Secret Paths of Northern Vietnam 10 Days 9 Nights

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At a Glance
-This ultimate Off The Beaten Track Tour of Northern Vietnam gives you the best possible glimpse into a truly remote, authentic and untouched part of this wonderful country. From trekking in remote areas like Mu Cang Chai and Hoang Su Phi, from visiting the wonders of Ha Long Bay and the less visited Lan Ha Bay and Cat Ba Island, this tour has everything an adventurous traveller to Northern Vietnam could ever want.

What To Expect

Itinerary
Day 1: Hanoi – Nghia Lo
Day 2: Nghia Lo – Mu Cang Chai
Day 3: Mu Cang Chai Trekking
Day 4: Mu Cang Chai – Bac Ha
Day 5: Bac Ha – Hoang Su Phi
Day 6: Hoang Su Phi – Ha Giang
Day 7: Ha Giang – Dong Van

Day 1: Hanoi – Nghia Lo (L, D)

We will pick you up from your hotel in Hanoi and begin our journey. After about 2 hours of driving, we stop at Duong Lam, an ancient village which has had UNESCO protection since 2006 owing to it’s incredible wealth of houses dating back as many as 4 centuries.
After exploring the village and having lunch, we continue driving through the countryside and observe the tea plantations and maize fields slowly replace the rice paddies. Eventually we reach Nghia Lo, where we will have dinner and spend the night with a delightful White Thai family in their homestay.

Highlights and activities: Duong Lam village, Nghia Lo
Accommodation: Local family
Meals: Lunch, dinner

Day 2: Nghia Lo – Mu Cang Chai (B, L, D)

We start the day by going for a bike ride around the rice paddies, observing the villagers already hard at work. We then enjoy breakfast in the open air overlooking the fields before we head for Khau Pha Pass, passing by the rice fields of Tu Le along the way.
After lunch at a local restaurant, we continue by driving to Nam Co Village where you can observe the Flower H’mong in their distinct dress and also visit the market if this is the right day.
We then drive onwards to La Pan Tan and Mam Soi, areas famous for their rice fields, where we’ll stop to walk up the hill to the viewpoint for incredible views of the verdant green or golden yellow fields. We then have dinner and spend the night at Mrs. Chon’s Homestay in Kim Noi Village.

Highlights and activities: Khau Pha Pass, Nam Co village, La Pan Tan, a 3-5 km trek
Accommodation: Chon's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 3: Mu Cang Chai Trekking (B, L, D)

After breakfast, we start the longest trek of the tour from Kim Noi Village to Hang Dang De and then further to Che Cu Nha. You’ll get a picnic lunch among the rice terraces here and then continue to La Pan tan where our driver will be waiting to drive you back for a second night at Mrs. Chon’s Homestay.

Highlights and activities: Kim Noi village, Hang Dang De and Che Cu Nha, a 15 - 17 km trek
Accommodation: Chon's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 4: Mu Cang Chai – Bac Ha (B, L, D)

Today we drive from Mu Cang Chai to Bac Ha Town via Tan Uyen. This road is incredibly dramatic and has plenty of great views as you travel across the winding roads. Crossing the Hoang Lien Son Mountains, you will reach Bao ha where you will have lunch and get a chance to explore the town, before we set out for a trek through several ethnic villages to reach Bac Ha, where you will have dinner and stay the night in a Tay homestay.

Highlights and activities: Through Hoang Lien Son mountain, a 3-5 km trek
Accommodation: Tay Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 5: Bac Ha – Hoang Su Phi (B, L, D)

If it’s Saturday or Sunday, we will spend the market at either Can Cau Market or Bac Ha & Coc Pai markets respectively. You will then have lunch before we set out on an adventurous trip along narrow roads to the Ben May terraced rice fields. Here you will see plenty of La Chi people who can be distinguished by their unique outfits, and you will spend the night in a homestay in the village.

