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rice terrace - mu cang chai-vietnam - zonitrip

Mu Cang Chai to Sapa- Hiking Tour 5 Days

(3 Reviews)
  • 5 DaysHigh season: Jun, Sep,Oct
  • Private/group tour : 5-15 People
  • Sleep: Homestay/Hotel
  • Difficulty : Gentle (2/5)
  • Pickup: from Hanoi
  • Min Age : 15+

Sapa and Mu Cang Chai are located in far Northwest Vietnam. They’re well-known as the best beautiful Rice Terrace in Vietnam & in the world, but it’s still keep unchanged charm since many generations. If you like photography, nature and people’s culture, mix with a little challenging via hiking local trails,  this Sapa- Mu Cang Chai Hiking tour 5 days tour is designed for you.

You have an opportunity to explore one of the most beautiful parts in the Sapa and Mu Cang Chai, the beautiful stream, majestic mountain landscape and breathtaking rice terraces fields. You will sleep in the homestay of tribal minority, to experience the local life and their culture. You will also be able to meet several different minorities, such as Black or Flower Hmong, Giay, Tay, Thai, Dao and Xa Pho. Both valleys are beautiful with mountainous surrounding and rice paddy terraces.

Our program has a well organized and flexible itinerary depends on the weather and rice status, so to have a smooth program, let book with Zonitrip – local Tour operator Expert.  

Recommended Airport

Noi Bai International Airport (Google Map)

Meeting Point

Your hotel in Hanoi

Price Includes

  • All transportation mentioned in program: prviate car from your hotel to Mu Cang Chai- Sapa and come back to Hanoi
  • English speaking local guide (experience, knowlegeable and friendly guide)
  • Meal as in itinerary
  • Accommodation as indicated in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees and signseeing fees
  • Water: 1 little/day/person

Price Excludes

  • Personal expenses, tips and gratuities
  • Personal items: Clothes, rain-gear, foot wears
  • Beverage: Extra drinks
  • International Travel Insurance


  • Comfortable walking/trekking shoes
  • ClothingLight comfortable clothes and warm clothes in winter time ( from Oct to Feb)
  • Take a small day backpack for hiking
  • Insect/mosquito repellent, sun cream, sun hat, light raincoat
  • Medicine + First aid kit(fever, bad stomach etc.) + (aspirin, anti-biotic, salon pas, healing tape, energy pills...)
  • Snack, nut, candy, energy gel, drink
What to Expect
  • Spetacular beauty of Rice Terraces fields - with best spots for photography
  • Fantastic mountain scenry, amazing views
  • Interesting and unique hiking journey
  • Explore the true rural life and interesting traditional culture of ethnic people
  • Experience staying at traditional homestay & enjoy the tasty Vietnamese food
  • Less touristic, avoid the crowed in tourism area, merge with nature
  • Well organization and flexible program with best price

Day 1HANOI – NGHIA LO- TU LE (-, L, D)

7:30 am: Our guide will pick-up you at hotel. We also pass Nghia Lo town – the home of Thai people – one of the main ethnic people in Yen Bai. Around 2-3pm, arrive Tu Le town, you will walk around the rice fields, spring and villages, explore the life, the house, the culture…of Thai and Mong people.

Ups on your health and time, we will go farther, through Nam Co – Nam Pang to homestay in Bung Som village, around 10km in 3,5hrs. Or shorter route 6-7 km in 2hrs. You will follow the rice field, narrow muddy local path, cross the stream. If you want, you can join to swim with children in the stream. The Hiking road is quite flat, not too much difficult, but cross the field and stream is one of interesting activity.

Overnight at the homestay wooden stilt house of Thai people in Tu Le. ( if you want a private room, we can arrange the room in a hotel)

Sum up

  • Hiking difficulty: Easy ( 1/5) ~5 -10 Km in 2-3,5 hrs
  • Driving: 250 Km – 5hrs 
  • Accommodation: Homestay


8 am: After breakfast, we will move to Mu Cang Chai. We will drive over the Khau Pha pass (one of the four greatest passes in Northern Vietnam, connecting Tu Le and Mu Cang Chai. These scenic roads offer a lot of stops for picture-taking as it is the viewpoint to see the Lim Mong, Lim Thai village or paragliding-point on the top of this pass.

