(5 days, 5 nights Middle Roads Of Vietnam 4×4 Tour)
Booking code: OV09
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This is a more challenging and remote alternative to the Northwest loop. In fact, this incredible route takes you through verdant vistas and mountain ranges, along lakes and rivers, and through the jungle and tiered paddy fields rising and falling as far as the eye can see. Along the way, you’ll be hosted by different hill tribes wearing amazingly elaborate and colourful costumes. These are people who have been living in the hills for a centuries, and in reality, their ways of life have little changed from generation to generation.
Day 1: Ha Noi – Nghia Lo (~210 km, ~7 hrs)
07:00 – Depart from Hanoi through the Red River Delta into the mountains of Yen Bai province and then on to Nghia Lo. The area is home to Thai, Nung, H’mong, La Ha and Ma ethnic minority peoples. Overnight in a hotel or guest house.
Day 2: Nghia Lo – Than Uyen (~150 km, ~5 hrs)
Exploring the local market in Nghia Lo is a good chance to shop for local handicrafts. In fact, today’s drive is along an exciting stretch of road which climbs over the mountain pass to Mu Cang Chai past H’mong, La Ha and Dzao hill tribe communities. At the bottom of the valley is the town of Than Uyen. Overnight in a hotel or guest house.
Day 3: Than Uyen – Sa Pa (~100 km, ~3 hrs)
The road follows the Hoang Lien Son Mountain Range and winds through tea plantations and rice terraces as it hugs the Nam Ma River. In general, this stunning valley is dotted with Tay, Dzao and H’mong hill tribe villages. In addition, 1,900-meter Tram Ton Pass to Sa Pa is located in the breathtaking Hoang Lien Son Mountains. After lunch, a 3-hour trek to Ta Van village for a home stay and savoury food with your Dzay hosts.
Day 4: Trekking
Trek along rice terraces, through a lush bamboo forest and past local villages. Then stop to enjoy a picnic lunch. After lunch, trek to Ban Ho for an insightful night with your Tay hosts, where you’ll sleep in the cosy loft complete with comfy mattress and also a mosquito net.
Day 5: More trek
Short trek to the dirt road for the jeep ride back to Sa Pa. Finally, explore the town or go shopping in the market for local produce. At 17:00 take the bus to Lao Cai.
21:20 – Night train back to Ha Noi (soft sleeper with air conditioning).
05:00 – Trip ends at Ha Noi Railway Station.
* You can choose to ride from Sapa to Hanoi with a stop at a Dao village near Thac Ba Lake in 7 days, 6 nights.
* Offroad vehicle options: Russian UAZ, Japanese TOYOTA Land Cruiser or NISSAN Patrol or MITSUBISHI Pajero.
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