Ma Pi Leng – The Mysterious Pass for exploring in the north of Vietnam


In the last months of the year, southern areas of Vietnam is attracting a thousand of tourists to famous places of interest. Located in Ha Giang province, Ma Pi Leng is known as one of four famous passes in Vietnam with rugged winding roads and steep cliffs. However, when challenging this pass, you will be amazed by the immense scenery of limestone mountain running to the horizon.

The spectacular overview of the pass in Ha Giang

Ma Pi Leng – one of the four great passes in Vietnam

Ma Pi Leng pass of Ha Giang has the length of about 20 km. It is one of the most dangerous roads in Ha Giang, but it is extremely important with ethnic people in there. Ma Pi Leng peak is 1200 meter high on Dong Van rock plateau. The path leading to the mountain belongs to the road named “Happiness Road” connecting Ha Giang, Dong Van city and Meo Vac town.

The history of the pass

When it comes to Ha Giang, as far as many people know that this province is famous for the beauty of majestic rice terraced fields, Tam Giac Mach flower fields and so on.

Tam Giac Mach in Ha Giang

However, Ma Pi Leng pass is also becoming a tourist attraction with a spectacular view as well as the adventure of this path. This is known as a historic pass because the pass connects Ha Giang to the provinces downstream. The workers had to work very hard for 6 years to build the road by themselves without any support from modern machines. Even they always face danger and death, by the improvement and brave they have successfully completed the pass as “a Pyramid of Cat tribe”.

How to get to Ma Pi Leng pass

To get to Ma Pi Leng pass in Ha Giang, tourists can choose to travel by a wide range of different means. Almost tourists come to this pass, they always commute by bus or motorbike.

For young people who are passionate about traveling, they usually travel to the pass by motorbike for rent. Nevertheless, the road to go up the pass is quite rough, bumpy and dangerous, the driver must have a hard steering wheel to ensure safety during the trip. Do not forget to bring extra gasoline and car repair types of equipment. The way to the pass is very high and steep, once the car has trouble, you can fix it right on the spot.

Travel to Ma Pi Leng pass from Ha Noi

Travel to Ma Pi Leng pass from Ha Noi by bus

Normally, the bus will start the journey to the pass from My Dinh station to Ha Giang at 5: 00 a.m to 9:00 p.m. Hence, tourists can choose a comfortable and suitable time to explore the pass on their trip.

Travel to Ma Pi Leng from Ha Noi by motorbike

If you want to have more exciting experiences in the trip to explore Ma Pi Leng Pass, you can ride a motorbike in two routes as follows:

  • Route 1: from Hanoi to Thang Long Bridge and then turn to Viet Tri, Phu Tho, passing Tuyen Quang to Ha Giang.
  • Route 2: from Hanoi to Son Tay, straight to Trung Ha bridge and then Co Tiet to Phong Chau bridge to Phu Tho and Doan Hung towns and then turn to Tuyen Quang in the direction of Highway 2 to Ha Giang.

Along the way to the top of the pass, you will have the opportunity to admire the majestic natural scenery of the northeastern mountains, the rolling mountains, terraced fields, small houses along the road or to meet Mong locals. Carrying me on my back along the road, an idyllic but beautiful scene in the eyes of visitors.

When to travel to Ma Pi Leng Pass

Ha Giang is one of the Northern provinces having the full beauty of the pristine mountain, majestic rice terraced fields, and charming flower fields. Whether tourists go to Ha Giang in any season of the year, they can enjoy the full of the natural scent of the pass.

Exploring the pass by motorbike in Ha Giang

January to March, the time after Lunar New Year is always chosen by many tourists or backpackers to travel for spring. This is also the time for apricot, plum, and yellow mustard flower to bloom. Watching the overview of Ha Giang from the top of Ma Pi Leng Pass will appear in front of visitors a brilliant picture of a spring day. Moreover, visitors also have a chance to sightsee the tranquil life with the vibrant color of yellow mustard, white plum, and gentle color of life in local.

Visit the pass on the occasion of May – the flooding season, from the top of Ma Pi Leng you will admire a mural with deep but extremely attractive colors created from terraced fields. The flooding season, when people lead water from ravines and streams to terraced fields to allow water to gradually seep into the soil and prepare for transplanting.

It is not as bright as autumn when the rice has bloomed, but when the season of water rushing Ha Giang also becomes extremely attractive. The currents of water flowing down each field under the blazing sun have created sparkling rays like a silver cloth covering a mountain.

Exploring the pass in the last months of the year

In September, Ha Giang becomes brighter and more attractive than ever, with golden terraced fields. When entering the ripe rice season, along the path to the top of Ma Pi Leng Pass, visitors will see the golden fields in the deep forest of rocky mountains.

In October and November, when the triangular petals begin to hatch. The tiny petals carrying the fading pink will gradually darken at the end of the season giving visitors a sense of peace. The soul also becomes softer when dropping soul among the fields of triangle flowers stretching to the horizon.


Referring to Ha Giang is mentioned Ma Pi Leng Pass is like a proud symbol here. It only takes a few hours to reach this peaceful highland and explore the pristine beauty of the mountain in there. However, this pass is still dangerous and bumpy, the tourist traveling by motorbike should focus on the safety on the whole trip. Hope you will have a wonderful time to explore this mysterious pass.

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