You will spend your Lovely authentic weekend in the north – west of Vietnam and enjoy its atmosphere and landscapes. Trekking in Sapa along roads snaking through high passes, journey through fertile valleys, see incredible rice terraces and visit colorful ethnic – minority markets. Sapa trekking through some ethnic villages and join in local activities.”
Enjoy the stunning landscapes of the northern mountainous areas of Vietnam
Trekking in Sapa Northern Vietnam to experience the local life of ethnic minority groups as well as to enjoy fresh air and peaceful landscape
Explore Sapa Town and visit traditional market of colorful handicrafts.
Interact with the friendly local people and enjoy some cuisines.
Save Time - Save Money. How?
Day 1: Friday: Meeting at station, get the train to Lao Cai – Sapa
Our guide will pick you up at the train station and take the night train to Lao Cai
Today useful note(s)
To make it safe, you should lock the door of cabin when you are inside.
If you require a private cabin, please feel free to give us a request.
Overnight on train
Day 2: Saturday: Lao Cai – trekking Lao Chai Ta Van village – seeing indigo dyeing by H’mong local people.
Arrival in Lao Cai, our driver picks you up at train station. Take a quick shower and enjoy breakfast in a local restaurant before transfer uphill the Hoang Lien Son mountain range.
Sapa is one of the most interesting sightseeing in the North of Vietnam, with the height around 1500-1650m above sea level and the most breathtaking hill stations in Vietnam. It reflects the signature of French architecture and colorful hill tribal cultures. This is home to stunning mountain landscapes, verdant rice terraces, unique stilt villages and Indochina peak, the Fansipan. Travelers are invited to enjoy the best of Sapa all the year round with different taste of seasons and exciting outdoors.
Lao Chai is a village of Black Hmong ethnic people. Here we will discover their daily life and how they make their traditional clothes, handicraft, indigo... We will visit the biggest valley which offers to you the best views of the golden rice terrace field in Vietnam. After the Lao Chai village, we walk to Ta Van, a village of Giay people. It is a small group of ethnic people living in Vietnam, they still preserve a rich and traditional culture. We will enjoy the lunch with a local family in one of the beautiful traditional houses located on their rice paddy fields.
You will be able to rest and enjoy a delicious lunch prepared by your guide in a local house. - In the afternoon, continue to walking through a bamboo forest to Giang Ta Chai, a Red Dao ethnic minority village. Moreover, you can explore the life of ethnic minorities; admire the spectacular natural scenery with the terraced rice fields. Visit Sa Pa’s ancient rock with engraved images, both big and small - unique patterns of the ancients.
Experience the activities of H’mong local people. They buy the yarn at a local market; they still typically weave and embroider the fabric themselves. Many H'mong, though, still cultivate and dye, using local indigo plants, the cotton and hemp from which they make their clothing. Their many crafts, their embroidery is stunning.
Take a rest nearby a waterfall to refresh, enjoy the fresh air before climbing uphill to a road where the car is ready for your journey to Topas Ecolodge.
Enjoy the landscape of Muong Hoa Valley (Sapa Valley Trekking) and the trek through Hmong Village and Red Dao Village.
Visit Thac Bac, Silvery waterfalls, one of the most popular tourist attractions of the neighborhood. It is located about a half hour from Sapa town that offers stunning views over surrounding mountains and lush forests belonging to Hoang Lien National Park.
You can trek up Hàm Rong (Dragon’s Jaw) Mountain. There are several well-tended flower gardens along the way. Going through two Heaven Gates, you will get the top of Ham Rong Mountain. Up here, you will have sensational spectacular views of the Hoang Lien Son Mountains, including Vietnam’s highest peak - Mount Fansipan
Today useful note(s)
Make sure you have plenty of water, and that you know where fresh water is available along your Sapa trekking.
Always carry a well-equipped first aid kit.
Overnight in Topas Ecolodge
Day 3: Sunday: Bac Ha colorful market – take night train to Hanoi
Sapa adventure (continue)
Bac Ha market is located about 76 km from the train station, Bac Ha is a remote district of Lao Cai province. Bac Ha market which takes place every Sunday is famous for the originality and authenticity that the traders still preserve. It is not simply a place for buy and sell but also an opportunity for people from different ethnicities to come and meet, for relatives to reunite after a long time missing, for women to demonstrate their beautiful handmade traditional costumes and even for youngsters to find their dates. To reach the market, many ethnic vendors have to walk a long distance passing mountains and hills. Yet the distance has never discouraged them from joining the Sunday colorful market.
