6 Days Best of Northern Vietnam

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See the most beautiful sites of the north on this trip, including Ban Gioc Waterfall, Nguom Ngao Cave, Dong Van Plateau and seize the opportunity to meet colorful hill-tribe groups along the way.

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  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
      caving, hiking, sightseeing
    • Activity Level Jeep tours
    • Group Size Large Group
    All about the 6 Days Best of Northern Vietnam.

    Itinerary at glance

    Day 1: Hanoi – Quang Uyen
    Day 2: Ban Gioc Waterfall – Cao Bang City
    Day 3: Bao Lac – Meo Vac
    Day 4: Ma Pi Leng Pass – Ha Giang City
    Day 5: Ha Giang – Bac Ha
    Day 6: Visiting H’mong Village – Back to Hanoi


    Types of road: highway, paved mountain roads
    Vehicle types: Pick-up cars/trucks
    No of passengers per car: 01 – 03
    No of vehicles: 01 – 10
    Driving distances: 1,350km


    • Hotels
    • Guesthouse, homestay: blanket, pillow, mattress and mosquito net provided, western toilet, hot shower

    Meals: local food (fish, pork, beef, chicken, egg, vegetable…)
    Activities: hiking, caving, sightseeing
    Group size: 01 – 30
    Duration of trip: 06 days
    Guides: 01 – 02 guides/group

    Self-driving information/requirements:

    Minimum driving age: 22
    IDP (International Driving Pass)
    Manual or automatic: both
    No of passengers per car: 01 – 04

    1. Day 1 Hanoi - Quang Uyen (L/D)

      Pick up from your hotel and leave Hanoi in the morning. Today, your drive will go through the villages, small towns and a part of the old national route 1A (the new 1A is now the main highway from north to south – the spine of Vietnam). This route offers you many stops with panoramic views of local life in the Northern Vietnam countryside, including rice fields and villages and many other attractive sites along the way. Lunch en route. Reach Quang Uyen in the afternoon where you will check in to the guesthouse. In the evening, you will be invited to a hill- tribe family in the village for dinner. Only a simple meal, but you will have the chance to meet and learn more about the Nung minority group.

      Stay: Guesthouse

    2. Day 2 Ban Gioc Waterfall – Cao Bang City (B/L)

      After breakfast, you head to Ban Gioc Waterfall. Today´s landscape is amazing, with karst formations and peaceful sceneries of villages – hamlets of hill-tribe people living along the mountains.  The highlight of the day is Ban Gioc Waterfall. This is commonly regarded as the most beautiful waterfall in the north of Vietnam. You will also visit Nguom Ngao Cave on the way to Cao Bang, with more than 900 of its total 2,144 meters in length to be discovered. Nguom Ngao Cave is the longest and most beautiful cave in the north of Vietnam – truly a masterpiece in stone. Inside the cave, you will be dazzled by sparkling seven-colored stalactites hanging from high above and startlingly life-like rock formations.

      Continuing the trip with a visit to the traditional blacksmiths village of the Tay minority group, Phuc Sen is an authentic ’trade village’ where people still maintain the traditional occupation that their forefathers practiced a hundred years ago. Entering the village, you can hear the sounds of their hammer blows. Thanks to their time-tested techniques and vast experience, the village is well-known for durable and high quality products. Their main products are farming tools and kitchen knives. In the early 20th century, a village man used to produce cannons for the Viet Minh (the northern Vietnam army during the Indochina war)

      Stay: hotel (3 star)

    3. Day 3 Bao Lac – Meo Vac (B/L)

      Today you will drive up to the Dong Van plateau and on the way, a visit to the Black Lo Lo ethnic group in Khuoi Khon Village. The villagers still live in the traditional houses on stilts and the women frequently wear their beautiful traditional costumes. Lunch will be in Bao Lac town.

      In the afternoon, there will be time for the drive up to the rocky plateau. It offers opportunities for taking photos of landscapes and the colorful hill-tribe people can sometimes be seen on the way. Meo Vac town is where you will spend the night. This district of 18 communes and 1 town shares borders with China. About 90% of the population here are of the H’Mong people.

      Stay: hotel

    4. Day 4 Ma Pi Leng Pass – Ha Giang City (B/L)

      There are many places to see today, starting with a great view of Ma Pi Leng Pass and a relaxing walk in the ancient part of Dong Van town. Have a break at a coffee house, which is transformed from an ancient house of a local rich business man. Following Dong Van Town, you will stop at the “Palace of the Opium King”, once home of the man considered to be the King of the H’Mong ethnic people in the Dong Van highland area. The architecture of the building bears highly artistic value and clearly reflects ancient Chinese architecture. It was not only a home, but also a fort in the middle of a rocky highland valley. During that time, his main income was from purchasing opium, and the many opium flower designs decorating his palace confirms the story.

      On the drive down to Ha Giang City, you will have one more stop at Quan Ba Heaven’s Gate, and can climb to the top of Fairy Mountain. From there, you can see the famous Twin Mountains and overlook the small towns in the valley spreading out at your feet.

      Arriving at the village in the late afternoon, you will check into a homestay of the Tay minority group. The Tay is the largest minority group in Vietnam with a population of more than 1 million people.

      Stay: Homestay


    5. Day 5 Ha Giang - Bac Ha (B/L)

      This will be a long day in the car, but you will be driven on less touristic routes from the East to the West of Vietnam. On the way, you will see Hoang Su Phi’s terraced fields, recognized as a national heritage site. These amazing terraces stand as witnesses through centuries of hard work with wet rice cultivation by the La Chi, Dao and Nung ethnic minorities.

      Note: The best time to see the rice fields is in summer, the time of rice crop. In May (beginning of rainy season) peasants start their crop, they plow and flood terrace fields with their irrigation systems. During this period, their fields look like pieces of curved mirror. Later, their fields have green colors with different tones. Then September and October is considered the most beautiful time for photographers. Rice terrace fields in harvest season look like a vivid picture with many bright colors.

      Stay: hotel

    6. Day 6 Visiting H’mong Village – Back to Hanoi (B/L)

      If you visit on a Sunday, you will have the opportunity to see Bac Ha Market – the biggest and one of the most interesting markets in the entire region. Thousands of people from many ethnic groups come here and the scenery looks more like a festival than merely a marketplace. You will see Black Dao, Tay, Phu La and Flower Hmong people trading all kinds of commodities, from hand embroidered clothing to chili peppers and even buffaloes.

      If it is not Sunday, you will visit the nearby Pho Hamlet. This is a hamlet of the H’mong minority group, who has inhabited the region for centuries. The villagers there are famous for their unique corn wine. We will visit a family; get to know about their daily routine and how they make their corn wine.

      Farewell Bac Ha, off to Hanoi. Tour ends at your hotel.

    • Hotels
    • Guesthouse, homestay: clean, blanket, pillow, mattress and mosquito net provided; western toilet; hot shower

    Meals: local foods (fish, pork, beef, chicken, egg, vegetable…)


    Homestay in Quang Uyen
    Hotel in Cao Bang
    Room in Cao Bang
    Room in Ha Giang