When we arrive in Mu Cang Chai, we will spend around 3 hrs Hiking from La Pan Tan village to Rasberry Hill – one of the most famous destinations in the country with round shape follow the mountain shape. La Pan Tan village is well-known with large and high rice terraces in Mu Cang Chai. Everything was built by the human hand of the H’ mong people over the past hundreds of years. The simple lunch will be served after go down to the main road, or if you want to try to experience the life of Hmong people, you can visit their house, cook and eat lunch with local.

After lunch, you will continue to take the Hiking from Che Cu Nha to Kim Noi village in around ~9-10 km in 3 -3,5hrs. On the way, we will go up a high mountain, pass the H’ mong village and a waterfall in a remote area. Besides seeing the beauty of rice fields, you’ll be guided how to plant rice, harvest rice or discover the farm working of locals. We can visit some houses or schools to explore local life and culture if that interests you.

At the end of the Hiking route leads to homestay of Thai people in Mu Cang Chai center. Enjoy dinner, warmly & hospitality of Thai people.

Option 2: Depends on your fitness and health, if you want to more time to rest, in the afternoon, we can choose the option, Hiking to see the sunset in Sang Nhu village. If the weather is good and the status of rice field, we will make a Hiking trip to Sang Nhu village ( in Mu Cang Chai) – where have the beautiful rice terrace field with Horse feed shape and amazing sunset. However, this Hiking trip is quite steep.
Overnight at the stilt house homestay of Thai or Mong people. ( P/s: If you want to experience sleep in the homestay of Hmong people, we will arrange a night in Hello Mu Cang Chai homestay in La Pan Tan village.)

Sum up

  • Hiking level: Moderate (3/5) with ~15-17 Km in 5-6hrs
  • Driving: 50 Km 
  • Accommodation: Homestay

Day 3MU CANG CHAI - SAPA (4hrs driving and 2hrs hiking) (B,L,D)

After our breakfast, depending on the season, we can spend 2-2,5hrs Hike up to Sang Nhu or Lao Chai village, where has beautiful rice terraces (attractive many photographers), Hiking through the pine forests, the hidden path.  

After that, we will be transferred to Sapa. The road connects Mu Cang Chai to Sapa is one of the most beautiful mountain roads in Vietnam with fantastic scenery. Cross Tan Uyen district, where you can see the majestic Green TEA Hills.  Our guide will take you to visit the tea plantation, a demonstration of the tea making process, and about a dozen cups of the local green tea! You will have an experience, how to tell when tea leaves and buds are ready to be picked and how to tell its quality grade.

We’ll cross over O Quy Ho pass, one of the four greatest passes in Vietnam where you’ll see the highest peak of Indochina: Mt Fansipan. You can enjoy fresh and cool air and nice landscapes. It will be an unforgettable experience.

Arrive Sapa in the afternoon, check-in hotel, eat dinner and relax to prepare for the Sapa trip next morning.

Sum up

  • Hiking level: Easy (1/5) ~5-7 Km in 2-2,5hrs
  • Driving: 160 Km ~4hrs
  • Accommodation: Hotel 3 sao

Day 4Sapa – Cat Cat- Y Linh Ho – Lao Chai – Ta Van (B/L/D) ( 14km)

Enjoy your breakfast at the hotel, leave your luggage at the reception store. 

At 9:00 am, we will leave Sapa and hike down to Cat Cat village, taking in the picturesque waterfall at the bottom of the hill. After a slight retrace of steps (but not all the way back up!) we will take a turn towards Y Linh Ho and begin a 2km walk through rice terraces. Y Linh Ho is home to the Hmong minority, and their hereditary rice terraces are around 100 years old. This is a perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in true Hmong culture!

