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Start our day with a visit to Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, this is a very special place for all Vietnamese and also famous for foreigners around the world to see the whole complex, Uncle Ho’s house on stilt where he lived and worked from 1958 -1969, his fishing pond and his garden.
Then head to One Pillar Buddhist Pagoda built in 1049 by King Ly Thai Tong who ruled from 1028 to 1054. Ly Thai Tong was childless and dreamt that he met the bodhisattva Avalokiteshava, who handed him a baby son while seated on a lotus flower. Ly Thai Tong then married a peasant girl that he had met and she bore him a son. The emperor constructed the temple for the gratitude for this miracle.
Further on our excursion, we visit to Van Mieu, temple of literature to dedicate to Confucius and his four best disciples. This was also the first national university of Vietnam built in 1076 within the temple to educate Vietnamese bureaucrats, nobles, royalty and other members of the elite. This university remained open from 1076 to 1779.
The interest thing in this place is the collection of steles of doctorates whose names, birth place, year of the examination, and the rank were engraved onto the marble stone stele placing on the top of the turtle. There are 1307 graduated doctor names on 82 stele in this place.
After visiting this wonderful place, we will have lunch at restaurant in old quarter with specialty food of Hanoian - Cha Ca (Grilled Fish) and refresh.
Later in the day we visit to Ethnology Museum which is very rich culture collection of 54 ethnic groups living in Vietnam. The simple agriculture stools, fish traps, hand weaving cloths, crafts, festivals, folk arts, traditional houses, and lively activities of each tribe are all here for us to discover.
Finish our day at Vietnam National Museum of History, we not only see the exhibits from stone age, bronze ages and prehistoric era to prove that there were the ancient Viet people living in Hanoi but also the modern artifacts to show how the Vietnamese has been strugling for independence, freedom, peace and love.
Late afternoon drive to Hanoi Railway Station for night train trip to Sapa.
Hanoi to Sapa by train: 255km (8 hours)
Overnight on train
Early morning get to Lao Cai Railway Station then transfer to Sapa town. Sapa is a hill station resort built during the French in 1880s and a lovely town located at 1600m above the sea level.
Sapa is very famous for hill tribe markets, mountainous and fabulous Hoang Lien Son mountain range in which Fan Si Pan, at a height of 3314 meters above the sea level is considered as the highest peak of Indochina peninsula.
Enjoy breakfast at hotel where we can leave our luggage and refresh before trekking to Ta Van and Lao Chai village.
The short journey will commence with a drive southwards Muong Hoa Valley. You will then start your descending walk into the valley, which is the largest paddy terrace in Sapa area.
The guide can provide you interesting information about rice and rice growing. If the journey to valley on May and October, you will be able to experience how the local do planting and harvesting, one of the most important activities in their daily life.
The walk takes from Lao Chai Village of Black H’mong minority to Ta Van Village of Giay minority hill tribe lives, including a visit to one of the local schools. Enjoy the lunch in a local house.
After lunch the walk continues on a hilly trail through a bamboo forest to Giang Ta Chai, a Red Dao ethnic minority village. On the way, you can make a stop at a waterfall for a rest and photographing.
Once leaving the village, descend to a suspension bridge before ascending to the main road where your vehicle is awaited for your journey back to Sapa.
Approx: Grade 2 of 5/ 1 hour driving/ 4 hours walking
Note: One of the most well-known trips in the Sapa valley.
Lao Cai Station to Sapa: 35km (1 hour)
Overnight in Sapa
The last journey in Sapa will be mostly driving downhill towards Lao Cai before taking a left turn into a small paved road leading to Ta Phin Village of Red Dao tribe hill.
Here you can experience the unmixed cultural life of Black H’mong and Red Dao minorities, the two largest ethnic groups in the area living happily together while still maintaining their own traditions.
The two groups, who are both well-known for handicraft, are recognized by their dressing style. Then take a walk around the village and visit one of the local houses.
After that transfer back to Sapa. Lunch on your own expenses.
We also have a chance to visit the border gate between Vietnam and China in Lao Cai City before getting on the train.
Approx: Grade 1 of 5/ 1 hour driving/ 1.5 hours walking.
Note: Red Dao women will try to sell handicraft at the village so this tour would not be recommended if you prefer “off the bitten track” tours. Good road conditions
Terms & Conditions
Any part of this itinerary can be altered to fit your need, e.g.accommodation, tour length...