At the confluence of Vietnamese and Chinese cultures, Ha Giang, near the borders and the capital, is a land of culinary delights that will amaze food enthusiasts. Its generous terroir and skilled chefs make its local dishes irresistible.
What to eat in Ha Giang ? For an unforgettable culinary experience, embark on a journey to Ha Giang. Let the unique aromas and flavors of its local specialties guide you through a rich and authentic culinary heritage.
Food & drink in Ha Giang - What to eat in Ha Giang ?

What are Ha Giang specialties you should try ?

Thắng cố ("Soup made from horse, beef, pork and even goat meat"), Mèn mén ("Corn rice"), Xôi ngũ sắc ("Five-colored steamed glutinous rice"), Thịt trâu, thịt lợn hun khói ("Smoked buffalo/pork meat"), Lợn cắp nách (“Carried-under-arm” pigs), “shan tuyet” tea, Au tau porridge, Buckwheat cake", ... are the specialties to try when traveling to Ha Giang. The authentic cuisines of the ethnic minorities in Ha Giang have given rise to distinctive dishes that delight the palates of visitors, perpetuating their unique cultural heritage.

What are the Ha Giang specialties to try ?

Dishes made from local plants in Ha Giang

Ha Giang, a mountainous province with a diverse endemic flora, offers unique culinary specialties from plants. Among the typical dishes include :
  • Buckwheat cake
  • Five- colored sticky rice
  • Au tau porridge (Cháo Ấu Tẩu)
  • Corn Rice - "Mèn mén"
  • Bac Me Bamboo Tube Rice ( Cơm lam Bắc Mê )
Among these, the two must-try plant-based specialties in Ha Giang are:

Buckwheat cake

During your culinary exploration in Ha Giang, do not miss the iconic buckwheat cakes. This dish, symbolizing the soul of the region, is made from the seeds of the gorgeous purple buckwheat flower. After blooming, the locals harvest the seeds, dry them, and grind them into a fine powder to make these cakes. Despite their small size, these seeds are very rich in nutrients. Ha Giang buckwheat is grown in a pure environment, without toxic chemicals. The resulting cakes exude a sweet aroma and have a soft, sweet, delicious texture, capturing the rustic charm of the surrounding mountains. These cakes are readily available at local markets and make an ideal souvenir for your loved ones during your exploration of Ha Giang province in Vietnam.

What to eat in Ha Giang? Try the buckwheat cakes

Five-color sticky rice

Five-color sticky rice is a typical dish of the Tay people, a traditional delicacy served during festivals. Its vibrant aesthetic consists of sticky rice adorned with five distinct colors: red, blue, white, purple, and yellow. These colors represent the five elements and carry symbolic meaning :
  • Red : desire and passion
  • Blue : lush mountains and forests
  • Yellow : abundance and prosperity
  • Purple : fertile land
  • White : loyal love
This culinary masterpiece is the result of the skill of Tay women who, with meticulous precision, create these vivid colors to express their wishes for happiness and prosperity for the new year.
Xôi ngũ sắc - Five-coloured sticky rice
When visiting Ha Giang province, do not miss the chance to taste this exquisite sticky rice, which will delight your taste buds with its subtle and savory flavor, while celebrating the rich cultural tradition of the Tay people.

Typical meat dishes of Ha Giang

“Thắng cố” (Soup of offal of horse, beef, or even goat)

Discover the iconic Thang Co, a must-try dish of Ha Giang. This signature dish, traditionally prepared with horse offal, has adapted to the diverse tastes of tourists and now includes buffalo, beef or pork.
The “Thang Co” is a soup made from horse, beef, or even goat offal.
The organs are meticulously cleaned and then marinated in a spice mixture of 12 carefully selected ingredients. After hours of slow cooking, the "Thang Co" reveals its tasty broth, a subtle balance of sweet and spicy flavors. Enjoy this exceptional dish in local restaurants or the lively markets of Ha Giang. The "Thang Co" experience will leave an unforgettable taste imprint on your journey.
"Thang Co" – Horse offal soup

Smoked buffalo/pork meat: A culinary treasure of Ha Giang

This traditional dish is a staple of Ha Giang cuisine, embodying the distinct flavors of the Thai tribe. It offers an authentic taste of the highlands, without the preservatives found in dried meats like beef or chicken.
Smoked buffalo meat plays an important role in the daily lives of mountain people, but it also has ceremonial significance, marking festivals and warmly welcoming visitors.
True to its name, its unique flavor carries the scent of mountain fireplace smoke, with a hint of Mac Khen nut spice. Its dark brown exterior hides tender flesh with a deep red color.
Often enjoy shredded, smoked buffalo meat combined perfectly with corn wine. Despite the absence of preservatives, it can be preserved for about a month, offering visitors an ideal souvenir of their trip to Ha Giang.

