This is an adventurous, moving on tour through the mountainous north-west provinces of Vietnam and Laos. Luggage transfer and vehicle support will be provided. The tour is suitable for fit, experienced cycling enthusiasts. Vietnam's far North West is undo
What to Expect
Hanoi to Luang Prabang Mountain Bike Tour
Itinerary in brief
This is an adventurous, moving on tour through the mountainous north-west provinces of Vietnam and Laos. Luggage transfer and vehicle support will be provided. The tour is suitable for fit, experienced cycling enthusiasts. Vietnam's far North West is undoubtedly the best place to cycle in the country as the roads see virtually no tourists and avoid Vietnam's notorious highways. It wasn't until the late 1990's that travel restrictions were lifted. Starting in Hanoi, we;ll pass through stunning landscapes, amazing karst rock formations, stilted houses with thatched roofs, mountains nestled between limestone outcrops and the highest concentration of hill-tribe people in the country. We'll cross into a remote area of Laos via the newly opened border crossing at Tay Trang. From the small market town of Muang Khua, we'll take a slow boat down the beautiful Nam Ou river before cycling on to World Heritage Luang Prabang, with its beautiful temples and colourful night market. Our route south to Vientiane, the sleepy capital of Laos, is on virtually traffic-free roads. Great cycling and some of the friendliest people in Asia.
The opening in 2007 of the Tay Trang border crossing between Vietnam and Laos has made this exciting tour possible. This is an adventurous, moving on tour through the mountainous north west provinces. Vietnam's far North West is undoubtedly the best place to cycle in the country as the roads see virtually no tourists and avoid Vietnam's notorious highways. Stunning landscape, amazing karst rock formations, stilted houses with thatched roofs, mountains nestled between limestone outcrops and the highest concentration of hill-tribe people in Asia. We enter Northern Laos at Tay Trang. The trip includes a spectacular journey by boat down the Nam Ou River, a day off the bikes in World Heritage town, Luang Prabang with its beautiful temples and colourful night market, and time to explore vibrant Hanoi and Vientiane.
Set Departures Hanoi to Luang Prabang Mountain Bike Tour
Day 1: Hanoi - Arrival
Upon arrival at Hanoi Airport our guide who will accompany you to your hotel will welcome you. There are no activities planned for today but your guide will be able to offer advice and assistance as required. This evening your guide will return to your hotel to escort you to sample some of Hanoi's superb cuisine. Overnight in Hanoi
Day 2: Hanoi - Lao Cai [B]
21h00: Transfer to Hanoi railway station to catch the night train to Lao Cai. O/N on the train.
Day 3: Lao Cai - Sapa [B/ L / D]
We'll disembark from the train very early in the morning and either bike or transfer to Sapa. It's not all that far but it is virtually ALL up hill.
Sapa is the hilltribe capital of North Vietnam. There are a variety of minority people in this area and they all come to Sapa to the market.
Day 4: Sapa -Tam Duong [B/ L / D]
Started from Sapa by cycling about 16 kilometres uphill to the Vietnam highest pass at 2000 meters above sea level where you see beautiful Silver Waterfall and Tram Ton heaven gate then it is downhill for around 26 kilometres on the road described as the most beautiful one in Vietnam with breathtaking scenery all the way to Binh Lu. In the late afternoon you will arrive in Tam Duong, where you will stay overnight in a comfortable Hotel.
Day 5: TamDuong - Xin Ho [B/ L / D]
We cycling through Tam Duong plain which is covered in shark's teeth-like limestone karst. We would visit a village of Mang people near Sin Ho with the next stop being Sin Ho which is home land of the Red Hmong, Kho Mu, Mang and Dao ethnic minorities. They are settled there longtime ago and still retain their traditional culture and habits. The trip to Sin Ho is occasionally suspended due to the restriction of the local authority.
Day 6: Xin Ho - Paso - Laichau ( MuongLay ) [B/ L / D]
We Cycling down hill to Chan Nua then cycling to Lai Chau have a couple pretty big climbs and then follow the picturesque Nam Na river into Muang Say (aka "Old Lai Chau"). We stay at the hip Lan Anh hotel where there no doubt will be an active badminton game in the evening.
Day 7: Lai Chau - Dien Bien Phu [B/ L / D]
In 1954, the French Garrison at Dien Bien Phu was pinned down when the Vietnamese were able to do something thought impossible....carry heavy artillery into the mountains. When you ride in this area you will wonder yourself how they ever did it. The siege at Dien Bien Phu ended in a French surrender and marked the end of French Indochina. Little known is the fact that the US had developed a plan to aid the French by using tactical nuclear weapons at Dien Bien Phu
Day 8: Dien Bien Phu to Muang Khua, Laos [B/ L / D]
We depart Dien Bien and cross into Northeast Laos at Tay Tran. This is the least populated section of Laos. We continue on to Muang Khua on the banks of the Nam Ou river.
Day 9: Muang Khua to Odomxai [B/ L / D]
This is a scenic lightly traveled road to bustling Odomxai. Odomxai seems to be undergoing a rennaisance. Lots of construction and activity in the town these days. They have an airport here also (with less than daily service). We stay at the nicest place in town.
Day 10: Odomxai to Pak Mong [B/ L / D]
A tough climbing day at the start and then rolling hills with magnificent scenery before a 29 k Descent to Pak Mong.
Day 11: Pak Mong to Luang Prabang [B/ L / D]
On to the historic and enchanting city of Luang Prabang. We follow the banks of the Mekong before entering the city proper. It's also possible, with advance planning, to bike the 20k in the opposite direction to Nong Khiaw and then take a boat down the Nam Ou River. This will take you right by the Pak Ou caves at the confluence of the Nam Ou and Mekong Rivers.
Day 12: Rest day in Luang Prabang [B/ L / D]
Today is a rest day in Luang Prabang. Luang Prabang is encircled by mountains and situated on the banks of the Mekong where it meets the Nam Khan river. There is a lot to see in this World Heritage Town: Temples, Monastaries, the Royal Palace and French Colonial Architecture as well as the beautiful falls outside of town. It's worthwhile to get up and observe the monks collecting alms at 6 am.
Day 13: Luang Prabang departure [B]
At leisure until transfer to Airport for onward flight.
- English Speaking tour leader (other languages upon requests)
- All accommodations base on twin-share at hotel, guesthouse and Home stay.etc…
- Meals detailed in the itinerary (B = Breakfast , L = Lunches ,D = Dinners)
- A/C transfers and transportation.
- Boat trip mention in itinerary
- Sightseeing excursions as outlined in itinerary
- Train Ticket from Hanoi to Lao Cai
- Pump, bike tools, spares tubes.
- Spare bike
- Mineral water drinking.
- Seasonal fruits.
What's Not Included
- International airfares
- Travel insurance and bike helmet (compulsory)
- Items of a personal nature
- Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks
- Mineral water beyond that supplied
- Single Supplement
- Optional excursions
- Additional transport required due to any emergency situation
- Personal expenses such as telephone and laundry bills
- Mountain bicycle (Bike Hire US$20/per day)
- Visa fees
- Departure taxes
- Tipping for guiding