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History

History of Sapa

Sapa has been known about its pure, temperate atmosphere and beautiful landscapes. In 1909, a convalescence and medical treatment area was built up. In 1917, a tourism office was founded in Sapa and one year later, the French people started to build up their first villas.

Lying at 38 kilometers far from Lao Cai Township and 376 kilometers from Ha Noi, the hanging garden Sapa was discovered by a Western person in the end of the 19th century. To reach this place, people can follow two ways: one way from Lao Cai Township and another from Binh Lu (Lai Chau), by different means of transporting like trains, cars or motorbikes.

In the 40s, the French people projected and made Sapa become an ideal place for resting and convalescing with full equipments and facilities like good hydroelectricity system, water providing station, governor general edifice, chief envoy building, coal department, treasury, forest management system, asphalted roads, and especially more than 200 villas with the Gothic architectural style in the 19th century of Europe in the central of the township, lying among peach forests and samu trees. This has brought the township the form of a European city.

Staying at the height of 1,500 meters above the sea level, Sapa used to be a small high land with the name of Lo Suoi Tung. The current name Sapa originated from Pekinese language. The word “Sapa” means “sand bank”. This place was named Sapa because in the old time, there was only a sand bank where the local residents organized kermis before a township was established.

Sapa has been known about its pure, temperate atmosphere and beautiful landscapes. In 1909, a convalescence and medical treatment area was built up. In 1917, a tourism office was founded in Sapa and one year later, the French people started to build up their first villas. In 1920, the railway Ha Noi - Lao Cai was completed and Sapa then was thought of as the summer capital of the North.