Mai Chau is a mountainous district and home to many ethnic groups such as Thai, Muong, Kinh, Mong, Dao, and Tay with distinctive cultural identities, creating a diverse and unique cultural treasure. Aware of its advantages, the district has paid attention to the preservation and promotion of ethnic groups’ cultural values so that culture will become a leverage for tourism and contribute to socio-economic development and life quality improvement.

Linen fabrics with patterns drawn in beeswax are always attractive to visitors in Pa Co commune of Mai Chau district.

Mong people in Mai Chau mainly live in Hang Kia and Pa Co communes. They still maintain many of their traditional cultural practices like weaving linen fabrics, dyeing fabrics indigo, embroidering brocades, and drawing beeswax patterns.

Sung A Mang, Secretary of the Pa Co communal Party Committee, said that in recent years, people have moved to capitalise on local advantages, especially typical cultural characteristics, to boost tourism. From rock fences, the architectural style, and the way every small corner of homestay facilities is decorated to costumes, the old script, musical instruments, traditional crafts, and daily activities, all reflect the local unique culture that, apart from beautiful natural landscapes, leaves deep impressions on tourists once they come to this place.

Particularly, in 2017, Mong people successfully revived the Gau Tao festival, which is an important part in the culture and spiritual life of local people and has also become a magnet for tourists.

For three consecutive tenures, from 2010 to 2025, the Party organisation of Mai Chau has set a target of turning the district into a key tourism area of Hoa Binh province and an attractive, hospitable, and safe destination. It and locals have also stayed determined to properly carry out the Mai Chau Party Committee’s Resolution No. 15 on the preservation of local ethnic group’s cultural identities during the 2020 - 2025 period, with a vision to 2030. This is considered a right direction of the district and has also won support from the public, thereby helping promote fine traditional cultural values and eradicate backward customs.

Hoang Duc Minh, Vice Chairman of the Mai Chau People’s Committee, said that determined to create a leverage for tourism development, the district has carried out multiple measures like increasing investment in tourism infrastructure, providing training and improving service quality at tourism establishments, preserving and turning cultural values into tourism products, stepping up tourism promotion activities, and attracting more investment.

Thanks to those moves, Mai Chau has recorded progress in tourism development and was selected as one of the 10 friendliest destinations in Vietnam at the Traveller Review Awards in early 2023.

Among the 22 tourism projects here at present, 11 with registered capital of over 846 billion VND (34 million USD) have become operational. From only one community-based tourism site (Lac village), Mai Chau now houses 148 tourism accommodation establishments, seven community-based tourism sites, 12 hotels, 28 hostels, and 106 homestay facilities, creating jobs with stable income for over 1,200 people.

Last year, the district welcomed more than 656,000 tourist arrivals, including over 84,000 foreign, and earned about 673 billion VND in tourism revenue, statistics show.

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