|DURATION||13 days / 12 nights|
Day 01: Hanoi arrival
Arriving at Noi Bai Airport. Welcome by your guide and your bus. Program visit the city will be organized according to time of arrival. Evening Free.
Night at the hotel
Day 02: Hanoi - Viet Quang (B, L, D)
From Hanoi to Viet Quang (260 km from Hanoi) through a nice mountain road, lunch en route. Arrival in Viet Quang in the afternoon, transfer to hotel. Preparations for the day hike that will follow.
Overnight at the hotel. (Approximately 9 hours drive).
Day 03: Viet Quang - Tan Nam - Trek (B, L, D)
Breakfast and then drive to the start of trek (30 km from Viet Quang). We start with a small path and 3-hour climb, 300 m above sea level, to reach the very colorful village of Pa Then ethnic people. Our passage arouses curiosity. After a short descent, picnic lunch will be served on a beautiful lawn. The path descends gently down the hills covered with tea that leads to Tan Nam, a Tay village.
Homestay in Tay stilt house. (1 hour drive, including 6 hours of walking up to 3 h with 700 m vertical).
Day 04: Tan Nam - Phieng Lang - Trek (B, L, D)
After crossing a suspension bridge, we enter a region of very lush jungle. Climb and descent alternate on a pleasant path will take you through many small hamlets inhabited by Dzao with long jackets. The women of this ethnic group is lacquered teeth and wear their long jackets even at work on the fields. Lunch in Tay stilt house. The host, a friend of ours, will warmly welcome to his family with a shot of rice wine made here.
Later in the afternoon, we climb on a hill shaded by large palm trees. The scenery is fantastic, a small hamlet, perched in the middle of the rice terrace is our haven for the night. Our presence may cause a big surprise to the youth of the village.
Overnight Homestay. (6 to 7 hours walking).
Day 05: Phieng Lang - Quang Nguyen - Trek (B, L, D)
Early start to gain altitude. Small houses of Dao Ta Pan are scattered on the slopes. It’s a very nice surprise for local people to see Westerners come here! At noon, we crossed a high pass to reach Quang Nguyen, a remote village near a river to have a cold beer while children rush out to meet us with big smiles. A beautiful river basins forming a pleasant pool behind our accommodation that you can jump in for a bath.
Overnight Homestay. (4 to 5 hours of walking with 1:30 to climb).
Day 06: Quang Nguyen - Coc Dong - Trek (B, L, D)
New early start to climb the Col de Nam Li at about 1500 meters. One of the most extraordinary rainforest that you ever been that gives the “Indiana Jones” feeling. We need to come down again for 1 h on the opposite side to get a clear view of a beautiful valley. The H’mong tribe who inhabit the valley are clad in richly embroidered clothes.
Overnight in Dong Coc Homestay. The house is rustic, but the welcome exception.
(5 -6 hours of walking, about 1100 m of elevation).
Day 07: Coc Dong - Sin Man - Trek (B, L, D)
We follow the trail to go up higher and higher in the middle of terraced rice fields. You are going to see lovely H’mong girls, dressed in long red dresses. After 30 minutes of walking, we descend into smooth Coc , the daily market. Lunch. The path later on is easy to Sin Man. End of trekking and overnight stay.
Overnight Homestay. (7 hours walking).
Day 08: Sin Man - Bac Ha - Na Lo - Trek (B, L, D)
Departure by jeep to Sin Man in Bac Ha. Visit the hamlets around Bac Ha, Can Cau, Ban Pho 1 and Ban Pho 2, occupied by the ethnic H’mong colorful. Visit the village of Nalo. Dinner in Nalo.
Day 09: Na Lo - Ban Lien - Trek (B, L, D)
In the morning we cross the Col de Nam Tho, at 1300 m altitude. Vegetation more lush turns into jungle. 3 hours to climb (400 m vertical) and 1 hour steep descent. In the after – noon, we reach the village of Ban Lien, inhabited by black Tay tribe mostly dressed in traditional costumes very different from those of the H’mong.
Overnight Homestay. (5 to 6 hours walking).
Day 10: Ban Lien - Nam Khanh - Trek (B, L, D)
We cross the Tay villages situated at the foot of hills covered with palm trees. Picnic lunch with a Tay family. By late afternoon, down to the village of Nam Det, populated by Dzao. We are surrounded by rice terraces and forest of cinnamon.
Overnight Homestay. (5 to 6 hours walking).
Day 11: Nam Khanh - Bac Ha - Trek (B, L, D)
We leave the village of Nam Det to climb couple steep hills. The view of the valley from here is superb. We will pass villages of Phu La tribe. In late afternoon, we reach a clear path that leads us to Bac Ha.
Overnight at hotel. (5 to 6 hours walking).
Day 12: Bac Ha - Lao Cai - Night train to Hanoi (B, L, D)
We leave the village by a mountain road towards the village of Trung Do, visit Tay’s village and boarding a boat trip on Chay river to Bao Nhai. Lunch at Bao Nhai then get on the road to Lao Cai, boarding the night train to Hanoi.
Overnight aboard the train. 10 hours of transport
Day 13: Hanoi arrival
Arrival to Hanoi early, transfer to the hotel.
Level of difficulty:
5h00 of walking per day on average 4 days. Accessible to all who already have experience of hiking for several days and not fearing the discomfort …
The walking rythm is slow and steady, suitable for everyone, the discovery aspect is privileged over the sporting aspect.
No technical difficulty, sometimes slippery trail.
Vietnamese speaking guide throughout the journey. During the trek, sometimes team of local porters don’t follow you because they take another road passable by their mopeds to be in charge of shipping bags and cooking. They are employed on site and managed by a local guide, responsible for directing and communicating with the natives.
Luuggages: Only your business day.
Luggage transfers: By Minibuses or motors
* In Hanoi, in cozy B & B hotel in base of double room
* In small cities, hostel or guest house
* While walking, homestay very simples (sleeping on mats), but typical, offering the advantage of discovering truly minority life of Tonkin. But it is always possible to wash.
Vietnamese cuisine is rich and varied , as one of the finest in the world. However, the basis of Vietnamese cuisine is simply white rice, accompanied by a variety of vegetables, meat, fish, spices and sauces. At each meal, many small dishes that everyone can draw at will with chopsticks. You get used very quickly …
You are invited to share the rice wine by the host when you sleep at their home. Without upsetting the refuse is not always easy. For those who do not like alcohol, drink in one gulp and make him the cup with both hands and make you the happiest of men …
Regions through during this trek have been the site of bloody battles between the French and Viet Minh. For Vietnamese, it completely belongs to the past, especially since a large proportion of ethnic groups that we encounter fought alongside the French. The warm welcome in the villages is a usual. The paths are used by villagers and thus without any risk of mine.
What to bring:
A duffle bag or duffel bag with shoulder straps or better a large backpack which must not exceed 15 kg for business carried by the porters who have no other means than the backpack. Your backpack should be large enough to fit your business of the day (water bottle, camera, windbreaker, t-shirt spare …).