HS05: Vietnam Northwest Loop Tour - 10 days / 9 nights

Destinations: Hanoi – Mai Chau – Nghia Lo – Mu Cang Chai – Sapa – Y Ty – Hanoi


1/ Mai Chau Valley: Mai Chau is the heart of a beautiful valley that is a world away from the hustle and bustle of Hanoi. The modern village is an unappealing sprawl, but as you emerge on the rice fields and rural living it is transformed into a real paradise. It’s a stunning area.

2/ Mu Cang Chai: Mu Cang Chai is considered as the most beautiful destination in Vietnam adventure tour because when visiting this place, you will not only have a great chance to enjoy the beautiful terraced fields but also have chance to explore the unique of hill tribe .

3/ Sapa: The Queen of the Mountains, Sapa sits regally overlooking a beautiful valley, lofty mountains towering over the town on all sides. Welcome to the destination in northwest Vietnam, gateway to another world of mysterious minority cultures and luscious landscapes. The spectacular scenery that surrounds Sapa includes cascading rice terraces that spill down the mountains like a patchwork quilt. The mountains are often shrouded in mist that rolls back and forth along the peaks, offering tantalising glimpses of what lies in wait on a clear day. The valleys and villages around Sapa are home to a host of hill-tribe people.

4/ Y Ty: 70km driving from Sapa YTy now is considered as a new attractive destination in Lao Cai due to its natural beauty. On the way to this beautiful place, you can see the zigzag roads, clouds cover the villages and people in somewhere. All looks like a colorful picture and you will be attracted from the first sight.

5/ Bac Ha Market: Bac Ha has one of the most interesting ethnic markets in Vietnam and possibly everywhere in South East Asia: "Sunday is market day in Bac Ha, which is the occasion for the various local ethnies to gather in huge crowds to exchange the last news, gossip, shop, and eat a copious lunch. It was visibly a festive event. I was surrounded in a sea of color, and had the feeling to be on a movie set


Brief Vietnam Northwest loop tour:

Day 1: Hanoi Arrival
Day 2: Hanoi – Mai Chau
Day 3: Mai Chau – Nghia Lo
Day 4: Nghia Lo – Mu Cang Chai
Day 5: Mu Cang Chai – Sapa
Day 6: Sapa Trekking
Day 7: Sapa – Y Ty
Day 8: Y Ty – Muong Hum – Bac Ha
Day 9: Bac Ha market – drive to Hanoi
Day 10: Hanoi Departure

If you are looking for untouristic destinations with off the beaten paths, Vietnam Northest loop tour is a good choice for you. The Northwest - the roof of Vietnam is where the mountains of the Tonkinese Alps located with spectacular scenery and electic mix of hill tribes. This Vietnam adventure tour will give you abundant chances to come face to face with the amazing landscapes and colorful inhabitants of remote hill tribe villages including Mai Chau, Nghia Lo, Mu Cang Chai, Sapa, and Y Ty. Especially, the driving from Mu Cang Chai to Sapa offers some of the best mountain and terraced rice fields vistas in Southeast Asia as the roads climb more than 1000m over the Tram Ton Pass.Let's join this Vietnam adventure trip to discover the secrets of the region.


  • Tour Class

  • 3 Star Hotel 
  • High Season 

  • (Jan 1 - Apr 30 & Oct 1 - Dec 31)

  • From $930 
  • Low season 

  • (May 1 - Sep 9)

  • From $920

NOTE: The above tour prices are estimated per person & applied for group of 2 persons! Depending on your favorite hotels, traveling dates & group sizes, the tour prices will be updated! Please contact us at info@vivutravel.com for further information!

Hanoi Arrival (None)

Upon arrival, our private Vietnam Tours guide and driver will welcome your Vietnam Holiday, pick up and transfer to Hanoi, a city where the exotic chic of old Asia blends with the dynamic face of new Asia. Where the medieval and modern co-exist. A city with a blend of Parisian grace and Asian pace, an architectural museum piece evolving in harmony with its history, rather than bulldozing through like many of the region’s capitals. Hanoi is where imagination becomes reality. Free at leisure.

Overnight in Hanoi.

Day 01

Hanoi – Mai Chau (Breakfast, Lunch)

08:00 Pick up at your hotel and transfer to visit one of the most beautiful place in the North – Mai Chau Valley which takes around 160Km (4 hours).

On the way, we make a first stop at Hoa Binh Hydropower Plant which was built from 1979 to 1994. It is not only an important industrial construction but also an attractive sightseeing for visitors. Many valuable items such as: Ho Chi Minh statue on Tuong hill with 18 meters height, the traditional area keeping letters, memorial Vietnamese and Soviet experts sacrifice to built hydropower projects.

