Experiences of conquering Ma Pi Leng Pass

Experiences of conquering Ma Pi Leng Pass

Discovering Ma Pi Leng Pass is one of many the interesting experiences that many young people enjoy when coming to Ha Giang. For the first experience of recovering Ma Pi Leng Pass these following notes will help your trip become smoother.

1. About Ma Li Peng Pass - Ha Giang

Where  is Ma Li Peng Pass? Located on the Happiness Road connecting Dong Van and Meo Vac, Ma Pi Leng is the name of the most dangerous road in Vietnam, in the province of Ha Giang with a length of about 20 km, and 1200m  height.

Ma Pi Leng is also known as one of the "four great pass peaks" in the northern mountainous region of Vietnam, along with O Quy Ho Pass, Khau Pha Pass and  Pha Din Pass.

Ma Pi Leng Pass Travel

Ma Pi Leng is considered the most dangerous road in Ha Giang

2. Which time to conquer Ma Pi Leng Pass?

Ha Giang is like the "muse" of the mountains, with the softness, clarity and tranquility of nature bestowed on this place, even if you take a Ha Giang tour in any season of year, you always can fully enjoy the scent  of the mountains here.

January to March, after Lunar New year is always chosen to enjoy the spring, this is also the time for apricot, plum and yellow mustard flowers bloom. Watching Ha Giang’s landscape from the top of Ma Li Peng Pass, visitors can enjoy a beautiful, brimful with vitality picture with the vibrant colors of canola flowers together with the gentle colors of apricot petals and plum blossoms - a beautiful setting.

If you want to experience Khau Vai love market, travel Ha Giang on April. Participate in this event, visitors can understand native cultures. In other regions, Love Market is where boys and girls get to know each other, but this market in Ha Giang is unique, here couples that have no charm to get married they could come and meet each other, talk, share their current life. Conjugal may take each other to the Love Market to find their old friends Couples can bring each other, they respect other as it is their responsibility.

Khau Vai love market

Khau Vai love market in Ha Giang

Visit Ha Giang in may- falling water season, at the top ò Ma Pi Leng Pass, you will be admired this incredible landscape with deep color but very attractive created from terraced fields. This season is when people lead water from ravines, streams to terraced fields to allow water to gradually seep into soil and prepare for transplanting. It is not as colourful as autumn when wheat flowering, but falling water season in Ha Giang is also attractive, the water flowing through every plots of wheat under the dazzling sun of summer created sparkling rays like a silver cloth covering all the hills.

June to August is a great time to conquer the pass and explore the majestic rock plateaus. This season in Ha Giang is pretty cool, not too hot, so, it kind of favourable for you to explore places and conquer the craggy peaks.

September, Ha Giang becomes extremely vibrant and attractive than ever, with golden terraced fields when entering the harvest, along the path to the top of Ma Pi Leng Pass, visitors to Ha Giang tour will see the golden fields among the deep forest of mountains.

Golden-fields season in Ha Giang

Golden-fields season in Ha Giang

In October and November, when the circuit triangular flower petals beginning to hatch, those tiny light pink petals will gradually darken at the end of the season gives visitors a sense of peace, the soul becomes calmer letting soul among the fields of triangle flowers stretching to the horizon. 

December, it's starts to get cold, yellow mustard flowers blooms in every corner of Ha Giang and gradually covered the rocky plateaus. From the paths to the roads leading to the villages, all is covered with yellow mustard flowers, making the picture of Ha Giang winter no longer dreary as people often think. 

3. How to get to Ma Pi Leng Pass?


If you come from the southern or central provinces, you can buy a ticket to Hanoi to get to Ha Giang. Now, evevry Airline of Viet Nam( Vietnam Airlines, JetStar and VietJet Air, Bamboo Airlines ) can all provide the flight to Hanoi.

In the case of traveling alone or a small group, you can share a Taxi fare from the airport to the hotel with some other Passengers.


  • Bus from Hanoi

Bus to Ha Giang departs from My Dinh Bus Station, the departure time is from 5am to 9pm, you should contact directly with the garage to book tickets, to avoid out of tickets or being stuffed.

From Noi Bai airport, you can take a taxi to the pick-up location to Ha Giang at National route 2, about 1km from the airport  - Hanoi to Ha Giang, note that taxi to tax per trip (about 120,000 VNĐ) rather than kilometers . If you on the late fight to the Noi Bai Airport, you can rent a car with 7 or 16 seats (about 3 million VNĐ/way) to Ha Giang at night and you will be at Ha Giang early the next morning.

  • Motorbike from Hanoi

It will take you 6-8 hours to get to HA Giang from Hà Nội by motorbike. And these are some route for you to go:

** Ha Noi - Son Tay (take route 21 in Co Nhue) - then go straight to Trung Ha Bridge ( at T- junction of Son Tay town, turn right or go straight to La Thanh) => Co Tiet => Phong Chau Bridge (cross the Phong Chau bridge turn left, follow the Thao river) - to Phu Tho town - Doan Hung and turn to Tuyen Quang - at Tuyen Quang, Do Not go through the city  choose the direction of National Route 2 straight ahead to Ha Giang.

** Ha Noi- Thang Long Bridge - turn right to Vinh Phuc - Viet Tri - Phu Tho - Tuyen Quang - Ha Giang. 

Motorbiking on Ma Pi Leng Pass

Motorbiking on Ma Pi Leng Pass is an unforgettable experience


Nothing is better to conquer and explore Ha Giang by motor. If you want to bring your motorbike with, you can attach it by car, but if you want a simple and compact trip, you can also choose the option to get there and rent a motor for discovering Ha Giang.

