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North East 10 Days Vietnam Motorbike Tour

Duration: 10 days
Accommodation : HOMESTAYS, 3*HOTELS
Km: OVER 150km
Type: Self – Riding


The North East area of Vietnam developed with the migration of the H’mong, Ha Nhi, La Chi, Lo Lo, Tay, Nung… people who migrated from south China. Especially the North East will take you to Ha Giang’s natural environment bears the same characteristics as other mountainous areas; that is, an unfavorable all year round dry climate with little rainfall, constant fog in the winter, and rocky unfertile soils cut across by countless streams. Due to transportation difficulties, the province has long been an isolated border area with little contact between the local ethnic minorities and the provincial governments.
The scenery through to the coast is magnificent; the craggy mountain ranges covered in mystic clouds make travellers feel like wandering in a fairyland, valleys between the mountains are enhanced by spectacles of coloured villages each with distinctive architectural features and fascinating spots for watching the sunset. If World Heritage had a cultural hotspot for diversity, this would be it. There are an estimated 20 ethnic minorities in the area. If lucky, or planned well, the weekly market in Meo Vac will provide an opportunity to see this wonderful mix of cultures and people.
It’s not an easy challenge though; to get there, travelling through jungle and cloud forests where these ethnic minorities live sporadically, the journey is hard. Roads are currently under construction and motorbiking terrain is anything from wet, slippery mud baths to 1-meter wide rough gravel mountain passes. If you’re looking for an adventure you know where to find it.
Those who have come here will be amazed at the exotic ethnic cultures of which local fairs are characteristic. It is recommended that riders come on New Year’s day when ‘khen’ dancing, music played with instruments made from leaves, folk songs, traditional corn-made alcohol and the bizarre custom of ‘stealing the bride’ will keep you amazed forever.
The Northeast trips are impressive due to the opportunity to develop friendly relationships with the locals where you will be enjoying meals with them, and the accommodation will be provided by them. One of the specialties of the Northeast is the local cuisine skills in our host kitchen. You don’t only study about ethnic minority lives; you will also be able to study their cuisine.
Cao Bang is a beautiful landscape with limestone karts which cannot be compared to anywhere in the world. This motorbiking tour is more suitable if your intended stay in Vietnam is short. The Northeast Vietnam could provide you some an option for easier riding and will suit every rider, even a beginner to tour on motorbike.
Day 1: Hanoi – Vu Linh. 170 km, ~4 hrs.
To head out of Hanoi city, we follow the Red River to avoid the city traffic jams. This exciting river road will gives a taste of things to come, including testing your biking abilities. After that we’ll board a ferry to cross the traditionally famous Lo River, in which a number of important events took place during our resistance war against the French colonialists. We continue our journey north to Babe Lake by riding along the river Chay.
– Local host family in Vu Linh village
Day 2: Thac Ba – Luc Yen. 80 km, ~3 hrs.
An early morning start to Thac Ba lake by canoe will provide an opportunity visit to Dzao and Cao Lan minority people and partake in the daily life of the locals. This experience is unique as the Dao ethnic are a very colourful and nice dressing people. After lunch, to aid our digestion, we will make a short hiking through remote villages neighbor to Vu Linh and view hundreds of beautiful green islands.
By late afternoon, after several hours driving, we will arrive to Dong Inh village, hard driving up steep hill for the last 2 km but the village is set right at the most beautiful spot for the view of valley and Thac Ba Lake. The Red Dzao ethnic people populate this village. The local Red Dzao earn their living by collecting forestry products, hunting and farming a variety of subsistence crops and some fruit.
– Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
– Gia Long Hotel
Day 4: Xin Man – Ha Giang. 140 km, ~5 hrs.
The regular Sunday Xin Man market is located right at the edges of Xin Man itself. Here you will see people from the H’mong, Nung; Tay, Dao… ethnic minority groups. They all walk through mountain paths and rough terrain from their mountain villages to Xin Man market to trade items and socialize. This market is one of the most isolated in Vietnam, so it has never been given much attention. To reach Xin Man, it’s at least a 3 hour ride along narrow meandering roads from the town of Bac Ha, on this leg you have to be careful not to lose yourself in the dense woods. An easier but longer route can be taken on the curving road cutting through steep mountains for the 100 km ride from Xin Man. This will still take about 4 hours despite the newly upgraded bitumen road and the absence of other vehicles.
