Itinerary at a glance
“Ba Be Lake, National park, Ban Gioc waterfall (Cao Bang) and Ha Giang, Vietnam are home to many ethnic minorities that have kept their unique traditions. However, they are also some of the poorest people in the country. Breathtaking landscapes made up of limestone mountains, rice terraces, wild rivers, waterfalls and caves make it a perfect destination for tourists that seek an authentic and adventurous travel experience. It is a truly amazing destination for the more adventurous traveler or for photographers looking to get off the beaten track.
This 7-Day Trekking North Vietnam Tour tour is designed for adventure travelers and photographers who love nature scenery,people and adventurous activities.
Morning: 7:30: Pick-up at hotel
Afternoon: Travelling on our private boat, you will go through the entire length of the 3 connected lakes (Ba Be – means Three Bays). You will enjoy the beauty of the lake, with green water and various flora beside the river and your boat. Soon, you reach the enormous tunnel of Puong Cave which measures an impressive 300m long by 30m high. This is the result of millions of years of erosion from the flow of the river or you can choose to visit Dau Dang waterfall, with walking through the forest.
The boat will reach the homestay – the Bac Ngoi village– which is located close to rice fields and the lake.
+ The traveling time by boat is around 3.5 hrs.
+ Sleep in a homestay of Tay people ( If you want to enjoy the traditional performance of Tay people, there is an additional cost)
Trekking around 14-15km from 8am-3pm ( around 7hrs including 1.5-2 hr lunchtime). You will go through the natural forest, the village of Dao and Tay people via a hidden trail.
After the long trek, you will enjoy around 2 hrs of kayaking and swimming to discover the beauty of Ba Be Lake.
Sleep in the homestay of Tay people
Morning: Cycling about 5km to explore an amazing cave in the mountain. We visit Hua Ma cave before coming back the homestay/
After lunch: Transfer by car from Ba Be- Cao Bang.
Reach Phia Thap community-based tourism village – the famous incense making the village. The village is surrounded by limestone pinnacles which make for spectacular scenery. Every household in this village makes incense, so you can easily see and explore the process of making incense and talk with friendly and hospitable locals here.
You also have the option to visit Pac Rang blacksmith village.
Sleep in a homestay of Nung people
7:30: Morning: You can do a short hiking for take energy in the morning, spend around 1hrs to climb up the mountain in the village to see the panorama of Phia Thap village – located in the valley and surround by karst mountain.
After that, we will transfer to Ban Gioc waterfall – one of the largest waterfall in Vietnam – located in the border between Vietnam and China. We will have time to take the beautiful pictures of 2 huge waterfalls in Vietnam, take the boat trip close the bottom of the waterfall and see the other side of the Chinese border.
boat trip on Ban Gioc waterfallAfternoon: Visit Nguom Ngao Cave, one of the most spectacular caves in North Vietnam with beautiful stalactites of various shapes.
Come back to Cao Bang City, take a rest in the hotel.
A great day in the mountains north of Bao Lac is ahead of you. Riding following the mountainous road, with beautiful karst mountain, nice road and meet the different tribes in rural areas.
When arrive Meo Vac, you will spend around 2,5-3hrs trekking to the peak of Ma Pi Leng pass on the Sky path trekking road – which gives stunning views of the mountains and sweeping valleys, with the poetic Nho Que river. You will be impressed with the landscape of Ma Pi leng pass and history to build for this road.
Trekking on Skypath, Ha Giang.
After 2,5-3hrs trekking, you will reach the main road.
Sleep in a hotel in the Dong Van old quarter or homestay of Hmong people in Dong Van or Hmong community village in Meo Vac. ( to convenient for boat trip next morning)
+ Visit the local market if your trip falls on a Sunday.
+ Visit Hmong King palace, Lung Cu flag pole or Boating/Kayaking in Nho Que river ( ups on your health)
+ Sleep in Dao ecolodge or Homestay of Dao people in Nam Dam village
If it’s Sunday, you can have a chance to enjoy the unique and special local market in Meo Vac. It only happens on Sunday and therefore is known as the “Sunday Market”. There are very colorful fabrics and various cultures of ethnic minorities. We believe it will be a special experience for you.