From Y Linh Ho we will make our way to Lao Chai, an established Hmong minority village that has been inhabited for centuries. See the products of this minority at its best, with established rice terraces, homes and a vibrant community. You will be welcomed warmly by Mai and her family who run the first-ever homestay owned and run by Hmong minority in the Sapa region.


  • Hiking route:   14km in ~5 hours on dirt paths/downhill 
  • Accommodation:  Homestay
  • Meals:    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5Ta Van – Giang Ta Chai – Su Pan – Sapa- Hanoi (B/L/D) ( 8km hiking + 6hrs driving)

When you awake on Day 5, open the window and have a look outside – weather permitting – you will be treated to amazing views across the rice terraces in the valley.

After breakfast, you will make your way to Ta Van where you will visit the Giay minority people. This tribe traditionally fished for a living and as a result established themselves close to rivers. They have mastered the art of fishing with bamboo sticks, and cook the fish inside bamboo. Nowadays however you are more likely to see the Giay working in fields planting or harvesting rice. We will continue our walk through an impressive bamboo forest to Giang Ta Chai, and then on to the village of Su Pan where you will be able to rest your legs and take in the stunning mountain scenery as we stop for a picnic lunch.

After lunch, our car will pick you up and transfer back to Hanoi. 


Hiking route:   8km in ~2,5-3 hours 
Driving time: 350km~6hrs
Meals:    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner


Hiking Mu Cang Chai map

Sapa trekking map
Sapa trekking map



I'm a solo traveller, is there a single supplement?

Solo travel is taking off. More and more adventurers are forging their own path and travelling alone as part of a group tour. And it’s no wonder. With the confidence you gain from seeing the world on your terms, solo travel gives you a sense of freedom like nothing else.

If you want to travel to your own tune, you’ll be in good company with Zonitrip. Lots of our travellers arrive alone and leave with lifelong friends. With shared authentic experiences in far-flung destinations, our tours are the perfect chance to create lasting friendships.

We’ll match you with the group having suit your departure time, so you can share the tour cost. About single supplements like accommodation, most of our homestay have a single mattress so it’s very convenient for solo travel. If you want to upgrade a private room, the small surcharge can be accepted.
If at the departure time you want, we haven’t had any other group, you can book in advance or deposit to keep a sit. We will inform you of the update or customized suitable or better options.

You can also find many travel ideas and tours here in the best solo travel destinations. Don’t worry, let contact with us.
Email: info@zonitrip.com
Tel/whatsapp: +84389927861

How about accommodation?

After a long day with a lot of activities, we know a comfortable place to rest overnight is a special concern. A relaxed and enjoyable accommodation is not only to state the quality of the tour but also to get the energy back for the possibly hard days after.

However, the Trekking and Motorbike tours of Zonitrip are almost at remote regions where accommodations are not like other big towns, so we’ll stay mostly at the standard hotels or home-stay. But don’t’ worry, they’re surely safe and the equipment is comfortable enough for you:

  • Home-stay:

Mostly 90% of Zonitrip’s customers are pleased with staying at homestays. 

All the families we choose to stay have special permits and are certificated from the local government. Most of the homestays are nice wood and clean houses on stilts, are owned by warm hosts, who are local knowing well area. Below is the equipment you can expect to have at the homestay: private mats, blankets, mosquito nets, fans, clean toilets, hot water. 

  • Hotel

In Sapa, you will spend 1 night at a hotel. There are many choices, you can choose from 3-4-5star hotel. 

If you have any specific inquiry about accommodation, don’t hesitate to discuss with us. 

How's about the food?

We would like to say the food on tours is one of the most important reasons to make our clients come back for more.
We serve almost local Vietnamese food on the tour. Generally, Vietnamese food is light but it’s surely not boring and so healthy. We can be sure all food is fresh with a lot of vegetables, especially for vegetarians.
We sometimes choose a basic roadside restaurant for meals or eating at the homestay but the food is always fresh, tasty and plenty to choose.
Such as famous PHO (rice noodle soup), BUN CHA (special noodle with grilled pork), NEM (Spring rolls)…The local people have different methods to cook so we can be sure you can have different food for each meal during the long adventure tours in Vietnam. 