Our next stop will be Giang Mo ethnic village which is set in a valley at the foot of Mo Mountain in Cao Phong District, 85km northwest of Ha Noi and 10km from Hoa Binh City. Visiting Giang Mo Village where you have a chance to see houses on stilts rested under the shadow of big trees and surrounded by paddy fields, discover the daily life of local Muong Minority and interact with them.

From there, we take a short drive to reach to one of the most beautiful roads in Vietnam which is steep mountains in one side and amazing Hoa Binh Lake in the other side and called Halong bay on land with thousands of islands dotted on the lake. If you are lucky, you can see the fishermen working on the lake to catch fish, shrimp… Especially, we will stop at a stilt-house located on the bank of the lake for having a picnic lunch which will be prepared by our tour guide. Then take a short boat trip (1 hours) on the beautiful lake and immerge yourself in the pure nature of fresh.

Overnight in Mai Chau.

Day 02

Mai Chau – Nghia Lo (Breakfast, Lunch)

After breakfast, we depart for Nghia Lo via Son La. We will have stops on the way to take the wonderful photos from stunning mountains and landscape and visit Muong minority in Yen Chau and Moc Chau.

Arrival Nghia Lo, if time permits, we will invite you to visit the tea farm in Suoi Giang town. Check in hotel and overnight in Nghi Lo city centre.

Day 03

Nghia Lo – Tu Le - Mu Cang Chai (Breakfast, Lunch)

After breakfast , we are ready for Lu Le Visiting & take photograph from Lim Mong, Lim Thai on the way.

Having lunch on the way in local restaurant.

After lunch, continue driving to Mu Cang Chai. You will be stop at La Pan Tan and Che Cu Nha Villages which having the best scenery about terrace fields.

Arrive Mu Cang Chai, check in guest house and overnight in Mu Cang Chai

Day 04

Mu Cang Chai – Sapa (breakfast, Lunch)

In the morning, we have a chance to visit the different and very colorful hill tribes in Muong Hoa, Muong Kim and Na Kim villages before keep driving to Tram Ton pass where you have a great chance to enjoy the fresh, cool air and stunning landscapes.

Continuing down road to visit Silver waterfall in O Quy Ho before arrival Sapa town centre. Check in and free at leisure to discover Sapa by night.

Overnight in Sapa

Day 05

Sapa trekking tour (Breakfast, Lunch)

09:00: The local tour guide will come to meet you at your hotel, she will introduce about the trip via the map and then we start doing one day trek to Sa Seng, Hang Da and Hau Thao villages where will give you a special atmosphere of peaceful villages in the mountain, those are visited by fewer tourists than the other villages.

Our driver and tour guide will lead you from Sapa centre to the new road to discover Sapa market and meet the different hill tribes are trading here. After one hour visiting market, we continue our trip by driving to Sa Seng where we start trekking up hill. Along the way, you will have a great chance to view and enjoy the amazing scenery of Chapa vallay with its mountain side, river, terraced rice fields and villages located close together.

Keep walking to Hang Da, a small but very beautiful village of Black Hmong people where you can stop to visit and hear your tour guide introduce more about their traditional culture and custom. Then you will be better understanding the culture of different minorities in Sapa.

Have picnic lunch in a small port where you can view the wonderful rice paddy . After lunch time, we continue walking to Hau Thao, from this place you have a chance to see the panorama view of Muong Hoa valley and Hoang Lien Son mountain range. Our private van is ready to transfer you back to Sapa

Overnight in Sapa

Day 06

Sapa – Y Ty (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

On this day, we continue our amazing trip to Y Ty, one of the most beautiful destinations in Lao Cai province. From Sapa, we transfer you to Y Ty where you have a chance to see the starting point of Red river running to Vietnam from China and see the conjunction of Lung Po Stream joining to Red river.

After lunch in Y Ty, we start trekking tour to visit Lao Chai 1 village of Ha Nhi minority, in this village, you will have a chance to explore the traditional culture and custom of hill tribe living in the house with the mushroom shape.

Continue our trek to discover Phin Ho plateau with the height of over 2.000 m , enjoy the fresh and pure air and discover the diversity of plants.

Get back to Y Ty centre for check in homestay.

Overnight in Y Ty

Day 07

Y Ty – Muong Hum – Bac Ha (Breakfast, Lunch)

After breakfast with the host we say goodbye and drive to Muong Hum. Stop at Y Ty jungle where you can see a lot of ancient trees and in this jungle, the weather is always fogy and cool in all year round.