Highlights and activities: Local market, a 3-5 km trek
Accommodation: Local family
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 6: Hoang Su Phi – Ha Giang (B, L, D)

The trek today will run from Dong Loi to Suoi Thau via terraced rice fields and the homes of people belonging to the La Chi ethnic group. We will stop for a picnic lunch in Thang Loi Village before visiting some ancient tombs, one dedicated to Hoang Van Thung, a hero and king of the La Chi people. After lunch we will drive you to Ha Giang where we will have dinner and an overnight stay in a homestay.

Highlights and activities: Suoi Thau, Thang Loi village, a 12 - 15 km trek
Accommodation: Mr Doan's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 7: Ha Giang – Dong Van (B, L, D)

After getting the permits from the immigration office in Ha Giang, you will be taken across a succession of stunning passes with absolutely jaw-ping views until you reach the mountain town of Tam Son where lunch will be served.
Once you’ve eaten, we will take you to the H’mong palace which once belonged to the “King of the H’mong” and was constructed by French and Chinese architects, leading to an interesting fusion of styles. The palace was once infamous for being used to store opium and weapons but was abandoned in the 1950’s and the descendants of the family now live in France and Canada.
After the palace we continue on to Dong Van, arriving at 18:00, where you’ll have dinner and stay the night in a hotel.

Highlights and activities: Tam Son, King's Palace, a 2 - 3 km trek
Accommodation: Hoa Cuong Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 8: Dong Van – Meo Vac – Bao Lac (B, L, D)

If today is a Sunday, we will take you to the weekly Dong Van Market after breakfast. Here you can spend some time talking to the locals, learning about their culture and traditions, as well as do some souvenir shopping from the wide variety of colourful goods available here.
We then set out for a trek to Pu Lo, a French fortress built in 1890 located on a hill above the town. After exploring the fortress we hit the road again, passing through the spectacular Ma Pi Leng Pass, considered one of the most beautiful natural spots in all of Vietnam.
We then descend into Meo Vac Valley, arriving in Bao Lac village where we will have dinner and spend the night.

Highlights and activities: Pu Lo fortress, Ma Pi Leng, a 8 - 10 km trek
Accommodation: Hotel in Bao Lac
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 9: Bao Lac – Ba Be National Park (B, L, D)

Today we take the mountain road from Bao lac to Cao Bang, following a secret route that winds its way through the mountains, eventually reaching the Tay village of Cho Ra and then finally Ba Be National Park. After lunch in a local restaurant, we get back in the car to visit Hua Ma Cave, before we continue to the Tay village of Coc Toc, where Mr Linh and his family will welcome you to their traditional Tay stilt-house, where you will have dinner and spend the night.

Highlights and activities: Ba Be National Park, Hua Ma cave, a 2 - 3 km trek
Accommodation: Mr Linh's homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
 
Day 10: Ba Be National Park – Hanoi (B, L)

After breakfast, we will take you to Bo Lu Quay where we board a boat for our trip around Ba Be Lake. You can spend your time on-board as you wish, swimming, relaxing and enjoying the spectacular scenery all around you. We then reach the Nang River, which is surrounded by rich wildlife. We follow the river until we reach Puong Cave to discover the many stalactites and stalagmites within, before our driver takes us back to Hanoi. You’ll have time to enjoy some last bits of scenery on the drive, stopping for lunch on the way and arriving back in the capital at around 17:30.

Highlights and activities: a half day boat, Puong cave, a 2 - 3 km trek
Accommodation: Not included
Meals: Breakfast, lunch
 

What's Included
- A/C transfer
- Homestays / Hotels
- Experienced English speaking guide.
- Meals as stated in the itinerary (B: Breakfast; L: Lunch; D: Dinner)
- All sightseeing tickets (Travel permit).
- No extra charge after confirmation
- 24/7 hotline support guaranteed

Departure & Return

Departure Point

- Start from your hotel in Hanoi Old Quarter 
 

Departure Time

- Pick up at your hotel in Hanoi
- Timing on other days will be appointed by your guide
 

Return Details

- Pick up at your hotel/homestay in Ba Be National Park
- Drop off at your hotel in Hanoi around 5pm

What to take
- Pack essentials, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, comfortable walking shoes. Take a small day pack for hiking and trekking.

- It is essential to bring your passport on this trip. We also recommend packing: insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat and sun hat...

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