10 days / 9 nights. Challenging ride of Ha Giang.
Below is a video clip that has some portions of this Ha Giang trip with an off road version. In case you want to watch more videos of our Vietnam motorbike tours please check our YouTube channel.
HA GIANG & NORTHEAST DETAILED ITINERARY
Day 1: Hanoi – Nghia Lo, ~250 km, ~6 hrs.
Easy riding along the beautiful road no. 32, crossing wild mountain passes and green tea plantations on the mountainsides.
Day 2: Nghia Lo – Sapa, ~260 km, ~6 hrs.
Long riding on an easy and good road, this is the best route to see beautiful sceneries of rice paddies and mountain views.
Day 3: Sapa – Bac Ha – Xin Man. ~140 km, ~4 hrs.
In the morning, ride down to Lao Cai town with a visit to Lao Cai border gate. Then roll along the route 70 to Bac Ngam for a nice break, chances to take pictures of beautiful mountain and river scenery. Then head up the mountain pass to Bac Ha for our lunch and short hiking to some H’mong villages there.
In the afternoon, we continue the small trail to Xin Man in the rocky, muddy and slippery to experience the real taste of motorbiking in Vietnam.
Day 4: Xin Man – Thac Ba. ~170 km, ~6 hrs.
One special day begins by heading South on the bumpy, dirty, and muddy road. Luckily, we climb up to the top hill on a good condition road, then ride down the hill with beautiful scenery of rice paddies on the mountain sides which seems to be impossible in the rain. Stop at many villages to chat and talk with local people and discover their culture.
After about 3 hours riding, we reach a good, small and wild road through rice fields, limestone mountain karsts of Luc Yen.
After lunch, keep riding for another 60 km to a beautiful village of Dao Quan Trang people on the lakeside. Leave our bikes there to the buffalos, jump on a small boat and enjoy swimming.
Day 5: Thac Ba – Ba Be. ~160 km, ~5 hrs.
Follow beautiful green tea plantations to Tuyen Quang town, then ride on the National Highway 2 for half an hour. However, it is boring there, so we turn left on wilder mountain tracks through the forest before arriving at Ba Be National Park and lake. Overnighting with a family of Tay ethnic family from which we have a beautiful view of rocky mountain and rice fields surrounding the biggest natural lake of Vietnam.
Day 6: Ba Be – Bac Me – Ha Giang. ~130 km, ~5 hrs.
In the early morning, we put our bikes on boats for 2 hours exploring Ba Be lake and National Park before landing on a maize field. Unloading our bikes and have good breakfast with the owner of the Nang river restaurant; Mr. Pirrate, who then will give you a lot of helpful advice for an adventure day.
The day begins with 3 km riding along an old hillside trail along Nang River, which is spacious, and more than enough for motorcycle touring. Catch your breath while you can, it’s worth it! Then, it’s time to master up all your skills, techniques and experiences for the 80 km of a forest road which without the help of our experienced guides you will likely to get lost into one of the 16 branching roads. Along the way, we climb over many tall passes and deep river valleys. This road trip will take you only 3-4 hours during the dry season, but at least 7-8 hours during the rainy season. However, the impression from ‘conquering nature’ makes the hardship all worthwhile. Upon arrival, we will cross 3 rivers between 20-30m wide but only 70 cm deep, all managed with the instruction of our experienced guides.
The last 50 km will be easy, over some passes to go to Ha Giang.
Day 7: Ha Giang – Meo Vac. ~160 km, ~4 hrs.
Rise and shine for a few hours trek to many of the Heaven Gates such as Quan Ba, Yen Binh and Dong Van. They are called so because one gets the feeling of touching the sky, the heaven gates. This is the best time and place to enjoy the wonderful sightseeing of the vast limestone mountain range and perpendicular walls of rock, which brings one a feeling of adventure while being lost in a magic land.
Here we are surrounded by many rocks of all shapes and sizes. After lunch at Yen Minh town, the scenic route climbs over a pass before arriving at Pho Bang, also called Bang Street, which was built many centuries ago and features multi-storey houses made of clay bricks and tile roofs. Visit some of our local friends, who are Hoa minority. Then we continue our trip to visit the infamous Vuong Palace, an H’mong family of high rank during French colonial rule (Vuong Chi Sinh was supported to be the H’mong King in Vietnam). This palace attracts keen interest from architecturally minded visitors due to its mixed style of European and Chinese architecture. Overnighting in Meo Vac.
Day 8: Meo Vac – Tra Linh. ~170 km, ~6 hrs.
After bidding farewell, we climb over the Ma Pi Leng Pass. From the top, we can enjoy a beautiful view of the sunset overlooking the Nho Que river.
Visiting these remote areas, we will bear witness to how hard the local people struggle with their environment for their survival and development. Because the living conditions are extremely hard, there is barely any arable land within the rocky mountains. As a result, the people who live there survive on a diet of corn, which is the only crop able to grow in the rocky soil. Even through this hardship, the local people are very friendly, simple yet have developed a strong attachment to other people. They are the soul of this remote area.
Keep following the river until we meet RC 4C, near China. Then cross Gam River on a bamboo raft into the land of Cao Bang province. Here you find Lo Lo, Bo Y, Dao and Giay people. You can also visit their villages just at the roadside on the way to Bao Lac town.
A good road on RC 4 with beautiful picturesque on the Pac Lung pass before the stop in Nguyen Binh valley with the green colour of maize and rice fields.
Keep rolling up wild mountain pass into Cao Bang town for lunch. Later a short walk to see traces from the French colonialism and many stories of the 1940s.
The national vestiges are some of this hill town’s major sights. We have a chance to visit these before we head out in the direction of Ma Phuc Pass to enter an area of innumerable vast steep limestone karsts and visit the North and North East’s district which is home to Nung and Tay ethnic people.
Day 9: Tra Linh – Ban Gioc – Ha Lang. ~120 km, ~4 hrs.
Follow the bumpy road along the Chinese border through beautiful limestone mountains for a break in Ban Gioc waterfalls. Ban Gioc marks the natural border with China.
After picnic lunch on the bamboo raft, we continue riding along the border to Ha Lang, the wildest area of Cao Bang province.
Overnight in Phuc Hoa, the town at the China border.
Day 10: Ha Lang – Hanoi. ~230 km, ~6 hrs.
Easy road to Hanoi. On the road, we pass through many beautiful villages of Tay people surrounding the mountain feet.
A full day to discover the history of the heroic national road 4 made famous in the 1950s. We visit the battlefields in That Khe and Dong Khe.
After lunch in Lang Son, we ride on Highway 1 back to Hanoi.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org in case you need more details and options of this Ha Giang tour on motorbike.
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