Several stops on the way to take the beautiful photos then have lunch on the way before driving ahead to Bac Ha.

Check in and overnight in Bac Ha town.

Day 08

Bac Ha colorful market – drive back to Hanoi (Breakfast, Lunch)

The markets in the Northern Vietnam are always the colorful meeting places for the hill tribes, spotlight for any Sapa Tours and of course, your unique Vietnam Tours experience. Minority people come down from the mountains to sell their products, or just for catching up on the latest news, gossip, drinking away troubles or seeking for lover.

From your hotel, you also can see the people is coming to market from everywhere.

After that, you will have time to take a walk around the market to see how local people business and enjoy the special atmosphere and you may try out your trading skills with the friendly local people.

Have lunch in the local restaurant before drive back to Hanoi.

Arrival Hanoi around 19:00. Check in hotel and overnight in Hanoi

Day 09

Hanoi departure (Breakfast)

Fee time at leisure until our tour guide and driver transfer you to airport where you can continue your next destination. End of the trip!

Day 10


  • Hotel accommodation (Check-in time: 14h00, Check-out time: 12h00)
  • Private car/mini van
  • All entrance fees
  • English speaking guides (Except for free days)
  • Meals as per program
  • Visa approval letter to Vietnam (Except for $25 usd per person as stamping fee at the airport)


  • Early check-in & late check-out
  • International flight in/ out Vietnam
  • Tips
  • Drinks
  • Personal Expenses
  • Insurance

* What about Cancellation policy?
In case of cancellation, we will not impose any charges if we are not being charged and possible to get refund from our suppliers but if our suppliers apply charges for cancellation, you will have to pay those charges that apply. Cancellation policies vary, depending upon the type of service, the time of year, and the reason for cancellation. We will pass on to you all details of any cancellation policy with our transparent reply upon demand.

General cancellation charges that applied by travel services in Vietnam and Indochina.

- Domestic flights: 25% of the fares
- 3 star hotels, no charge if you cancel 5 -7 days before your arrival. (FIT)
- 4 star hotels, no charge if you cancel 10 - 15 days before your arrival (FIT)
- 5 stars hotels, no charge if you cancel 15 - 20 days before your arrival (FIT)

However, in peak season, we may have to pay the hotels one month before your arrival to secure the booking, and in this case, the cancellation policy will be based on the hotels' cancellation plolicies.

* Can we get refund?
For the unused services, Vivutravel will refund you the money.

Question 1: Best time for Northeast and Northwest Vietnam tour

The Northwest

The Northwest are very famous for their endless beautiful rice fields that look really like a picturesque landscape. And you can fully enjoy that beauty while traveling to those areas from May to Sep. In May & June, it is called the water falling season by the local people as it is the time they fill in the terraced rice fields with water. Everywhere is like a giant mirror reflecting the natural beauty and the sunlight. In Jul & Aug, the rice fields are being colored green and arising as a charming green picture. The most beautiful time to enjoy terraced rice fields in Sapa and the Northwest is at the end of August and in the beginning of September when they turns yellow – a perfect color of a masterpiece created by nature and human. 

How about the other months? In fact, the other months are also a good time to travel to those areas as you can see many other amazing things like peach and plum trees & flowers in Spring time from January to March or snow sometimes covering everywhere in Winter time from December to February. 

Just be aware that many days in Winter can be sunk deep in fog and frost with short views and make your trip out of our expectation. However, discovering the daily life of local people during Winter gives you memorable experience, for sure, as their hard conditions are really shown on those days. 

northwest vietnam tour

The Northeast

Northeast region includes mountainous provinces in the far North of Vietnam where the weather is cool/cold all year round. It will be severely cold from December to February with average temperature of 8 degree C and cool in the rest of year with average temperature of 25 degree C.

Be aware that it will be wet and foggy in cold season and you can't enjoy the spectacular and beautiful sceneries. However, there will be drizzly weather during cold season only, not typhoon. Furthermore, visiting local ethnic people during cold days will be different experiences as you can see and entirely understand their life of deprivation and misery.

Rainiest months in those areas are July and August, however, those 2 months are also best time for traveling to the Northeast as you can enjoy yellow rice fields in other areas in general and in Bac Son Valley in particular. Ban Gioc Waterfall is also more beautiful during rainy season.  

northeas vietnam tour

Question 2: Trekking routes and trekking distances

Trekking is a must-do activity while traveling in those remote areas, then it plays an important role in that trip, of course. So you should clear all information with your travel consultant or tour guide about your trekking tours as some of them are very hard and dangerous that are just suitable for young and energetic people only. A suitable trekking distance will help you fully enjoy the trip, the culture, the local people as well as the nature, otherwise, tiredness of a hard and long trekking distance will surely make you have many negative thoughts. 

