Visually, we were blown away by Bac Ha market in northern Vietnam. During our winter visit, the women and their brightly-colored clothing provided the perfect contrast to the muted winter landscape. Most of the women who make the trek to Bac Ha market from their hill villages are from the Flower Hmong ethnic group. As you can see from our photos, they dress in colorful head scarves and beautifully embroidered skirts and tops.
As I was told by the General Manager of Craft Link, Ms. Tran Tuyet Lan, not-for-profit organizations have to sell quality products in order to survive. Charity isn’t sustainable.
But Hanoi’s Hoa Sua School and Craft Link try. The customer gets quality food and handicrafts, respectively, in addition to the warm fuzzy feeling from contributing to a good social cause. It's an ideal – and apparently sustainable – combination.
Located just northeast of Ko Samui, Koh Pha Ngan is best known for its crazy full moon party at Haad Rin. For us, it's a place to stay in a simple bungalow on the beach and relax with a book.