Discover the iconic hill tribes of Northern Vietnam on an adventurous bike expedition. What is special about these tribes is that they still live in their traditional ways that have stood the test of time, and their communities are only found in the most remote areas of Southeast Asia. Ha Giang Province, open only relatively recently to travelers, is surely one of the best places left to witness the culture of these people- and on two wheels, even better!
This unspoiled, sparsely populated region is home to a staggering variety of hill tribes, many of whom don’t even communicate in the national language and who live by their traditional, subsistence farming ways. You’ll have the chance to see this up close as you cycle through this stunning region.
Every day offers a different terrain, gradient, vista and climate as we climb and descend the various altitudes of the Ha Giang Plateau. This is an unforgettable ride and if the memory of your burning leg muscles isn’t enough to remember it by, then your amazing photographs certainly will be.
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Day 1: Transfer to Ha Giang & Explore by Bike
Riding: 25km cycling – It is a long drive to get to Ha Giang Province, as remote and untouched areas are never easy to reach! We’ll leave early in the morning and stop along the way at a couple of points of interest, before arriving just after midday. Then it’s time to try out the bikes and take a warm-up ride of this sleepy provincial capital. The late afternoon is best spent in our simple but adequate resort, on the banks of the main river.
Day 2: Cycle to Yen Minh
Riding: 92km cycling – After a warm-up pedal yesterday we’ll glide into the second day of our adventure. Let’s take our time over a good breakfast, then set out on the first serious ride. Our route initially follows the river along an undulating landscape and after the first short climb, and descent, we reach a village for a break.
We’ll push on after the break and pedal into some more sustained climbs. Here is where we discover what the gradient of Ha Giang province is like. For the most part, it’s a continual but predictable ascent where you will be at ease once you find a rhythm. The high pass for today is the aptly called Heaven’s Gate, and from there we have a short descent into Tam Son: a tiny community clinging to the side of the hill for lunch.
After lunch we’ll descend into the valley, following a river for a short while. We come across the ruins of a defensive wall of speculative age, and then we start our afternoon climbs. The gradient is a bit less than in the morning, so your legs will find it easier going as we head into an area of pine forest and Red Dzao communities along the way. A wind-in-your-hair descent down to the town of Yen Minh is the cherry on top of a fantastic day. This is where our simple but clean hotel is for tonight.
Day 3: Challenging Cycle to Meo Vac
Riding: 70km cycling – Our epic day starts early. After a steaming bowl of noodles, an egg baguette, and a strong coffee, we set out with a climb. As we enter the center of the Dong Van Plateau, scenery that was already impressive is now nothing short of mind-blowing. At each stage, you find yourself wondering how you could continue to climb when you’ve climbed so far, but it goes on and on with an amazing variety of scenery. For our cultural fix, we will have time to visit the Palace site of a former Hmong King and some local houses along the ride.
Day 4: Cycle to Tam Son
Riding: 86km cycling – Another day of great cycling and scenery awaits! This morning we trace back to Yen Minh on a different route, the good news for your legs is it’s mostly downhill. After some time to soak up the sun with a coffee on the edge of town, we head out for our main climb of the day. The gradient on this climb is steep but the view is amazing yet again, our pinnacle today is Can Ty Heaven Gate where local Hmong will be at work doing their traditional weaving. After a refreshing descent down, you have the option to either transfer or do the last climb to our Lodge for tonight. Your day concludes with a stroll around the village and a great dinner awaits.
Day 5: Downhill Ride to Ha Giang
Riding: 30km cycling -You’ll awaken to a perfect morning for a slow coffee at our Lodge, watching local red Dzao people herding water buffalos and cultivating their rice and corn. We’ll jump back on our bikes for a short exploration ride, snaking our way through sleepy villages where people grow vegetables and brew the local “Corn wine” spirit (watch out!).
After that we descend back toward Ha Giang for lunch and a revitalizing shower, before transferring back to Hanoi where your tour concludes.
2020 Dates & Prices
Departs daily from Hanoi:
** Minimum of 2 Passengers required to operate
4 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Giant Anyroad or Trek E-bike
Support Vehicle :
An air-conditioned backup support vehicle is always available for tired riders and to carry your luggage.
4 nights accommodation
Local English Speaking Guide
Entrance Fees & Touring:
Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary
* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking. * Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.