The mountainous town of Sapa is expected to welcome as many as 10,000 visitors on the upcoming National Day holidays this weekend, said Lao Cai Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism director Tran Huu Son.
Mr. Son added that the main factor contributing to the increasing number of visitors is the expanding homestay services; about 40% of visitors had registered tours to Sapa's villages, a 20% increase compared to the same period in 2010
Currently there are 100 families in Sapa who make the living from the homestay service. It is predominantly located in the communes of Ban Ho, Cat Cat, Ta Van and Ta Phin. Mr. Son also said that the homestay service has brought the families more incomes than other traditional jobs, especially when many foreign visitors are more inclined to stay at ethnic people’s houses in villages to get an insight into tribal life.
Situated in a picturesque part of the northern province of Lao Cai, Sapa was the site of a French resort during colonial times, and has since become one of the most popular travel destinations in the country.