The trekking routes are also important as it should really be arranged based on your traveling time. In beautiful time, it is advised to do popular trekking routes even though they can be crowded with tourists as those routes pass amazing terraced rice fields that you have never seen. However, when the harvest season is over, you should consider the trekking routes that are not crowded and passing remote villages. 

north tour vietnam

Question 3: What should be prepared for Vietnam Northeast Loop Tour

Clothes: Traveling in cool season, you should prepare summer clothes with some light jackets as it will be pretty cold in the early morning and evening. Whereas warm coats are highly recommended for traveling in cold season as it can be even dropped to 5 degrees under zero.

Rain gear: Weather in the Northeast is not stable that can be changed continuously. It can be rain in the early morning but sunny at noon and rain again in the late afternoon. Then rain gear should be well prepared.

Personal drugs: The far north is really lack of medical infrastructure as well as pharmacy. Then it is advised to bring your personal drugs as well as popular medicines like paracetamol, thermometer, anti-itching lotion, oral rehydration preparation and bandaids.

Mosquito and insect repellent: Those stuff are necessary as you may trek through the wet jungle or stay at local houses near the forest.

Question 4: Traveling to the Northeast in cold season

Hotel with heat: It is better to stay at a hotel with heater (of course, air-conditioner with heat is not available in those areas) if you are planning to travel to the Northeast in cold season. Homestay is not a good idea during that period as you can’t sleep well for sure due to low temperature and privation of warming facilities.

northeast vietnam

Question 5: Traveling in rainy season 

You should consider traveling to those areas in rainy season as it can be dangerous sometimes. When it rains a lot in those areas for many days, erosion is pretty popular and may much affect to your trip.

Question 6: Traveling to the Northeast and Northwest with kids

Traveling to the Northeast with infants and small kids under 6 yrs old is not advised because of the simple life condition and poor infrastructure in those areas, but older kids and teenagers are really fine as they can bear a pretty hard trip and more important, a lot of life-time experiences are waiting for them.

northwest vietnam

Question 7: Is it safe for traveling to untouched areas

It is safe, for sure, while traveling to the Northwest Mountains or even border regions as those areas are highly controlled and protected by local government. That’s why you have to apply for permission before visiting to the border regions and it will be arranged by your local travel agent. The local ethnic groups are also friendly and hospitality even they can’t speak both Vietnamese and English.

Question 8: Interact with local people

Local people are not familiar with tourists but you are surely warmly welcomed by them as Vietnamese in general and ethnic people in particular are very open and kind and so love to see you as well as to help you in case you need. Then, you should show your good attitudes all the time if you want to visit their houses as well as make a short chat with them. Remember to ask for acceptance when you wish to take their photos.


Question 9: Road condition

Road condition is not a big problem when traveling in the Northeast and Northwest as they are mostly big and smooth roads

trip to ha giang

Question 10: Donation

Donation is highly recommended and it can be money or not. Normally, you can bring along warm clothes for both adults and kids as it is cold there all year round. Quilted Blanket is another great idea. Or at least, you should prepare some small gifts for local kids like cakes, notebooks, pencils, etc. 

mu cang chai

Vivutravel believes that a good choice of accommodation will be the key factor for a successful holiday, and for many years of experience in tourism, we have created a list of the best hotels and resorts each destination that offer us both more benefits of competitive rates, early birds, guaranteed promotion and discounts with availability.

vietnam hotel

We pick the selected hotels for you as below:
Location: The hotels must be centrally – located, close to the main attractions and most convenient for you to enjoy your holiday.

Facility & Service Quality: Vivutravel only uses the hotels that are regularly and strictly inspected. The hotel must provide international standards and your every need is cared for by the hotel staff.

Variety in Choice: As Vivutravel offers different styles of tour such as honeymoon,, family, adventure, discovery, homestay,... so we will offer many styles and grades of hotels which are available for different budgets, tastes and culture backgrounds.

Hotel Information for planning your holiday and stay.
2 Stars - From US$35 - US$40:
We hardly use 2 star hotels for our clients but sometimes we have no choice if your trip is in the mountainous or remote areas. Basically, 2 star hotels will offer good size and clean guest rooms with AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms

3 Stars - From US$40 - US$80:
Offering basic needs for a comfortable stay, good size and clean guest rooms with Free access high speed Internet, Welcome baskets and drinking water, Telephone with international dialing, Electronic safe box in room, Hairdryer, Coffee and Tea, Wake-up service, AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms. On-site restaurants with breakfast included and lunch or dinner at your own pick up. A small fitness center, spa and swimming pool can be expected.

