The Best Mountain Bike Tours Vietnam: 10-Day Itinerary
When someone mentions “Vietnam”, perhaps you will think of ancient pagodas, historic buildings, or iconic street food. However, this blissful land is also famous for its intriguing tribal cultures.
Each hill tribe or ethnic group in the Land of Blue Dragon has a unique language, heritage, and historical background that are worth exploring. You won’t find them everywhere, though: They only reside in the most remote areas, mostly at high altitudes in the mountains.
Ha Giang Province is undoubtedly one of the best destinations to learn about the culture and lifestyle of these people. Aside from various ethnic minorities, this region is also well-loved for its wild, unspoiled natural beauty, promising you the most unforgettable mountain bike tours Vietnam.
In case you want to embark on an exciting cycle tour there, we have laid out a 10-day itinerary that will help you get the most out of your trip. Pack your bag, and let’s go!
Day 1: Hanoi Arrival – Night Train To Lao Cai
Your Vietnam mountain bike tours will start in Hanoi. Our tour guide will welcome you at the Noi Bai International Airport and take you to a hotel at the heart of the Old Quarter. As you’ve checked in, it’s time to unwind on your own.
You can sample the iconic street food, take a cyclo ride, or simply stroll down the bustling streets and immerse in the old-world allure that can only be found in the capital of Vietnam.
When the sun sets, enjoy a welcome dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant with our tour guide. Following the meal, the bus will transfer you to the Hanoi Railway Station for an overnight train to Lao Cai. With 4 beds in a cabin, these trains ensure every traveler can rest comfortably, so get enough sleep to prepare for the adventure ahead!
Day 2: Lao Cai – Cao Son – Coc Ly – Bac Ha Cycling Tour
Early in the morning, we will arrive in Lao Cai city. After meeting up with the local tour guide and fueling up with a nice breakfast, your cycle trip begins here. Put on the cycling suit, kick off the pedals, and hit the paved road leading to Coc Ly.
Following you throughout the journey is a support van, so all you have to do is take in the beauty of nature while enjoying total freedom.
Arriving in Coc Ly at 10 AM, we will participate in the local market, which is held every Tuesday. Though it’s not a big market, it plays a crucial role for ethnic minorities in the area. Here, the Hoa, Nung, Mong, and Dao Den residents gather together not only to exchange goods but also to socialize with each other. It’s one of a few markets in Lao Cai that still retains the traditional cultural features.
We bike down a single track to reach Bao Nhai bridge before making a turn toward Bac Ha town. Upon arriving at Sao Mai Hotel, take your time and unwind on your own. Spend the night there and recharge with a local meal.
Day 3: Bac Ha – Ta Cu Ty Bike Tour
After having morning coffee, we hit the road that will take us to Ngai Thau commune. Cross the suspension bridge and go through an exotic, lush-green valley for 4 kilometers before climbing 5 kilometers up a steep hill trail to Lung Phinh.
Once we arrive at the top, take a break for refreshment before turning left for a 22-km track to Can Cau marketplace. Your heart will be captivated by the epic landscapes and the locals’ warm hospitality. The magnificent rice terraces here have been an inspiration for many award-winning photos, so remember to take your own snapshots!
To wrap up the day, have dinner and stay the night with a local family. It would be an experience like no other.
Day 4: Ta Cu Ty – Nam Dan Biking Tour
The 4th day is a wonderful day with many highlights on your mountain bike tours Vietnam.
Following a hearty breakfast of pancakes with our hosts, we bid them goodbye and set off on the bikes to travel from Ta Cu Ty to Dan Kham village. This route is a combination of short rocky parts and dirt trails, stretching for 22 kilometers.
As you cycle through rice terraces, get ready to be blown away by the breathtaking views and the colorful hill tribal villages. The Dao, Hmong, and Nung people call this area home.
After the lunch break, we go on a longer loop that takes around 3 hours. It takes us along dirt paths and a single track from Dan Khan to Che La Commune. You can observe local people’s daily life as you go deep into the lush forest. Upon arriving at the Nam Dan commune, keep cycling downhill until you reach the homestay. That’s where we will spend the night.
Day 5: Nam Dan – Nam Choong Cycle Tour
It’s time to immerse in the raw beauty of nature. To begin the 5th day of your biking north Vietnam tours, we hit the road and rode for 14 kilometers through the dense rainforest to the other side of the mountain. The unpaved road takes you past the tea farms, bamboo forests, and rice terraces.
