10 days North East Expedition

Hanoi, Sapa, Bac Ha, Ha Giang, Quan Ba, Dong Van, Meo Vac, Bao Lac, Ba Be Lake, Cao Bang, Ban Gioc Waterfall, Hanoi

This expedition takes us through some of the remote regions in the northeast of Vietnam. Colourful markets, cultural diversity and the unique sceneries make this an unforgettable adventure.

Day 1 Hanoi - Board an overnight train to Lao Cai

We meet you at our office between 19:00 to 19:30 to brief the trip. This is followed by a short transfer to Hanoi railway station. Here we board an overnight train departing Hanoi at 22:00 to Lao Cai around 6:00 the following morning.

Day 2 Lao Cai - Sapa - Hau Thao - Giang Ta Chai

Upon our arrival in Lao Cai railway station in the early morning, we are picked up and transferred by our bus, starting with a drive through spectacular mountains and picturesque rice terraces, onto Sapa town. After shower and breakfast, we set off to discover Sapa and its nearby villages of Sa Seng and Hau Thao, set in a spectacularly beautiful valley and home to Black H'mong people.

We have ample opportunities to see how they live and give wonderful insights into their way of life. Finally, we arrive in the village of Giang Ta Chai, nestled in a spectacular region. Tonight we spend a memorable night in the traditional stilt-house of a Zay family.

Zay people are adept at rice cultivation and are responsible for tending to the manicured terraces that stretch as far as the eye can see. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 3 Sapa - Bac Ha

Bac Ha is situated in a region of breathtaking beauty, known for its colourful Sunday market. After breakfast we continue our hiking and trekking. We discover some of the area’s finest scenery marked by dramatic rice terraces and ethnic minority villages scattered along the way. This is followed by our journey to Bac Ha.

From here, we enjoy hiking following the trail winding through the tiny tribal settlement of Tay and plum orchards and then proceed due north over hillocks and verdant farmland. When we have finished our hike we settle in with a local Flower Hmong family for the night. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 4 Bac Ha - Ha Giang

From Bac Ha we spend time seeing its colourful markets (Can Cau on Saturday and Bac Ha Sunday Market). It is the best time seeing the market between 7am to 9am. Following that we embark on a journey to Ha Giang. This is followed by a drive to the village of Thon Tha, a little village and home to a Tay ethnic community. Here we leisurely hike through traditional villages and along spectacular rice terraces. The night is spent in a friendly local Tay family. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 5 Ha Giang - Quan Ba - Dong Van

Ha Giang is one of the most remote provinces in North East Vietnam. The area is home to some of Vietnam’s most colourful hill tribe minorities. We continue hiking and trekking in Ha Giang before we head north of Ha Giang to Quan Ba District.

The area is populated by Dao ethnic people and encircled by truly awesome remote forested mountains. We combine a long, but gentle hike with an opportunity to meet the local people going about their daily life. The beauty of the surroundings tempts us to follow the rugged trail setting off through verdant hills and tangled jungle growth. Eventually, the trail arrives at a tiny village perched nearby the township of Quan Ba. This is followed by our continuing journey to Dong Van for the night in a hotel. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 6 Dong Van - Meo Vac - Bao Lac

After breakfast we embark on a hike in Ma Pi Leng Pass, a particularly picturesque area. We hike up to some Hmong villages on the steep slopes. We find one of the few places in Vietnam that are blessed with unique landscapes featuring vast mountain complexes and spectacular valleys. After that we descend to the river of Nho Que for boating along the peaceful backwates and towering mountains and lush hills. The rest of the afternoon finds us heading to Bao Lac. We stay overnight in a hotel (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 7 Bao Lac - Ba Be Lake - Spend the night in a local family

This morning we depart Bao Lac and embark on a route up into mountain areas onwards to Ba Be Lake National Park. This is one of the largest natural lakes in Vietnam, home to many kinds of birds, scenic valleys, towering rocky outcrops, underground river tributaries, and a gigantic cave. 

All of the villages in the park are not necessarily ethnic Tay. Those located high up on the slopes are inhabited by Green H’mong and Red Dao hilltribal people. Following a relaxing boat trip and a hike along the riverfront, we stay overnight with a Tay family in a traditional house. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included)

Day 8 Ba Be Lake - Pia Thap Village

After breakfast, we take a short drive to Hua Ma Cave, nestled in the southern reaches of Ba Be National Park. Hua Ma is adorned with numerous unique and breathtaking formations, offering a fascinating exploration experience. Following Hua Ma Cave, we continue our journey to the charming village of Pia Thap. En route, we pause briefly to admire the scenic Ma Phuc Pass.