If today isn’t Sunday, we have 2 options for you:
Option 1: If you have good health for trekking, we will choose Trekking down and up to Nho Que river, take a boat trip or Kayaking activity.
NHo Que river – it’s located in the bottom of Ma Pi Leng pass with Tu San canyon – it’s a new interesting destination in your Ha Giang tour. Tu San canyon is considered a deepest and most unique canyon in Vietnam. The best way to explore the Tu San abyss alley is by boat, where you will be surrounded by the cool green water and immersed in the quiet and fresh atmosphere of the valley. You will be enchanted by the overwhelming presence of the towering mountains on both sides of the river.
P/s: You can choose KAYAK activity.
Visit The Lung Cu National Flag Tower. It’s considered as the North Point of Vietnam. Before reach Lung Cu, we will pass the stunning scenery of Rock Plateau. We are rewarded with a brilliant backdrop of picturesque valleys covered in rice paddies. After visiting the tower, you will visit the culture village of Lo Lo people – one of the minority ethnic people in the Frontier area.
Then visit the infamous Vuong Palace, Vuong Family was considered the King of the Hmong People in Dong Van, Ha Giang. Their residence was built in the scenic valley of Sa Phin with Chinese architecture. You will explore the history of Hmong people in Dong Van in the French colonic period – the special frontier area.
Leave Vuong palce, transfer to Nam Dam village – the inhabited by Dao ethnic people (long dress Dao group). The local still keep their traditional customs, habits & culture from ancient times. You will have a chance to see the local traditional house made of compacted soil which protects people from the extreme weather in the high mountain. You are welcomed to visit the houses whose owners are very friendly and hospitable.
Enjoy dinner and sleep in a homestay.
7:30am, After a local breakfast, we take a small hike trekking down to Lung Tam village – where Mong ethnic people live. You can learn the way to make the traditional craft and clothes by hemp and draw the pattern by bee wax of Hmong people. It takes around 2hrs.
P/s: Option 2: Light trekking around the Nam Dam village to explore the local life before comeback to Hanoi.
This is followed by our return journey to Hanoi, arriving around 6 pm
Drop you off at your hotel & say goodbye our guide. Tour the end./.
P/s: The itinerary can change according your requirement
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What to take:
Pack essentials, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, comfortable walking shoes.
Take a small day pack or medium backpack
It is essential to bring your passport on this trip. We also recommend packing: insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat, and sun hat.
Mr Chanh – AUSTRALIA
My NORTH VIETNAM TOUR 7 days – Ba Be- Ban Gioc- Ha Giang
I visited Vietnam at least once each year and this was1 of the most memorable trips in Vietnam.
Incredible landscapes and the roads are the car and motorbike enthusiast dream. The ethnic minorities and their cultures. They are some of the friendliest and charming people I have met.
One of my main reasons for visiting Ba Be- Ban Gioc- Ha Giang was photography and I have made some of the best photos of Vietnam.
Nghia is so patient and helpful of my needs and endless questions. She created the customized itinerary to cater to my primary objective of this trip – photography, and I have to say she did a fantastic job.
I am so fortunate to have Hai as my guide. He knows North Vietnam area likes on the back of his palm. The locals such as Homestay, restaurants and even head of the village all know him. He is also very patient and accommodated to my needs of frequent impromptu stops for photography, and occasionally patiently waited for an hour for me to capture the magnificent landscapes at ideal lighting and moments.
Thank Zonitrip for your kindly & helpful supported.
Kayi – Singapore
“Professional, Personal, Unforgettable”
I, my partner, father, and brother signed up a 7day NORTH VIETNAM TOUR with Zonitrip at Ba Be, Ban Gioc and Ha Giang. We underwent a myriad of amazing experiences – visiting a school, playing with children, threshing rice, learning about the village culture, sleeping at homestays, drinking with the locals, smoking from bamboo pipes, etc. It was nice talking to the locals and even nicer talking to Nghia and Dung Ha, who were our guides but I’d really prefer to call them friends.
