The Warmth of Vietnamese Women: A Canadian Photographer’s Enchanting Encounter.

The captivating beauty of Vietnamese women, with their innate kindness, unwavering resilience, and strong leadership, enamored a Canadian photographer and captured his heart forever.


Canadian photojournalist Julie Anne Davies recently embarked on a remarkable journey through Vietnam, exploring the country by motorbike. Her travels took her through the breathtaking landscapes of the northwestern mountain region, where she was captivated by the stunning beauty of the terrain and the warmth of the local women.

A Vietnamese woman, captured by Julie Anne Davies, exudes a sense of strength and resilience as she goes about her daily life. This image showcases the beauty and spirit of Vietnamese women.

In an article titled “Through The Lens: Lessons On Love & Leadership From The Women Of Vietnam,” published on the renowned travel website Travel + Leisure, Julie reflects on her experiences and the profound impact of this journey.

As a world traveler and photographer, Julie has spent decades exploring remote and challenging destinations, always seeking to connect with local cultures and communities. Vietnam, with its diverse landscapes and rich cultural heritage, left an indelible mark on her.

From the magical light of the late afternoon transforming the terraced mountainsides into mythical scenes to the fragrant air of the buckwheat and conifer-filled forests, every breath filled her wandering spirit.

“I felt an overwhelming sense of kindness in this land,” she wrote, “and even when I rode without a set route, the sense of community and collective good among the people guided me. There is no feeling of being lost or alone when you are embraced by such warmth and hospitality.”

Julie Anne Davies captures the essence of a woman’s life in Vietnam, showcasing the beauty and strength of women in their daily routines. This image, taken in Bac Ha Market, Lao Cai Province, is a testament to the gentle yet outgoing nature of Vietnamese women.

As a photographer and a woman, Julie was drawn to exploring and documenting the lives of women in Vietnam. She found their gentle and outgoing nature captivating, making her journey both easy and enriching.

Vietnamese women left a lasting impression on Julie, and she was struck by their kindness and hospitality. They welcomed her into their homes, shared their work, and even invited her to participate in their traditional crafts.

In the northwestern province of Ha Giang, she met women from the Dao, Hmong, and Tay ethnic groups, who generously shared their skills in weaving flower wreaths and bamboo basket-making.

Similarly, in Mai Chau Plateau, Son La Province, local women encouraged her to try their wooden looms, laughing and guiding her through the ancient craft. Julie also witnessed the strength and resilience of women in their daily lives, from leading water buffaloes to rivers to drink to skillfully butchering chicken and fish in the bustling markets of Hoi An.

The majestic beauty of Ha Giang Province, captured by Denis Dep Trai Bissonnette, showcases the allure of Vietnam’s northwestern region. This image highlights the stunning landscapes that Julie Anne Davies experienced during her journey.

As Julie traveled through the northwestern mountains, she observed the daily lives of the local people. She saw women carrying heavy loads of bamboo and firewood up steep mountainsides, grandmothers sharing stories that bridged the past and the present, and young girls tending to their younger siblings while their mothers worked in the fields.

The women she encountered embodied kindness, resilience, strength, and wisdom. They were deeply connected to their traditions, their land, their families, and their surroundings. This journey through Vietnam deepened Julie’s sense of admiration and respect for women and their invaluable contributions to the world.

Motorcycle Routes from North to South Vietnam

With improved road infrastructure, there are now multiple routes to explore between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Vietnam Coracle suggests some conventional routes suitable for both novice and experienced motorcyclists:

The Classic

Distance: 2,770km

Duration: 2-4 weeks

Destinations: Ho Chi Minh City, Mui Ne, Dalat, Nha Trang, Hoi An, Hai Van Pass, Phong Nha Caves, Ninh Binh, Hanoi

Road Conditions: Paved rural & coastal back-roads, new & old highways

Navigation: Simple, with some tricky sections in central areas

Scenery: Coast, highlands, mountains, limestone formations, cities, villages, cultural sites

The Beach Bum

Distance: 2,050km

Duration: 10 days – 3 weeks

Destinations: Ho Chi Minh City, Mui Ne, Nha Trang, Phan Rang, Cam Ranh, Quy Nhon, Phong Nha Cave, Hanoi

Road Conditions: New coastal highways, paved rural back-roads

Navigation: Fairly simple, some tricky sections on the central coast

Scenery: Coast, beaches, fishing villages, farmland, beach towns, cultural sites

Ho Chi Minh Road

Distance: 1,880km

Duration: 10 days – 2 weeks

Destinations: Ho Chi Minh City, Dat Mui, Ca Mau, Tan Ky, Tuy Loan, Cao Bang, Bac Kan, Hanoi

Road Conditions: Highways & paved mountain roads

Navigation: Simple and straightforward for most of the route

Scenery: Agricultural plateaus, mountains, limestone formations, ethnic minority villages, war vestiges

The Easy Rider

Distance: 2,230km

Duration: 2-4 weeks

Road Conditions: Good highways and some back-roads

Destinations: Ho Chi Minh City, Mui Ne, Nha Trang, Quy Nhon, Dalat, Kon Tum, Hoi An, Hue, Phong Nha Cave, Ninh Binh, Hanoi

Navigation: Easy to follow, with a few tricky sections on the central coast

Scenery: Mountains, farmland, coast, cities, fishing villages, cultural sites

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