Hanoi to Sapa & the hill tribes of Vietnam

Trip ideas
Duration (in days): 4

From: Hanoi

To: Hanoi

From

£325

Exc. International flights (per person based on 2 adults, 2 children) 
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Overview

This 4 day trip begins with an overnight train from Hanoi to Sapa which will bring you into the mountainous north-west of Vietnam to the region of Sapa. Discover this intriguing area, resplendent with lush, green terraced hillsides and lofty mountains, ripe for trekking. Visit several local hill tribes of Vietnam who will welcome you in, for a unique glimpse into their traditional way of life, crafts and agriculture – a real insight into local life.

Starting and ending in Hanoi makes this Sapa tour a great side trip, travelling by overnight train, and experiencing a rural and mountainous side to Vietnam directly from a busy and hectic city.

This itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.

Highlights 

  • Travel from Hanoi to Sapa by sleeper train
  • Uncover the local hill tribes of Vietnam
  • Take in panoramic views over terraced hills and mountains
  • Visit local houses and see traditional crafts and farming techniques
  • Take a trekking tour through local villages

Itinerary

 

Itinerary in brief:

  • Overnight train from Hanoi to Lao Cai (the gateway to Sapa)
  • 2 nights Sapa

 

Day 1: Hanoi - Lao Cai   

Your trip begins in the evening with a transfer to Hanoi train station, where you will board the overnight Hanoi to Sapa train and travel in a soft sleeper compartment to Lao Cai, the gateway to the Sapa region. 


Day 2: Lao Cai - Sapa     

Upon arrival at the border town of Lao Cai, there will be time for breakfast before driving to visit a local market.

After your time at the market, there is a short walk to a hill tribe village. Here you’ll have the opportunity to visit local homes to get a better understanding of the tribe’s daily life as well as their culture and traditions.

Later in the day you’ll be driven through the mountains to the former hill station town of Sapa, a base for visitors to this mountainous northwest region. In the terraced hills and mountains, the expanse of green landscape is dotted with flashes of colour from the hill tribe population; be it dyed fabrics, scarlet turbans or embroidered clothing, it is a fascinating and colourful place to be. 

You will spend your first of two nights in your Sapa hotel this evening. 


Day 3: Sapa – Ban Khoang – Ta Giang Phinh      

After breakfast, you’ll depart Sapa for a thirty minute drive to Ban Khoang Valley, with breath-taking views of Hoag Lien Mountain Range.

Your first stop is at Lu Khau Village in Ban Khoang Valley, which is home to Blue Hmong and Red Zao minorities. By exploring the village on foot you will get to meet friendly locals and learn about their colourful culture and lifestyle in the Vietnamese countryside.

A short drive will bring you to Ta Giang Phinh Valley, where you’ll stop for a local lunch. After your meal, take a leisurely walk through the charming valley on a winding village path and is home to the Blue Hmong ethnic minority. While at the village you will get the chance to see villagers tending to their crops with buffalos and see some handicraft workshops.

A late afternoon transfer will take you back to Sapa where the remainder of the day is free for you to explore at your own pace or simply relax at a local bar or at your hotel.


Day 4:Sapa – Hang Da – Sau Chua - Hanoi

It is an early start this morning, as your guide will accompany you on a morning trekking tour to Hang Da and Sau Chua villages. Here, the Black Hmong people continue to live a traditional way of life despite Sapa’s development and increase in visitors.

The walk takes you along quiet narrow pathways thought the countryside and past the scattered and modest houses of the Black Hmong people.

You will get back to your hotel by noon, in time for lunch (not included) or any last minute souvenir purchases.

Your time in Sapa has come to an end and it is time to board your bus back to Hanoi, where you will arrive in the evening to continue with your onward travels.


 

Info

The climate in Vietnam varies dramatically depending on the region you are visiting and is incredibly diverse with weather ranging from snow and frost in the northern hills to tropical conditions in the south. There are two monsoons in Vietnam; the winter monsoon arrives between October and March and brings cold and wet winters to the north and dry and warm conditions in the south. From April to October the summer monsoon brings humid weather to the whole country apart from those regions sheltered by mountains. For the best balance we recommend visiting in either April, May or October.

This itinerary is purely a suggestion, and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you.

What's included: 

  • 3 nights accommodation (2 nights in a hotel, 1 night overnight train)
  • Train tickets based on shared cabins
  • Daily breakfast
  • Lunch on Day 2 & 3
  • English speaking guide
  • Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle
  • Entrance fees for mentioned visits

Not included: 

  • Meals other than mentioned
  • Services other than those mentioned
  • International and domestic flights
  • Laundry, telephone calls and expenditures of a personal nature
  • Tips & gratuities

Accommodation

2 nights in 3* standard accommodation. Hotels in this category include:

  • Sunny Mountain

Plus one night on an overnight sleeper train

 

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