This 7 days Sapa best trekking package takes you to such hill tribes villages as Sin Chai village, Cat Cat village, Y Linh Ho village, Lao Hang Chai village, Seo Mi Ty village, Den Thang village, Ta Trung Ho village, Nam Ngan village, Nam Sang village, Ban Sai village, Nam Nhiu village, Nam Than village, Sin Chai village, Nam Lang village, Ta Thang village. Enjoy spectacular landscapes and wild nature of Hoang Lien National Park and Muong Hoa, Nam Sai and Suoi Thau valleys. Experience the unique culture, custom and way of living of the Black Hmong, Red Zao, Tay and Xa Pho ethnic groups with memorable experiences of local life.
DAY 1: SAPA -> SIN CHAI VILLAGE
Departure from Sapa at 8.00 am. Transfer by road 16 km along national road 4D to Tram Ton Pass with a short top at the Silver Waterfall.
Walk around the Heaven Gate for great view of the west side of Hoang Lien Son mountain range. Start trekking from Heaven Gate through the thick rain forest of the Hoang Lien Nature Reserve for about 2 hours. The trail is narrow, tough steep downhill from 1,847m to 1,541m. Lunch break here on the top of a hill named Sour & Acrid.
Continue trekking downhill after lunch for nearly an hour to the stream crossing at 1,414m. The trail of this portion gets through corn fields and some terraced paddies including some tough but short descending. Once getting to other bank, the trail becomes wider and less tough along the upstream part of Muong Hoa river for about 2 hours towards Sin Chai village of the Black Hmong.
Arriving at home stay at about 5.00 pm, relax and free walk around for stunning scenery of the valley at sunset.
Dinner and home stay in this village.
DAY 2: SIN CHAI -> Y LINH HO VILLAGE
Breakfast and leave home stay at 08.30 to 09.00 am. Take an easy walk along Muong Hoa river for nearly an hour to Cat Cat waterfall, short break by this wonder of nature.
Cross the river by suspension bridge to other sides, follow the steps uphill to the southern edge of Cat Cat village and from here the follow a good path for another hour softly downhill(1,212m to 1,188m). Cross the Vang stream to other bank and then lunch break.
After lunch, the trail winds up steep hills to 1,227m for two hours through rice paddies, corn fields and later rain forest before gradually descending for another 2 hours to wards Y Linh Ho village(at 1,018m), another village of the Black Hmong with lot traces of slash and burn agriculture along the way.
The rest hour of the afternoon is at leisure or for free walk to explore this charming village.
DAY 3: Y LINH HO -> SEO MI TY VILLAGE
Breakfast and leave Y Linh Ho at 09.00am, enjoy an easy trekking with just some soft descends and ascends for nearly an hour to Lao Chai San 2 village (1,058m), where the influence of other cultures and religion can be seen evidently. Then the trail gets narrower and tougher uphill for about another hour from to Lao Hang Chai 1 (1,146m). This portion of the trek includes a long and steep ascend but offers great view of Muong Hoa Valley. Paying visit to several local homes in Lao Hang Chai village before lunch break.
Leave Lao Chai San 1 after lunch and trek along the narrow trail for half an hour between farm land and bamboo forest with not too much up and down before challenging the steep path for about 1,5 hour, through thick rain forest to 1,785m high. Taking a long break here for recovery and enjoying the marvelous panorama of Muong Hoa Valley. The last portion of the trek today takes about 1 hour gradually downhill to Seo Mi Ty village of the Hmong which sits near the bottom of a stunning valley(1,548m).
The rest hours of the afternoon is for relaxing by the stream near the newly built hydraulic power station.
DAY 4: SEO MI TY -> TA TRUNG HO VILLAGE
Leave Seo Mi Ty at 09.00 after breakfast. Take an easy walk along a large path for 20 minutes downhill, passing through a small hamlet. And then the trek gets harder for 2 hours along a tougher which is a combination of lose rocks, steep dirt track and stream crossings, through re-grown forest to Den Thang village(from 1,548m to 1,294m). Walking to explore this isolated village for half an hour before lunch break.
Afternoon trek is also downhill for most of the way about 2 hours from Den Thang to Ta Chung Ho suspension bridge (at 872m).
The trail is tough plus two stream crossings which makes this part harder. Enjoy a short rest here before challenging 3 km uphill to home stay at a small Red Zao hamlet(at 984m).
