The 4-day Northern Vietnam tour starts from Hanoi, takes you to Yen Bai province, one of the provinces which are infected by mass tourism. Enjoy a half day trek to a Dzao village in Vu Linh before continuing traveling to Nghia Lo where you have another half day trek. The highlight of the journey is the half day trek you do on the third day in Tu Le. The area is peaceful, off the beaten path and exceptionally beautiful during the period of harvesting – Early May and October.
Day 1: Hanoi – Thac Ba Lake.
7h00: You will be met up with Lotussia Travel team at your hotel in Hanoi (please advise your hotel contacts when booking). Depart Hanoi for Thac Ba lake, Yen Bai province. Enjoy a half day road trip along the national road 2 via Vinh Yen, Phu Tho to Yen Bai. Have some photo stops en route for you to enjoy beautiful scenery of lush palm forests, tea plantations and stunning valleys. Upon your arrival in Vu Linh, you will have lunch in a local restaurant in Vu Linh. After lunch, enjoy a short hike to a Dzao village. You will hike for about two or three hours through local Dzao villages and terraced rice fields. The hike is easy as you mostly walk on flat roads without much up and downhill climbs. Stop by a local house of the Dzao where you can learn more about the local life. Around mid-afternoon, you will be picked up again by your car and transferred to Vu Linh. Check into a local stilt house for dinner and overnight.
Day 2: Thac Ba Lake – Nghia Lo.
After breakfast, you say goodbye to the host and depart for Nghia Lo. Today the road is good but turns left and right continuously. You travel through the area where most of hills are covered with palm trees, tea and industry plants.
Around noon, you arrive in Muong Lo, located in an immense and flat valley surrounded by a vast mountainous area. Have lunch in a local restaurant in town. In the afternoon, you will be transferred by car to a Thai village where you enjoy a short trek around the village. You meet up with local villagers, chat with them to understand more about their culture and traditions. In the evening, you have dinner in a local stilt house before returning back to Nghia Lo town and check into a hotel for overnight.
Day 3: Nghia Lo – Tu Le.
After breakfast, you leave Nghia Lo for Tu Le. Some stops will be made en route for you to visit local hilltribe villages and to take picture of the wild beauty of the scenery. You arrive in Tu Le around noon, in time for lunch. After lunch, enjoy a half day trekking to local H’mong villages are located near the town. During this 3-hour hike, you will meet up with the H’mong, the Thai. Along with Lotussia tour guide, you will learn more about their culture, custom and traditions. Dinner and overnight in a local stilt house (homestay).
Day 4: Tu Le – Hanoi.
After breakfast, you enjoy a full day drive from Tu Le back to Hanoi. You take another road for the return, the National Road 32. If time permits, you have the opportunity to visit Duong Lam ancient village before arriving back in Hanoi. Duong Lam village in Son Tay Town (some 60km to the west of Hanoi Capital) is the first ancient village recognised as a national relic by the Ministry of Culture and Information. The ancient village has a history of about 1,200 years with many houses dating back up to 400 years. One special thing about the village is that most of the buildings here are made of laterite and mud, two materials that are abundant in the area. You arrive back in Hanoi around late afternoon. Trip ends.
Occasionally our tour itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travelers’ comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the service proposal. It’s very important that you print and review a final copy of your itinerary a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact us. We are here to help you!
Please note that while we operate successful trips in Vietnam throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.
Depending on the proposed option (semi-guide tour or all-inclusive package tour), the price may include the following services. Please bear in mind Lotussia Travel is specialized in tailor-made trips. Trip cost vary depending on group size and other details.
- Car transfers.
- Local tour guide. The English-Speaking guide is provided by default. Other language may be available upon request (with extra charge).
- Entrance fees.
Unless required most of the following services are usually not included in our tour price.
- Flight/Train tickets.
- Tour leader.
- Local porter(s).
- International travel insurance.
- Personal expenses.
Our tour guides speak English or French. They hold a university degree in tourism and national license as a guide. If you wish to send a tour leader along with any group, he or she can fully rely on the knowledge and experience of our local guides.
Remote treks are always accompanied by a local representative to deal with permits and authorities and manage the porter team. They speak the local dialects, know the cultural traditions and give tips on suggested behavior in fragile ecological areas and tribal communities. For some itineraries, the role of tour leader and representative is combined.
Principally, Lotussia Travel requires all the trip associates to know the destinations well by any means of traveling or enquiry to the local suppliers to figure out all the relative details of any trip. For adventure tours such as jungle trekking, mountain hiking, sea kayaking, river rafting or biking, cycling tours, LOTUSSIA Travel will never add any new routes into available schedule until survey or pre-view it.
Lotussia Travel carefully choose all the hotels, guest-houses or home-stays based on service quality, location, and characteristics, doing best to make the accommodations in the remote small places as comfortable as possible. Please bear in mind that hotels in Vietnam might not be in the same standard in other country. Generally hotels in major cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh city, Hoian, Hue…are much better than hotels and guest-houses in mountainous areas.
Lotussia Travel take dinning as an indispensable experience to clients since it is an important part in Vietnamese culture. Therefore, Lotussia Travel will not intend take clients to the most expensive restaurants but non-touristy local ones which offer delicious, local food, with nice or interesting atmosphere. The restaurants might be simple in the country but LOTUSSIA Travel guarantee is sanitary and cleanliness. Or even on our trek, we encourage our cook offer client food with new tastes from day to day. During adventure itineraries to mountainous or remote areas, there is sometimes no choice for hotel and restaurants. We will try our best to bring you the best taste of local food.
As the tap water in Vietnam is undrinkable, Lotussia Travel recommend clients to drink bottled water throughout your trip, or boiled water on treks. Lotussia Travel offers bottle water all the day, and soft drinks like Cola, Sprite or Vietnamese Tea or if possible juice in restaurants (if mentionned in itinerary). This is not automatically included in the packages. In simple restaurant or on camping, Lotussia Travel offers boiled water, instant coffee or juice, wrapped milk (Details are confirmed in bottom of your itinerary).
In most destinations of Vietnam, all the roads are well paved though the traffic is quite messed up like in Hanoi, Hai Phong… We use proper vehicles, car, minibus or coach in good condition based on the size of the groups. We use 4WD only on the rough road where the other vehicles could not pass through or based on clients requirement on overland journeys or treks. For cycling itineraries, we usually use our support minibus or minibus with support truck. For sea kayaking, river rafting trips, diving packages we use standard boat as support. Detailed information is provided on our service proposal.
We use drivers who are native or local of each travel destination and maintain good safety records for all trips. Most of our drivers can speak English but a little bit. This is just enough to understand basic words such as “time of departure”, “stop”, “restaurants”, “hotels”…If you want to learn more about Vietnamese culture and information about sightseeing sites, booking a tour guide is highly recommended.