My Best Friend Comes To Vietnam: Part 2 in Sapa

For the next part of Munji’s Vietnam adventure we headed to the green mountains of northwestern Vietnam, Sapa. The town overlooks terraced rice fields of the Muong Hoa Valley.

Views of Vietnam
A modern little family 👩‍👩‍👧

After absorbing culture in Hoi An, getting down and dirty in mud caves in Phong Nha and partying until the early hours of the morning in Hanoi, clean fresh air and a good hike was exactly what we needed. Sapa was the place for exactly that!

views of Sapa
Sapa

The journey to Sapa

Getting to Sapa town was easy, we got a bus from Hanoi city centre.
Tip: to make sure you get a good seat on the bus, arrive for the departure early!
Another note, it’s not a very comfortable ride, especially if you’ve got normal / longer than normal sized legs. It can also get very cold with the air con, there’s no toilet on board and the lighting makes you feel like you’re in a night club. So you might want to bear that in mind.

On the bus from Hanoi to Sapa
Overnight bus to Sapa

I’m not a morning person

As soon as we got off the bus in Sapa town we were bombarded by local women asking if we wanted a room at their homestay. After telling them several times that we had already booked somewhere and we were waiting for a taxi, they then went on to try and sell us all kinds of souvenirs.

After an awful sleep on the bus and still feeling rather groggy, being pressured to buy things at 6 am in the morning was very, very annoying. If you know me, you’ll know I’m not a morning person. I hate being woken up, and when I do I’m in no mood to talk straight away.

But after this encounter, the day did get better.

Views over Sapa

But the day did get better

After hearing that Sapa town was very touristy we decided to stay slightly further out of town. 8.9km outside to be precise, in the province of Lao Cai.

We got to the homestay, which turned out to be slightly less authentic than expected, but none the less very reasonable for what we paid. It was around £13 for a one night stay for the two of us in a private room. The bathroom is shared with other travellers and a family dinner was also included in the price.

Munji doesn’t eat meat, so while she was visiting me I also didn’t eat meat. Being vegetarian was surprisingly quite easy. I thought it would be difficult at the homestay, but they were very accommodating and there was plenty of food to go around.

last minute

Vietnam is a hikers paradise

Sapa is a popular trekking destination for backpackers and holiday-makers. We only had one night to spend here, so arriving at 6 am meant we ought make the most of our time. After putting our bags down and checking in we took an hour nap, had a little bite to eat for breakfast, and then reluctantly decided to embark on a 7 hour trek.

Ready for our hike in the hills of Vietnam
Just starting our 7-hour hike and we already look like 💩

At the time it wasn’t our greatest idea, seeing as we were both still half asleep, but looking back it was the best decision we’d made on the whole trip.

Most of the town’s population is made up of hill tribes; the Black Hmong, Tay and Dao. The homestay had arranged a trek for us with a local tour guide who was from the Black Hmong tribe. The guide had great English and was able to tell us a lot of information about Sapa and other nearby villages.

With local Vietnamese tour guide
Munji, Chili (our tour guide) and me
Friends along the tour
We made some lovely friends along the way

If you’re wanting more of a hiking challenge there’s always the 3,143m tall Fansipan peak. It’s the highest mountain, not only in Vietnam, but Indochina! And it’s climbable over several days. Or you could just get a cable car to the top.

More beautiful views of Sapa below.

Apart from hikes and trekking there are other things you can do in Sapa. Even though we were short for time we managed to squeeze in a handicraft workshop with a local tribe family. It was an authentic experience which taught us how the people of the Black Hmong make and design their special Vietnamese clothing for the new year ahead.

Traditional thread weaving in Vietnam
Busy weaving some thread

And here are some more photos of the stunning Sapa views and cute little kiddies we met on our travels.

Vietnam is beautiful
kids in tree
What a tree!
Vietnam bridge views
I love Vietnam
Tree climbing kids
Rice fields in Vietnam
Munji in Vietnam
On the way to school
Kids in Sapa
Sapa views
Sapa
Sapa heart flower

Have you been to Sapa? What was your experience like? Leave a comment below.

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Head over to Travel Videos if you’d like to watch what we got up to in Vietnam.

Thanks for stopping by!

Maya
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Current location: At school, blogging before my first lesson of the day.

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