Beautiful azaleas in Y Ty forests are beckoning…

Have you got any vacation plans for the upcoming April 30–May 1 holiday? How about taking part in the cycling competition “Walking among the azalea” to watch beautiful azaleas in full bloom along the race track, which runs through the old forests in Lao Cai province’s Y Ty commune?

Y Ty’s forests are located 2,000 metres above the sea level.  Visiting Y Ty these days, apart from layers of clouds and local villages with thousands of cherry blossoms, pear and camellia flowers in full bloom, you will also encounter the magnificent sight of red azaleas blooming vigorously in the old forests.

Since their beauty has attracted visitors from all over the country who come to enjoy it on the roads of the mountainous border province, this year, authorities of the Bat Xat district has collaborated with the Lao Cai Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism to hold a cycling contest with the theme “Walking among the azaleas”.

Cycling track of the “Walking among the azaleas” competition - Photo by Hoang Kieu

This is both a sports experience and a tournament that prepares cyclists for Bat Xat district’s annual cycling competition. It is also one of the inaugural activities that set the scene for a series of events to recover Bat Xat’s tourism after the COVID-19 pandemic.

The one-day race will start at 8 am on April 30, 2022, at the Sang Ma Sao commune and end at the Phin Ho village in Y Ty commune, Bat Xat district, Lao Cai province. The track will be 20km long, going through Den Sang commune, Den Sang bridge, Y Ty old forests, Phin Ho village, with the finish line located at the gate of Hoa Loi company (Phin Ho village, Y Ty commune).

The part of the track going through the old forests has several hundred-year-old azalea trees lined up on both sides, with their flowers in full bloom. Here you may cycle through the clouds, listen to the sound of water streaming under thousands of green cardamom trees, and pass the primeval forests… The scenery looks like something in a fairy tale.

Azalea flowers on the cycling track - Photo by Hoang Kieu

According to Bat Xat district’s People’s Committee, besides the purpose of inviting visitors from all over the country to Y Ty, which is often considered the second Sa Pa of Lao Cai, the event also aims to direct people to the campaign “Everyone exercises following the great Uncle Ho’s example” and help to improve their health.

As the COVID-19 pandemic is easing off, the People’s Committee of Bat Xat district asked the organizers to ensure safety for participants, save and not waste resources, create a cheerful spirit for people and the athletes, and leave a good impression on visitors.

Every year, as spring comes to an end, flowers bloom vigorously on the mature azalea trees, creating a lively scenery for the mountainous province. The azalea flowers in Y Ty forests are among the 30 types of azaleas that exist only on the Hoang Lien Mountain. Visitors can also enjoy the silver-ish pink azaleas that grow so close to each other. In the old forests, each azalea tree has its own form, its trunk covered in moss, some that are tens of metres tall, stretching themselves out in the majestic nature.

Y Ty’s azalea flowers bloom from the end of January to the end of May, reaching their most vibrant beauty in the second half of April every year. This year, after periods of frost covering Y Ty’s forests, the flowers bloomed later, and their white, pink, and yellow colors will definitely be a sight to behold and remember as visitors and athletes take part in the cycling competition this holiday, when they enjoy what the poetic race track, full of flowers, has to offer.

Azalea flowers on the race track - Photo by Hoang Kieu

If having a chance to stay, visitors can go out to explore nature on the mountain roads, where azalea flowers are blooming on the vast primeval forests such as the Lao Than peak in Y Ty commune, Putaleng peak in Trung Leng Ho commune, Ky Quan San peak in Sang Ma commune… Don’t miss the rare opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich vegetation of the old forests.

The terraced rice fields in Y Ty.

Also, coming to Y Ty these days, you can see the terraced rice fields in the watering season, in preparation for rice planting. Y Ty looks so beautiful with these immense rice fields that seem to go on forever. This will surely be an unforgettable experience for you and your family during the upcoming April 30–May 1 holiday./.