A concerned local in a remote village of Vietnam has put up the only homestay in the area. Trung HoàngĐức hopes that tourism brought about through the Tho Homestay would uplift the lives of the Tay minority in the Na Rang village as well as preserve their ethnic culture.
Backpacker Alfred Salkeld found himself the only tourist in Na Rang, a remote village in northern Vietnam approximately 89 km/55 mi from the capital of Hanoi. He spent three weeks in the area where he stayed at the Tho Homestay, the village's only homestay to date, and lived with 21-year-old Trung and Trung's grandparents. "I left home because I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life," Salkeld told INSIDER. "Trung returned home because he had a clear vision of how to help his whole community."
Salkeld discovered the Tho Homestay through Workaway, a site that enables travelers to snag free food and accommodation in exchange for services rendered. Trung's post revealed that he hopes to bring in travelers to their remote village so that they can see for themselves the actual lives of the Tay minority, explore the natural scenery of rural Vietnam as well as help with the homestay business or teach English to the locals. Through the tourists' presence, Trung believed that the villagers will have a glimpse of a better future and a broader career path to raise their standards of living.
Since he's already been snapping photos and videos through his travel blog, Salkeld volunteered to take proper photos of the Tho Homestay to promote the business. He captured the traditional stilt house stuck in the middle of a lush green backdrop, the one all-purpose room with bamboo flooring and the open windows with a view. He also took snapshots of Trung's household members and snippets of the simple living in Vietnam's rural village. For only 80,000 Vietnamese Dong (about $3.50) per night with breakfast already included, one can slip away to the serenity and beauty of Na Rang.