The main square where trading takes place is divided into smaller section, specializing in a particular product such as handicrafts, food, horse, poultry and blacksmith. Each has its own trait and worth joining. The town itself is rather dull for any country surfer but if you want a relaxing place to get away from the tourist crowd in Sapa, or simply fond of taking unique photos, Bac Ha can be your option. Most tourists get return tickets to Bac Ha by contacting the enormous number of tour companies in Sapa or Lao Cai. Tours to Sapa from Hanoi may or may not include the trip to Bac Ha market so check well in advance. Buses offered by these tours companies are of much better quality though with moderately higher price. It’s worth investing for the road is curvy and challenging, even after significant improvement.
Have lunch in a local restaurant.
You will then start a short walk to Trung Do village which belongs to the Tay minority. Tay villages are always set up at the foot of a mountain or along a stream and are named after a mountain, a field, or a river. Each village contains about 15-20 households. A large village is divided into many small hamlets. The houses are built on stilts or level with the ground. Stop by a traditional Tay house for a cup of tea before taking a boat cruise upstream the Chay River. The scenery is very beautiful on both sides of the river. The boat trip will end at Coc Ly where your vehicle will be waiting for you for the journey to Lao Cai Station.
You can enjoy some famous local cuisines such as “mèn mén” (steamed corn wheat), “thắng cố” (horse soup) and corn wine. They are bought in Sapa market or some restaurants.
Buy local food or handicrafts as gift for your relatives.
Today useful note(s)
Make sure you have plenty of water, and that you know where fresh water is available along your trekking.
Bring low shoes with comfortable cloth
Check your luggage before moving to train station.
Hotel accommodation in twin/ double sharing basis with daily breakfast.
Door to door pick-up/transfer service with private air-conditioned vehicles.
Experienced English speaking guide.
Meals as stated in the itinerary (B: Breakfast/ L: Lunch/ D: Dinner)
1 small bottle of water per person on day trip
Return train ticket Hanoi – Lao Cai – Hanoi on 4 berths sharing/cabin
Entrance fee and Sightseeing tickets
One by one care service 24/7 during the trip.
Services charges and Government taxes
Meals, Beverages which do not specify in the program
Personal Expenses, tips and gratuities
Prepare 2 passport size photos for Stamping visa at airport on arrival
Itinerary can be run in reserve
Check in time is normally at 14.00; check out time is normally at 12.00. Early check in or check out is upon on availability of the hotels.
LIST OF RECOMMEND ACCOMMODATION
Sapaly/ Orient/ King/ Livitran Express
Kid < 5 years old: Free of charge (share services with Adult) Children Policy:
Kid 5-10 years old: 50% Adult Kid >10 years old: 100% Adult price
* S.R.S: Single Room Supplement
*Victoria Express Train option is upon on request.
* At the time of quotation, Travel Sense Asia reserves the right to adjust prices to take account of unusual movements in currency markets, hotel and transport costs as a result of inflationary price pressures in oil and other commodity markets.
This was a hands on trip covering cooking, on the farms, walking, fishing, meeting the locals and dining with them and several visits to the theater plus. Julie (Hien) organized everything in great detail leaving nothing to chance. Her recommendation to hire an SUV for greater comfort and ease with all the luggage was most appreciated. For most of the trip we had a guide as well as the driver. During the trip Julie was always available if we needed assistance of any kind, and while we were organizing the trip Julie was very prompt with her emails.... Read more
We were a group of 3 couples (age 65-71). Started our contact with Julie from Travelsense a year in advance. Just came back a week ago from a 3 weeks tour of Vietnam and Cambodia. The service we have received from Julie was outstanding! She had been in touch with us every single day. She was flexible in changing itinerary according to our requests during the trip... Read more
Julie (Hien) helped us with a 2-week tour to Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh City and Siem Reap(Angkor). She is very effective and answered all questions promptly and the whole trip went smoothly...... Read more
Useful information for travel in Vietnam
What’s the difference between 3, 4, and 5 -star hotels?