The lively central market of Xin Man will be visited in the morning before we depart for Bac Quang where you will have to be alert as the road has many dangerous meandering turns. After reaching Heaven’s Gate II and the Hoang Su Phi Pass, a picnic lunch will be provided amongst superb surrounding landscape. When dropping down into Tan Quang the tour will take a leisurely ride along the National Highway No 2. If time permits we’ll have a dip in the warm waters of the hot springs. The remainder of the day we will spend relaxing. This night will be spent in a hotel.
– Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
– Hoa Cuong Hotel 3***
Day 6: Meo Vac – Bac Me – Ba Be. 180 km, ~5-7 hrs.
The Meo Vac market lasts till the mid-afternoon. However the tour will hit the road before lunch, as today is a real challenge as the group travels by a track through a forest. This 80 km motorcycle ride is a measure of your bravery and skill. The rolling rocky roads take you to hell on a rainy day. However the breath-taking scenery makes the hardship all worthwhile.
Meo Vac is a land of rugged mountains and beautiful hill villages remaining unchanged for centuries. The Meo Vac market attracts a wide variety of ethnic minority groups who walk all the way from their mountain villages to Meo Vac market in order to trade goods and produce. Market sessions provide a chance for locals to promenade and young men and women in colourful costumes to meet, date or seek sweethearts. For this reason, markets in the northern mountainous areas are often called the Love Markets. Visiting Meo Vac on Sundays, one can shop in a very original mountain market where all kinds of goods and multicoloured clothes can be purchased.
We traverse many tall passes and deep river valleys. This road trip will take you only 3-4 hours during the dry season, but at least 7-8 hours during the rainy season. However, the feeling of ‘conquering nature’ makes the hardship all worthwhile. Upon arrival, we will cross 3 rivers between 20-30m in width and up to 70cm in depth, all managed with the instruction of our experienced guide. The remaining 3kms of the journey is a pleasant and relaxing ride. You’ll ride along an open hillside road along the Nang river. Catch your breath while you can. We fend the driving to day here and take a boat trip for an and half hour in Ba Be Lake to Pac Ngoi village where we will stay with our host-family.
– Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
– Local host family in Quang Uyen, Nung ethnic 
Day 8: Quang Uyen – Ban Gioc – Quang Uyen. 100 km, ~5 hrs.
Today we will take the opportunity to explore the spectacular scenery and wonderful world of local ethnic minority people. Along the way we will visit Ban Gioc waterfall, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Vietnam, which form a natural border between Vietnam and China. The echo of the falls can be heard kilometers away. In rainy season, the waterfall makes the scenery even more magnificent. While here we will take a bamboo raft trip and have a picnic lunch. We also have a chance to visit China on the other river bank. Before the sun sets, we ride back to Quang Uyen and visit Phjia Chang village, settled by Nung An ethnic people 300 years ago. This village is famous for the traditional handicraft, such as basketware, weaving and so on. We will have dinner with our friends in the village.
– Local host family in Quang Uyen, Nung ethnic
Day 9: Quang Uyen – Bac Son. 110 km, ~5 hrs.
The most impressive landscape of Cao Bang is the riding from Quang Uyen to Dong Khe. The scenery of the road is unequalled with the steep limestone mountain and a green rows of sugar-cane fields. After seeing this scenic site, we continue our journey following the historical National Highway No 4 with the famous battles, such as Dong Khe, That Khe, Coc Xa or Lung Phay Pass…We stop for lunch in That Khe.
In the afternoon, the riding turns into quite challenging way on mountain road. Some last kilometers bring great view of rice-fields and Tay villages which are interposed between mountain sides.
– Local hotel
Day 10: Bac Son – Ha Noi. 150 km, ~6 hrs.
On the way down hill, we will stop for a short walk to visit Phuong Hoang cave (Phonix cave), where you can have a good time with fresh water from underground stream and cool place for coffe.
The return trip is also with a possible riding through countryside surrounded by steep mountains before we turn off to National Road No1 for last distance to Hanoi.
<div justify;”=””> – Breakfast, Lunch

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