4 Stars - From from US$80 - US$130:
Offering a wide range of comfortable boutique hotels are available with shopping, dining and entertainment facilities nearby. Featuring quality service, fully furnished rooms, restaurants, fitness center with spa (and swimming pool in most cases), the hotels are expected to offer an above-average accommodation experience.

5 Stars - from US$130 - US$200 – US$ 300:
Offering an extensive range of facilities for an excellent accommodation experience. Multiple restaurants on site and a wide range of choice for buffet breakfast, good size of swimming pool, fitness center and concierge service round out the experience.

Tour guide and driver are Vivutravel's representatives and your travel companions during your travel in Sapa & Northwest Loop Tour who take care of our travel services and make your holiday a memorable time. Understanding this, Vivutravel always selects the best tour guides and drivers for such amazing trips to the far North.

Tour Guide:

We do understand that a good tour guide will make your holiday a beautiful time and tour guides who work with us are well-paid, experienced with a university background, eager to exchange our culture, lifestyle, knowledge...with travelers, and have a great passion for their country and understand the personal touch.

Then we always use experienced tour guides who are expert in guiding trips to those Northeast areas and will show you the most beautiful view-points, introduce to you unique cultures and lifestyles of local ethnic people as well as guide you to amazing trekking routes.

vivutravel tour guide


Vivutravel guarantees to offer the best means of transport during your Sapa & Northwest Loop tour. The safety, comfort and security of our customers come first. Furthermore, as all tourist sites are mostly far from towns and city centers, vehicle must be the latest modern one or it will be very difficult to manage in case it is broken on the way. Furthermore, checking the vehicle carefully before the trip is a must-do procedure in order that it will work well and stays away from all rising troubles. Our drivers must be very experienced and careful too as it is not easy to go around those untouched areas. They are all full time workers, government licensed in the tourism industry with at least 5 years driving experience.

vivutravel transportation

Indochina holiday to Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand offers you some of the world's best food and it is really the highlight of your travel. Vivutravel tends to include meals where necessary and when special. Other meals are at your own choices.

vietnam travelvietnam holidays

Breakfast is included at all hotels and is buffet breakfast with Asian and Western food.

Lunches (if included) are usually set menu at handpicked local restaurant with comfortable dining environment where you can rest assure to taste the local flavor. All restaurants are carefully selected and highly recommended.

If allergic to some food
We suggest you to list any food or ingredients that you are allergic to and let our travel consultant know. Then your travel consultant will mark them in the guide’s itinerary, so that our reservation's team and tour guides in different cities can make some preparations and arrangements in advance.

Dinners are only included if you stay overnight in a homestay, overnight on cruise in Halong Bay, Mekong Delta or at some special occasions such as welcome dinner, farewell dinner or on requested. So dinners are at your own choice and arrangement, but Vivutravel's tour guide will always give you good suggestions based on your preferences.

Your rate:
Recent Reviews

Lyn and Barry

          ( Excellent )

Hi Ngoc Just wanted to let you know that once again we really have loved our trip to Vietnam. Everything that you planned has been wonderful. So until the next time thank you once more Love and best wishes Lyn Have a great Independence holiday Xxxxxxxxxxx

Roslyn Patten

          ( Excellent )

This is the third time that we travel with Vivutravel. Whether for a 3 week tour or a 3 days tour, the satisfaction is always there. To prepare our trip to northwest of Vietnam, Hoai was listening. Only one contact is appreciable. A good reactivity during the exchanges of mail, a phone call for more information, Hoai has always responded our request. Thanks Hoai. We have not yet visited all of South East Asia and we will not hesitate to contact Vivutravel for future trip. We have recommended Vivutravel for our family and our friends. Do not hesitate, go with Vivutravel.

Start with $920 $
Get free quote for this tour? Please fill out the below tour enquiry form and give us as much information as possible, we get back shortly!

This is private tour with a flexible schedule. There is no other traveler on the tour. You will have a private English speaking tour guide and a private air-conditioned vehicle in each destination. This is sample tour and can always be personalized to meet your personal needs and travel budget.

Planning the tour:
Prompt response in 0.5-10 hours
Supported by private travel consultant
Unlimited changes, no charge

Our guarantee:
Quality service and affordable price with added value
Use of excellent local guides
Use of well-selected hotels
Use of comfortable vehicles
Worry-free & one-stop service
Excellent customer care

Methods of payment:
Deposit 30% in advance after the tour is confirmed
Balance paid on arrival in cash, credit cards, traveler's cheque
Online and secure payment by bank transfer or credit cards