Pu Luong Nature Reserve
140kms from the center of Hanoi you will find one of Northern Vietnam’s hidden gems, Pu Luong Nature Reserve. This vast and diverse nature reserve serves as an ideal rural escape for anyone looking for a tranquil experience.
Whether you’re planning an active week of activities or a few days of sweet nothing, Pu Luong has it all. The reserves of diverse scenery have an equally diverse culture. And as a result, there are various different options in terms of accommodation. In this post, we will explore the different types of accommodation available in Pu Luong and our top 5 places to stay. Taking cost, experience, and location into consideration.
The first thing you really need to know is how to get to Pu Luong. Here we show you the two main routes. You can find more information as well as routes on our Mai Chau Blog.
The route in Black is the faster route but is a little more boring as it follows the highway for more than half of the distance. However, you will make good time and it is a great option if you are prone to leaving later in the day.
The red route is a little trickier to follow and runs on smaller roads but it is more interesting, especially the section on the ATK road. You do, however, miss out on the Hoa Binh Dam which can be an interesting stop.
An Authentic Experience
Locals in Pu Luong are the majority part of the White Thai ethnic minority. As a culture they are particularly welcoming and hospitable, greeting tourists with open arms. In recent years Pu Luong has grown as a tourist destination in the north, giving locals an opportunity to turn their authentic homes into homestays. Therefore allowing tourists to truly experience life as a local.
Authentic homes in Pu Luong are built from basic wooden structures and sit above the ground on stilts. Due to this the living area is raised above the effects of flooding and unwanted creatures. Homestays come equipped with a welcoming family, bed, bathroom, food and flowing rice wine. Staying in a homestay allows travelers to give something back to the local communities whilst gaining an authentic Vietnamese experience. If you’re planning on spending time hiking and exploring the outdoors, a homestay may be the best option for you.
1. Pu Luong Homestay $
Address: Bản Hiêu, Cổ Lũng, Bá Thước, Thanh Hoá
Contact: 0389 506 696
Located a short distance from the village of Thac Hieu you’ll find this traditional homestay. Sitting on the valley floor this family home provides travelers a place to rest their weary heads. Run by a local family, those who stay there are able to experience life as part of a local family. Food can be prepared for each meal of the day and will often be served with the family themselves.
Access to a bed, mosquito net, and clean shower are provided for all customers. An authentic experience not to be missed!
2. Mr Ba’s Homestay $
Address: Cổ Lũng, Bá Thước District, Thanh Hoa, Vietnam
Contact: +84 379 781 988
Yet another fantastic family run homestay in near the small village of Thac Hieu. Offering a similar experience to Pu Luong homestay, travelers are given the opportunity to sleep, eat and live like a local. You can read more about the village of Thac Hieu and what you can expect from the area in our post about Pu Luong as a destination in the North.
3. Pu Luong Holiday $
Address: Lac Village, Bá Thước District, Thanh Hoa
Contact: 097 863 55 51
These purposes made wooden bungalows lean very slightly more toward a luxury experience. All are equipped with their own bathrooms and two beds. The accommodation itself is managed by a local family who lives next door in their own traditional stilt house. Breakfast and dinner are served daily for all residents to enjoy together with the family.
The bungalows look out over the valley floor and raised hammocks swing off the ground, offering the perfect place to relax!
Located in Lac Village and walking distance from Thac Hieu, this accommodation is ideal for those wanting to explore the area by bike or on foot.
A Luxury Experience
Although Pu Luong Nature Reserve is associated with a rural and outdoorsy experience, it also has a few high-end resorts to choose from. As a regular holiday destination for city dwellers from Hanoi, there is a demand for a more luxurious style of accommodation. The popular village of ‘Ban Kho Muong’ is home to a few of these. Located off the QL15 (highway), this village is easily accessible for all, therefore making it an attractive destination in Pu Luong. Homestays and resorts are dotted amongst the vast rice paddies in this area.
Popular with families and large groups, this scenic part of the nature reserve offers various different activities. Such as kayaking, hiking, swimming, and cycling.
4. Pu Luong Retreat $$
Address: Thành Lâm, Bá Thước District, Thanh Hoa
Contact: 024 3823 9988
Wooden bungalows on stilts scatter the hillside at this luxury retreat. Those who stay here have access to their own private rooms with balconies that overlook rolling rice paddies. Nestled within this retreat is a pool that looks out over a breathtaking mountain view, making it the ideal place to sit with a book and soak in the surrounding nature.
Staff at the retreat speak good English, are attentive and will make your stay here memorable. The restaurant serves local and western food at every mealtime, ensuring you’ll never go hungry. This truly is a luxurious and remote place to stay hidden within some of Pu Luong’s most dramatic scenery.
5. Pu Luong Treehouse $$
Address: Don village, Thanh Lam, Ba Thuoc, Thanh Hoa, Thanh Hoá
Contact: 096 696 38 51
Perched on top of rice terraces, this accommodation is an ideal place to stay for those wanting to relax and explore the nature reserve. The houses on stilts (treehouses) have private and mixed dormitory rooms equipped with comfortable beds and mosquito nets. Most rooms have balconies that look out over the valley.
Decorated in a shabby chic style, this accommodation has hammocks, outdoor sofas, and seat swings ideal for socializing. Hidden away within a peaceful surroundings, guests will enjoy a tranquil place to relax between outdoor excursions.