As the Lunar New Year approaches, the village of Quang Phu Cau on the outskirts of Ha Noi works feverishly to produce fragrant incense sticks for the Tet celebrations. In January, when production ramps up to meet demand from the country and neighboring countries such as China, India, and Malaysia, the village produces tons of sticks and becomes magically colorful, making it a must-see for lovers of scenic landscapes.
Ancestor worship involves the use of incense. It is the only means of communication between the living and the dead worlds. Each batch of incense is tailored to the tastes of the regions where the sticks are sold.
Making incense is a time-consuming process that requires workers to split the bamboo into splints, dry them, then feed them into machines to create sticks before dying them.
The village of Quang Phu Cau, also known as the “Village of Incense,” is about 40 kilometers from Ha Noi and is one of the 1000 villages specialized in craft striving to preserve centuries of tradition.