DAY 5: TA CHUNG HO -> BAN SAI VILLAGE
Breakfast and trekking from home stay at 08.30. Morning trek is a real challenge along a narrow dirt trail which sneaks on steep hill sides from the height of 950m up to nearly 1,632m. Lunch break at the top of the mountain in the thick rain forest.
Continue trekking after lunch along the same trail downhill for 1,5 hour through the rain forest of Hoang Lien National Park to Nam Ngan Village of the Red Zao(952m). Enjoy an easy walk to explore this quiet and charming village. Then following a larger dirt path for nearly 1 hour downhill to Nam Sang Village of the Xa Pho peoples(a sub group of Phu La group), whose population is only about 6,500 individuals and well maintained their traditional way of living. The last portion of the trail getting across the fairly flat bottom of Nam Sai valley to Ban Sai village of the Tay ethnic peoples(at 570m).
Dinner and home stay in this village.
DAY 6: BAN SAI -> SIN CHAI VILLAGE
Breakfast and leave Ban Sai at about 09.00 am. Trekking along a large & rocky path uphill to Nam Nhiu village of the Red Zao(870m) and then continue along a dirt path for 1,5 hour to Nam Than Village of the Red Zao and Black Hmong(865m). This portion of the trek offers stunning view of Nam Sai and Nam Cang Valleys as well as chances to understand life of tribal peoples in remotest region of Sapa. Leaving Nam Than for an hour through wild land dotting with terraced fields amongst mountain and rain forest…
Continue trekking for 2, 5 hours in the afternoon along the same trail passing through the cultivated hilly land of Suoi Thau Commune to Sin Chai B Village of the Red Zao(733m). Check in home-stay, having a short rest and easy walk to explore this small and quiet village.
DAY 7: SIN CHAI -> LAO CAI -> HANOI
The trek today is long and hard including 2 descends and one long and steep ascend. Departure from home stay for a sharp descending in half an hour to the bottom of the valley( from 733m to 452m) and gradually uphill for nearly 2 hours to Nam Lang B(676m) and onto Nam Lang B(899m), the 2 village of the Red Zao. Paying visiting to some local homes before lunch break.
Afternoon trek is much better along a large and rocky road on high elevation for ½ hour, slightly uphill to Ban Pho village of the Hmong, then gradually getting downhill to Nam Ket Village(532m) of the Red Zao and the Tay. From here the trek is much easier for nearly 2 hours to Ta Thang village. This portion offers wide view of the Red River valley which runs through the Bao Yen District.
Trek ends at about 4.30pm at Ta Thang village, picked up and transfer by road nearly an hour to Lao Cai station. Trip ends here in late afternoon.
Occasionally our tour itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travelers’ comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the service proposal. It’s very important that you print and review a final copy of your itinerary a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact us. We are here to help you!
Please note that while we operate successful trips in Vietnam throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.
Our trekking tours can be classified into three levels
There are about 8 – 10K to walk on flat roads. No previous experience is necessary. Anyone in good health and fit enough to perform an occasional hike can take an easy level trek. Vietnam easy walks are provided in Hanoi, Bac Giang, Mai Chau, Ngoc Son Ngo Luong…
There are about 10 – 15K to hike on flat and hilly roads. At this point too, no special background is required. Hikers accustomed to trekking in hilly areas of Mai Chau, Pu Luong or Lai Chau, Yen Bai successfully accomplish our treks “moderate”, provided they are in good health and to have a correct fit. These treks are moderate or easy hikes with an average duration or shorter but more difficult steps.
There are about 16 – 23K to trek on uphill/downhill dirty, rocky trails. Physical fitness is very important for these treks and you may have to lead you home before the trek. Most treks in this level are comparable with long rides in the Fansipan mountain or the the mountainous region of Ha Giang, Cao Bang, sometimes higher altitudes. The climate and isolation can also participate in difficulty. Prior trek experience is preferable but not vital if you have confidence in your fitness.
Our trip cost usually includes the following services. Please bear in mind Lotussia Travel is specialized in tailor-made trips. Trip cost vary depending on group size and other details.
- Car transfers
- Local tour guide. The English-Speaking guide is provided by default. Other language may be available upon request (with extra charge).
- Local porter(s)
- Sightseeing entrance fees.
- Bottled water.
Unless required most of the following services are usually not included in our tour price.
- Visa (required)
- Flight/Train tickets.
- Accommodation pre/post trip.
- Travel insurance
- Personal expenses
Our tour guides speak English or French. They hold a university degree in tourism and national license as a guide. If you wish to send a tour leader along with any group, he or she can fully rely on the knowledge and experience of our local guides.
