The Dao ethnic minority is incredibly diverse in all aspects of life; social and religious practices, architecture, and agriculture diverse in all aspects of life; social and religious practices, architecture, agriculture and dress. For several centuries, small, localized groups have steeled in the northern border region after crossing over from China. Dao people now number approximately six hundred thousand in Vietnam, with related groups in Laos, Thailand and China.
Long age the Dao adopted the Chinese writing system and have a substantial literary tradition. One popular legend records the origin of the twelve children. Ban Ho is worshipped by the Dao and the five colours of Dao embroidery represent their ancestor. The Dao boats a particularly striking traditional dress, the most eye catching element of which is a bulky red turban. Dao people live at all altitudes, their house stole and agricultural techniques varying accordingly. While groups living at lower laves are relatively prosperous, growing rice and raising livestock, those in the high, rocky mountains live in considerable poverty.