Sapa Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF SOUTHEAST ASIA 316

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Women practising Tai Chi by Hoan Kiem Lake

Day 1: Hanoi

Xin chao! Welcome to Vietnam.The capital of Vietnam is a charming city with a population of around four million. Hanoi is famous for its beautiful lakes, shaded boulevards, verdant public parks and its thriving Old Quarter, which is an architectural museum piece with blocks of ochre buildings retaining the air of a 1930s provincial French town. Upon arrival you will be met at the airport by our local representatives and transferred to you hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight in Hanoi.

Vietnamese Water Puppets

Day 2: Hanoi - Sapa

Enjoy today at your leisure, if you would prefer we can organise a full day sightseeing tour including a cooking class for you. This evening where you will be picked up from your centrally located hotel by your local guide between 6.00pm-6.30pm for an included dinner and to learn more about the Sapa region. After dinner, you are transferred to the train station where you board a sleeper train bound for Sapa via the town of Lao Cai. Overnight sleeper train - Please note you will be unaccompanied on the train.

A lady from one of the hill tribes near Sapa

Day 3: Sapa

Welcome to Lao Cai. Upon arrival you will betransferred to Sapa, passing through dramatic scenery along the way. Enjoy the morning to relax and explore this fascinating hillside town. This afternoon we head off on a guided 2-3 hour moderate trek to the hilltribe villages of Cat Cat, home to the H'mong people who originated from China about 300 years ago. The H'mong people are easily recognisable by their dark-blue or black clothing. The dye is made from the indigo plant which is native to the area.H'mong women wear long aprons with embroidered waist-coats and have their hair rolled up into a turban-like hat, while the men wear a black skullcap. In the late afternoon we return to Sapa for your overnight. Overnight - Sapa

A local child in Sapa

Day 4: Sapa

This morning set off on a six hour guided trek, passing along buffalo paths and trails, as well as through several hilltribe villages and resident minority groups such as Red Zao and Tay people. This is a spectacular walk, winding through stunning scenery and elegant rice paddy terraces. Here you will encounter some of the friendliest people you could ever hope to meet. Stop for a picnic lunch along the way, and finally spend the night in the home of a Zay family in Ta Van Village. Tonight stay in a simple family homestay with basic facilities. Dinner is prepared and included by our hosts. A day pack is recommended for the trek and overnight, as your main luggage can be left at your hotel in Sapa. Overnight – Homestay

Villagers in Sapa

Day 5: Sapa - Hanoi

Today set off on a 2-3 hour walk to Su Pan Village where we meet up with our vehicle for the 30 minute drive back to Sapa. Arriving in Sapa, you have a free afternoon to explore the town before transferring to the train station where you catch the overnight train to Hanoi. (Day use of a hotel before the night train is not included) Overnight sleeper train.

A street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi

Day 6: Hanoi

Welcome back to Hanoi. Upon arrival you will be met by our local representatives and take you to a local restaurant for breaffast. You will then transfer to Ninh Binh. Upon arrival, we visit Hoa Lu Ancient Capital. In Hoa Lu there are now 2 temples built on the ground of the old royal palace, one is dedicated to King Dinh Tien Hoang, the other is to King Le Dai Hanh. You get the chance to learn more about the feudal dynasties and historical periods in Vietnamese history. After lunch, take an amazing boat trip to visit Trang An grottoes. While rowing through Trang An gaze at the magnificent forested mountains upon which graze white goats, visitors enjoy a heaven on earth. Overnight - Ninh Binh @ Hoang Son Peace Hotel.

Day 7: - Hanoi

Drive due south to Van Long Nature Reserve which covers an area of 3000 ha and is home to rich biodiversity and spectacular rock formations. Upon our arrival at Van Long we embark on a boat trip along this beautiful reserve and through a cave. Afternoon finds us in the floating village of Kenh Ga. Here we walk around open rice paddies, enjoy a leisurely boat ride along Hoang Long River and watch the village life unfold, before we descend to the cave of Van Trinh, a two-storeyed spacious cave, well-known for its unique stalagmites and stalactites. This is followed by our journey back to Hanoi, arriving there at around 6pm. Overnight in Hanoi.

The Huc Bridge

Days 8-9: Hanoi

Enjoy the next 2 days at your leisure exploring Hanoi on your own. Overnight Hanoi.

Changing of the Guard outside the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi

Day 10: Hanoi

Enjoy your last minutes for shopping before transferring to airport for the flight home. End of services.