Area: 9,562.9 sq. km.
Population: 319.9 thousand habitants (2006)
Capital: Lai Chau Town.
Districts: Phong Tho, Tam Duong, Muong Te, Sin Ho, Than Uyen.
Ethnic groups: Thai, HMong, Viet (Kinh), Giay, Dao.
Introduction: Geography, Tourism, Transportation.
- Cultural Travel: Cam Muong Festival, Catching Fish Festival of the Khang, Harvest Festival of the La Hu in Lai Chau.
Lai Chau is situated on high mountainous region in the North West of Vietnam, northern of Da River. Its neighbors are Yunna (China) on the north, Laos on the west, Lao Cai Province on the north-east, Dien Bien, Son La provinces on the south.
A range of mountain following Northern West - Southern East makes up the terrain The Pu Sa Leng point is 3,096m in height. There are sloping mountains, hill, valley, plateau, spring alternately. Falls and waterfalls with high flow are potential of hydroelectricity in Lai Chau.
Climate: Belong to tropical monsoon zone; the climate of Lai Chau is divided into two seasons: rain season and dry season. The annual average temperature is 21ºC - 23ºC.
Tourists are interesting in custom of ethnic groups in Sin Ho Village or Tam Duong Townlet. They also fond of other sites such as: Tien Son Cave, Muong Lai Spring.
The transportation is mainly by road. National Highway No.12 connects Dien Bien Phu City to Ma Lu Thang Border Gate crossing Lai Chau, and National Highway No.4D links Lai Chau with Sapa Townlet. Lai Chau Town is 406km from Hanoi.
Cam Muong Festival
Time: From the 30th day of the twelfth lunar month to the 5th day of the first lunar month.
Place: Lai Chau.
Characteristics: The spring festival days of the Laos in Lai Chau. People pray the gods of rivers and mountains, the ancestors support for earning ones living easily. Sorcerer makes offerings, food tray of offerings is processed from the village to the forest. From the 1st day to the 5th day of Tet, people play traditional games and dance at the village, Con balls throwing, drink can wine.
* Catching Fish Festival of the Khang
Time: The 5th day of the third lunar month.
Place: Than Uyen District, Lai Chau Province.
Characteristics: Catching fish by hands in collective, offering fish, fish dishes, giao duyen singing and dancing.
* Harvest Festival of the La Hu in Lai Chau
Time: The tenth and the eleventh lunar months.
Place: Lai Chau Province.
Characteristics: Xoe dancing and avoiding going to the forest for picking up fire wood, cutting trees, grass in 3 days to pray for verdant vegetation around year.
(Source: Vietnam National Administration of Tourism)