Water buffalos were still very much in used in Sapa to cultivate the land. After all Vietnam is still considered an underdeveloped country, but the method I think is too primitive.
The Way to Ta Phin Village
After a short rest at Sapa town, we continued to drive to Ta Phin Village. On the way, I asked this guy for the way to Ta Phin village, didn’t notice that he was actually holding a snake.
Hoang Lian Hotel and Modern Girls
Thac Bac (Silver Waterfall)
Thac Bac Silver Waterfall is about 100 m tall
“Protection Fee” for the bike
We then went to Thac Bac (Silver Waterfall). There were a lot of stalls lined up beside the entrance to waterfall, and they were not embarassed to ask us to park our motorcycle at their stall. The treat is, you have to buy something from them so that they will look after the bike for you. They all seemed know the rules, as most guide books mention about it. Even the guy who borrowed us the Honda bike suggested us to buy something for about VND 2,000, but we ended up paying much more than that.
Tram Ton Pass
Tram Ton Pass, the highest mountain pass in Vietnam is located 14 km from Sapa, 3 km farther toward Lai Chau from Thac Bac. Here was the view of the road towards Sapa from Tram Ton Pass.
On the way to Thac Bac (Silver Waterfall)
View of the Sapa valley beside Mountain View Hotel
We tried to rent a bike at Mountain View Hotel. They insisted USD $10 for a bike per day. I felt that it’s too expensive. Later a guy approached us on the street, willing to rent us his Honda motorcycle for USD $6 a day, or USD $7 inclusive of petrol. So we made a deal for the bike and petrol.
Hmong Girls (or Child Exploitation)
We been dropped in front of Mountain View Hotel, right into a group of Hmong girls, which I believed employed by Mountain View Hotel and Royal Hotel, which both of them belonged to a same family. These kids basically persuaded us to stay at either one of these hotels. After they learnt that we’re not going to stay overnight, they started to promote their merchandise, and kept haggling right until we left. It’s a pity that they didn’t go to school, but work as a child labor instead, although this may seemed to be entrepreneurship, but I rather treat them as child exploitation. May be the children just simply need more money, but I had to admit it’s a very good business strategy that can easily win over any tourists.