Everything was very well arranged and we enjoyed ourselves a lot. By the end of the trip, we couldn’t bear to go back. The pre-trip service was fantastic. Nghia was very organized and accommodating even though we kept asking her questions. The post-trip service was totally unexpected. Nghia to the effort to compile a trip video for us 😀
Zonitrip is highly recommended. Go with them, you won’t regret it.
Irena- Czech republic
The best trip in our life
We have 5 days North Vietnam Tour with Nghia – the tour guide of Zonitrip. We have visited three different ethnic groups and stayed overnights in their Homestay type if accommodation. The trip was prepared and handled excellent way. Nghia has provided outstanding service for our family (consider we have traveled with two children 10 and 13 years old) and all our wish has been full filled immediately. She responded and adjusted the trip even during the day when our son wished to go fishing to give us an unforgettable experience and a really wonderful time. This trip was for all of us just like dream, she took us on places in mountains where we never could get or even think of, also by using local tour guide knowing the language of the small ethnic families. Every day was full of adventure however we felt absolutely save thanks to the highly professional care of our tour guide Nghia. We will never forget all the nature, beauty and detail information about the real life of the small communities in mountains in North Vietnam close to China border. We had lots of fun on the trip and we hope to return as soon as possible to this wonderful region and we will definitely use the Nghia’ s service again.
Samantha – USA
My 3 days NORTH VIETNAM TOUR in Ha Giang were an amazing experience. I took over 300 pictures, walked around a Hmong village and stayed overnight in with a Lo Lo family. My tour guide, Kien was the best and extremely kind. We talked a lot about philosophy and tourism and the history of Vietnam. He was also a talented driver because we did over 80 miles a day and I rode on the back of him along with all our gear for 3 days. The facilities were CLEAN and COMFORTABLE. I was worried because I paid in full before the trip and I read so many horror stories. However, Nghia and Kien were so honest and kind. Them – along with the Hmong and Lo Lo people I met – really showed the goodness and hospitality that is truly in Vietnam. I will carry this experience with me and I hope they know how memorable this was for me.
Tuan Tran – Australia
I did extensive research before planning our trip and looked at multiple tours. We went with Zonitrip’s 7 day NORTH VIETNAM TOUR (to Ba Be Lake, Cao Bang/Ban Gioc and Ha Giang) as it included multiple activities that aren’t organised by most other tours. This included Kayaking in Ba Be Lake or near Ban Gioc waterfall or cycling to Hua Ma Cave. There were multiple treks that our guide (Zoey) who took us to village after village that seemed completely off the beaten track. We walked off small tiny pathways will no signs that led further and further into small villages. Often we would be walking in rice paddies and taking various shortcuts. One great unexpected experience was taking a local villagers suggestion and walking up the top of a small mountain in Phia Thap with magnificent views. it was also Zoeys first time and was well worth the 1hr trek (up & down). Zonitrip seem to be very knowledgable on where are good places to stay and take in reviews and feedback from many others. Every place we stayed out, we were very happy and preferred the booked accommodation over others in the same village. Communication with Zonitrip was excellent before the trip had begun and we came to an agreement on which accommodation was suitable for each night and any preferences. I also told Nghia my plans to propose to my partner with certain specific requests (including organising a bottle of champagne, booking a nice hotel with nice views/roof top in Cao Bang, ensuring private raft/boat in Ban Gioc waterfall etc). This was of course all done (and my partner said ‘yes’!). The best part of the trip was have our Driver (Chu Mi-Anh?) and our guide Zoey. The driver was excellent with 30 years of driving – we felt very safe on the hazardous roads in Ha Giang. As my partner was scared of biking in Ha Giang, we took a private car and she felt incredible safe (unusual for her) and slept on each trip! Zoey was the best guide ever and our trip was amazing mainly because of her. She was thoughtful and very friendly and she cared for us from start to finish every day. She was very knowledgable on every aspect of the tour – where to stay, guiding treks, available activities, interacting with locals, ordering food, basically everything! We certainly felt that she understood us and accommodated for our needs. Being Vietnamese (from Australia), I understood the interactions and I would certainly recommend her as a guide and also this tour. Best 1 week holiday we’ve had.
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