  • Giang Son: New good motorbikes. Most of them are Sirius bike, suitable for going through bumpy road.

- Address: Group 1, Cầu Mè hamlet, Phương Thiện commune, Hà Giang ward.

- Ms Giang: 0913.374.904 - 0988.470.863

  • Anh Vinh

- Address: 33b, group 1, Quang Trung ward.

- Tel: 0912.606.025

  • Mr Bay:

- Tel 0986.030.405 - 0915.273.882

  • Phon Tooc

- Address: 19/5 Street, Nguyễn Trãi Ward, City. Hà Giang.

- Tel: 0162.995.2252  or  0914.557.024

  • Hong Hao motor rental service

- Address: No 10, Phạm Hồng Thái Street, Group 17, Minh Khai Ward, Hà Giang City (Near Minh Khai Secondary School)

- Tel: 0165.398.2928 or 0915.842.019

  • Renting 7-16 seater car or self-driving please contact Mr.Vinh

- Tel: 0164.611.5115

4. Ma Pi Leng conquering guides

To visit Ma Pi Leng, one of the famous 11 tourist destination in Ha Giang, you have to pass extremely dangerous roads and bends.

First of all, you have to go from Ha Giang to Dong Van to reach Ma Pi Leng pass.

Ma Pi Leng pass (also known as Ma Pi Leng) in Ha Giang province is a rugged mountain pass that’s about 20 km long beyond Ma Pi Leng, a mountain peak of about 1,200 m high in Dong Van Plateau, located on a road named Con duong Hanh Phuc (happy street) connecting Ha Giang, Dong Van city and Meo Vac town.

This 200 km long road was made by thousands of youth volunteers from 16 ethnic groups in 8 northern provinces of Vietnam for 6 years (1959-1965) with over 2 million workers each day, Ma Pi Leng separately was done by the youth from suicide squad hung on the cliff to keep every centimeter in 11 months. Ma Pi Leng is unorthodoxly referred to by tourists as one of the "four great mountain peaks" in the mountains of Northern Vietnam, next to O Quy Ho Pass, Khau Pha Pass and Pha Din Pass.

Ma Pi Leng is the name in Mandarin that means "horse nose". But in the figurative sense this name refers to the most dangerous of the mountain peak, where the mares climb to the top  and die of miscarriage. Where the slope is so steep that the horses passing there stop breathing, or the mountain peak stands like horse nose. However, according to some indigenous Hmong people, the correct name of the pass is Mao Pi Leng, meaning "cat nose".

Ma Pi Leng Pass - First majestic

Spectacular view on Ma Pi Leng Pass that enchants every comer at first sight

No one has been to Ma Pi Leng once without being surprised because of the majestic and mysterious beauty of the pass connecting Dong Van and Meo Vac district.  Wind, sunshine, clouds, a pristine mountainous wilderness like the beginning of time.

Nho Que River (its upstream in China is called Phổ Mai River) comes from Nghiem Son mountain (Van Nam province, China) that is 1500m high, flow in West North – East South direction, through Dong Van, Meo Vac district, Ha Giang province, Vietnam to meet with Hâm river at Na Nat, Ly Bon, Bao Lam district, Cao Bang province. The river is a tributary on the left bank of Gam river, which is 192 km long. The section flowing in Vietnam is 46 km long. The basin area is 6,052 km² (the part in Vietnam is 2,010 km²), the average height is 1,255 m, the average slope is 18,7%. The river flows through the valley. The average total water volume every years is about 2.69 km³, equivalent to the annual average water flow of 85 m³ / s and the annual flow module of 15.8 l / s / km²

Ma Pi Leng pass is one of 11 tourist destinations that you should visit when you’re in Ha Giang, spend time to appreciate picturesque and majestic landscape all around the country.

5. Where to stay at Ma Pi Leng?

Normally people come to conquer Ma Pi Leng in one day. But if you want to stay overnight to commune with nature, you can book a room at Ma Pi Leng Homestay. This is a lovely small homestay along the mountainside. You can stay at Dong Van or Meo Vac because there have more choices.

 Ma Pi Leng Homestay

Lovely cosy space inside Ma Pi Leng Homestay

6. What to eat at Ma Pi Leng?

When visiting Ma Pi Leng, don’t miss the chance to taste local specialities such as thắng cố (horse meat), thịt trâu gác bếp (smoked buffalo), lạp xưởng (Chinese sausage),… especially grilled moss. This dish may sound strange but once you savour it, you can never forget its flavour.

Ma Pi Leng Food

Lots of culinary specialties await you to come and savour

7. Things need to notice when visiting Ma Pi Leng Pass

  • Clothes

In summer, you should wear breathable and comfortable clothes and trousers to avoid insect bites.

In winter, you should bring warm clothes, scarf and gloves to keep warm because it’s cold up there.

  • Hiking shoes

You should wear hiking shoes with high slip-resistance. Soft toe will prevent your feet from being hurt when moving.

  • Snacks

You should bring snacks in case you’re hungry, because it’s hard to find restaurants near the Ma Pi Leng Pass.

  • Medicine, bandage

On the Ha Giang tour from Hanoi, there’re inevitable scratch when you pass bushes or fall.  Because the medical condition there is poor, you should bring a first aid kit with you.

Ma Li Peng is appraised as one of the most worth-visiting 11 tourist destinations in Ha Giang. If you have a chance to visit Ha Giang, it’s recommended taking time to contemplate this majestic landscape. Hope these conquering Ma Pi Leng Pass experiences will help you in your upcoming visits.