An Epic Expedition to Ha Giang and Ba Be

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Overview

Ha Giang  - sometimes known as ‘the Roof of Vietnam’ - is characterized by beautiful limestone karsts, rolling hills and highlands. It’s also homeland of many minority groups and hilltribes such as the Dao, H’mong, Tay and Nung... This epic road trip across Dong Van Geopark to Ba Be Naitonal Park has been handcrafted to bring you an array of colourful ethnic minority communities, stay in local villages and visit lively tribal markets, while travelling through dramatic mountain and forest landscapes

Highlights

  • Spectacular scenery
  • Be immersed in hill-tribe culture
  • Great trekking trail for nature enthusiasts
  • Extendable with Halong bay

 

What to bring

  • Sun & rain gear (including sun cream, brimmed-hat)
  • Insect repellent
  • Warm clothes in winter (mid Nov to early Mar)
  • Trekking shoes/sandals
  • Daypack for trekking
  • Toiletries, towel and flashlight
  • Original passport

 

Hanoi - Xuan Giang

Day 1 Hanoi - Xuan Giang

Meals: lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Xuan Giang village - Traditional house-on-silts

8:00 AM - pick up from your hotel, we exit Hanoi on a highway and get on nice winding roads to Yen Binh – the Southern edge town of Ha Giang province.  You’ll arrive at Xuan Giang village by afternoon, let the high mountains behind and enter a lower relief with its rice fields, forests and rivers. Check-in a local homestay and enjoy a late lunch prepared for you by the host.

The rest of day, with weather and physicality permits, we’ll spend the rest of day for an light trek around the simple and beautiful rural area.  Dinner and overnight at the homestay.

Your overnight accommodation is provided by a local family in their traditional house-on-silts. There’s no private room and you’ll sleep on the floor in a large communal area. The sleeping corner is set up with a single mattress (thin, but adequate), blankets (ditto), pillow and mosquito net. The restroom is at international standard and a few steps from the main house.

 

Xuan Giang - Quan Ba

Day 2 Xuan Giang - Quan Ba

Meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Nam Dam Dao lodge - Standard room

After breakfast, we say goodbye to the homestay host continue our journey to Quan Ba. The road then takes us up into the mountains, with a dramatic climb to see Heaven’s Gate, the entrance to the Dong Van Geopark. We’ll then get off from our car and take a light trek from here to Nam Dam – a village of Dzao village.

The trekking ends at Nam Dam Dzao lodge, where a late lunch will be served. The rest of day will be at your leisure, relaxing at the lodge or take an easy walk to learn about local daily life. Dinner and overnight at the lodge.

Located in the heart of Nam Dam village, Quan Ba town, the Dao lodge is featured with traditional architecture and magnificent mountain views. Each room has a balcony and a seating area, enclosed bathroom comes with a shower, slippers and free toiletries.

 

Quan Ba - Dong Van - Meo Vac

Day 3 Quan Ba - Dong Van - Meo Vac

Meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Meo Vac mountain lodge

Have a full breakfast as you need energy for 2.5 hours scenic hike on trails to Lung Tam village. Upon arrival there’s chance to visit a local workshop where women cultivated and weaved hemp for generations.

We then get back to our car and the (probably) most scenic road of the whole country, right at the heart of the Dong Van Geopark (recognized by UNESCO) - a rocky plateau with towering peaks, pine forests and wide valleys. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant in Yen Minh.

In the afternoon, we have a break at Dong Van town before heading to Meo Vac via Ma Pi Leng pass. This is one of the best photo stop to enjoy the wonderful sightseeing of this vast limestone mountain range and perpendicular walls of rock, which brings one a feeling of adventure whilst being lost in the rocky highlands . Check-in Meo Vac mountain lodge.

Meo Vac Mountain lodge (a.k.a Chung Pua Auberge) is an old ancestral Hmong house built in the 1930’s. Originally the house was designed as a fortified farm with four blocks of buildings surrounding a central patio; following an architecture model common in the south of China Han. After renovation, the lodge opened to travelers in 2013 and offers a unique accommodation experience in a true H’mong atmosphere.

