Introduction

North West Vietnam is a home of many hill tribal groups and terraced rice fields while Laos is a country of mountainous natural beauty and stunning scenery. On this cycling adventure our team will take you through some of the most beautiful landscapes of Vietnam and Laos. Enjoy a traditional meal with a local family and learn different cultures from different tribals in many regions. Ride on quiet countryside roads and off the beaten path in Vietnam's stunning North West mountain region before crossing Muan Khua, Laos. Following days, cycle through some of the most truly spectacular jungle-covered limestone mountain landscapes of Northern Laos. Enjoy the peaceful Nam Ou River from your bungalow in Nong Khiaw and explore the mysterious Pak Ou Caves before arriving into the cultural capital of Laos, Luang Prabang.

Destination
Duration
Tour code
VCT: MCT-12D - HANOI - LPQ
Travel style
Tour meets
Tour ends
Accommodation
2 - 3 - 4 star hotels
Single supplement
425.00$
Number Of cycling days
10 days
Ages to ride
18 years old
Average distance per day
45km
MTB Bike hire
US$132
Total cycling distance
540km
E-Bike hire
Small group
02
Large Group
14
Price in US$
USD $2975.00 2975.00
Price in VND
What's included
Private A/C vehicle takes up all cyclists, luggage
Truck to carry all bikes
New Giant MTB, wheel size: 27.5" hydraulic brake
Helmets, new bottles of water
All entrance fees, ferry tickets in countryside
Daily cold water, snack, fresh fruits, facial tissues
B = Breakfasts, L = Lunches, D = Dinners
12 nights: double room/ twin room
1 night on train to Lao Cai
Pick up/ drop off at hotels
Bicycle mechanic
English speaking guide throughout the tour
What's not included
Personal travel insurance
Other personal expenses
Single supplement
Visa to Vietnam & Laos
International Flight
Drinks are not included with any meal
Day
1
Sleep a night on train from Hanoi to Lao Cai

Our team will will meet you at your hotels and make a brief and dine with our guide before you board on train. Stay a night on A/C cabinet to Lao Cai. It takes a round 9 night hours

Dinner
Violette Express Train
Day
2
Lao Cai - Sapa

The train arrives at the station of Lao Cai at 5:30 am. Our team’ll arrange your breakfast at local restaurant, then a transfer on windy road uphill to Sapa town. Check in and relax until your cycle riding starting from the hotel at 1:00 pm. Ride on the hilly back roads to Dao villages, past rice terrace paddy fields. We will ride on a dirty track to Ta Phin, stop at Ethnic at village’ market to chit chat with Red Dao. Ride to the high roads for a transfer back to Sapa.

UHM Sapa Legend Hotel & Spa
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
35km
Hilly - moderate
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
3
Sapa – Ta Vang - Lao Chay – Home-stay

On your cycling adventure today, you could smell and taste the real life as you cycling on hilly track through particular mountainous scenery, villages and markets on the way to home-stay where we stay tonight. From the hotel, we ride down hill on beautiful back roads with particular scenery along the country roads. We turn right on concrete path to downhill, past the home of Dao before we cross a river to continue our biking to local market of Ethnic people. Stopping and walking around this market and have some photos taken before we bike through rice fields to Tay villages for lunch. In the afternoon, we continue cycling into the home of Red Dao people and stay a night at luxury home-stay by stream

Home-stay
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 60km
Hilly - moderate/hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
4
Nam Cang - Sin Chai - Ban Ho – Sapa

Bike routes are imaging today. They are mixed; single track, dirt country road through hills, mountains and valleys. We ride on hilly path along mountain areas through some villages of Tay Ethnic, passing some schools located by hills, remote villages and headquarter of local government. This morning ride gives opportunities to enjoy scenery on valley along the mountain ranges, streams and country back roads. You’ll meet different Ethnic people with colourful customs and having photo taken with them cannot be missed. Then we follow a trail to explore remote area, corn paddy, and many valleys of rice terrace, some young jungles forest, and waterfall. Lunch en route at the home of Tay Ethnic before the afternoon biking to Ban Ho. Today ride is end up here for a transfer back to Sapa.

UHM Sapa Legend Hotel & Spa
Breakfast/ Lunch/
25 - 50km
Hilly - easy/ moderate/hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
5
Sapa - Tan Uyen – Than Uyen

On your bike ride adventure today is almost all downhill ride from Haven gate to Binh Lu, Tan Uyen and Than Uyen. To avoid pedal up to the Heaven Pass, we’ll have van/bus transfer to its peak. Then we enjoy easy ride bicycling downhill’s on rolling mountain ranges to Binh Lu, then we turn left on to small path, ride rolling hill through villages; see buffaloes on farming land, ride pass many lakes, stopping at family furniture workshop, tiny markets of Ethnic people on back road. Top for lunch in small town before the afternoon ride continue. The easy on flat land and down hills ride passing corn fields, tea and rubber plantations to Than Uyen.

