Mu Cang Chai Weather and Climate

Mu Cang Chai in Yen Bai Vietnam is famed for the majestic rice terraces. Carefully planning a tour to Vietnam and Mu Cang Chai for photography, you may like to know how is the weather and climate in Mu Cang Chai during the rice season. Are there a lot of rains and floods in Mu Cang Chai in the time the rice turns into golden colors? Are the rice terraces all flooded and is it not possible to take impressive photographs of them in their best colors?

Golden rice terraces at Mu Cang Chai, Yen Bai, VietnamYes, the rice season is the rainy season in Mu Cang Chai and in the far north of Vietnam. The wet rice needs water and the only available source of water in the mountains is rain water.

The rainy season itself is fine as it rains and stops every day or every few days. That's why you can still see plenty of photos of the golden rice terraces in full sunshine. It is not expected to have floods in the rice terraces at Mu Cang Chai as they are high in the mountains and the higher mountains than them are covered in dense forests still. The rice terraces have been there for hundreds of years and they themselves slow down the water flow. Flash floods in the mountains are normally caused by incessant rains (7 days and more) on barren mountains.

There have been floods at Mu Cang Chai Township as it is on a very low-altitude ground compared to the steep and high barren mountains which surrounds the township. When it rains, the water from the surrounding mountains quickly flow to lower ground, and the township is like a reservoir. The more it rains the more powerful the flow and the flash floods and landslides are possible results. The town is 10-15km far from the photography area at La Pan Tan and Che Cu Nha though.

Amazing rice terraces at Mu Cang Chai, Yen Bai, VietnamHaving said that it is advisable to be wary of the unpredictable weather conditions nowadays given that you'll have to travel for hundreds of kilometers to Mu Cang Chai on mountainous roads. It is recommended to check the weather forecast 5-10 days before your trip to Mu Cang Chai. Should you hear of possible upcoming tropical depressions or typhoons in the weather forecast/warnings, it is mandatory to cancel your tour to Mu Cang Chai. This is because typhoons/tropical depressions in the mountains in the far north of Vietnam often bring about long-lasting rains. While the weather is unpredictable, the dangerous weather (if any) at Mu Cang Chai can be foreseen with good accuracy 7-10 days before your trip.

If you plan your tour to Mu Cang Chai yourself then it is more flexible for you to change the travel itinerary in case of unfavorable weather forecast. Should you book your tour via a local tour operator or travel agency, then they normally would advise you take an alternative trip else pay you back a refund.

Mu Cang Chai rice terraces
Mu Cang Chai rice terraces

Be smart in planning your Mu Cang Chai tour and be flexible in your decision should circumstances require, you’ll be sure to have a great time and wonderful photographic journey at Mu Cang Chai then. Good luck and have a great photographic experience amid the golden terraces of Mu Cang Chai!