The town never stops to amaze with foggy peaks, rice terraces and well-preserved ethnic culture
Mount Ham Rong
Sa Pa seen from Ham Rong Mountain. Photo credit: Gavin Whit/VnExpress
The 1.8-kilometer mountain peak offers a perfect view of Sa Pa.
From the top, travelers can catch one of the most breathtaking sunsets in the world and beautiful sights of the Indochina rooftop, Fansipan.
The Huffington Post in April listed the mountain among eight best vantage points in the world.
Visitors will have to pay VND70,000 ($3.25) to climb up Ham Rong, which has been developed into a mountain park with beautiful gardens.
The Rock Church
Photo credit: Marty Windle/VnExpress
Built by the French in 1895, the Rock Church is one of the few colonial heritage sites in Sa Pa that have stood the test of time. It has been constantly preserved to be an icon of the foggy resort town.
Cat Cat Village
Boys play with a wheelbarrow at Cat Cat. Photo credit: Vu Quang/VnExpress
The village is two kilometers from the center of Sa Pa. It is the home of a H’Mong ethnic community whose members still preserve traditional crafts such as weaving and making bronze and silver jewelry. They still dye cloth with natural colors and polish it with bee wasp.
Muong Hoa Valley
Photo credit: Black Baron93/VnExpress
The photogenic valley draws many tourists for the spectacular view of rice terraces lining up along a 15-kilometer stream against the stunning backdrop of foggy mountains. The rattan bridge that runs across the stream is also another popular attraction.
But the 2,300-acre valley, around 10 kilometers to the southeast of the resort town, is more than just a perfect picture. It also has a mysterious sandstone area with more than 150 pieces carved with human images in different daily activities.
The sandstone area of eight square kilometers has been recognized a national heritage, although the origin and the meaning of the carvings are still unknown.
Ta Phin Village
Photo credit: Ngaymua/VnExpress
The village is home to H’Mong and Red Dao people. There’s a lot of cultural aspects for one to discover at the village, including their exotic and tasty cuisine.
But the winding and rocky road to the village is a memorable experience. Get ready for poetic scenes of rice terraces and corn fields on both sides.
The Bac (Silver) Waterfall
A tourist walks on a bridge above the Bac Waterfall. Photo credit: Tran Duc Khoi/VnExpress
One can rent a motorbike downtown and ride around 12 kilometers to the west to the waterfall, which is of 200 meters high. This is among the lesser-known tourist sites in Sa Pa as it is not well connected to other parts of the town.
The waterfall is particularly cold in the morning as the fog rolls in over the peaks.
O Quy Ho
Beautiful sunset at the peak of O Quy Ho Pass. Photo credit: Quan Alek/VnExpress
O Quy Ho is a few kilometers from the waterfall, both on the 4D National Way.
The pass is one of the most beautiful in Vietnam. Its peak at more than 2,000 meters above sea level allows one to capture the big picture of the mountainous zigzag roads.
The peak is covered with white clouds almost all year round, hence its poetic local name “the Cloudy mountain pass,” while the official name O Quy Ho is said to have come from a mythical bird that used to live in the area.
The roof and front yard of a house in Sa Pa are covered in white. Photo credit: hachi8/VnExpress
Snow first appeared in Sa Pa in December 2013 and has returned every winter since. While it can make traveling much more difficult, it creates beautiful scenes that cannot be found anywhere else.