Phuong Nhung Hotel **
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 80km
Hilly - easy/moderate
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
6
Than Uyen – Quynh Nhai

Most gentle back roads on your cycling adventure today are almost windy and thoroughly mountain ranges, lovely lake, beautiful rivers and jungle area of Son La province. Check out of hotel and start the day ride from hotel, ride out the Than Uyen, then to Muong Kim where we undulate on the minor road, through villages, lush farmlands and hillsides, and sometimes along the rivers. Then back to the main road to Ban Chat hydropower station, where we stop to admire the large hydropower plant and peaceful mountain surroundings of the Reservoir. Afterwards, we climb up some small hills on winding roads and ride alongside the Ban Chat Reservoir and mountainous jungles. The road is tranquil, with many stilt houses along the water’s edge. Lunch en route. In the afternoon, we continue bicycling to Muong Gion, challenge some small hills before downhills, crossing Da River on Pa Uon bridge. Check in the hotel by the river.

Trung Kien Resort ***
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 75km
Hilly - easy/moderate/ hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
7
Quynh Nhai –Tuan Giao – Dien Bien Phu

Ride through the small town of Huynh Nhai, challenge some gentle hills, go through the forests, and enter the Dien Bien province; continue to ride down to Minh Thang, break for coffee, and explore a local market that sale local products made of bamboo. Then ride down to Tuan Giao, which benefits fantastic mountain views, rice terraced, lush valleys, and pass by small villages on the way. Have local speciality dishes at regional in the town of Tuan Giao.


In the afternoon, we'll climb up the Tang Quai Pass, at an elevation of 1700m, and the landscapes are stunning and incredible. The rests are gentle hills undulating along the rivers, passing tiny villages, wooden stilt houses, and small towns along, and the road is more down than up. The road is quiet and smooth through sleepy ethnic villages and sometimes along tranquil rivers to Dien Bien Phu. The historic battle where the Viet Minh defeated the French and forced the French to end it's war in Indochina.

Muong Thanh Grand Dien Bien Phu hotel ****
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 80km
Hilly - easy/ moderate/ hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
8
Visit the base of Dien Bien Phu

Spend ½ day tour to visit A1 hill, cemetery of Dien Bien Phu, the former military head office of the General De Castries and Dien Bien Phu’s Museum. After lunch, we return to hotel and free to explore town by your own until dinner. 

Muong Thanh Grand Dien Bien Phu hotel ****
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
support vehicles
Day
9
Dien Bien Phu – Muang Khua

Double check your passport before living Vietnam for Laos today. An early start transfers you to Tay Trang border. After we cross land border to Laos, meet our team and continue to discover this country, people and its cultures by bike on following days. From the border, we ride down on smooth road to  Muang Mai before chellange some hills to Hmong village. Lunch is well- prepared in village before we continue riding down, along Nam Ou River to Muang Khua.

Sernnali hotel ***
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 60km
Hilly - easy/ moderate/ hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
10
Muang Khua – Pak Mong - Oudomxai

Today we ride downhill through rubber tree plantation, teak tree plantation and jungle forest in the morning. Ride passes small wooden houses, thatch houses and tiny markets along river. In the afternoon, we will take an easy riding past beautiful rice fields, mountainous scenery along Nam Phak River.  There are many breaks along the tribal villages and some gentle hills to speed up then going down to Udomxai.

Charming Lao Hotel ***
Breakfast/ lunch/ Dinner
30 - 80km
hilly- easy/ moderate
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
11
Odomxai – Pak Mong- Nong khiaw

Today is a challenge day, and along ways as its more than 100 km. Your guide will cut off some serious hills and enjoy the best scenery along undulating roads. To avoid many big hills, we will have a transfer to the top for moderate biking through jungle. Ride past villages of ethnic people, stop and find out where plenty of wild animals’ meat selling on roadside. Stop for lunch at Pak Mong. From the fork/T-junction of Pak Mong, the road to Nong Kiaw is the best. With moderate hilly back roads, past local markets, rice terrace paddy fields and scenery along River bank and limestone mountains allows you challenge some gentle hills on your biking  to the cave, then riding to Nong Khiaw brigde, enjoy sunset as the sun is being down behind the mountains

Mandala Ou Resort ****
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 80km
Hilly - easy/moderate/ hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Day
12
Nongkhiaw - Park Mong – Luang Prabang

Commence from the hotel with a 30-minute transfer to Pak Mong, turn left and drive furthermore 15 km, then start riding. We pedal on paved along the road, kids riding bicycles to schools, holding umbrellas to avoid getting tan. Umbrellas are very popular used as they can be seen almost everywhere in Laos. It is very helpful because of the long daylight rains and sunshine in mountainous country. Both woman and men are from teenagers to the old.


Take time with your easy time cycling on a smooth road along Nam Ou River. Lunch en-route. Continue today's ride to Nam Ou bridge, turn right on country back roads, bike 20 km through small villages, and view beautiful scenery along the rivers, passing colorful temples, and small markets until riding back to the man road. We end cycling here and hop on the support vehicles for a short transfer to Luang Prabang City. Have a farewell dinner with team at one of the famous restaurant. Trip End!

