Huu Lien community-based tourism village in Huu Lien Commune, Huu Lung District, has recently emerged as an attractive ecotourism destination in Lang Son Province thanks to its pristine natural beauty.
Visitors kayaking on Nong Dung Lake (Photo: Thuy Linh)
The village captivates travellers thanks to high mountains, poetic rivers winding around the valley, and vast grasslands stretching across the Dong Lam meadow. The place also boasts cultural diversity, giving visitors unforgettable travel experiences.
The best time to visit Huu Lien is in autumn, when nature boasts its most charming appearance.
Huu Lien Commune is located inside the 8,300-hectare Huu Lien National Forest Reserve, which stretches over three districts of Huu Lung, Chi Lang and Van Quan. The reserve is also home to Huu Lien Forest, which has been dubbed the "green lung" of the Northeast region thanks to its rich and diverse ecosystem, magnificent cave systems, underground streams and emerald lakes.
Located in the north of Huu Lien Commune, Dong Lam Meadow is an ecological area of around 100 hectares. The meadow is surrounded by limestone mountains and adorned with streams that flow to Dong Lam Lake. In the rainy season from July to October, the rising water levels turn the meadow into a clear blue lake, thus earning it the nickname “Ha Long Bay of the Northeast region”.
As camping activities and nature-based tourism have become increasingly popular, many young people and families have opted to Dong Lam for their trips. Visitors to Dong Lam can kayak on Nong Dung Lake, explore local caves, go fishing, fly kites, or play with local horses grazing on the Dong Lam meadow.
Dong Lam meadow is a perfect place for camping. (Photo: VOV)
In addition to the great potential of eco-tourism development, Huu Lien community-based tourism village is also appreciated for its cultural diversity as it is home to nine ethnic groups, including Kinh, Muong, Cao Lan, San Diu, Tay, Nung, Dao, H’mong, and Thai.
Therefore, vacationers can immerse themselves in the harmony of cultural identities among the groups by admiring four-roofed stilt houses leaning against the mountain with the typical architectural style of the Tay people, enjoying beautiful ‘Then’ and ‘Pa Xoan’ folk singing of the Dao ethnic group, take part in the Go Chua Shrine Festival, which is celebrated on the 13th day of the third lunar month, and sample delicious dishes including grilled pork, steamed snails, grilled fish, and sticky rice.
Huu Lien villagers have been active in boosting local tourism and promoting their cultural heritage, which has not only contributed to facilitating local socio-economic development but also improved locals’ livelihoods. The village now has six homestay facilities to welcome visitors.
Vi Van Tuyen, the owner of Ngoc Bich Homestay, said that Huu Lien villagers have received a lot of support and training from local authorities towards developing community-based tourism.
Visitors to Ngoc Bich Homestay can try their hands at making pumpkin cakes and cooking traditional wine, visit the family’s tangerine garden, enjoy indigenous dishes, and join cultural exchanges with locals.
He revealed that before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, his family welcomed about 250-300 tourists every month, generating a stable income for the family.