What to Buy in Sapa

January 10, 2022 - 790 views

While Sapa is famous for its picturesque landscape along with ultimate trekking routes, the markets here are the best places to learn about its culture and the local activities. This is also where you can buy souvenirs as gifts for your friends and family when you come back home. So what to buy in Sapa? We will be figuring out the most popular Sapa souvenirs in this article.

1. Handicrafts

There are large groups of ethnic people living in Sapa. This place is a popular tourist destination and there is no surprise that you can buy plenty of local handicrafts in the markets and everywhere else in Sapa. These items feature the unique culture, traditions of the place, and the soul of the ethnic minority people. In Sapa town, you can always see a child from the age of five or above trying to sell handcrafted products. They have to trek long distances from their villages to the town to be able to sell their products so that tourists can bring their culture back home.

You Can Find Handicrafts which is the best things to buy in Sapa Everywhere In Sapa

You Can Find Handicrafts Everywhere In Sapa

Visiting Sapa, you can find a lot of handcrafted items such as accessories, tribal wear, dried foods, and silver. The items are unique at reasonable prices since one can only cost you less than $1. For example, you can be charged about 20,000 VND for a bracelet, which is nearly $1. For a small beautiful purse, you only have to pay around 100,000 VND (about $5).

Handicraft is always the thing you should buy in Sapa, and you can bargain with these women and kids who sell you the items. However, if you understand how much effort they put into making the items, as well as how hard it is to bring them to town for sale, you don’t want to do so. Also, the sellers are mostly children who are so lovely that you don’t want to lower the price.

Recommended address:

  • Muong Hoa shop: 025, Muong Hoa Street, Sapa Town.
  • Pho Nui Shop: 013, Cau May Street, Sapa Town
  • Sapa minorities handicraft: Cau May Street, Sapa Town.

2. Hill tribe costumes

Hill tribe costumes refer to the culture of ethnic minority people from the remote area in Sapa. They are made from brocade fabric which can also be used to make bags, embroidered jackets, and quilts. The costumes that are sold in the market look similar to what local women wear. They are all made meticulously by hand with skills passed down through generations. One single item might take days or even months to finish, represent local women skills and extreme patience. And if you want to buy these costume in Sapa, it’s worth it.

Wedding Costume Of Red Dao is one of the top things to buy in Sapa

Wedding Costume Of Red Dao

The whole process of making the costumes is hand-made, from materials to procedure. The most common material is hemp which is grown everywhere in Sapa. Hemp can be used as strong fibers to make clothes. Other popular materials are cotton and linen, which are collected from the forest. Local people also raise silkworms to make the beautiful silk thread for embroidery. Additionally, they make colors with natural ingredients, such as yellow from turmeric, blue from indigo leaves, black from a local leaf, red and brown from local trees. Although the materials are all-natural, the locals still make creative patterns and unique styles.

You can find and buy these hill tribe costumes in the markets or shops in Sapa town. They can also be found in ethnic villages such as Cat Cat or Ta Phin where locals offer in-house shopping. Today, to satisfy the complicated requirements and to adapt to the demand of customers, there are mass-produced costumes in the market along with handmade ones. Costumes that are made from mass-produced brocade are brighter with more designs, while the handmade ones have harmonious patterns and contain the high traditional value. Anyway, both are really unique and worth to buy in Sapa

Recommended address:

  • Bac Ha Market
  • Ta Phin village
  • Cat Cat village
  • Hue Silk Sapa: 24 Cau May street, Sapa town

3. Nuts and fruits

Thanks to the cooler climate than other parts of Vietnam, Sapa is where you can find special local fruits such as peach and pear. These fruits are organically grown in gardens along mountainsides. Although they have small sizes, the taste is delicious with a combination of sour, sweet, and a little bit acrid taste that you must try and buy in Sapa. It is easy to distinguish fruits here from other places as they have a thin layer of white powder covering. They are also kept in bamboo baskets to avoid bruising.

Sapa Chestnut is a tasty souvenir in Sapa

Sapa Chestnut

Additionally,  you can buy Sapa local vegetables and nuts. However, not many countries allow carrying fresh fruits and plants when traveling by plane, so consider eating them while inland as they do not contain preservatives.

Recommended address:

  • Sapa market
  • No 26 Dong Loi street, Sapa town
  • Ms. Thai: Cau May street, Sapa town

4. Specialties

Other specialties that you can buy in Sapa are herbs and packaged foods. These products are very healthy. There are many kinds of Vietnamese medicinal herbs here, including fresh and dried. The packaged medicinal herbs can be used to make tea, mix with food, add into a bath, or to treat diseases. Dried foods such as horse and buffalo meat are also popular here. They are very common gifts that tourists buy when they visit Sapa.

Herbs  are souvenirs in Sapa that Can Be Used For Many Purposes

Herbs Can Be Used For Many Purposes

Recommended address:

  • Mrs. Yen Herbal: Cat Cat village
  • Sapa market and night market
  • Tuoi Tre restaurant: no5 Fansipan street, Sapa town

5. Silver jewelry

Silver jewelry is an important part of ethnic traditional costumes which is not only the decoration for clothes and makes them become more luxurious but also used as an item which helps to avoid bad luck, devils, and protect health. The silver jewelry is also usually hand-made by ethnic people in Sapa and the most popular items are necklaces and bracelets which shapes and designs can tell the tribes apart.

The silver jewelry in Sapa is very lovely and shiny; however, tourists should note that the silver used to make these jewelry pieces has low purity which reduces their values; therefore, if you want to buy silver jewelry in Sapa, remember to bargain at least 50% before buying it as a souvenir. 

Recommended address:

  • Sapa Love Market
  • Cat Cat village
  • Sin Chai village

So, have you decided what to buy in Sapa? Whatever you buy and take home, they will be unique and you can rarely find them outside of Vietnam. These items will also remind you about special memories when you visit Sapa.

Hue Pham

(Image source: Internet)

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