|A rice terrace in Mu Cang Chai during transplantation season in May, 2020. (Photo: VnExpress)
"When you imagine magnificent Asian rice fields swirling on the slopes of velvet green hills, you’re picturing Mu Cang Chai, Vietnam," Big 7 Travel wrote. "Centuries of careful cultivation have shaped what is easily some of the most beautiful rice terraces in the world."
Mu Cang Chai is also full of hiking trails and vibrant local culture. Black Hmong, a branch of one of Vietnam’s largest ethnicities, are the primary residents. Moreover, Mu Cang Chai provides a unique look into their way of life, it added.
The site ranked Mu Cang Chai 21st on its list. At number one is Torres del Paine National Park in Chile, followed by the self-governing Faroe Islands, Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park, Li River in China and Slovenia’s Lake Bled.
Big 7 Travel compiled the list by collecting data on ‘most beautiful places in the world’ pins on Pinterest, their most liked photos on Instagram and suggestions from their 1.5 million readers across social media platforms.
Mu Cang Chai, a rural district lined with mesmerizing rice terraces in Yen Bai Province, is around seven hours' drive to the northwest of Hanoi. The town sits at 1,000 m above sea level at the foot of Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range. Its rice terrace fields stretch across 2,200 ha of the mountainside.
In 2017, the terraced fields were named among some of the 19 most picturesque peaks on earth by US travel site Insider. Mu Cang Chai was also listed among the best places to enjoy autumn in Asia by Singaporean travel site Tripzilla in 2018, and among the most colorful destinations by US Magazine Condé Nast Traveler in 2019.