Dien Bien Phu in Vietnam is connected with the historical Dien Bien Phu Victory 1954. Nowadays, history lovers from all corners of the world still admire the charming and powerful Dien Bien Phu.
Dien Bien Province is positioned in the Northwest of Vietnam, encompassed by Lai Chau Province and Son La Provinces of Vietnam, Phongsali Province of Laos, and Van Nam Province of China. Dien Bien Phu is the capital of Dien Bien Province. This is one of the bordered cities, around 474km to Hanoi. The city is most known for the hard and victorious history against the French colonists on May 7, 1954. The highlights of local tourism lie on lots of the historical attractions related to the Dien Bien Phu Victory 1954, and the imposing rice fields, lakes, passes, or nature reserve, and the diversity of ethnic cultures.
A Glimpse of Dien Bien Phu Victory 1954
During the wartime of 1954, Dien Bien Phu was a battlefield between the Vietnamese Army and the French Army. Vietnam’s legendary General, Vo Nguyen Giap, led the Vietnamese Army to defeat the French. He ordered the jungle troops, wrapped in sandals made of old car tires to attack and blockade the French army. Victoriously, the Vietnamese defeated the French army after 56 days that resulted in the collapse of colonialism across Indochina and also contributed to the Vietnam’s independence.
Tourist Attractions in Dien Bien Phu
Dien Bien Phu Battlefield Relic Complex
Dien Bien Victory Statue
In February 23rd, 2004, the “Dien Bien Victory” statue was transported from Nam Dinh to the D1 Hill. Commemorating Dien Bien Phu Victory, the statueincludes three soldiers turning their backs toward each other while their hands hold a Thai’s infant, and above is the victory flag. The statue has the height of 16,6m and the weight of 220 tons and is made of copper.
The momentous A1 Hill is located in Muong Thanh Commune, Dien Bien Phu City. It witnessed the intense and documented battle between Vietnam Army and French Army. Then, the Vietnam Army won the fight to occupy the hill at 4:00 AM on May 7th, 1954.
Cemetery of Vietnamese Martyrs in A1 Hill
The A1 Martyr’s Cemetery was built in 1958 and was quite close to the historical A1 Hill. The cemetery includes 644 graves of the Vietnamese soldiers who sacrificed life for the success of Dien Bien Phu Campaign. Most of the graves are anonymous, but there are 4 named graves of the martyrs including To Vinh Dien, Be Van Dan, Phan Dinh Giot, and Tran Can. This place is very tranquil, clean, and fresh.
Do Cat Base
Headquarter of Christian de Castries French General was set on Muong Thanh rice field. The old Vietnamese Army did fight very hard in 56 days to occupy this base – where Do Cat General met the significant characters of the French government at the time. At 17:30 PM on May 7th, 1954, Do Cat General was caught alive there. The structure and layout of the base remain original. Around the base are the defensive barrier and the 4 tanks. The base itself is 20m long and 8m wide, including 4 chambers for living and working.
The Headquarter of Dien Bien Phu Campaign
This significant headquarter is set in a pristine forest of Muong Phang Commune, 25km to the east of Dien Bien City. Right on the top, there is an observatory that allows the visitors to view the whole scenery of Muong Thanh Valley.
Dien Bien Phu Victory Museum
This museum was constructed in 1984 to celebrate the 30th year after Dien Bien Phu Victory. Then, in the year of 2003, the construction got upgraded and separated into 5 areas for displaying the war remnants. At present, there include 274 objects and 122 photos that all characterize the historical campaign of Dien Bien Phu as well as the city today.
Muong Thanh Rice Field
Muong Thanh is one of the most beautiful rice fields in the Northwest of Vietnam. It has the elevation of 400m above the sea level, the length of over 20km and the average width of 6km. Located in the middle of Dien Bien City, Muong Thanh Rice Field was compared to “a giant reservoir” of rice and corn. At the end of September, the rice fields become yellow-coated. Walking on the endless fields during harvest season brings the fantastic feeling.
Pa Khoang Lake
The attractive lake is 20km away from Dien Bien Phu City. It attracts nature lovers and photographers thanks to the spectacular landscape and fresh atmosphere. Also, it’s interesting to meet the Thai and Kho Mu ethnic minority groups who keep their traditional custom and culture of the people in the Northwest of Vietnam.
Muong Nhe Nature Reserve
Muong Nhe Nature Reserve is settled in Dien Bien Province, about 700km to the northwest of Hanoi. The Nature Reserve is rich in the biology value, size, and landscape. If you look the whole scenery from the top dimension, it creates a marvelous picture dotted with the blue of the forest, the yellow of flowers, the red of the bare road, and the brown of the thatched roof villages of the Hmong, Kho Mu, Ha Nhi ethnic groups, and more. While the fauna and flora in Muong Nhe Nature Reserve are diverse and protected, it’s worthwhile for ecotourism and biological research.
Mển Village (or Bản Mển)
The village is nestled amidst the grandiose mountainous and vast rice fields of Dien Bien. Mển Village is the attractive tourist destination for everybody to mingle with the friendly community. From afar, Bản Mển looks as beautiful as the picture with village leaning against the mountain and heading towards the green rice fields. Standing out of the green ground is the stilted houses of the Black Thai ethnic groups.
Pha Din Pass
Pha Din Pass is one of the four king passes that the backpackers truly admire (together with Ma Pi Leng, O Quy Ho, and Khau Pha). About the name of Pha Din, in Thai language, it means “Frontier of Heaven and Earth.” The Pass has the height of 1000m and is compassed by the deep gulf on one side and the upright cliff in another side. With lots of twists and turns, Pha Din challenges all drivers, but the experience is worthy to see the stunning scenery.
How to Get to Dien Bien
Even though you can reach Dien Bien by motorbike, it’s highly advised to get there by coach or airplane. The province is around 474km from Hanoi and owns lots of twists and turns that make it hard to drive on your own. Just come to the coach station in Hanoi to get the tickets for the high-quality coach to Dien Bien. Along the driving route, you enjoy the stunning landscape. If possible, the fantastic recommendation is to connect the tours with Sapa Town or move towards Laos. If you are considering to include Dien Bien Phu in your Vietnam package tours, please feel free to contact us for further advise!
The Best Time to See Dien Bien Phu in Vietnam
- May: Of course, the best time to visit Dien Bien is on the ceremony of Dien Bien Phu Victory on May 7th to get immersed in the festive atmosphere and witness the big celebration of the local people.
- March: This month is the ideal time to see the flowers blossoming the whole area of the Northwest.
- August – September: These two months are the harvest season of the rice fields in the Northwest. So, if coming at this time, expect to enjoy sightseeing the yellow rice fields in both Dien Bien and some other areas.
- December: It is when Mexican sunflower blossoms out to cover two sides of the road towards Dien Bien.
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