These images are a look at the life and land of Vietnam’s great north. Busy city streets are nowhere to be found. Instead, motorbikes ply their way up and down the pastoral slopes on imperfect trails while trucks wind their way though endless curvy roads, all at a snail’s pace. Work and earning a living comes from the soil. Nothing precious is given without effort. The faces here are different too. They represent different ethnic minorities with their very own unique features, cultures and attire. These hills hold great intrigue, offering sights and scenes not found anywhere else in the country, and I will make my way back soon, towards the great northern skies.

Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

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Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

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Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

Under Great Northern Skies: Sa Pa, Vietnam. Lying in the high hills on the border of Vietnam and China, grand landscapes are home to several different ethnic minority groups.

Young boys take charge of a herd of buffalo in the high rural hills around Sapa, northern Vietnam.

Young boys take charge of a herd of buffalo in the high rural hills around Sapa, northern Vietnam.

Text and Images by Quinn Ryan Mattingly