About 20km from Bac Ha, Coc Ly Market is a colorful Tuesday market in a mountainous area where ethnic people gather to buy and sell goods, dine and drink, or just wander to enjoy the ambience of the montagnard market by the Chay River.
Visiting the market and see ethnic people such as Flower H’mong, Phu La and Dao Tuyen in colorful costumes. They are busy with buying and selling their homemade products, whatever they can sell to the festive market. Scarves, clothes, decorations and other items made of ethnic fabric on sale also add color to the bazaar by the Chay River. Because Coc Ly is more remote than Sapa, the dress and way of life is more traditional than in the large centers. The market deals in fruit, vegetable, pork and chickens, in addition to colorful fabrics and items of traditional dress. There is a buffalo sale in progress and many of these placid animals are tethered close to the market. Buffalo are still widely used in the growing process, especially in the mountainous regions. Horse are an important form of transport in the North West and a quite a few, sturdy ponies were tied to tree around the market. The horse carries a light timber frame on their back to carry produce to and from the market.
You also can do a short trek to the nearby village of Tham Phuc inhabited by the Flower H’mong and Black Dao minority as well as visit Trung Do village, inhabited by Tay minority. There will be an exciting boat cruise winding you through a breathtaking, out of this-world landscape where the mountain grow from water presenting their most hidden mysteries, including beautiful caves and bustling life on the riverbank.