 

Meo Vac hiking

Day 4 Meo Vac hiking

Meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Meo Vac mountain lodge

We have a full day ahead to explore the region. It is culturally rich of 16 ethnic groups and features gorgeous landscape made of mountain and deep rocky valleys.

We pack our picnic lunch and depart from the lodge after breakfast for a day hiking in this little paradise. Numerous encounters along with the dwellers on their way to work in corn fields or collect wood and plants from the forests. The program will follow your rhythm and the guide will be there to match it with your preferences. Second dinner and overnight at the lodge.

 

Meo Vac - Ba Be National Park

Day 5 Meo Vac - Ba Be National Park

Meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Pac Ngoi village – Traditional house-on-silts

We leave Meo Vac after breakfast; the drive is quite long today but across beautiful sceneries. We journey through three different provinces, Ha Giang, Cao Bang and Bac Kan. Although it’s quite a long drive, the landscape is breathtaking with the Sino-Vietnamese mountain ranges all around. Weather and time permits, there’re opportunities to pay a visit to some local villages en-route such as Nung people of Niem Son valley, San Chay people in Bao Lac or Dzao Tien people in Tinh Tuc.

We should enter Pac Ngoi village in Ba Be National in the mid-afternoon. We’ll have dinner and spend the night with a Tay family in their traditional house-on-silts.

 

Ba Be National Park

Day 6 Ba Be National Park

Meal: breakfast, lunch, dinner | Accommodation: Pac Ngoi village – Traditional house-on-silts

After a greedy breakfast, we’ll get a quick transfer to the main wharfs of the lake for a venture on the biggest natural lake of Vietnam. We journey across it from South to North seizing the natural splendor of the spot. At the Northern edge, we veer off on the Gam River and slide it up to the remote jungle village of Dau Dang. We should be there by lunchtime, warmly welcomed at the house of Mr Hien and Mrs Thom, owners of the regionally recognized “best restaurant” of the province.

After lunch and probably few shots of corn liquor, we get back on the boat and slide down the river all the way to Puong cave. We pass across and follow gently the current to the point where we can meet a road again for a transfer back to Pac Ngoi. Time for shower before another dinner and night at the homestay.

 

Ba Be - Hanoi

Day 7 Ba Be - Hanoi

Meal: breakfast, lunch | Accommodation: not included

Easy morning, we will have time to stroll around a last time before lunch at the homestay. We exit the park in the afternoon on a nice little road, farewell to the lake and arrive in Hanoi around 18:00

 

PRICE PER PERSON based on group tour

Validity

Price per person based
on group of 2

Single supplement
1 Oct 2018 - 31 Dec 2019

USD 814
[vnd 18 966 000]

USD 72
[vnd 1 664 000]

 

* Fixed prices in USD. Prices in VND are subject to currency fluctuations upon making the trip reservation.

* Single supplement: to be applied for those who travel with others but require a single room for her/himself.

* Prices valid till 31 December 2019 for the ready-to-book adventure outlined on this detailed program which has been handcrafted by our production team and that includes the best of the destination (highlights and some lesser known assets as well!). Our travel consultants will also be glad to customize this journey to suit your specific interests and travel-style. 

* Would you like to adapt the itinerary, accommodation, length of the trip or any activity as per your needs and preferences? Then just forward us your comments at info@handspan.com.

* Special prices for groups of more than 2 people, children and the possibility to connect the tour with other stages of your trip around Indochina by contacting us. 

Included

  • Accommodation as specified on the program.
  • Transportation in appropriate vehicle with experienced driver as stated.
  • Meals as specified on the program.
  • The services of an experienced English-speaking guide.
  • All entrance fees, visits and activities mentioned.
  • VAT and other taxes.

 

Not included

Flight tickets or visas.
Beverages, gratuities and personal expenses.
Personal travel insurance.
Supplements on peak season.

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