Dong Van Market – Ha Giang

Dong Van market is open on Sunday morning in Dong Van town, Dong Van district, Ha Giang province in the northeast Vietnam.

Dong Van Ha Giang market is famous for its picturesque and colorful sides and the fact that this is frequented by ethnic minorities in the region including the H’mong, the Lo Lo, the Dzao… You will be dazzled by the colorful traditional costumes of the local people. Most of the customs of local ethnic groups have remained unchanged for centuries.

The market is renowned for it’s cultural diversity but extremely difficult to access for the regular tourist or backpacker due to its steep, long, time consuming hair pin roads. Those that do take the grueling sick inducing mini buses, private cars or motorbike adventure are rewarded for their efforts, as every Sunday you can witness a spectacular sparkling spectacle of Hmong fashion.

Don Van Sunday market beckons ethnic groups living roughly within a 25km radius of the town. This primarily consists of White Hmong, Black Dao and Tay people living high and secluded up in the mountains. By either walking, biking and busing, Hmong girls and boys, young and old all gather at the market every Sunday for socializing, selling and showing off.

Dong Van Vietnam market is held only on Sunday morning. Buyers will find fabrics including linen, tinted with indigo, for sale. They used to make the traditional outfits. This is especially raw fabrics, without embroidery. The sharp sweet stench of rice wine wafted through the air.

Some of the younger women have wind chimes dangling on their back, that jingle as they walk. Men were sat around catching up, playing cards and getting drunk for breakfast. While Birds, buffalo, cats, pigs, dogs and ducks were being bustled and bagged from one hand to the next. The men all wear black. Many of them have on flat, cloth hats that would look right at home in America in the 1920s.

To date, Dong Van Vietnam is little visited by tourists (because of the distance between Hanoi this Northern Plateau) and mainly attract travelers and photographers who want to experience adventure and exotic landscapes and authentic.

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