HOTELS IN DIEN BIEN PHU
Dien Bien Phu is a town in northwestern Vietnam. It is the capital of Dien Bien province, and is known for the events there during the First Indochina War, the Battle of Dien Bien Phu, during which the region was a breadbasket for the Viet Minh. Điện Biên Phủ lies in Muong Thanh valley, a 20-km-long and 6-km-wide basin sometimes described as "heart-shaped". It is on the western edge of Dien Bien province, of which it is the capital, and is only a short distance from the border with Laos. Until the creation of the province in 2004, it was part of Lai Chau province. The following year, the important Battle of Dien Bien Phu was fought between the Việt Minh (led by Vo Nguyen Giap), and the United States-backed French Union (led by General Navarre, successor to General Raoul Salan). The siege of the French garrison lasted fifty-seven days, from 5:30PM on March 13 to 5:30PM on May 7, 1954. The southern outpost or fire base of the camp, Isabelle, did not follow the cease-fire order and fought until the next day at 01:00AM; a few hours before the long-scheduled Geneva Meeting's Indochina conference involving the United States, the United Kingdom, the French Union and the Soviet Union. The battle was significant beyond the valleys of Dien Bien Phu. Vo Nguyen Giap's victory ended major French involvement in Indochina and led to the accords which partitioned Vietnam into North and South. Eventually, these conditions inspired American involvement in the Vietnam War. The battle of Điện Biên Phủ is described by historians as "the first time that a non-European colonial independence movement had evolved through all the stages from guerrilla bands to a conventionally organized and equipped army able to defeat a modern Western occupier in pitched battle.