We usually arrange centrally-located and Western-standard hotels. Five-star hotels are usually palatial with huge lobbies and comfortable rooms, their standards not quite matching the best of Paris or New York, but very close. Four-star hotels have quality facilities, but not as luxurious as five-star hotels. Three-star hotels meet the needs of most Westerners, but breakfasts have less choice. We also recommend some courtyard hotels or Vietnamese-style hotels with local features and architecture. These hotels have a good ranking, or positive feedback from our customers, and TripAdvisor. Usually, hotels in big cities, small cities, and rural areas are a bit different, even if they have the same star level. We try to use the best available hotel in each place.
Passport & Visa Requirements
You may be required for visa to Vietnam. Please check the list of countries which need visa to Vietnam in this links: Who need visa to Vietnam? Vietnam Visa is issued by Vietnam Embassy in your country or “Visa on arrival”. Travel Sense Asia will offer free visa to Vietnam for you (except some difficult countries). You will need one clear page (per visa) in a full passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond the date of your departure from Vietnam.
As currency exchange rates in Vietnam fluctuate, we suggest you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com or www.vietcombank.com In 2015 the USD & VND has been around 22.500VND per USD. There are many ATM machines that accept both Visa and Master card, but these are limited to cities. We also recommend the use of cash and travelers checks in USD currency. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops, but they may charge a 2–4% transaction fee.
It is customary to tip service providers in the travel industry in Asia, depending on the service. Tipping is expected — though not compulsory — and shows an expression of satisfaction with the people who have assisted you on your tour. Recommendations for tipping drivers (3 USD per person per day as a guideline) and local guides (8 USD per person per day as a guideline) would depend on the quality and length of the service. In additionally, you will sometimes use rolling boat, cyclo riding, porter which you should give a small tip to these local people.
Eating is an important part of your Vietnam experience. Generally, breakfasts are included in the itinerary and offered by hotels. Travel Sense Asia recommend local Vietnam restaurants that are popular with local people for lunch. You can order dishes with the help of your guide. We usually leave dinner for your own choice — Western food can be found in most large cities. If you are vegetarian or you are looking for e.g. halal food, please feel free to inform your travel advisor, who can arrange a restaurant to fit your needs.
We use comfortable sedans or vans with air-conditioning. The comfort and safety of our customers is of utmost importance, so we ensure that all of the vehicles that we use are well maintained and always very clean. Our drivers take pride in their vehicles. Our car and van are always available space for a comfortable trip. Luggage - All clients are limited to two items of luggage each; a suitcase with a maximum weight of 20kg and one piece of hand luggage with a maximum weight of 7kg. It is essential that your luggage is lockable. Please note that authorities will only allow bottles onto the aircraft if they have been checked in as main baggage. Bottles in hand luggage may be confiscated.
What are train conditions like in Vietnam? A soft sleeper is recommended for overnight and long-distance travel. Each soft sleeper compartment is enclosed, and contains four bunks, two on each side. The bunks are wider and more comfortable than hard sleepers, with decent bedding. Soft sleeper compartments may vary between trains. For route Hanoi – Laocai – Hanoi, it also has VIP cabin with 2 soft sleeper beds, please make quest if you prefer a private cabin. You may have both over-head storage and under-bed storage, or just under-bed storage. Fastest train is about 70kph. The railways is small here and it’s not as comfortable as train in developed countries.
In Vietnam the standard voltage is 220 V. The standard frequency is 50 Hz. The power sockets that are used are of type A / C / G. Below you find pictures of these power sockets and corresponding plugs. And we provide more information about the voltage and frequency. Climate - You will find a complete packing list and a helpful climate chart in the ‘Suggested Packing List’, which is included in the pre-departure information link sent within your deposit documentation. Seasonal weather patterns can be quite unpredictable. Up to the minute information on worldwide weather can be found on www.weather.com.
If you’re looking to travel to Vietnam or any country in South-east Asia but don’t know where to start, I’d be happy to use my experiences to determine your perfect destinations. My motto in work is bringing my passion for travel combined with dedication, providing suitable packages and exceptional service to our clients. You will definitely have memorable times when traveling with us, Travel Sense Asia. Don’t delay, speak to us today!