Typical drinks in Ha Giang

Ha Giang is distinguished by its renowned corn wine, sold at ethnic markets by women. Customers have the opportunity to taste the wine before purchasing. Considered a local specialty, corn wine plays an important role in celebrations, offerings, festivals and social gatherings of Ha Giang people.
For more information on the culinary specialties of Ha Giang, please refer to our dedicated article :

Where to eat in Ha Giang right now ?

Street food restaurant in Ha Giang

To discover the authentic flavors of Ha Giang, explore the lively street restaurants. These establishments are often run by family chefs who pass down their secret recipes from generation to generation. Visit the famous "Bánh cuốn Bà Hà" restaurant, where the steamed rice rolls (‘bánh cuốn’) is a must-try.
Where to eat in Ha Giang ? Come to the "Bánh cuốn Bà Hà" restaurant.
In the highlands of Ha Giang stands the famous "Bánh cuốn Bà Hà" restaurant, renowned for its attractive "bánh cuốn" dishes. The owner, Mrs. Ha, aged 80, and her daughter, Mrs. Bui Thai, rise at dawn, as early as 1:00 AM, to lovingly prepare these culinary delights. On weekends, the crowd is such that nearly 1,000 "bánh cuốn" are sold each day, making this restaurant a favored destination for tourists and gourmets.
In Ha Giang, "bánh cuốn" is distinguished by its traditional service with broth instead of the usual fish sauce. This tasty broth, simmered from pork bones, brings an irresistible sweetness.
"Bánh cuốn Bà Hà" restaurant – Best street food restaurant in Ha Giang
The rice flour Mrs. Thai uses is local rice flour, soaked overnight to soften and then seasoned with spices. When customers arrive, Mrs. Thai steams the dough with precision before topping it with fried pork and wild mushrooms. She then rolls it and cuts it into portions. Finally, fried onions and coriander are added to perfect the flavors.
Mrs. Ha’s banh cuon is renowned for its smooth taste and distinctive broth. Her restaurant also offers a variety of dishes, such as meat rolls, black mushrooms, and spring rolls. Despite its popularity, Mrs. Ha’s restaurant maintains impeccable service. Don't be discouraged by having to queue during your tour, as the special flavors of this iconic location in Ha Giang are well worth the wait!

Typical restaurant in Ha Giang

For a varied gastronomic experience in Ha Giang, opt for a spacious restaurant equipped with complete facilities. Additionally, if you have food allergies, major restaurants can adapt dishes to meet your needs. The Au Viet Ha Giang restaurant is a renowned option for its excellent cuisine and personalized service.
The Au Viet restaurant is a renowned option for its excellent cuisine and personalized service.
The Au Viet restaurant is a well-known dining venue in Ha Giang, offering an exceptional culinary experience at reasonable prices. This spacious facility can accommodate over a hundred guests and provide efficient service.
Local cuisine is honored, prepared with fresh ingredients, ensuring healthy dishes that comply with hygiene standards. In addition to attractive menus, Au Viet also provides event organization services.
The second floor offers a spacious room equipped with modern equipment : speakers, radio, computer and microphone. This modern setting is perfect for corporate meetings, birthday celebrations, and other festive events.
To learn more about restaurants in Ha Giang, please refer to our dedicated article :

Conclusion about cuisine & café in Ha Giang

Cuisine and café in Ha Giang are essential elements of the region’s experience. The traditional dishes, reflecting the rich cultural heritage and traditions, are a delight for the taste buds. As you explore the breathtaking landscapes of Ha Giang, from lush rice fields to towering mountain peaks, take time to enjoy these delicious dishes. Let's explore the must-see places to enjoy local cuisine in our detailed article below.

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