, when in the region, would aim for the “known places” like Quan Ba, Meo Vac or Dong Van. But frankly speaking, nowhere in Ha Giang has such a combination of landscapes as Hoang Su Phi: Stunning mountain ranges, creating layers for your photographs, ranging rivers bisecting mountains into 02, lush forests and the amazing icon of northern Vietnam: The rice terraces.

When is the best time to photograph Hoang Su Phi and what is in Hoang Su Phi to photograph?

Hoang Su Phi is beautiful at any time of the year. Still, there are 02 times that the scenery changes, which you should opt for: May – June and Sept – Oct. One is the time the local farmers start the rice crop and the other is when they harvest the rice. At both times, the textures of the cascading rice fields appear to be most photogenic. In May – June period, the rice fields form gigantic mirrors reflecting the sky above. In Sept – Oct period, the rice ripens and form vast golden patches along hillsides.

Is there a market in Hoang Su Phi for photography purpose?

The capital of Hoang Su Phi is a town called Vinh Quang, home to a central market of the same name. While the market is open on daily basis, it gets most crowded every Sunday, when the local minorities coming to buy & sell. This is also when the locals are dressed up in their colorful costumes, offering an alluring chance to capture the local beauty.

Which lens should I pack along for photography in Hoang Su Phi

  • A tele lens is definitely a must. This is extremely helpful for the mountains of northern Vietnam, especially a place like Hoang Su Phi, where you can see hillsides covered in lines of rice.
  • A portrait lens is handy, as there will be times that you get to meet the locals on the way, or in a market. These are friendliest people in the world and thanks God, they don’t care about their photos being on anyone’s Facebook, yet!
  • A wide angle lens is helpful when you choose to walk into the rice field and photograph the farmers at work.

Where should I stay during the photography tour in Hoang Su Phi

For a map of Hoang Su Phi, please click here

Recently, a dozen better accommodations came up and Hoang Su Phi is over the time when rustic accommodation was the only choice. Accommodation now varies from small hotels in town and nice lodge s nestled in the mountains. Last but not least, you can always choose to stay in one of the numerous home-stays – a modern term thanks to the recent gentle flux of tourism.

Send us an email to sales@momentlives.com and we’ll help you pick an accommodation that suits you the best.

How long should I stay in Hoang Su Phi for photography?

We suggest 02 full day for photography in Hoang Su Phi. Of course, this won’t allow you travel back and forth to the shooting sites for numerous times, but it gives an appropriate time duration for landscape and people photography Hoang Su Phi. Be noted that the town market of Vinh Quang is most crowded on every Sunday morning, when the ethnic minorities descend to sell products.

Of course, if you combine Hoang Su Phi and with a photography tour in Ha Giang, then the time can easily be close to a week, because the loop from Ha Giang – Quan Ba – Dong Van – Meo Vac will occupy another 03 days easily.

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