Day 1: Hanoi to Lao Cai. After dinner in Hanoi, board night train departing Hanoi to Lao Cai at 9:30 pm. Accommodation in Victoria luxury coach couchette.
Day 2: Lao Cai to Sapa
Arrive at sunrise in Lao Cai along the Chinese border. After breakfast omelet, soup and a strong jolt of Vietnamese coffee, mount bikes for the ride from Lao Cai into the "Tonkinese Alps" to Sapa. The climb, although only 19 miles, gains over four thousand feet so not everyone is expected to ride the distance. Looking back over the border into China, seven different mountain ranges can be seen. We'll also see our first hilltribes - mostly Hmong - dressed in traditional, Indigo-dyed clothing. Upon arrival in Sapa, lunch at a local restaurant before ride to the Victoria Resort, which overlooks the breadth of Sapa's mountain range, including Fansipan - Vietnam's highest mountain. Dinner and overnight in Sapa. All meals included.
Day 3: Sapa
Ride to Silver Falls and Dinh Deo Pass, at five thousand feet is Vietnam's highest paved road, and to the source of Sapa's morning fog - Qui Ho Lake. Cycle back to Sapa for lunch. In the afternoon, continue riding another 10km before we start a hike to Ta'van hill tribe's village approximately four miles away in a wide, serene valley. We'll meet and observe the Ta'van in their day-to-day activities. Along the way we will see the few remaining French colonial buildings, including a large church, that were severely damaged during the Chinese invasion in 1979. Return to the hotel in the late afternoon. Dinner and overnight at the Victoria. All meals included.
Day 4: Sapa
Morning hike down past the terraced rice fields to the Qui Ho river valley dotted with Hmong villages. Lunch is at a local restaurant. Afternoon free or optional walk around the town to meet and interact with various hilltribe groups such as Hmong, Dzao, Dzay who gather around the central market to sell their weavings. Preparations for next day's ride. Dinner and overnight at the Victoria. All meals included.
Day 5: Sapa to Lao Cai - Hanoi
Ride from Sapa to Bac Ha. Our morning begins with an hour and a half descent! We coast out of Sapa back down to Lao Cai losing over four thousand feet of elevation. Once at Lao Cai board Victoria coach for return journey to Hanoi, the daylight trip affording views of rural Hanoi missed on the overnight journey up. Arrive late evening in Hanoi. Transfer by private car to hotel and farewell with guide. All meals included.
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Asia Vietnam Outdoor: Land Rambler Bicycle Touring Hiking & Trekking
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