Red Dao Herbal Baths: A Complete Guide

Herbal bath, a traditional healing tradition, which reduces bone and joint pain, is also used as a therapeutic treatment for postpartum women.

Red Dao Herbal Baths: A Complete Guide
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Bathing with medicinal leaves of the Dao people has become a popular treatment in Sa Pa. This is a special remedy made with more than twenty types of tobacco leaves in the high mountains of the Dao people. It reduces bone and joint pain. It’s also used as a therapeutic treatment for postpartum women.

Let’s learn more about the Red Dao Sapa herbal baths and why they’re considered an important tourist product of the region.

What is the Herbal Bath of the Red Dao people?

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Bathing with medicinal leaves is very popular among Vietnamese ethnic communities in general and within the Dao people in particular.

For the Kinh in the Northern region, bathing babies with the local leaves is believed to make their bodies healthy and avoid skin diseases. The same goes for the Red Dao people of the region. They also have their herbal remedies that are thought to carry different effects.

The Red Dao people have held the custom of bathing with medicinal leaves since ancient times. On the last day of the year, they will go to the forest to collect medicinal leaves for bathing and to welcome the new year.

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Some of the main herbs used in this medicinal bath are aromatic ginger, Chinese banyan, elderberry, clematis uncinata, a medicinal plant native to the area known as elsholtzia penduliflora, the evergreen litsea cubeba and others.

The medicinal herb recipe is used to prevent headaches, hoarseness, fatigue, bodily stress caused by physical strain.


What is the effect of bathing with medicinal leaves?

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Bathwater is drawn at between 37 and 40 degrees celsius. It is a bit hot if you're not used to it. But the treatment’s effect is pronounced across all ages.

  • Children bathing with medicinal leaves leave with cool, rosy skin. It can effectively treat heat rash.
  • For the elderly, it will bring a feeling of comfort, relaxation, better sleep, and eliminate the odor of old age and stronger bones.
  • For men, it is used to increase vitality, reduce muscle pain, stress, and can even mitigate fatigue after drinking.
  • Women bathing with medicinal leaves of the Red Dao people help their skin be smooth, white, and pink. They may feel increased health and are generally refreshed and relaxed overall.
  • New mothers who are bathed in this treatment may be able to avoid postpartum diseases and depression.

Because of the effects of the medicinal herbs, users may experience faintness or lightheadedness, which is normal. Leaving the bath in case the feelings intensify should return one to a normal state.

The baths are not recommended for those who are pregnant or menstruating.


Where can I bathe with medicinal leaves?

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There are many places to bathe with medicinal leaves in Sapa. However, you should choose carefully and choose a reputable and clean facility.

Sapa Green (Green's Spa)

This is the first place to build a sauna and bath with medicinal leaves of the Red Dao ethnic group in Sa Pa.

Coming to the facility, visitors will enjoy a full range of unique services such as massage, Dao medicine bath, sauna, herbal foot baths, and more.

One of the points that make Sapa Green Hotel different from other establishments is the quality of bath medicine. The mixture takes the color of red wine. It is the standard recipe of the Dao ethnic group.

Dao's Center

One of the most prestigious places to bathe, this location sources leaves grown and processed directly by the Red Dao people at home, so the quality of bath leaves is guaranteed.

The bath leaf recipe at Dao's Center is made according to the traditional bathing remedies ensuring the integrity of the Dao's medications.

Thao Nguyen medicine bath facility

The Thao Nguyen facility provides visitors with a medicinal bath service in a small spa facility. This is a long-standing medicinal bath facility in Sapa, the address is located right at the old Sapa bus station, so it is very popular with tourists.

Phuong Lan herbal baths will satisfy visitors with many years of experience in the family service industry and professional staff.

The minus point here is the quality of massage chairs and beds. Many are outdated.


Ready to soak it all in?

Photo by Vietnam Tourism

Visitors love bathing with medicinal leaves of the Dao people because it brings comfort and ease, dispels fatigue, and is very beneficial for health. Try a medicinal bath in Sapa when you visit!