Our next stop after Mai Chau, during our 2 week trip in Vietnam, was Pu Luong Nature Reserve! Pu Luong Nature reserve was a little hard to get to so we decided to spend two days here over the Christmas holiday. Pu Luong was absolutely gorgeous. We wanted to go a little off the beaten path and was able to find a great ecolodge with the help of friends.
Pu Luong is home to many ethnic Thai tribes and we stayed at an ecolodge run by a local Thai family. We spent two great days relaxing by the waterfalls, hiking, biking, and gorging ourselves on home cooked meals.
Ban Hieu Garden Lodge
The ecolodge we stayed at was called Ban Hieu Garden Lodge. It was definitely on the luxury side of homestays and was such an amazing experience. Our friends that recommended this place booked through a travel agency. We had difficulty finding this place online as well so we also booked through a travel agency and paid a premium because of it. It’s now available to book through online here. It was a bit challenging to get to. We had a printed out map from our travel agency and had a driver from Mai Chau. The roads were almost nonexistent so we had to deal with a frustrated driver with a large truck – not a good idea. I highly recommend hiring a driver to get you as far as possible then you can call the ecolodge to pick up bags on their scooters.
I think it’s worth every penny for the bungalows. They are incredibly comfortable and the bathroom was pretty luxe in my opinion. There were no other guests over the days we stayed so we had the entire place to ourselves. We enjoyed home-cooked breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday with the family and even got to enjoy some homemade Banana wine!! It was probably my favorite part of Vietnam.
Hiking and Biking
The main activities in Pu Luong are probably hiking and biking. We went hiking and biking around but spent most of our time relaxing by the water and reading. The owners of our homestay had such friendly dogs that accompanied us for hours as we hiked around and peeked into the many small villages.
During our time here last year, more and more roads were being constructed as well. I’d love to visit again before it gets too popular as it becomes more accessible to tourists 🙂