Meal: not any | Accommodation: Night train – sleeper cabin (sharing)
20:30 – We depart your hotel to catch the night train to Lao Cai (4-berth sleeper cabin with air conditioning)
Meal: breakfast, lunch | Accommodation: Chau Long hotel – Superior
Around 6:30 AM – Arrive in Lao Cai and be transferred by shuttle bus to Sapa. The bus ride uphill to Sapa takes a little over an hour giving you a glimpse of the stunning vistas and impressive rice terraces.
On arrival, you will stop by our office, meet your tour guide and leave your luggage and take a shower in our partner’s hotel if you would like.
8:00 – You will enjoy a full buffet breakfast at Chau Long hotel.
9:00 – Start trekking from Sapa to Ta Phin valley. We start from Sapa and walk through the town for about 20 minutes before turning to a dirt road to Ma Tra, a black H’mong village. The trekking route offers a breathtaking view of vegetable gardens and rice terraces with green mountains rising above. There will be time for visiting with local families and learning about their traditional fiber processing. We continue trekking to Ta Phin village of the Red Dzao, in one of the most scenic valleys in Vietnam. Here we’ll stop for a simple lunch before exploring the village.
15:00 – Return to Sapa by private vehicle to check in to your hotel. You’re free to explore the town, its market and sloping streets with all the colorful handicrafts.
Hiking distance: ~ 15km | 4-5h
Meal: breakfast, lunch | Accommodation: not included
8:00 – pick up from your hotel, we then start trekking from Sapa town to Golden Stream valley. The trek offers some stunning views of the rice terraces, gardens and Fan Si Pan mountain range. After crossing a suspension bridge, we will hike up to Lao Chai San village and continue to Lao Chai village for lunch. After lunch, we will explore the villages of Lao Chai (Black H’mong) and Ta Van (Dzay). This trek is relatively easy, though the trail can be quite slippery if it rains, so good footwear is recommended.
After visiting a family of the village, we walk to the main road to meet up with our driver and return to Sapa town.
In the afternoon, you’re free to explore the town, its market and sloping streets with many colorful handicrafts.
15:30 – Meet the guide at Handspan office. A car takes you to the bus station.
16:00 – Comfortable shuttle bus departs from Sapa to Hanoi. Enjoy beautiful views driving along the Hoang Lien Son mountain range. The bus is equipped with large individual seats, A/C and wifi. There’re 2 stops on the way and dinner is at your own cost.
22:00 – Arrival in Hanoi.
Meals: lunch and dinner | Accommodation: Treasure junk
7:45 – Tour check-in procedure
8:00 – Depart from Hanoi for a 3.5 hours drive to Halong City through the Red River Delta. Upon arrival, get on board of the Treasure Junk. Start cruising from Hon Gai pier to the boundaries of Halong bay while lunch with fresh seafood is served (vegetarian and kids menus available).
After lunch, just make yourself at ease and relax. We are slowly getting off the classic cruising routes, far from the usual clichés of this busy tourism spot. Limestone rock formations will parade all around us for about 2 hours before our first stop.
We reach the perfect spot, remote and scenic, where the waters of Halong and Bai Tu Long hit and wave together. Let’s get ready for serious things. Swimming suits, ok. Kayaks and tender boat, ok. Paddles and gears, ok. Let’s get closer to the water and explore the bay in depth.
After one/one and a half hour kayaking, we get back on board to refresh and start the aperitif on the sundeck. The boat cruises to its anchorage area. Dinner is served either inside or outside depending on weather conditions. Overnight on board in a cozy air-conditioned cabin with en-suite bathroom facilities.
Meals: brunch | Accommodation: not included
We will be back at the pier about 11am, and driven to Hanoi with an expected arrival time about 4pm. The day will be short so let’s wake up early to take the maximum of it.
6:30 – Coffee, tea and cakes will be served. Wake up smoothly while witnessing the silence of beautiful misty bay. A 30-minute Tai Chi session will be organized, energize your body and soul or just allow yourself some farniente time on a sunbath with a cup of coffee.
About 7.45am, we hop on bamboo boats to go visiting a secluded floating village surrounded by the mountains. We trace our way between numerous floating houses and small rowing boats that serve the everyday life as vehicle, itinerant shops, fishing utility, sometimes overnight shelter.
Back on treasure before 9am, we start cruising back to the pier. From 9.30am, a brunch will be served. Take a last glance at the rocks, standing still as the eternal guardians of a kingdom, we are about to reach the pier.
Once on land, we sit in a small café to wait for our overland vehicle. Our shuttle bus will take you back to Hanoi centre at around 16:00.