Le Bel Air Resort Luang Prabang
Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner
25 - 70km
Hilly - easy/moderate/ hard
support vehicles
cold water, snacks, fruits
Road Condition

Two third of the mainland of the country are mountain ranges, tropical forests, remote hillsides, and valleys in northern Vietnam with sparse population. Most small towns, cities in the northwest and far north near the Laos border, and the Chinese are homes to hill tribes. Most rural gravel roads and dirt tracks are the primary means of transport for locals due to peak mountain ranges, slopes, deep valleys, and sparsely populated. Many roads are closed to traffic because of rivers, streams and high mountains, while the minor and high roads are less traffic. Mountain biking tours in northern Vietnam are on-road and off-road, and fewer off-roads in rural Districts where rural roads are unsafe and dangerous. 

Weather

Hanoi and North Vietnam have two distinct winter and summer seasons. The relaxed but primarily dry winter lasts from November to April when temperatures average 17-22°C, the coldest months being December to February. With hot and humid, summer lasts from May to October, and the highest rainfall is from May to August.


In the Northeast, the rainy season usually occurs in May and will end in August with heat and low humidity, while the Far North begins from June to August. The rainy season is from June to August in the Far North, and the cold winter is from December to February.


North West and Far North Vietnam's agricultures depend on the wet season, particularly rice crops on terraces. Rice plants need plenty of water to grow and develop themselves. The yearly rice crop in North West and the Far North is only one crop and will begin after the first rainy month to make the soil more workable before seeding starts. The different times to seed the rice plants are from 2 weeks, depending on locations, high or low terraces, how much water is from raining or getting from streams and rivers.


The best time to explore North West & Far North Vietnam is the farming season, not at the beginning, with too many rains and young seeling rice plants only. From the early September to last October are the harvest seasons. Here are the opportunities for travellers to admire stunning colourful rice terraced fields, lush country farms, green rainforests, waterfalls, and vast vegetations. Travellers also meet hill tribes on farms and their homes.

Vehicles

Private Support Vehicles

We organize cycling holidays, cycling adventure trips and mountain biking tours. All are flexible with luxury, fully air-conditioned vehicles to support riders on the entire journey. It depends on how many riders are in the group, and the vehicle support services will be well-arranged to satisfy your travels. There are air-conditioned 16-seat van/minibuses to take up all riders, luggage, and a truck to hold all bikes during the trip. 

Every morning, the vehicles will transfer you out of the bustling city, and then you will ride to explore the stunning countryside, and you will back on the vehicles to avoid traffic in town when the daily's ride ends in the late afternoon. 

Every 20 - 25 km, the support vehicles will be waiting at the high road if you are tired and really would love to ride on A/C van. Your guide will escort you to vehicles easily because many country back roads are linked to the main roadways where keeping vehicles are on standby. 

Then you can relax on a support vehicle when others in the group can continue cycling as long as they wish! You will meet the others at the next point/ destination where you love to re-join the group and continue to ride.

All your luggage/ suitcase and day bags are safe on the vehicles and well kept by the company's drivers and its team.

2 to 4 riders in a group

There is only one A/C 16 seater van to take up all riders, luggage & suitcases, and bikes. There are four rows of seating for passengers on the A/C 16 seater van. Two people sit on each row. The third row is for luggage and suitcases. The last row of seats will be folded up, so all bikes will be uploaded here.

A medium group tour: from 5 to 7 people

There will be two vehicles to support riders on the entire trip. One 16 seater van to take up all riders, luggage & suitcases. Another truck to carry all bikes, spare bikes, tool kits, icebox to keep cold drinks, and so on

A large group tour: 8 to 14 people

One minibus to take up all riders, including luggage & suitcases, and one truck to carry all bikes, spare bikes, water, cold drinks, and snacks...Iceboxes

A group has more than 15 riders and more than 20 people

We provide two vans and one minibus, and one truck to escort large groups of riders and help ensure their safety. Our pro guide will motivate a team with support vehicles to bring the best services to riders.


Giant MTB & Trek Hybrid MTB Bikes & Gears

Trek Hybrid MTB Bikes - Wheelsize 700c x45/1.95 - Gravel tires









 

 



Giant MTB Bikes - Wheelsize 27.5 x 1.95








Currently, this tour have no schedule, yet.

I have just completed my 3rd ride with Vietnam Backroads, having ridden from Hanoi to Saigon in 2012, Mekong Delta/Cambodia 2013 and now Hanoi to Luang Prabang in 2014. The trips have been for 2 weeks and private tours with 12 to 15 friends from the South Coast, NSW, Australia. Van again organised an amazing ride for us. He goes out of his way to make sure our trips are memorable ones. I cannot speak highly enough of his professionalism. We are so impressed with our cycling holidays organised by Van that we will be back in 2015 for another memorable cycling trip

Leonie S Jambe…
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Cycling Vietnam to Laos - Ha Noi to Luang Prabang