Ma Phục Pass stretches for 3.5km and rises approximately 700m above sea level, winding its way between two limestone mountains. Designated as a geological heritage site within the Cao Bang Global Geopark, recognized by UNESCO, Ma Phuc is renowned for being one of the most picturesque passes in the country. Along the journey, we also have the opportunity to visit several ethnic minority villages, inhabited by the Tay, Nung, and Dao ethnic groups.

Upon reaching Pia Thap, we find ourselves amidst limestone forests, renowned for their tranquil beauty and the traditional art of incense making. We hike from the village winding our way through various ethnic villages, verdant hillsides and lush seasonal farmlands. Tonight, we are graciously hosted by a local Tay family, where we immerse ourselves in their warm hospitality and cultural traditions. (Breakfast, lunch, and dinner included)

Day 9: Pia Thap Village - Ban Gioc Waterfall

Leaving Pia Thap behind, we journey northwest to Ngoc Con and Phong Nam, renowned for their picturesque landscapes in Cao Bang. Upon arrival, we are into the heart of this stunning valley, immersing ourselves in its natural beauty. Our hike leads us through majestic mountains adorned with lush limestone jungles, expansive rice fields, and tranquil streams meandering through the terrain. Along the way, we meet the local Tay and Nung ethnic minorities, offering us the opportunity to learn about their culture and life.

Our next destination is Ban Gioc Waterfall, a wonder of nature. Fed by the Quay Son River originating from China, the waterfall gracefully flows through Dam Thuy commune of Trung Khanh district. As it crosses the rice fields of Dam Thuy towards the vast alluvial plain of Ban Gioc village, it creates a spectacular sight. Against the backdrop of rice fields stand the villages of the Tay ethnic people, adorned with ancient stone houses on stilts.

Ban Gioc Waterfall itself marks the border between Vietnam and China, with its cascading waters forming a breathtaking natural wonder. The river branches into numerous streams, culminating in the impressive tiers of Ban Gioc Waterfall. Here, we leisurely stroll around the falls and its beautiful surroundings, perhaps opting for a bamboo raft ride along the pristine waters.

After our discovery of the waterfall, we venture on a hike through remote Tay villages and rice field trails, tracing the paths used by the local inhabitants. Our day concludes with a warm welcome at a local family homestay nestled amidst the verdant surroundings, accompanied by the sounds of the Quay Son River. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner included)

Day 10 Ban Gioc Waterfall - Nui Thung Mountain - Lang Son - Hanoi

This morning, we enjoy a tranquil stroll through the picturesque frontier village nestled between Vietnam and China, savoring the serene atmosphere of this unique border setting. Our journey then takes us to Nui Thung Mountain, also known as "Angel Eye Mountain." Its name derives from the colossal hole at its core, resembling a grand eye gazing from the heart of the peak. Finally, we proceed towards Hanoi via Lang Son province, a region characterized by its extensive border with China, our arrival in Hanoi is around 6 pm. (Breakfast and lunch included)

The facts…

Physical activities: Our itinerary includes walks and hikes, which are mainly on gentle terrains with:


  • A 6-8 km hike on Day 1
  • A 6-10 km hike on Day 2
  • A 9-12 km on Day 3
  • A 6-8 km hike on Day 4
  • A 5-7 km hike on Day 5
  • A 2-3 km hike on Day 6
  • A 9-12 km hike on Day 7
  • A 2-3 km hike on Day 8
  • A 6-8 km hike on Day 9
  • A 2-4 km hike on Day 10

You need to be reasonably fit as the hikes and the treks can be challenging sometimes, depending on the weather conditions. From June to September, the climate is usually humid and hot. From October to July brings cooler and more pleasant weather



  • Air-conditioned vehicle (Car or Bus)
  • Boat

Tour Guide: Our experienced and friendly tour guide speaks good English. He is knowledgeable about local cultures, history and the environment.


  • 9 breakfasts
  • 9 lunches
  • 9 dinners

We choose local ingredients, typical of the way people eat in the area, at local restaurants, homes or markets. We cater for Vegetarians but please request this at time of booking.


  • Overnight train (1 night)
  • Hotel (2 nights)
  • Homestay (6 nights)

Clean and comfortable homestays with mosquito nets provided.

Trip cost: 

  • $758USD per person for a group of 2 to 6 people
  • $687USD per person for a group of 7 to 9 people

The cost of the trip includes:

  • Transportation
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Purified drinking water
  • Tour guide
  • Entrance fees
  • VAT and other taxes

The cost of the trip does not include:

  • Travel insurance
  • Drinks (soft drinks, alcohol)
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Personal expenses

What to Bring:

Pack essentials for 9 days, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, comfortable hiking shoes. Take a small day pack for walking, hiking and trekking. 

It is essential to bring your passport on this trip.
We also recommend packing: insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat and sun hat...

Have a great journey!!!