Tuesday, July 7 2020


Ha Noi hosts traditional Bac Ha horse racing

Update: February, 16/2014 - 22:00

Thousands of people gathered on Sunday at the Culture Tourism Village in Ha Noi to enjoy activities from Viet Nam's 54 ethnic groups, as seen in their New Year celebrations.

The highlight of the event is the horse racing festival, put on by the H'Mong people in Bac Ha district, northern mountainous province of Lao Cai.

Sixteen horses and their horsemen have travelled more than 400km to participate in the annual event, which is particularly special since this lunar year is the Year of the Horse.

The horse is traditionally the friend of the people of Bac Ha, as it helps them with transportation and their farming work, and the horse racing, which existed in the minds of the Bac Ha people as a myth, has become a unique traditional culture found on the ‘white plateau'.

The traditional form of riding, without a saddle, makes the race more interesting, coupled with spectacular performances. The rider who has the fastest horse and obtains the most goals is the winner.

During wartime, racing was not held for many years since horsemen were needed on the battlefields.

Now, the racing has been brought back as part of the activities to meet the cultural and spiritual demands of local ethnic groups, helping preserve their special cultural values. As a race designed for "barefoot cavaliers", who have always been friends of horses, the festival has become an attraction for both domestic and international tourists, particularly as more tourists choose Bac Ha as their travel destination.

Viet Nam News's Truong Vi reports on the race through his photos.


Bac Ha horses are strong, tall, solid, with white teeth and smooth fur.

A horseman prepares for his friend.
H'Mong men and women play folk game at the Culture Tourism Village of Vietnamese Ethnic Group in Ha Noi.
The festival brings the visitors many art performance of H'Mong people.

It's time for racing.
Riding a horse without a saddle makes the race more interesting.
A horseman communicate with the audience after one round.
However, a horse quits the race.
Close to each other.
A fall.

The horsemen are always proud of their horses.
The winner of the race.


A representative of the organisers awards prizes to the winners.

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