Day 2: Lao Cai / Sapa
Day 3: Sapa trekking
Day 4: Sapa / Lao Cai / Hanoi - night train
Day 5: Hanoi arrival
DAY 1: HANOI / LAO CAI - night train
Pick up at your hotel at around 20h30 and transfer to the railway station to catch the night train to Lao Cai (Departure: 21h15 on the local train. Note that Victoria train depart at 21h55). Overnight on board.
DAY 2 : LAO CAI / SAPA
Arrive at Lao Cai station early in the morning and then drive to Sapa (1 hour), home to over 30 colourful hill tribes (including Black H'mong, Flower H'mong, Red Dao) and to Vietnam’s highest peak: Mount Fansipan. Breakfast on arrival just after check-in. In the afternoon, explore Sapa town and its local market as well as Thac Bac Waterfalls. Overnight in Sapa.
DAY 3: SAPA (light trekking)
Breakfast at the hotel. A full day discovering the minority villages located in the Sapa Valley. Depart by road to Lao Chai and then trek (2 km) through rice fields to visit a traditional Black H’Mong house before continuing your walk (2 km) to the Day village of Ta Van. Enjoy a picnic lunch on the way and then walk through a bamboo forest until you reach Giangtachai, a Red Dao village. This part of the trek is fascinating on a number of levels as you will encounter beautiful landscapes and find out more about the colourful Red Dao tribe with their unique style of dress and interesting tradition. Your driver will be waiting for you at Giangtachai village to bring you back to hotel. Overnight at the hotel in Sapa.
DAY 4: SAPA / LAO CAI / HANOI - night train
and its surroundings (minority market) After breakfast at the hotel, you check out. You will then have an excursion to one of the charming minority markets in the region (depending on which day of the week it is). Market days: Tuesday: Coc Ly Market where you will meet the ethnic minorities from H’Mong Flower, Lachi, Nung and Fula. After visiting the market, take a trip on the Clear River before returning to Lao Cai.
Saturday: Can Cau Market is located in one of the valleys around Sapa. To reach the market, follow a spectacular road with beautiful scenery. This market is the weekly meeting point for Flower H’Mong, Fula, and Black H’Mong. This is one the most authentic markets in the region. After the market, visit some nearby villages before returning slowly to Lao Cai.
Sunday: Muong Khuong or Bac Ha Markets : the busiest market of the region where one can meet the H’Mong, Fula, Dao and other ethnic minorities who come to exchange their goods and gossips from their own community. After a local lunch, drive to Lao Cai for the overnight local train to Hanoi leaving at 20h15 (Note that Victoria train depart at 21h05). Overnight on the train. Option: After visiting the market, return to Hanoi by road (360km=7h) along the Red River. On the way, we could stop to visit some minority villages. Arrive in Hanoi early in the evening. Overnight in Hanoi.
DAY 5: HANOI
Arrive in Hanoi at around 4h30 (local train) or 5h30 (Victoria train) and proceed to your hotel. Option: Day use room in Hanoi upon arrival. End of our services.