Additionally, you will go through some remote hamlets of Hmong and Dao people while making your way to the main road.
Climb uphill for 5 kilometers via the Red Dao villages of Phieng Lang and Quang Thuong, then continue for another 3 kilometers along the hillside. The last few kilometers can be a bit challenging, but as you reach the homestay and get rewarded with a meal, the effort is all worthwhile.
Day 6: Nam Choong – Pan Hou Bicycle Tour
After having breakfast with the family, we get on the bicycles. From Nam Choong, we set out on a single track that stretches for 6 km to the heart of Quang Nguyen Commune. Then, ascend through the Nam Ly river to Trung Son village.
A challenging 4 km of rolling and steep trail leads to a suspension bridge. From there, you can get to the other bank of the Nam Ly river. After taking a turn on a bigger single dirt roadway, go upward for 5 kilometers to the town of Chien Thang, and then travel progressively downhill for 6 kilometers to reach the heart of the Ho Thau commune.
As you approach Ho Thau, you will ride along a paved road that leads to the Thong Nguyen Commune. Relax and rest your muscles with a traditional massage in the eco-resort of Pan Hou.
Day 7: Pan Hou – Luc Yen Biking Trip
Right after breakfast, let’s start the cycle trip on an easy, paved road and ascent to the T-intersection. You can see many hill tribe villages and terraced fields during the ride. On the undulating road, take the right turn to Tan Quang township. This is where we will make a pit break for coffee.
We continue our journey to Luc Yen when you have refueled the energy. Along the route, immerse yourself in some picturesque landscapes, including limestone mountain views. Stop by to have a picnic and take your dose of fresh air at noon.
We keep riding to Luc Yen town in the afternoon and spend the night there. The area has served as Vietnam’s most crucial gem-trading center for more than 20 years, so the locals will have many fascinating stories to share with you.
Day 8: Luc Yen – Vu Linh Bike Trip
Have you ever seen a gemstone market? Well, in Luc Yen district, you can participate in one! Nestled by the lake, the Luc Yen gem market is surrounded by picturesque panoramas. It opens for just a few hours early in the morning, and although the weather can affect the operating hours, you can find the sellers at around 6:30 AM.
As mentioned, the area is one of the most important gem-trading centers in Vietnam. Hence, the Luc Yen market also plays an important role. Whether you want to take home some stunning gemstones for your loved ones or just want to learn about the trading process, make sure to set your alarm and arrive on time.
Afterward, head back to the hotel for breakfast. Then, we will continue our Vietnam bike tour. On the 8th day, you will go all the way from Thac Ba Lake to Vu Linh. Travel through numerous breathtaking landscapes before stopping by the tranquil Dao village for a big lunch.
Then, we will pedal on a single dirt track and over bamboo rafts to Vu Ling resort. This is the perfect place to relax, featuring free WiFi, a restaurant, and a sun terrace.
For the rest of the day, you can take a boat ride on Thac Ba Lake to admire the natural splendor and immerse yourself in the balmy golden hour.
Day 9 – 10: Vu Linh – Son Duong – Hanoi Cycling Trip
On the final day of our mountain bike tours Vietnam, venture through stunning landscapes and challenge your prowess with an arduous ride. Starting at the resort, we will cross the bamboo rafts and make our way to the village road. A single track leads us to My Bang, Hung Quan, and Yen Binh at the Doi Can commune.
Then, cross the An Hoa bridge and turn right to Son Duong. This is where we will stop for a lunch break. Following lunch, we make our way down to Dao Tru. A private bus is waiting here to take you back to Hanoi. As we arrive in the capital, you might unwind until the dinner gathering.
The next morning, have a full breakfast at the hotel, then unwind on your own before heading to the airport for the onward flight.
That’s it, the 10-day itinerary for the best mountain bike tours Vietnam. The northern part of this beautiful ASEAN country is full of hidden charms, and going on cycling tours is the best way to explore it.
These epic rides might not be for the faint-hearted. As you stop to admire the sunset and get lost in nature’s magnificent beauty, you will not regret choosing Vietnam as your destination. Hit the journeys and see for yourself!
Let’s see what cyclists say about MTB Vietnam on Tripadvisor!