Chloe - Travel Expert
I think travel is one of the best forms of education, it motivates you to get out of your comfort zone, to be always curious and to appreciate other cultures. Keeping this in focus, I determine to deliver the best travel services to assist your journey of exploring the majestic beauty of Southeast Asia. Our tour packages are tailored to suit your needs and budget plan since we believe travel is fantastically individual experience. Don’t be hesitate to contact us for further information and to fully embrace the journey travel!
Ryan Mac - Travel Expert
Hello, my name is Pera Fu, travel consultant for Travel Sense Asia, a local travel agency in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand. With great passion of travel and Italian language, I would like to bring you the beautiful experiences during Vietnam and Cambodia tour: daily life, different culture, friendly people. Especially, our Vietnam is a special country with wild nature, brilliant white beaches, exquisite dishes such as “Phở Bò” – beef soup with rice noodles, “Nem rán” – fried rolls, egg coffee. Welcome!!!
Pera – Travel Consultant
Travel opens your heart, broadens your mind and fills your life with stories to tell. Our mission is to bring you authentic local experiences in the most convenience and satisfaction with the best price. Don’t hesitate to allow Travel Sense Asia to show you how to travel like a local. We’re always looking forward to being your travel mate in Indochina!
Lily – Travel Consultant
I have a dream from my childhood that I wish to travel all around the world when I grow up. My wish partly did come true, I have had the chance to make some leaps to all destinations in Vietnam and few other Indochina countries. Now, I set aside my dream and stay in office to be a travel consultant to support you – my dear customer to have your own vacation without the nerve to spend too much time prepare for it. I can assure you that we can bring you the best vacation, find you the most suitable route and give you the excellent service we can provide. With our expert experience, you can give your trust on us – Contact us now to have a worry-free vacation.
Clyde – Travel Consultant
The best itinerary is the one which customer likes. I always think that your trip should be a personal experience and based on your interest. I take into account what you like and what you do not like to create the perfect trip. Just only for you
Kurt – Travel Consultant
Hi everyone! My name is Linh. “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” It is a quote of Saint Augustine that I really like. With a passion for travel, I decided to work in Travel Sense Asia team as a travel consultant to share my experiences with all of you and I am always ready to take you on a dream trip.
Erica – Travel Consultant
My name is Phong and 24 year-olds. Tour guide was my dream when I was in high school. It was to give impulse to apply Tourism University in Hue for learning more about Tour guide job. I am also love travel to many destinations and communicate with all friends over the world. I try to learn more and more new things to make me become an knowledgeable guide to share all the things I know for my guests and learn interesting things from them. I believe that tour guide is greatest job for me from now and in the future.
Nguyen Van Phong – Expert Guide
I am a hungry guide in learning and changing myself every day. Friendly, patient, smiling, flexible in touring. Working as tourguide for 10 years, I am ready to learn and ready to share. I am passionate in traveling and guiding my tourist. I am still much eager on duty to introduce about Vietnam and make the memorable trip for the travelers from all over the world.
La Hong Hue (Tommy) – Expert Guide
My passion is travel, bike, show history to my clients. My mission is bring them true value of the trip, local experiences.
Do Ngoc Minh (Min) – Expert Guide
I have developed my passion for guiding since 5 years ago. For me, this is a gob job with new knowledges and opportunities that approach me at work. I feel comfortable being a guide and i have planned to learn more in near future.
Nguyen Quang Minh – Expert Guide
My name is Son Tran, and im a licensed tourguide from Hanoi, Vietnam. I like this fulltime job personally, and as a result, fully dedicate to it. Being a tour guide, I have opputunities to meet people from all corners of the globe and show them around my lovely motherland, visit famous landscapes, share the glorious history and mysterious tales, or get to know better their cultures. Isnt that awesome?
Son Tran (Shaun) – Expert Guide
Xin chào! I am Nguyen Hong Khanh ( Can) and my surname is Nguyen. I’m living in Da Nang and I am really proud and passionate about my country, my people and my culture. I speak English extremely well. Educated at Da Nang University specifically to study English. I have translated complex English/Vietnamese for concerns including National Scientific & Technology Centre of Canberra, ExxonMobil, the US Air National Guard and CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation).