Cycling Northloop Vietnam – 15-Day Incredible Tour
North West of Vietnam is the home of many hill-tribe people and is famous for its stunning landscape. Cycling Northloop Vietnam, you will admire the wonderful limestone system, breathtaking rice paddy fields, unique stilted thatched roof houses, and vibrant local markets.
The most diverse ethnic make-up here represents various colors and characters, making the region interesting for biking discovery. Meet with the “Montagnards” mountain people to see how their lifestyle differs from each other and the city locals.
You’re welcomed by the warmest and most friendly curiosity of these high-landers. Enjoy your trip for 15 days and have memorable moments.
Day 1. Welcome to Hanoi, Vietnam
Arriving at Noi Bai airport, Hanoi, you’ll have a warm welcome from our guide and driver. They’ll bring you to your hotel in the center of the city. Take a rest and have a brief introduction about our tour.
You can take your time to explore Hanoi, an antique and bustling capital, where you can see the ancient beauty of the Old Quarter hidden in the modern developing facilities of the city.
It’s suggested to take a short cyclo tour around the heart of Hanoi and come back for dinner in a typical Vietnamese restaurant. Fill up your energy with tasty Vietnamese cuisine, and have a nice sleep.
Day 2. Hanoi – Yen Bai Cycle Tour
After having breakfast in the hotel, you’ll start your first day of cycling Northern Vietnam by taking a shuttle bus along the Red River to Song Thao. On the way, different captivating sceneries are presented to your eyes.
We’ll have lunch in a local restaurant and then start at the cycling point and cycle along the Red River to Yen Bai. The idyllic picture of villages, corn, and rice fields becomes real as you ride through it.
We’ll arrive in Yen Bai late afternoon and stay overnight there.
Day 3. Yen Bai – Nghia Lo Cycling Tour
The plan today is to cycle back to cross the bridge again to turn to route 37 in Nghia Lo. Captured in your eyes are the verdant rice paddy and various farms of green tea, cinnamon, and gum trees.
We’ll ride along the river, head to the midway before descending to Tran Phu, and have lunch there. The journey continues in the afternoon as we pedal through the Muong Lo rice field, where again, you’ll be hypnotized by its beauty.
Reach Nghia Lo in the late afternoon, check in, take a rest, and prepare for the next day of your journey.
Day 4. Nghia Lo – Tu Le – Mu Cang Chai Bicycle Tour
The local handicraft market is where minorities meet and sell their handmade products. Join the market near your hotel to choose some souvenirs, take pictures and feel the culture of the locals.
After that, we’ll commence our ride to Tu Le town to enjoy its beautiful landscape. There are undulated roads, alluring valleys, and picturesque rice terraces. Then, we’ll continue heading to the slope to view Tu Le town fully.
Pedal down to the town to have lunch and prepare to conquer the 25 km length of Khau Pa pass – one of the longest and most challenging passes in Northern Vietnam. You also will pass through the National Rice Terraces Heritages of Vietnam and follow the long river to Mu Cang Chai.
Enjoy the fresh morning air and captivating landscape with snacks, tea, and coffee before going down to Mu Cang Chai district, where 85% of the population is H’Mong ethnic. Stay overnight in Mu Cang Chai.
Day 5. Mu Cang Chai – Than Uyen Bike Tour
One of the highlights of most of the bike tours North Vietnam is the chance to immerse yourself in the famous stunning rice terrace paddy. Today, we’ll plan to cycle through three villages on the undulating roads along the river and observe the quaint villages and the hillside on our way to the Kim section.
After the lunch en route, you’ll hop on your bike again, head upwards to Than Uyen, and rest there.
Day 6. Than Uyen – Sapa Biking Tour
The itinerary today is quite challenging but interesting. Take a ride through the mountains where many minorities, such as H’Mong, Dao, Tay, Nung, etc., stay together for a long time. We bet you can not forget the astonishing picture of the rice paddy on both sides of the path after you see it.
Then, we’ll stop at the Binh Lu T junction for lunch. After that, you’ll pass 46km of the longest pass that divides Lao Cai and Lai Chau province. The Tram Ton Summit, which is 2200m high compared to the sea level, is waiting for you to conquer. There is the majestic limestone mountain and Fansipan – the roof of Indochina. Feel free to take pictures and enjoy the panorama.
Next, we’ll ride down to Sapa town. On the way, you can have a chance to try the local massage with herbs. Have dinner and a nice sleep in Sapa.
Day 7. Sapa – Coc Ly – Bac Ha Cycle Tour
Today’s journey will start by biking downhill to Lao Cai town. We can have a chance to visit Phong Hai and Coc Ly local markets where the minorities exchange their products. Their delicacy is worth trying as well.