Remote treks are always accompanied by a local representative to deal with permits and authorities and manage the porter team. They speak the local dialects, know the cultural traditions and give tips on suggested behavior in fragile ecological areas and tribal communities. For some itineraries, the role of tour leader and representative is combined.
When to hike
The north Vietnam experiences two distinct seasons; winter and summer. Winter is cool, dry and lasts from November to April. Temperatures range between 15 to 25°C during the day and 0 to 10°C during the night. With little rain, the winter season offers the most pleasant weather conditions for trekking in Vietnam. Read more about Vietnam weather.
During all trekking tours we may use local porters to carry your luggage as well as our trekking equipment, where required. To generate local income we employ local villagers for this task. Participants will have their own porter, carrying trekking equipment and luggage to a maximum of 15 kg per client. Travelers only have to carry their day packs. Read more how to pack
Depending on the nature of the tour, journeys will be accompanied by an air-conditioned car/minibus cover the larger overland sections.
Campsites and lodges are not common in Vietnam, instead we make use of homestays; staying the night in tribal villages along the way. Facilities are clean, but very basic. Travelers share a bamboo-slat floor, separated by curtains. Animals usually sleep under the house and restrooms and showers are often absent. Water sources are available outside. Mattresses, blankets and mosquito nets are taken care of.
Over the years Lotussia Travel has established a number of projects to upgrade home stay accommodation into a bit more comfort. Basic facilities aside, spending the night in a tribal village and enjoying a meal with the locals brings travellers unforgettable cross-cultural experiences. In the past 15 years of organizing trekking by this way, we never received a complaint.
During all treks meals will be arranged on the spot, in local restaurants and at home in local villages along the way. The meals are prepared by our cooks, the local guide or by the local host. Our cooks are well trained to prepare and serve food hygienically and they cook a variety of local delicacies. Sometimes this may include the slaughter of a chicken, duck or pig. We sometimes have the chance to bring western food, and snacks from Hanoi for breakfast and picnics along the way, and coffee and tea are available in abundance. Our cooks make a special effort to provide as much variety as possible. The porters give necessary assistance on the spot.
There are many shops and villages that have bottled water for sale. On remote trekking tours, we buy a sufficient supply of water for the next couple of days. We recommend bringing some water purifying tablets.
Comfortable lightweight clothing in natural fabrics such as cotton is most suitable for travelling in Vietnam. The dress code is fairly casual as in most parts of the tropics but it is advisable to cover arms and legs in the evenings against biting insects. A lightweight raincoat is a good idea in the rainy season. During the winter months warm clothing is needed for visiting the north of Vietnam. Visitors should not wear shorts, short skirts or other skimpy clothing when visiting religious buildings such as pagoda, temple, communal house and shoes should be removed before entering a private home.
What you take will naturally depend upon where you are travelling and the style of journey you are undertaking, and it can often be difficult to decide what to pack. Nevertheless, the following should act as a useful checklist of essential items worth thinking about taking.
- 1 medium-sized backpack.
- Comfortable walking shoes with good grip
- 1 long (easy to dry) pants and 1 long sleeved shirt to wear during the trek (easy to dry).
- 1 pair of flip flop (sandals).
- 1 pair of shorts and T-shirt to wear at camp site (2 if you do 4-day trek).
- 1 medium-sized towel.
- 1 medium-sized dry bag.
- Hiking poles/walking sticks
We strongly believe that Responsible Tourism can support to local communities: proving incomes,positive cultural exchanges and an incentive to protect natural environment. We recognize that there is always space for improvement. We continually strive to narrow the gap between principle and practice.
We have been turning environmentally responsible tourism into practices to minimize tourist impact upon the local habitat. From biodegradable soaps to re – usable water containers, we provide clients with the best information and mean to help them identify and implement effective ways to positive protect local nature and communities. It is a vital criteria that can be passed on and abided by all, long after the trip ended.
Prior to our tours, we contact and work with local community leaders to make sure we are welcome and in a manner that minimizes negative social and cultural impacts. We visit local development and community projects specific to the region, encouraging customers to donate and assist such a projects in appropriate and sustainable manner.
Where make sure that where and whenever possible our tours positively benefit the local community. We stayed at locally owned accommodation and visit cottage industries for local handicraft souvenir, generating income for local business. We often employ, hire support team such as local guide, motor-taxi drivers, cook assistants on all trips to ensure that the local community benefit not only short term but with increased employment opportunities for the future.