How do I book and pay?

All our quotes are in USD/VND. We accept Visa/MasterCard by either directly giving us your card details or using our authorized payment form, Western Union, bank transfers or cash ( USD & VND).
Once you have agreed on an itinerary or service we will ask for a 30% deposit and start making reservations for you. Once all reservations have been made we will confirm back to you. The final balance is due on your arrival in our area or before your tour departs.

What is cancellation policy?

  • Once you have paid 30% non-refundable deposit your trip is confirmed.
  • Any cancellation of a booking must be in writing and shall only be effective upon its acknowledged receipt by ZONITRIP
  • For cancellations made within 7 days and 48 hrs before the day of the service, we reserve the right to retain 25% of the due amount.
  • For cancellations made within 48 hrs of the tour, we reserve the right to retain the full fee.
  • No refunds are given in case of force majeure
  • No refunds are given if the client leaves the program after it has begun for any reasons whatsoever or miss any scheduled sightseeing or visit or no show up
3 Reviews
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Group Traveller

Excellent 5 day Sapa and Mu Cang Chai trekking with Mu who will tailor treks to suit anyone

Overall we had an excellent trip. What really makes any trip is the quality of the guide and ours, Mu from the Black Hmong Tribe, was excellent. There were just the two us on the tour so she tailored the trip to what we wanted and were interested in and went at a pace that suited us which enabled us to take all the photos we wanted. Mu’s English was very good and spoken without an accent (she learnt by following tours and picked it up all by herself). She told us about how the village people live, what animals they keep and what plants they grow and often pointed out things of interest. The sleeper train was as expected and at the homestays we had meals together with the other guests, which provided a social atmosphere to find out about their travels. The first homestay was high up in the hills (1,600m) where it was a bit chilly at night but the blankets provided kept us warm (March) but the second one right down in the valley was warmer. It was good trekking to the homestays
Visit in March, 2019



Couple Traveller

We did the 5 day trekking Sapa and Mu Cang Chai. Ngia was the perfect ambassador and made sure everything was adapted to our likings: meeting the locals, explanations about the culture, trying new food, getting to the best views.. after 23 days in Vietnam and many tours this was the best of them. Absolutely recommended.



Group Traveller

What an experience!
A friend and I did a private tour with Nghia and loved every part of the experience.
Our Sapa- Mu Cang CHai Hiking tour 5 days through the H’mong tiny valley and mountain village tribes was far more moving and beautiful that words and pictures can capture.

Nghia has such a grace to her, introducing herself and us along the way. It was very enjoyable to watch how she engaged with the H’mong people. She is curious and respectful. During one such experience she saw a women sitting in her yard hand paining fabric for a piece of clothing she was making. Nghia asked if we could watch her to which she agreed. She later invited us to try, which proved very difficult for us to do as it was freehand. We were invited to stay for lunch with them which was so kind. We asked to see her other wares. She has a few pieces that she hand sews to sell at market so we were able to purchase them from her directly. Very special moments here.

We stayed at homestays with families along the way. They were wonderful and warm hosts. The accommodations were very comfortable, clean and safe. The meals our hosts served were delusions and very plentiful. I know it was a lot of effort to make our meals vegetarian, which was much appreciated!!!

Our driver Anh was awesome. He was a very safe and experienced driver…. although a very harrowing drive through the MANY switchbacks. He did slow down for us as the ride lift us very queezy. Be sure to bring Gravol and ginger candy!

We were able to experience planting rice, picking tea leaves, shooing cows and chickens from roads and rice field paths, ethic life, breathtaking landscapes and had lots of fun along the way with Nghia, Seung and Anh.

We learned a great sea from Nghia, she truly is remarkable!

Nghia, thank you so much for an experience if a lifetime. If we could give you 10 stars for your hospitality, knowledge and genuine nature we would!

Juanita and I will miss you and your infectious laugh!

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