The northwest region is steeped in history and provides a captivating blend of dramatic landscapes and colorful hill tribes. This stunning and isolated area has changed little over the centuries. You will have the chance not only to experience rural Vietnam behind the scenes but also to meet and talk to numerous different ethnic minority groups who will welcome you into their tranquil, unspoiled world. This is one of the most exciting adventure tours on offer in Vietnam.
Day 1. Hanoi – Mai Chau ( Meals included: Lunch – Dinner )
The tour guide and driver will pick you up at your hotel at 09:00am and head off on your 21-day trip around the north of Vietnam. Our destination today is the Mai Chau valley where we will overnight in a traditional Thai Stilt House but modern and comfortable amenities are available. Upon arrival you get to take a walking tour through the rice fields and enjoy the peace and quiet compared to Hanoi. Dinner tonight is at the home we stay in.
Day 2. Mai Chau- Moc Chau – Son La ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner )
After breakfast, you continue to go to the north to Son La and have plenty of time to stop along the way for photos of the wonderful landscape. Along the way, you get to visit Moc Chau, a highland town which produces some of Vietnam’s best tea ( you will see there are may tea plantation on the way) and milk products. Upon your arrival in Son La, you will check in to your hotel and have lunch. After lunch, you will tour the old French Prison and learn about the history of the area. You then will explore the local market and mingle with different minorities and maybe find some handicrafts of interest.
Day 3. Son La – Pha Din Pass – Dien Bien Phu ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner )
Today you will get take out breakfast for the early start and continue driving north over some impressive mountain passes with fantastic views on your way to Dien Bien Phu. The Pha Din Pass is definitely a photo stop before you arrive in Tuan Giao town. Upon arrival in Dien Bien Phu, you will begin the tour of this valley city with a visit to the battlefields that shaped current Vietnam. Start with the bunkers used by the French, Bunker Headquarters and A1 Hill where bitter fighting took place. We then visit the Dien Bien Phu Museum for an overview and relics of the battlefield.
Day 4. Dien Bien Phu – Lai Chau – Tam Duong – Sapa ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner )
Departing Dien Bien, you will be starting on one of the most beautiful drives in the whole country. Our destination is the Topas Eco-Lodge- 20km south of Sapa or stay at the hotel depend on your request. Along the drive you will pass many different minority villages and see a vast rainbow of colors from the minority dresses as Black Hmong, Black Thai, Black Dao, Lu People, and Giay minority dot the landscape . You will leave the main road after Lai Chau and take in some parts of the north not seen by many.
You will have lunch in Tam Duong (old Binh Lu) and your ascent up to the highest road pass in Vietnam, Tram Ton Pass/ Heaven Gate, begins. The beauty of the climb may make you to take several stops for photos and depending on the time of year, there will be a fine layer of fog at the pass. Continue down the other side and pass thru Sapa town on your way to the Eco Lodge. Upon arrival at the Eco Lodge, you can take a rest in your bungalow’s balcony – for those with vertigo, maybe not!
Day 5. Sapa – Muong Hoa Valley – Topas Eco-Lodge or might be hotel in centre ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch )
After breakfast, visit the daily market and see many minorities in daily shopping mode. Take time to look for handicrafts and buy directly from the maker! There is a fair chance a local Hmong girl will befriend you and inquire in perfect English about you and what you are doing, as well as try to sell you some souvenirs.
After lunch, you will head out to Muong Hoa valley. Take a short walk from Lao Chai village of Black Hmong to Ta Van village of Giay. There will be time to stop at local houses to talk with local people or take some photos. The car will pick you up at Ta Van where you will continue to drive to the isolated Eco Lodge or hotel. Stop for a picture is on your request.
Day 6. Ban Ho Valley Trek then drive to Bac Ha in the afternoon ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner )
You will be travelling by car to Su Pan from where you will begin your walk downhill through the breathtaking scenery. On the way, you will pass through the Tay Minority village of Ban Ho village where you will be able to see the stunning views of the valley and rice paddy terraces. You will have the opportunity to explore the Ban Ho village of Tay minority before crossing the suspension bridge over the river, where your guide will prepare a delicious lunch in a local house.
The walk then continues through the rice fields to the Red Dao village of Nam Toong, where you will enjoy a cup of tea before heading back to Ban Ho to take a nice swim in the river nearby. You will then take the walk uphill to Su Pan. From here you will be picked up by van and take the trip to Bac Ha. Dinner and over night in bac Ha town.
Day 7. Bac Ha – Si Ma Cai – Coc Ly – Lao Cai – Hanoi ( Meals included: Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner )
Recommended by many Guide books , Bac Ha Market is held every Sunday and is the biggest minority peoples market in Northwest Vietnam. Alive with the bright colours and extravagant costumes of the local people, here you will meet Flower Hmong (Red Hmong), Black Dao, Tay, Nung, La Chi, Phu La and other minority groups who come from far and wide to buy and sell a wide variety of goods and livestock, to exchange news and to renew friendships. In the past the market was a centre for trading horses but now that motorbikes have replaced them it is more common to see buffalo, cows, goats, fish and other livestock being traded. The market opens at around 7.30am and closes mid-afternoon, so an early start is advisable.
Lunch is in Bac Ha and we then continue to Bao Nhai, a town along the road to Lao Cai, where we board a small boat for a short excursion to the river to Coc Ly. Our arrival in Lao Cai is around sunset and you will have a look at the Friendship Bridge linking Vietnam to China and the pagoda near the Vietnamese border. You will check in to a hotel for showering before boarding the train to Hanoi and have a farewell dinner in Lao Cai. Tonight we will stay over night on train to travel to Ha Noi. The overnight train arrives very early in the morning and we will transfer you to your hotel. Finish your The North West Loops Tour.
|Grade tour||Price per person in US$||Single
|2 pax||3 – 4 pax||5 – 7 pax||8 – 10 pax|
|First Class ***||$923||$772||$653||$598||$113|
Tour price include:
- A/c private van for pick up, transfer & sightseeing as per program
- English speaking tour guide
- Train ticket Lao Cai – Ha Noi ( A/C soft sleeper -private cabin /4pax)
- All entrance fees ,Mineral water, Boat ride
- Meals as indicated in the tour program (B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; D = Dinner)
- Hotel accommodation based on Double/Twin rooms
- Overnight in a traditional Thai Minority Stilt House
- Approved the invitation letter for Viet Nam visa
Tour price excludes:
- International flight to/from Vietnam
- Tips for the guide and driver ( group 1-8 pax : 5$/day/pax – group 9-16 : 3$/day/pax)
- Vietnamese entry visa ( USD$ 45)
- Travel insurance
- Drinks & other meals not mentioned in the program
- Personal expenses