Trekking Vietnam enjoys some of Vietnam’s most remote and authentic village locations, journeying through hill tribe communities, undulating rice terraces and tracing rivers and mountains. The 10 night trip begins in the historic northern city of Hanoi to enjoy the classic monuments and informative museums, such as the Ethnology Museum, ideal for an insight into the communities this trip encompasses. From Hanoi we head north to Quang Binh, stopping at Tay Villages. From Quang Binh we trek to Tan Nam, passing through small hamlets of Black Zao and Nung ethnicities, before resting in a local homestay. The trek continues on an easy path to Phieng Lang, home to Zao Ao Dai and Flower Hmong communities. The following days take in Pa Duc, Quang Thuong, Nam Choong, Coc Dong, Coc Re and Coc Pai taking in magnificent views, thick forest and steep climbs. From Coc Pai we head to Bac Ha to explore the luscious and famous Ban Pho Valley before catching the night train back to Hanoi.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 1 – Hanoi (D)
Meet our guide up on arrival in Noi Bai international airport. Transfer to hotel for check in (check in time is from 14.00pm/ early check in is subject on availability & surcharge). If time permits take a walk through old quarter & around Hoan Kiem lake before heading to restaurant for welcome dinner & trip orientation
Overnight in Hanoi.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 2 – Hanoi (B,L,D)
Depart the hotel at 8.30 for the Temple of Literature. In 1076 Quoc Tu Giam – Vietnam’s first university, also referred to as Van Mieu, was established within a temple to educate Vietnam’s royalty, mandarins and members of the elite. The university functioned for an incredible 700 years and its gardens and well-preserved architecture offer a fascinating glimpse into Vietnam’s past.
The One Pillar Pagoda, founded by King Ly Thai To in 1049 will be visited next. This structure is one of Vietnam’s most iconic temples. Close by is the mausoleum of the historic figure and father of modern Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh (viewed from outside; closed Mon and Fri and from Oct-Nov; possibility to visit without supplement before 11.00. Order of the visit may be changed to realise this cost saving) and the former presidents house on stilts where he lived from 1958 to 1969. Visit his former home, which illustrates the modesty of this Vietnamese revolutionary.
Continue to picturesque West Lake and the sixth century Tran Quoc Buddhist Pagoda. Lunch will be had in one of the city’s finest restaurants.
In the afternoon visit the fascinating Ethnology Museum (closed on Mondays), which is both a research centre and a public museum exhibiting the ethnic groups of Vietnam. As an alternative to the Ethnology Museum, visit the highly acclaimed Vietnam Women’s Museum (closed on Mondays). The museum is located near Hoan Kiem Lake and offers wonderful insight into the lives of Vietnamese women. Displays highlight Vietnam’s vast cultural diversity and educate on the significant role Vietnamese women play in Vietnamese society.
Learn historic and modern-day traditions centred around births, weddings, motherhood, spirituality and more. Finish the day with Water Puppet show
Overnight in Hanoi.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 3 – Hanoi – Quang Binh (B,L,D)
This exotic journey of the Northeast begins as we depart from Hanoi. We drive up and pass through the undulating terrain of tea plantations in Thai Nguyen city. We will make a short stop for a visit and break at the Museum of Ethnology in Thai Nguyen town.
Keep moving through many other timeless villages linked to the road which is the main artery of trade between the Northeast region and the Hanoi Capital.
After lunch in Tuyen Quang, we continue to Quang Binh with several stops to visit villages of Tay people. Depending on traffic conditions, we will arrive to our guest house at around 5-6pm. Having dinner in town.
Overnight in Quang Binh
Day summary: Transfer 295 km, approx.6 hours/ Some short walks along the way/ Acc: Local guest house in Quang Binh.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 4 – Quang Binh – Tan Nam (B,L,D)
After breakfast, we take a 15 minute transfer to the starting point of the trekking trail. Take an easy walk through valley and terraced rice paddies for over 2 hours to a village of Pa Then ethnic peoples. Explore the village and get the chance to know more the quotidian life of local people.
The afternoon trek takes nearly 4 hours up and down hill through plantation, rice paddies, especially the palm forest of hilly land of the Tan Nam Commune. Enjoy the peaceful ambiance while passing through hamlets of the hospitable Black Zao and Nung ethnic peoples.
Arrive to the centre of Tan Nam at end of the afternoon.
Dinner & overnight at home stay of Nung people
Day summary: Transfer 5 km/ Trekking 6 hours, approx.17 km, grade 2 of 5/ Home stay in Village of the Nung.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 5 – Phieng Lang (B,L,D)
Departure at 08.30am. The trek today is easy on village path which connect from one to one of the Dzao Ao Dai(Zao with long dress), Tay and Nung ethnic peoples which are lying beautifully along the Nam Ly River. Pay visiting many local homes along the way where we feel well the hospitality of local people.
In the afternoon we hike up slightly and gradually to Phieng Lang. This region is inhabited mostly by the Zao Ao Dai peoples and several Flower Hmong who traditionally and practically build their homes on hill tops and cultivate the surrounding land to create perfect dwelling. Arrive to Phieng Lang in mid afternoon. Take a leisure walk to explore the surrounding nature.
Dinner & overnight at home stay of Dzao people
Day summary: Trekking 6 hours, approx.17 km, grade 2 of 5/ Home stay in Phieng Lang of the Red Zao.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 6 – Phieng Lang – Pa Duc – Quang Thuong – Nam Choong (B,L,D)
Enjoy another day along the beautiful Nam Ly Valley. Take a good trail which winds up and down on high hill sides gradually uphill for the whole morning via Pa Duc village to Quang Thuong. Very different from the Nung and Tay, who live in large villages at low land, the Hmong and the Zao Ao Dai occupy the higher land and built their houses scattering on hill-tops. This portion offers one of the most beautiful in the far north.