Then, we’ll go to Bac Ha town – one of the furthest areas of Lao Cai. Many tourists would like to go there as they’ll reach one of the points in the Northwest of Vietnam. To reach the town, we need to ride through different terrains, such as single-track paths, along the Chay river bank, cross the bridge, ascend the hill and descend downtown.
If it’s Sunday, you can have the opportunity to visit the Bac Ha market. Discover the town on your own.
Day 8. Bac Ha – Coc Pai – Hoang Su Phi Cycling Trip
Your cycling Northloop Vietnam tour has reached halfway. The first destination today is Lung Phi, then we’ll move on the single beaten path to Sin Man. We’ll have lunch there and descend to Coc Phai town.
After completing the “Heaven Gate Pass 2” challenge, we’ll head down to Hoang Su Phi town. The amazing landscape with flowers and villages is the reward for you on the way. Have dinner and rest after a long day.
Day 9. Hoang Su Phi – Ha Giang Biking Trip
Our target of the day is to move from Hoang Su Phi to Ha Giang – the furthest province in north Vietnam, having a border with China. The province is the home of 23 different minorities, creating diversity in its culture and tradition.
The cycling path is full of limestone outcrops and peaks, making it a unique beauty. Besides, Hoang Su Phi is also famous for its rice field. It’s one of the National Heritages of Northeast Vietnam.
Grab your chance to visit the villages to see how local tribes live before passing hills and going down to Viet Quang. There you’ll take a transfer to your hotel in Ha Giang.
Day 10 -11. Ha Giang – Quan Ba – Yen Minh Bike Trips
The first 25km of riding today is on the flat road, where the charming rice terrace appears all the way. In the next 25km, you need to pass the winding path through a limestone mountain with high walls of rock.
Moving forward to reach the pass “Heaven Gate 1”, you’ll see some covered villages start to appear out of the cloud. You can have a wide view of the area, including Tam Son valley, Twin hills, and Quan Ba town.
Ride down to Quan Ba, have dinner, and stay overnight in the town.
The plan on the 11th day is to explore Quan Ba by riding up and down hills leading to Yen Minh. Take your chance to take pictures of the huge limestone rocks and karst topography.
Reaching Yen Minh, you’ll meet the Chinese community. Stay overnight in Yen Minh.
Day 12. Yen Minh- Dong Van – Meo Vac Bicycle Trip
The interesting itinerary continues with the riding challenge from the dense cedar forest to Dong Van plateau, a UNESCO Global Geopark. The terrain is 80% rock, and 400-600 million-year-old fossils were found here.
Covered by colorful orchids and forests, the most known isolated town in the center of Dong Van plateau is a shared home of Minh, Tay, Hmong, and Chinese Hoa. Since it’s near the border with China, the design of the houses is Chinese style.
Then we’ll take the undulating and winding road from Dong Van to Meo Vac. Staying on Ma Pi Leng pass, which is 1500m high above sea level, you’ll have a spectacular view of nature. Stay overnight in a small town in Meo Vac, where the culture and living style is highly preserved.
Day 13. Meo Vac – Bao Lac Biking Tour
Joining most of the Vietnam bike tours to the North, you can not skip visiting the daily market in the center town of Meo Vac. The market is where Tay, White H’Mong, and Lo Lo women dress in their traditional custom, carry corn and vegetables in their bamboo woven baskets, and do trading.
We’ll kick off your pedals towards Bac Me, along the Gam river. The terrain is up and down before we reach the flat road. The rocky limestone system around is incredible. Sometimes, you’ll see houses staying precariously on the cliff.
We’ll stop on the sideroad to visit the local market, observe the local lifestyle and have lunch. After that, the journey continues with riding along Gam river, passing the tough pass, and heading down to Bao Lac town.
Day 14 – 15. Bao Lac – Ba Be – Thai Nguyen – Ha Noi Cycle Tours
Start your biking plan by riding to Tinh Tuc – a tin-mining town. We’ll go through a valley before reaching the town. The road is quiet but quite challenging terrain.
However, it’s a worth-taking challenge since you’ll be rewarded with a breathtaking view. Stop for lunch on the summit and descend to Ba Be National Park.
After a good night’s sleep, our tour will come to an end. Enjoy your last half-day exploring the natural beauty between Ba Be and Thai Nguyen. Highlighted are the green tea farm and palm and gum trees.
After lunch, we’ll transfer to Hanoi and have a farewell dinner. End tour.
There are so many things to discover and admire in the far North West of Vietnam; 15 days cycling Northloop Vietnam doesn’t even seem enough to satisfy your exploration desire.
Set up your bike and cycle on the quiet, undulated roads; the marvelous sceneries will definitely not let you down!
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