Lunch break and then descending along a narrow trail passing through tea farms and steep terraced paddies for 2 hours to Nam Chong Village of the Zao Ao Dai. Explore the village and settle down in a local home by the hot spring for dinner and overnight. Overnight at home stay in Nam Choong.
Day summary: Trekking 5 hours, approx.14 km, grade 2 of 5/ Home stay.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 7 – Nam Choong – Quang Nguyen – Coc Cang – Coc Dong (B,L,D)
Starting the day with hiking through narrow trail along the river for an hour until the centre of Quang Nguyen Commune. We continue passing villages, rice terrace, enjoy the magnificent view of far north area!
Be ready for the most challenging part of the tour in the afternoon: Get over the Nhin Co San mountain. The trail becomes narrow and very tough at some part uphill through the thick rain forest and later bamboo forest to Coc Cang village of Che La Commune.
We will pass some hamlets of the White Hmong & Nung peoples.
Dinner and overnight at home stay of White Hmong people
Day summary: Trekking 6 to 7 hours, approx.17 km, grade 4 of 5/ Home stay in Coc Dong Village of the White Hmong.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 8 – Coc Dong – Coc Re – Coc Pai (B,L,D)
Another excellent day is waiting for you! Leaving Coc Dong for uphill hiking along a trail sneaking amidst high mountains, passing several hamlets of the Flower Hmong – who always occupy the highest elevation. Arrive to Coc Re at noon and enjoy lunch break in a local restaurant after hanging around the Coc Re market place for having local breath.
Descending for the whole afternoon passing through some narrow valley with marvellous terraced paddies, newly planted forest to Coc Pai, the town let of Xin Man District.
Check in the Gia Long hotel and enjoy free time to see interesting activities around the Xin Man Market in late afternoon.
Overnight at small hotel in town
Day summary: Trekking 6 hours, approx.17 km, grade 3 of 5/ Gia Long Hotel in Xin Man.
Highly recommend to make this day 8 on Saturday, so that we can enjoy the ethnic market atmosphere on Sunday next day!
Trekking Vietnam: Day 9 – Coc Pai – Bac Ha (B,L,D)
Breakfast and enjoy a leisure walk around Coc Pai for busy morning life before transfer by road for 2, 5 hour to Bac Ha Town let. Arriving to Bac Ha at noon, check in the Sao Mai hotel and lunch break.After noon is highlighted with 2 hours walk to explore the famous Ban Pho Valley which is home to the Flower Hmong and Tay ethnic.
Paying visiting to local homes and enjoy watching peoples making the well-known spirit from corn as well as a traditional dance with the Khen – a traditional musical instrument composed by 6 bamboo pipes.
Overnight in Bac Ha
Day summary: Road transfer 65 km/ Trekking 2 hours, approx.7 km, grade 2 of 5/ Hotel Sao Mai.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 10 – Bac Ha – Nam Mon – Trung Do – Chay River – Lao Cai – Train to Hanoi (B,L,D)
Today is the last day in the mountainous area and it is an easy day! Starting by the transfer of 9 km to Nam Mon Commune and trekking from here along a narrow trail uphill for half an hour and then downhill to the bottom of the valley, then trek along a narrow stream until to Trung Do village of the Tay which consisted of about 40 houses built on stilts on the bank of the Chay River which is set in harmony with the surrounding nature. Enjoy a leisure walk to explore this prosperous village before lunch at a local home.
Leaving Trung Do and walk along the Chay River for over an hour to pay visiting to some hamlets of the Black Zao and Hmong of the Cac Cop Village and from here takes the boat trip down stream the Chay River to Bao Nhai Commune. Picked up at the end of the boat trip and transfer to Lao Cai. Freshen up and dinner before boarding the night train for Hanoi.
Overnight on train
Day summary: Road transfer 56km/ Trekking 4-5 hours, approx.12 km, grade 2 of 5/ Boat trip 1,5 hours.
Trekking Vietnam: Day 11 – Hanoi Departure (B)
Arrive Hanoi early in the morning. A room is available for day use until 12.00pm. Free at leisure till airport transfer for your onward flight.
“This itinerary may alter due to local conditions, the strength of the group and other unexpected circumstances. We will do our very best to adhere to the set itinerary, however we cannot be held responsible for any last minute changes that might occur. In all such circumstances, your biking or trekking guide will have the final say.”
FORM REQUIREMENTS: Participants in any adventure travel will be required to complete and submit a signed terms and conditions agreement including the voluntary participation, assumption of risk, release from liability and hold harmless provisions. Where minors are involved, parental or guardian permission may also be required. Travel documentation will not be released unless these forms are complete and on file with Discovery Travel.
Trekking Vietnam: Rates vary frequently. Please contact us to get the best possible price based upon your travel period and specific touring needs, private basis not join in, please inquire for pricing which varies depending on accommodation standards.
Trekking Vietnam: What’s Included:
Accommodation in a shared twin or shared double room
Meals as mentioned (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)
English or French speaking guide (for other languages and a national guide supplements apply)
Tours and transfers as mentioned by private air conditioned vehicle
Boat trips as mentioned in the itinerary
Entrance fees for mentioned visits
Trekking Vietnam: What’s NOT Included:
Other meals than mentioned
Other services than mentioned
International and domestic Flights
Laundry, telephone calls and expenditure of a personal nature
Tips, Travel insurance
Trekking Vietnam: Creating Unique Touring Experiences
All the touring itineraries on this website have been carefully crafted by our in-country management teams and represent a series of experiences we can certainly recommend. However, we understand that every travel experience should be as unique and individual as each traveler. Our consultants are waiting to hear from you so that we can tailor or custom design a Vietnam tour to your individual specifications.